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COP 17: Climate talks start in South Africa (VIDEO)

UN climate talks kick off in Durban, with the future of the Kyoto Protocol and funding for poor countries hard hit by climate change at the top of the agenda.

Cop17 durban 11 28 2011Enlarge
South Africa Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe (C- green hat) takes part in a 3kms 'Walk for the Future' along Durban's beach front on November 27, 2011 ahead of the opening of UN -Climate conference (COP17). Inspired by the Occupy Wall St. movement, protesters calling for 'climate justice' are set to gather on November 27 at the opening of UN climate talks in Durban, South Africa, organizers say. (ALEXANDER JOE/AFP/Getty Images)

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa —  The latest round of UN climate talks began Monday in Durban, with the future of the Kyoto Protocol and funding for poor countries badly affected by climate change at the top of the agenda.

The event is officially called the 17th Conference of Parties (COP 17) to the United Nations' Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), and delegates from 194 countries will be in South Africa for the two-week summit.

Among the delegates are heads of state, environmentalists and celebrities such as Angelina Jolie and U2 frontman Bono.

But a stormy conference is predicted as countries try to form an agreement that would keep greenhouse gas emissions low enough to maintain a global temperature increase at two degrees Celsius or less. 

Christiana Figueres, executive secretary of the UNFCCC, said new research is “sounding alarm bells for urgent action" on global warming, the South African Press Association reported

"We are in Durban with one purpose: to find a common solution that will secure a future to generations to come," said Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, South Africa's minister of international relations and the chair of the summit.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/africa/south-africa/111128/cop-17-durban-climate-change-talks-start-south-africa