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Barack Obama arrives in Paris for UN climate change summit – video

Guardian climate change - 19 min 29 sec ago

US President Barack Obama touches down at Orly airport outside Paris on Sunday night, ahead of the COP21 climate summit which is taking place in the French capital this week. The summit, due to start on Monday and continue for two weeks, aims to agree on a common global approach to tackling climate change

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Obama pays tribute to victims of Paris attacks

Guardian climate change - 2 hours 8 min ago

US president visits the Bataclan, the scene of the deadliest attack, while in Paris for the climate change summit

Barack Obama paid tribute to the victims of the Paris attacks shortly after arriving in the city, where he visited the Bataclan, the concert hall where the deadliest attack took place during the onslaught.

Obama, who is in Paris for Monday’s international talks to curb climate change, was joined at the site by the French president François Hollande not long after Air Force One touched down around midnight local time.

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Major powers pledge $20bn for green energy research

Guardian climate change - 2 hours 32 min ago

The vow boosts a parallel initiative by global business leaders including Mark Zuckerberg and Ratan Tata

The US and 18 other countries have pledged to double funds for clean energy research to a total of $20bn over five years, boosting a parallel initiative by Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg and increasing the prospects for successful agreement at the Paris climate negotiations that start on Monday.

The countries, which include the UK, Canada, China, Brazil, India and South Africa, span the biggest global economies and major emitters, oil and gas producers, and leaders in clean energy research, the White House said.

Related: Paris climate talks: ‘Six years on, climate change is killing fish, flooding our fields’

Related: Laos counts the cost of climate change: record floods, drought and landslides | John Vidal

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Protesters gather around the world for a strong climate change deal

Guardian climate change - Sun, 2015/11/29 - 11:39pm

Crowds in numerous cities marched to pressure world leaders meeting in Paris into strengthening environmental policy

Hundreds of thousands of people around the world, from Sydney to New York, marched on Sunday to call on world leaders meeting in Paris to agree a strong climate change deal.

In Paris, pairs of shoes given by Pope Francis and Ban Ki-moon were among a collection set out in the Place de la République to represent those who were unable to march due to a ban by the French authorities in the aftermath of 13 November terror attacks. People lit candles, sang songs and wandered around the shoes, many of which were later given to a charity for distributing to homeless people.

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Last chance salon in Paris: there is no planet B | Editorial

Guardian climate change - Sun, 2015/11/29 - 7:25pm

The world’s hopes for a sustainable future depend on what happens in Paris over the next two weeks

The current front-runner for best slogan for the Paris climate change summit has to be “there is no planet B”; as for images, it is hard to imagine one more potent than the thousands of pairs of shoes laid in tidy lines in the Place de la République that symbolise the march climate activists had scheduled for Sunday then banned for fear of a repeat of the terrorist attack of a fortnight ago. However equivocal some of the political leadership sometimes appears, the popular movement for greening the economy is in good heart.

This is the 21st UN conference of the parties on climate change, better known as COP, and there are signs of a new maturity that might be the best omen for the future. It is easy to forget that this is an unprecedented attempt at global cooperation, one which has not only moved from event to process, but from protest to movement. For Paris is not only about world leaders trying to find an agreement acceptable to nearly 200 countries for whom the consequences of global warming will be existentially different. It is now also about the place of non-state players, from the indigenous peoples of South America to the world’s most sophisticated cities, and from the individual decisions that each of us makes to the clean energy initiative being launched on Monday by one of the world’s richest men, Bill Gates. One sign of this maturity is the demand from Laurent Fabius, the French foreign affairs minister in charge of this COP, that a deal on a final text should be agreed by next weekend. That would mean the last week of the conference was spent discussing how to put the final communiqué into action.

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What Paris climate negotiators are up against, and what it means for Australia

Guardian climate change - Sun, 2015/11/29 - 7:08pm

It won’t ‘solve’ climate change, but the Paris talks may come to be seen as a reset, making real gains possible. And that poses an interesting problem for Malcolm Turnbull

It will be fractious and frustrating and it won’t “solve” the problem. But the Paris climate summit that starts on Monday is likely to be characterised as a success anyway.

