Climate activists' howls of protest at Biden's COP27 climate speech

AFP , Friday 11 Nov 2022

A quartet of protesters briefly interrupted US President Joe Biden's speech at the COP27 summit in Egypt on Friday by howling and trying to unfurl a banner before UN police removed them.

COP27 protesters
Protesters hold a banner as President Joe Biden speaks at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 11, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. AP


"Carbon offsetting is a false solution," one of them -- apparently an indigenous man from Latin or North America -- shouted as he was escorted away from the venue.

He was referring to a US scheme whereby business can compensate for CO2 pollution by investing in developing world climate projects that reduce planet-warming greenhouse gas emissions.

"We are headed toward impended climate collapse, and Jeff Bezos will not save us," the man said.

The Energy Transition Accelerator carbon offset unveiled by US special climate envoy John Kerry this week in Sharm el-Sheikh is backed by the Rockefeller Fund and the Amazon founder through his Bezos Earth Fund.

The use of so-called voluntary carbon markets to drive down CO2 pollution remains highly controversial, with many analysts saying such difficult-to-monitor practices do not give business a strong enough incentive to reduce their own emissions.

During the 22-minute speech in COP27's packed plenary hall, the climate activists howled like coyotes and were unfurling a banner when UN police stopped them before escorting them out of the conference venue.

*This story was edited by Ahram Online

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