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COP27 draft climate deal published but gaps remain

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SHARM EL-SHEIKH — The U.N. climate agency on Saturday published an updated draft of a proposed final agreement for the COP27 summit, fleshing out some key parts of the deal countries are struggling to reach.

The document, which forms the overall political deal for COP27, would need approval from the nearly 200 countries at the climate summit in Egypt. Negotiators will spend the next few hours studying the texts and deciding whether they can back them.

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The so-called ‘cover decision’ sits alongside a host of other agreements still subject to intense negotiation a day after the summit was due to have closed.

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The draft contained only a partial text on the contentious issue of “loss and damage” payments to countries hit by climate-driven disasters. It left a placeholder in the section for funding arrangements on loss and damage where text could be added later if countries reach agreement.

In line with earlier iterations, the draft did not contain a reference requested by India and some other delegations to phasing down use of “all fossil fuels.” It instead referred to a phase down of coal only, as agreed at last year’s summit.

In an attempt to close the yawning gap between current climate pledges and the far deeper cuts needed to avert disastrous climate change, the draft requests that countries which have not yet done so upgrade their 2030 emissions cutting targets by the end of 2023. (Reporting by William James and Kate Abnett; Writing by Dominic Evans; Editing by Janet Lawrence)

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