Paris climate summit talks go into overtime

Sleep-starved envoys tasked with saving mankind from catastrophic climate change aim to wrap up a historic Paris accord on Saturday after battling through a second all-night session of UN talks, the French hosts said.

Paris climate summit talks go into overtime
An illustration picture taken on December 10, 2015 in Paris shows a draft for the outcome of the COP21 United Nations conference on climate change next to a picture of the Eiffel Tower. Photo: AFP
Eleven days of bruising international diplomacy in the French capital appeared to finally open the door to an elusive deal, now expected to be delivered one day after the original Friday evening deadline.
“It will be presented Saturday morning for adoption midday,” said a source at the French presidency of the climate talks, an annual gathering that frequently misses deadlines by days.
“Things are moving in the right direction,” said Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius, who is presiding over the talks, according to the source who spoke to AFP.
Releasing a fresh draft of the pact on Thursday night that showed progress on some key issues, an increasingly confident Fabius had said a deal was “extremely close”.
Fabius instructed the ministers from 195 nations to make unprecedented compromises on the outstanding issues: extremely complex rows primarily pitting rich countries against poor that have derailed previous UN efforts.
World leaders have described the Paris talks as the last chance to avert disastrous climate change: increasingly severe drought, floods and storms, as well as rising seas that engulf islands and populated coastal regions.
The planned accord would seek to revolutionise the world's energy system by cutting back or potentially eliminating the burning of coal, oil and gas, which leads to the release of Earth-warming greenhouse gases.
UN efforts dating back to the 1990s have failed to reach a truly universal pact to contain climate change.
Blame game 
Developing nations have insisted established economic powerhouses must shoulder the lion's share of responsibility as they have emitted most of the greenhouse gases since the Industrial Revolution.
But the United States and other rich nations say emerging giants must also do more, arguing that developing countries now account for most of today's emissions and thus will be largely responsible for future warming.
They are arguments worth hundreds of billions of dollars, which still need to be resolved before the negotiators can leave Paris.


French president’s trolling of Donald Trump delights the French AND Americans

Of all the reactions from global leaders to Donald Trump's decision to abandon the Paris climate deal, there was only one they were talking about on Twitter and in the press on both sides of the Atlantic for that matter.

French president's trolling of Donald Trump delights the French AND Americans
Photo: Screengrab France24

Shortly after Donald Trump made a not-so-shock announcement to withdraw the US from the Paris climate deal, the reactions from disappointed world leaders began to roll in.

But the one that grabbed all the attention and the headlines was from the French President Emmanuel Macron, who once again showed he knows how to impress on the world stage.

For a start Macron was quick off the blocks, taking to French TV at midnight local time to make a speech to the nation.

But how he really impressed and surprised viewers was by making his speech both in French and English. See the video below.

For a start French presidents don't normally speak English at all, let alone have the nerve and language ability to deliver a statement on live TV in Shakespeare's tongue.

And it's fair to say it went down well both in France and over the pond in America where Macron seems to be developing a huge following due to his willingness to stand up to both Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin.

AS usual Twitter was the first place to react.

Indeed many Americans were so impressed with Macron's English that it led them to mock the ability of their own president to speak his native language.

But the real crowd winner was Macron's trolling of Donald Trump when he ended his speech by twisting the US president's campaign slogan “Make America Great Again” to “”Make Our Planet Great Again.”

Macron even tweeted this image out and it soon went viral, getting 100,000 retweets.

That prompted the hashtag #makeourplanetgreatagain to top the Twitter trends in France.

But then Macron twisted the knife even further and told Americans disappointed with their new president to come to France to help battle climate change. And judging by many tweets, a lot of which were a little abusive to include here, many Americans (or at least those who don't like Trump) would be happy to take him up on the offer.

Macron's rebuke went down well on both sides of the Atlantic with the American press appreciating his “sermon” to Donald Trump and the French press acknowledging the ingenuity of his decision to give a speech in English. 

One article in Le Point magazine talked of how Macron had made the French feel proud of their president again who had in just three weeks become the “leader of the free world”.

While Macron may be under a little pressure at home, given the scandal that has surrounded one of his ministers, it's fair to say he has made an almighty impression in the international sphere in just under three weeks since he was inaugurated.

Although after his efforts last night he'd be forgiven for being a little hesitant next time he has to shake Donald Trump's hand.

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