That’s because negotiators have reset what qualifies as succeeding, and not just to allow world leaders to pat themselves on the back. Counterintuitively, demanding less might, in the end, achieve more than previous ambitious meetings that ended in failure.

Related: Tim Flannery: leaders now understand need to cut emissions 'hard and fast'

Related: Climate change protests across Australia – tens of thousands march

Related: Welcome to the wonderful world of climate talks, where less means more

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Thousands march in London for action on climate change ahead of Paris talks – video

Guardian climate change - Sun, 2015/11/29 - 5:49pm

Tens of thousands of environmental campaigners march through central London on Sunday on the eve of the Paris climate change talks. Jeremy Corbyn, Labour leader, praises those who braved the cold to turn out at the march. Organisers said the London event attracted even more people once it had been announced that the Paris demonstration would be cancelled

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Emma Thompson on climate change: without the Arctic we will die – video

Guardian climate change - Sun, 2015/11/29 - 5:11pm

Actor Emma Thompson discusses why protecting the Arctic is so important for the planet and the human race. Thompson speaks to ITV news reporter Richard Pallot as she takes part in a demonstration outside Shell’s London headquarters on Sunday, ahead of the Paris global climate change talks on Monday

  • This interview was originally published on ITV News
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Climate protesters clash with police as activists defy Paris ban – video

Guardian climate change - Sun, 2015/11/29 - 4:47pm

Hundreds of protesters demonstrate near the Place de la Republique in Paris on Sunday despite a ban imposed by the French authorities. Activists clash with riot police who use teargas to try and disperse the crowds. The march, planned for Sunday to coincide with the global climate change talks in the city on Monday, had been cancelled for security reasons in the wake of recent terror attacks in the French capital

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Peaceful Paris climate gathering descends into clashes with police

Guardian climate change - Sun, 2015/11/29 - 4:08pm

Anti-capitalists take over climate protest to rail against ban on marches imposed after terror attacks on city

A day of celebration and hope in Paris disintegrated into rioting and clashes with police on Sunday, after anti-capitalists and anarchists hijacked a peaceful event organised by climate activists earlier in the day.

About 200 protesters, some wearing masks, fought with police on a street leading to la place de la République, which has become a gathering place for Parisians since the terror attacks on 13 November that killed 130 people. Witnesses said floral and other tributes were trampled in the melee.

Related: Global climate march 2015: Paris police use tear gas during clashes – live

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Global climate march 2015 – in pictures

Guardian climate change - Sun, 2015/11/29 - 3:53pm

On the eve of the opening of the UN climate change conference in Paris, campaigners around the world from Melbourne to London are marching to demand action

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Paris climate protesters banned but 10,000 shoes remain – video

Guardian climate change - Sun, 2015/11/29 - 1:51pm

Over 10,000 pairs of shoes on the Place de la Republique replace marchers who were set to take part in a climate cancelled protest as activists take to the streets around the globe. The Paris march was expected to bring 200,000 people onto the city’s streets but was forbidden by French authorities in light of security concerns. Elsewhere, thousands marched in Hong Kong, Seoul and Sydney ahead of the Paris climate summit on Monday

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Is climate change really to blame for Syria’s civil war?| Jan Selby and Mike Hulme

Guardian climate change - Sun, 2015/11/29 - 1:12pm
Prince Charles is the latest high-profile figure to echo claims that ‘securitise’ the conflict. But the evidence just doesn’t stack up

Was the Syrian civil war partly caused by climate change? Prince Charles, for one, seems to think so. “There is very good evidence indeed that one of the major reasons for this horror in Syria was a drought that lasted for about five or six years,” he told Sky News, adding that climate change is having a “huge impact” on conflict and terrorism.

The Prince is not alone on this one: he joins a chorus of voices making similar claims. In the US President Obama, Al Gore, and the democratic presidential hopefuls Martin O’Malley and Bernie Sanders have all talked of a link between climate change and the Syria conflict, Sanders going so far as to argue that climate change is “directly related to the growth of terrorism”.

