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EcoWatch is featuring live broadcasting via Democracy Now! from Dec. 8 - Dec. 12, 8 to 9 a.m., from the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Lima, Peru. Diplomats from around the world are gathered in Lima to reach a draft agreement to limit greenhouse gas emissions that cause global warming, which will be finalized in 2015.
Here are the segments from Tuesday, Dec. 9:
"They Have Destroyed Our Livelihood": Activists Protest Shell and Chevron at U.N. Climate Talks
At the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Lima, Peru, protesters gathered inside Monday to protest the invitation of oil giants Shell and Chevron to speak on summit panels. Democracy Now! producer Mike Burke was there when scores of summit delegates attempted to walk into an event featuring Shell climate change adviser David Hone.
"Corporate Conquistadors": New Report Exposes How Multinationals Drive, Profit From Climate Change
As we broadcast from the United Nations Climate Summit in Lima, Peru, we speak with Pascoe Sabido of the Corporate Europe Observatory, which just released a new report titled "Corporate Conquistadors: The Many Ways Multinationals Both Drive and Profit From Climate Destruction." "This is COP 20. For 20 years we’ve been going without progressing to a fair and progressive climate deal that we need,” Sabido says. "One of the big reasons is the aggressive lobbying of the fossil fuel industry both at the national level and here at the talks." The new report is a joint project with Democracy Center and the Transnational Institute.
Peru Climate Summit is the 1st in an Amazon Nation Amidst Growing Threat to "Heart of the Planet"
This year's U.N. Climate Change Conference in Peru marks the first time the talks have been held in an Amazon country. More than 70 percent of Peru's national territory is within the Amazon Basin. The founder and executive director of Amazon Watch, Atossa Soltani, joins us to talk about the significance of the U.N. climate summit taking place in Peru amidst long-term threats to the Amazon. Soltani also addresses the challenges facing developing countries with lucrative, but carbon-intensive energy resources, and whether the United States is being a responsible environmental steward for future generations. "When we lose the Amazon, we not only create emissions, but we lose the climate stabilizing function of the forest," Soltani says. "We're reaching a tipping point."
Indigenous Women on the Front Lines of Defending the Earth Share Their Solutions to Climate Change
Today is “Gender Day” at the U.N. Climate Change Conference, a day that acknowledges the disproportionate impact of climate change on women, who make up 70 percent of the world's poor. We hear from a panel of indigenous women from around the world who met off-site Monday to share their solutions to climate change. The event, hosted by the Women's Earth and Climate Action Network, featured indigenous women leaders on the front lines of defending the Earth from exploitation by fossil fuel companies. Speakers included Patricia Gualinga, a Kichwa leader from Sarayaku, Ecuador, and her niece, Nina Gualinga. In 2012, the Sarayaku won a case against the Ecuadorean government after a foreign oil company was permitted to encroach on their land.
Democracy Now! Interviews Pablo Solon of Focus on the Global South
As we broadcast from the U.N. Climate Conference in Lima, Peru, where delegates from around the world are meeting on a global agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to global warming, the first text of this year's draft has been released. We are joined by Pablo Solón, Bolivia's former ambassador to the United Nations and former chief negotiator on climate change. Now the executive director of Focus on the Global South, Solón was a presenter of the International Rights of Nature Tribunal, which also took place in Peru.
Climate Justice Activists From Around the World Show Solidarity with Philippines
Among the many protests at the United Nations Climate Change Conference was a solidarity action with the Philippines, which was hit by Typhoon Hagupit over the weekend. Some 900,000 people were forced to evacuate. We speak with participants from Chile, Africa and New Zealand, who all say the negotiators at COP 20 are taking positions that fail to reflect the urgency that is needed to address climate change for countries that are already being impacted.
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A powerful volcano on Monday rocked an uninhabited island frequented by tourists about 30 miles off New Zealand's coast. Authorities have confirmed that five people died. They expect that number to rise as some are missing and police officials issued a statement that flights around the islands revealed "no signs of life had been seen at any point,", as The Guardian reported.
"Based on the information we have, we do not believe there are any survivors on the island," the police said in their official statement. "Police is working urgently to confirm the exact number of those who have died, further to the five confirmed deceased already."
The eruption happened on New Zealand's Whakaari/White Island, an islet jutting out of the Bay of Plenty, off the country's North Island. The island is privately owned and is typically visited for day-trips by thousands of tourists every year, according to The New York Times.
My god, White Island volcano in New Zealand erupted today for first time since 2001. My family and I had gotten off it 20 minutes before, were waiting at our boat about to leave when we saw it. Boat ride home tending to people our boat rescued was indescribable. #whiteisland pic.twitter.com/QJwWi12Tvt— Michael Schade (@sch) December 9, 2019
Michael Schade / Twitter
At the time of the eruption on Monday, about 50 passengers from the Ovation of Seas were on the island, including more than 30 who were part of a Royal Caribbean cruise trip, according to CNN. Twenty-three people, including the five dead, were evacuated from the island.
The eruption occurred at 2:11 pm local time on Monday, as footage from a crater camera owned and operated by GeoNet, New Zealand's geological hazards agency, shows. The camera also shows dozens of people walking near the rim as white smoke billows just before the eruption, according to Reuters.
Police were unable to reach the island because searing white ash posed imminent danger to rescue workers, said John Tims, New Zealand's deputy police commissioner, as he stood next to Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern in a press conference, as The New York Times reported. Tims said rescue workers would assess the safety of approaching the island on Tuesday morning. "We know the urgency to go back to the island," he told reporters.
"The physical environment is unsafe for us to return to the island," Tims added, as CNN reported. "It's important that we consider the health and safety of rescuers, so we're taking advice from experts going forward."
Authorities have had no communication with anyone on the island. They are frantically working to identify how many people remain and who they are, according to CNN.
Geologists said the eruption is not unexpected and some questioned why the island is open to tourism.
"The volcano has been restless for a few weeks, resulting in the raising of the alert level, so that this eruption is not really a surprise," said Bill McGuire, emeritus professor of geophysical and climate hazards at University College London, as The Guardian reported.
"White Island has been a disaster waiting to happen for many years," said Raymond Cas, emeritus professor at Monash University's school of earth, atmosphere and environment, as The Guardian reported. "Having visited it twice, I have always felt that it was too dangerous to allow the daily tour groups that visit the uninhabited island volcano by boat and helicopter."
The prime minister arrived Monday night in Whakatane, the town closest to the eruption, where day boats visiting the island are docked. Whakatane has a large Maori population.
Ardern met with local council leaders on Monday. She is scheduled to meet with search and rescue teams and will speak to the media at 7 a.m. local time (1 p.m. EST), after drones survey the island, as CNN reported.
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