UN climate talks call for action

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The 18th United Nations Climate Change Conference has opened in Doha on November 26 with a call for action from the president of the sessions.

Abdullah Bin Hamad Al Atttiyah told around 17,000 participants from across the world at the opening ceremony of the 18th Conference of the Parties (COP18) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) that “climate change is a challenge for humanity” and that the conference was a “golden opportunity – we must make best use of it”.

At the opening ceremony there were speeches from Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, the outgoing president of the conference and Christiana Figueres, the UNFCCC Executive Secretary.

The opening ceremony of COP18 Doha comes after months of anticipation, planning and hard work, as Doha prepared to welcome the world the vital meeting.

COP18 in Doha is the first UN conference on climate change to implement the UN’s PaperSmart programme. Participants will be provided with digital copies of documents, so that they print only the documents they need.

To cut down on traffic pollution, a fleet of buses will take delegates and other participants from hotels to the Qatar National Convention Centre, the Doha Exhibition Centre, and some of the city’s top tourist attractions. One hundred of the buses will run on gas-to-liquids fuel, a cleaner form of fuel.

In addition, the conference strives to leave a green legacy in Qatar. A Sustainability Expo is highlighting the green technology projects of local and international businesses. A network of information pods provides resources about climate change throughout Doha. And conference organisers have declared that the whole event will be carbon neutral: whatever carbon emissions are generated will be offset by investment in carbon reducing or absorbing projects. Together, these and other initiatives intend to point the attention of Qataris and visitors to the potentially dire consequences of climate change and the measures needed to fight it.

As a coastal, dry land nation, Qatar is one of the 10 developing countries predicted to be most affected by rising sea levels.

“Now more than ever, the issues at the heart of these negotiations are at the forefront of global debate and discourse. All seven billion people living on the planet share a single challenge: climate change,” Al Attiyah said.

“This is why we gather at the highest official levels in an international framework; this is our mission. If we do not make the changes we need to now, it will soon be too late. We must decide whether we let our lifestyles jeopardise our life,” he added.

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

The 18th United Nations Climate Change Conference has opened in Doha on November 26 with a call for action from the president of the sessions.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

The 18th United Nations Climate Change Conference has opened in Doha on November 26 with a call for action from the president of the sessions.

Abdullah Bin Hamad Al Atttiyah told around 17,000 participants from across the world at the opening ceremony of the 18th Conference of the Parties (COP18) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) that “climate change is a challenge for humanity” and that the conference was a “golden opportunity – we must make best use of it”.

At the opening ceremony there were speeches from Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, the outgoing president of the conference and Christiana Figueres, the UNFCCC Executive Secretary.

The opening ceremony of COP18 Doha comes after months of anticipation, planning and hard work, as Doha prepared to welcome the world the vital meeting.

COP18 in Doha is the first UN conference on climate change to implement the UN’s PaperSmart programme. Participants will be provided with digital copies of documents, so that they print only the documents they need.

To cut down on traffic pollution, a fleet of buses will take delegates and other participants from hotels to the Qatar National Convention Centre, the Doha Exhibition Centre, and some of the city’s top tourist attractions. One hundred of the buses will run on gas-to-liquids fuel, a cleaner form of fuel.

In addition, the conference strives to leave a green legacy in Qatar. A Sustainability Expo is highlighting the green technology projects of local and international businesses. A network of information pods provides resources about climate change throughout Doha. And conference organisers have declared that the whole event will be carbon neutral: whatever carbon emissions are generated will be offset by investment in carbon reducing or absorbing projects. Together, these and other initiatives intend to point the attention of Qataris and visitors to the potentially dire consequences of climate change and the measures needed to fight it.

As a coastal, dry land nation, Qatar is one of the 10 developing countries predicted to be most affected by rising sea levels.

“Now more than ever, the issues at the heart of these negotiations are at the forefront of global debate and discourse. All seven billion people living on the planet share a single challenge: climate change,” Al Attiyah said.

“This is why we gather at the highest official levels in an international framework; this is our mission. If we do not make the changes we need to now, it will soon be too late. We must decide whether we let our lifestyles jeopardise our life,” he added.

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