A fortnight of climate talks in Bonn ran smoothly enough, but political tensions await Pacific island presidency at November summit.


Fiji’s Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama, the incoming president of the next major climate meeting in November, closed talks in Bonn on Thursday with a call for solidarity.

In the past fortnight, UN negotiators continued writing the rules for an agreement designed to change the global energy system. At the same time, they have been faced with the potential withdrawal of the US – the world’s largest economy – from that process.

“The ball is being passed to Fiji this year at a very critical time,” said Bainimarama, whose tiny island nation will not actually host the next meeting. Instead talks will recommence in Bonn later this year, presided over by the Fijians.

Despite the inevitably colder weather, Bainimarama promised the meeting would be infused with a Fijian spirit of “inclusiveness, friendliness and solidarity”.

You can also be sure the islanders will highlight how exposed they are to the increasingly intense cyclones, rising sea levels and acidifying oceans that come with global warming. [/restrict]