Related: Global climate march 2015: Jeremy Corbyn to join thousands on Europe marches – live

Related: Innovation will save our warming planet – so where is the investment? | Will Hutton

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The Paris climate summit is a real test of humanity

Guardian climate change - Sun, 2015/11/29 - 11:05am

The best and worst in our natures are rising to meet a critical point in our history, but there is no cause for despair

This morning I visited the place de la Republique, in many ways the beating heart of Paris. It’s where people here chose to place their memorial to the victims of the attacks two weeks ago, and there is still a huge crowd, gathered round the central monument in intense, almost ritual silence, taking in the thousands of pictures, candles, flowers and messages left by wellwishers.

Related: Global climate march 2015: Jeremy Corbyn to join thousands on Europe marches – live

Related: Everything you need to know about the Paris climate summit and UN talks

Related: Which countries are doing the most to stop dangerous global warming?

Related: Christiana Figueres: the woman tasked with saving the world from global warming

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Governments keep failing to tackle climate change. Maybe they should stop trying

Guardian climate change - Sun, 2015/11/29 - 9:00am
Perhaps privately developed technologies could do their bit instead

Seven years after his landmark 2006 report on the costs of ignoring climate change, Lord Stern confessed that he’d been wrong , and had underestimated the size of the task.

“The planet and the atmosphere seem to be absorbing less carbon than we expected,” he said in 2013, “and emissions are rising pretty strongly. Some of the effects are coming through more quickly than we thought.”

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Tim Flannery: leaders now understand need to cut emissions 'hard and fast'

Guardian climate change - Sun, 2015/11/29 - 8:03am

Climate scientist says the world has come a long way since the failed Copenhagen climate conference and now accepts the urgency of tackling rising temperatures

The world has “come late” to realising the potential devastation of climate change, Prof Tim Flannery says, but the former Australian of the Year believes there is now a global understanding of the need to cut emissions “hard and fast” to avoid calamitous global warming.

Flannery, also formerly the chairman of the Copenhagen Climate Council, said world leaders were more committed now to thrashing out a binding global climate agreement than they were at the Copenhagen climate summit five years ago.

Related: Paris climate summit: world leaders told to iron out differences before talks end

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Climate change protests across Australia – tens of thousands march

Guardian climate change - Sun, 2015/11/29 - 7:34am

Tens of thousands of Sydney protesters call for a focus on the cost of climate change to Pacific Islands, while an unusually high turnout marches in Canberra

Climate change rallies rolled on across Australia on Sunday, following well attended protests in Melbourne on Friday and Darwin and Brisbane on Saturday.

Related: Global climate march 2015: tens of thousands march in Australia and Asia – live #climatemarch

Related: Thousands march over climate change in Brisbane and across New Zealand

Related: Are Australia’s bushfire seasons getting longer?

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Global climate march 2015: day of action begins in Australia and New Zealand – live #climatemarch

Guardian climate change - Sun, 2015/11/29 - 2:08am

Live coverage of the people’s climate march as millions across the world are expected to take to the streets ahead of the Paris climate change summit

2.07am GMT

My colleague Ben Doherty is with the Sydney marchers and sends this dispatch from the start line:

At the Sydney march, there are red shirts everywhere. Solid, if not yet spectacular numbers are gathering at the north end of Hyde Park, and marching into the Domain in bright sunshine.

Labor deputy leader Tanya Plibersek, who brought her own phalanx of rosily-attired Young Laborites, gave a rangy press conference at which she rejected the ‘heroic’ label Malcolm Turnbull affixed to Labor’s emissions targets (it wasn’t meant as a compliment, Plibersek seems to suspect).

Related: Turnbull says Shorten’s ‘heroic’ climate target aimed at making political point

2.02am GMT

Sydney marchers are also warming up – as is the weather, with that blue sky deciding to put in an appearance after all – and is expected to be the biggest Australian march of the day. Will NSW be able to best Melbourne’s 40,000+ from Friday?

Reader Tim Senior and friends are well stocked with placards for the Sydney rally:

On our way to the #peoplesclimate #climatemarch. On public transport of course!

