Leaders gather for key United Nations climate talks in Poland

Plumes of smoke rise from Europe's largest lignite power plant in Belchatow central Poland on Nov. 28

"One of the questions that came up today in my meeting with Nigerians in Poland was on the issue of whether I've been cloned or not". The only holdout was the United States.

The world is working to implement the commitments made under the Paris Agreement but is still far off track from preventing catastrophic levels of warming.

It is aimed at fleshing out the promises agreed in the 2015 Paris climate accord through which nations agreed...

But Fiji's prime minister, Frank Bainimarama said any "just transition" should consider the fate of all the people around the world whose lives are affected by climate change.

To contain warming at 1.5 deg C, man-made global net carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions will need to fall by about 45 per cent by 2030 from 2010 levels and reach "net zero" by mid-century, according to the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

"Climate change is running faster than we are, and we must catch up sooner rather than later, before it is too late", U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres, said at the beginning of the event.

A young woman in China said she was already living with the impacts of climate change, while another woman standing in front of a building destroyed by a wildfire said, "This used to be my home".

Calling Trump "meshugge" - Yiddish for "crazy" - for deciding to withdraw from the Paris accord, Schwarzenegger insisted that the climate deal has widespread support at local and state levels in the U.S.

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He later told reporters realities of global climate changes were, "worse than expected, but the political will is relatively faded after Paris" and was not matching the current challenges.

The shift away from fossil fuels, which scientists say has to happen by 2050, is expected to require a major overhaul of world economies.

"We need serious solutions from serious leaders, not risky schemes and political tricks aimed to keep big polluters polluting", she said.

In a rare intervention, presidents of previous United Nations climate summits issued a joint statement as the talks got under way, calling on states to take "decisive action.to tackle these urgent threats".

Asked about the recent protests in France, one of which turned into a riot in Paris on Saturday, Rutte said politicians must work to get all of society to back the measures needed to tackle climate change. "Otherwise they will say, 'We don't want such policy"'.

Not far from the meeting venue, Polish anti-coal activists held a small protest Sunday.

The World Bank has announced it is doubling investments in climate action with $200bn (€176bn) for 2021-2025, including $50bn (€44bn) towards helping countries adapt to the impacts of global warming. Thousands of people marched Saturday in Berlin and Cologne to demand that Germany speed up its exit from coal-fired power plants. Armin Laschet, the governor of North Rhine-Westphalia state, told the Funke media group that Germany's decision to stop mining and burning lignite coal "must be considered seriously and decided with broad consensus".

Nations facing imminent environmental disaster on Monday called on rich polluters to help them back from the brink, as the UN warned the world's plan to avoid climate catastrophe was "way off course".

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