Greta Thunberg is Time's 'Person of the Year'

Pacific countries are hoping to pressure industrialised nations into taking bold steps to try and address the climate crisis

China called for more support from developed countries to developing ones in addressing climate change as ministerial-level talks kicked off at the UN Climate Change Conference (COP25) here on Tuesday.

"As we saw at the Climate Action Summit in September, the determination demonstrated by business and financial leaders offers a potential path of hope. I would really like to know", she said One year and a half since the start of her protest, the activist said she has "even more reason" to speak to world leaders, especially those from rich countries.

Thunberg, who was awarded Time magazine's person of 2019 on Wednesday for her tireless environmental campaigning, told negotiators that their promises were a world apart from what was needed.

She added that summits on climate change seemed "to have turned into some kind of opportunity for countries to negotiate loopholes and to avoid raising their ambition".

About 40 climate activists, including representatives of indigenous peoples from several continents, briefly joined Greta after her speech on the conference's main stage, holding hands and demanding "Climate Justice!" through slogans and songs.

She has found herself in the role of spokesperson for a generation haunted by climate emergency since her solo strike against global warming outside Sweden's parliament previous year.

"The burden falls largely on the G20 to behave like adults, like great nations ought to", Kerry told Reuters on the sidelines of the U.N climate talks in Madrid, referring to a grouping of top industrial economies.

She said countries which had committed to reducing their emissions to zero by a certain date, as the United Kingdom has done with its legally binding pledge for net-zero by 2050, appeared impressive at first glance.

She continued: "Zero by 2050 means nothing if high emissions continue for even a few years".

In addition, there has been preciously little progress over the issue of "loss and damage" funding - how countries already dealing with the worst impacts of climate-related extreme weather and drought should be compensated.

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"To stay below 1.5 degrees we need to keep the carbon in the ground". Scientists say countries will miss both of those goals by a wide margin unless drastic steps are taken to begin cutting greenhouse gas emissions next year.

However, despite an overall high rating for its Climate Policy performance, experts point out that the Indian government has yet to develop a roadmap for the phase-out of fossil fuel subsidies that would consequently reduce the country's high dependence on coal.

"For decades, researchers and activists have been trying to get global leaders to take the climate threat seriously", says Time's profile of the teenager who inspired the recent School Strike for Climate.

Elan Strait of the World Wildlife Fund told AFP that the world was "desperate to hear real American leadership on climate change".

Last week, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.,) also led 15 USA lawmakers to participate in the climate talks in Madrid, declaring that the United States is "still in" the Paris climate accord.

Many Republican college students, for instance, want their party to shift its national position toward one of effective action on climate change, the former vice president said.

Announcing the decision on NBC, Time Editor-in-Chief Edward Felsenthal said: "She became the biggest voice on the biggest issue facing the planet this year, coming from essentially nowhere to lead a worldwide movement".

Thunberg's uncompromising stance has brought her into confrontation with some of the world's most powerful people. "If nature fails, we fail as well".

Last week, Nancy Pelosi headed a 15-strong US Congressional delegation that brought the same message to the United Nations talks, where major economies have balked at boosting pledges to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

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