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THE NEW ECONOMY013Left: Christiana FigueresThe defining issue for Durban will undoubtedly be for the global community to clarify the future of the Kyoto Protocol on the one hand, and to advancethe evolving mitigation framework under the climatechange convention on the other. In this context, it will be critical to officially establish countries'mitigation pledges within the process withoutlocking in the current insufficient level of ambition.Additionally, further progress on the rules foraccountable emission reductions is urgently needed.Finally, governments meeting in Durban need to definethe rules to undertake the review, which will assess apossible need to strengthen the temperature goal,including in relations to a limit of 1.5C. The politicaldecision-making process depends on scientific inputs,and governments need to decide how exactly they wantto conduct this important process.Achieving all of the above will be a tall order, but byno means impossible. After all, the host countrySouth Africa had huge obstacles to overcome on theway to becoming the country it is today. That was onlypossible because those responsible never lost sight of the supreme goal of the common good, knowingthey could only pull through together by overcomingwhat for a while appeared to be insurmountabledifferences, and compromising on core issues. As Nelson Mandela famously said: "After climbing agreat hill, one only finds that there are many morehills to climb." Governments meeting in Durban haveno alternative than to collectively climb the steep hillof Durban, and to take the next series of crucialclimate steps. And this next series of crucial steps needs to enablethe collective effort in implementation by bothgovernments and the private sector. Thiscombination of policy and action is what is needed tospark the energy revolution and vulnerabilityreduction that the world is waiting for. n

he conference in Durban presents us withan opportunity to shape the future globalresponse to climate change. I have foundthe number of principles that haveformed the basis of climate change negotiations overthe years instructive to guide a credible response to thischallenge. Although Parties have different positions on theelements on which agreement might be possible in Durban, any outcome in Durban must remain true to these principles. I therefore encourage you, as Ministers responsible for climate change, toapply these principles in your discussions and toensure that the outcome in Durban is faithful to theseprinciples. These include the principles of multilateralism,environmental integrity, common but differentiatedresponsibility and respective capabilities, equity, andhonouring of all international commitments andundertakings made in the climate change process.The strengthening and preservation of the multilateralresponse to climate change is paramount. Climatechange is a global problem that needs a global solutionand the concerns of all Parties must be heard andaddressed. Parties have always maintained that the multilateralrules-based system must prevail as without it there canbe no guarantee that countries will do what they havecommitted to do and all the gains made over decadeswill be lost. It is only through the preservation of the multilateralrules-based system that markets can be secured.Funding is essential to developing countries andwithout multilateral commitments to provide adequateand sustainable funding, developing countries wouldbe even more seriously affected. Furthermore, anyoutcome in Durban has to be adequate enough torespond to the principle of environmental integrity. A less ambitious outcome that would not address theurgent needs of those seriously affected by climatechange and that fall short of allowing futuregenerations the opportunity to grow and to live in asecure environment in which to pursue their owndestinies, would simply not be acceptable. More so since the Durban Conference is taking placeon the African continent, which is particularlyvulnerable to the impact of climate change. In thiscontext the low level of ambition is a serious concern. There is a growing realisation among developed anddeveloping counties alike that there is a gap betweenthe current level of emission reduction targets and thelevels required by science. It is, therefore, my hopethat our discussions here will produce creative ideas onhow Parties can raise their levels of ambition in amanner that would take the process forward.The principle of equity, currently expressed throughthe Convention principle of common but differentiatedresponsibilities and respective capabilities, isespecially pertinent for a fair and credible response. Climate change is the most pressing sustainabledevelopment challenge of our time. The principle ofequity must be addressed in the context of sustainabledevelopment. Similarly, an agreement that does not address thenecessary means of implementation - finance,WELCOME014THE NEW ECONOMYAS SOUTH AFRICA WELCOMES THE DELEGATES OF THE UNITED NATIONSCLIMATE CHANGE CONFERENCE - COP17 AND CMP7 IN DURBAN -PRESIDENT JACOB ZUMACALLS ON THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITYAND THE PARTIES TO HONOUR THE COMMITMENTS AND UNDERTAKINGSMADE UNDER THE CLIMATE CHANGE PROCESST