1.53am GMT

My colleague Shalailah Medhora is at the Canberra march, which has just started. She estimates there are around 3,000 people there so far:

And they're off! Around 3,000 on the march to the tent embassy. @Claire_Phipps

"There are no climate sceptics at the end of a hose". ACT firefighters union at climate rally. @Claire_Phipps

1.40am GMT

Many thousands of people marched in New Zealand on Saturday, with more events today: check here for those listings.

An estimated 7,000 turned out in Wellington:

@Claire_Phipps we had a fantastic turn out in Wellington yesterday! #ClimateMarch

1.33am GMT

We know already what the biggest emitters have committed to:

1.27am GMT

It’s Canberra’s turn now, and again it looks to be a very healthy turnout under a beautiful blue sky (it’s rather grey here in Sydney, not that that should put anyone off):

#peoplesclimate March kicking off in Canberra!

1.13am GMT

The Adelaide rally is underway and it’s a good turnout, estimated in the thousands:

Over 5000 in #Adelaide marching for jobs, justice & a safe #climate! #peoplesclimate #climatemarch

Huge turnout for the #adelaide #peoplesclimate march

Marching for our planet! #climatemarch #adelaide #climatechange #peoplesclimate

1.04am GMT

Avaaz, the campaign group behind the march, says more than 120,000 people have already taken part – with thousands of rallies yet to take place on Sunday, the main day of action.

Thousands of people marched in Brisbane on Saturday – organisers put it at 10,000 – and more in Darwin, following Friday’s 40,000-strong rally in Melbourne.

Thousands of people were marching through Melbourne’s CBD on Friday evening in what is expected to the largest in a series of climate change protests being held throughout Australia over the weekend.

They gathered in front of the state library and, as the lawns filled with protesters putting finishing touches on their placards, they took to the surrounding roads just in time for peak hour.

Related: Victorians take to the streets to demand urgent action on climate change

12.56am GMT

After the terrorist attacks of 13 November, the meeting of world leaders in the French capital beginning on Monday has an added poignancy.

But the COP 21 talks – it stands for conference of the parties, the yearly United Nations climate change conference; this is the 21st – will focus on hammering out a new global agreement to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions and with them the threat of climate change.

Related: Everything you need to know about the Paris climate summit and UN talks

12.48am GMT

Some Australian cities have already met and marched, with Melbourne getting in first on Friday evening, and Darwin and Brisbane on Saturday. I’ll have reports and pictures from those marches on this live blog shortly, along with news from New Zealand, which held most of its events on Saturday too.

Here’s the line-up for today:

12.36am GMT

Welcome to live coverage of the global climate march – a continent-spanning series of rallies which organisers hope will see millions of people join to highlight the need for a worldwide consensus on tackling climate change ahead of the COP21 talks in Paris, which open tomorrow.

I’ll be kicking off this live blog from Sydney, handing over later to colleagues in London and New York, and aiming to bring you updates from marches in all those places and everywhere in between.

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Innovation will save our warming planet – so where is the investment? | Will Hutton

Guardian climate change - Sun, 2015/11/29 - 12:05am
Governments must commit themselves to greater R&D or their vows on climate change will just be hot air

The most obvious response to climate change should be to transform the way the world generates energy. Living standards have risen 40 times over the last 250 years in the west, driven neither by the small state beloved of conservatives nor the large state favoured by socialists.

Rather, the growth has resulted from a complicated interaction between capitalism and science and technology, of necessity publicly funded, creating wave after wave of transformations in the character of our economic base and the quality and quantity of what it produces.

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Malcolm Turnbull says Shorten's 'heroic' emissions target is unrealistic

Guardian climate change - Sat, 2015/11/28 - 11:08pm

Prime minister derides Labor’s pledge to cut 2005 carbon emissions by 45% by 2013 as ‘a political rather than an environmental statement’

Related: Bill Shorten lays out bold climate aims as Malcolm Turnbull heads to Paris

Labor’s target on climate change is “heroic” and aimed at making a political point rather than helping the environment, the prime minister, Malcolm Turnbull, said.

Related: Malcolm Turnbull asks Commonwealth leaders to send climate change signal

Related: Welcome to the wonderful world of climate talks, where less means more

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