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December 12, 2011

The Sierra Club in Durban: The Last Weekend

You thought Cop17 was over? You thought wrong. Friday was an exciting day at the UNFCCC negotiations that began with an intervention that "occupied" the thoughts of many. Anjali Appadurai from College of the Atlantic closed her youth intervention with a Mic Check, a human microphone popularized by the Occupy Wall Street movement. She called for "equity now" and for negotiators to "get it done."

This spurred momentum for a massive action later in the day. Roughly 100 people participated in a march through the ICC where rousing speakers from global south delegations encouraged people to voice dissent with the current deal. Many of these protesters of these protesters had their badges taken away and were escorted off the premises. This protest resulted in greatly increased media scrutiny of the negotiations and set the stage for what came to pass later in the evening. At 8pm the president of the COP reviewed and approved a very full agenda. After approving the agenda, the president of the COP called for a break and that was the last we heard from the negotiators on Friday night.  

Because some decisions have not yet been finalized, negotiators decided to continue the conference through the weekend. Thus far there have been no open meetings and the conference center has been reserved until Wednesday, though very few believed the negotiations will continue past the weekend.

-- Lauren Ressler

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