Nov 28 - South Africa's president underlines the importance of climate change to Africa at U.N. climate conference. Jessica Gray reports.
South African President Jacob Zuma underscores the importance of landmark climate talks happening now in Durban. (SOUNDBITE) (English) SOUTH AFRICAN PRESIDENT, JACOB ZUMA SAYING: "For most people in the developing world and Africa climate change is the matter of life and death.'' World leaders are meeting at the U.N. annual Conference of Parties to discuss ways of fighting climate change via binding legislation. Their aim is to replace the Kyoto Accord, voluntary legislation that limits carbon emissions before the first phase runs out in 2012. But few have high expectations of the talks, prompting protesters to picket outside the conference in hopes of upping pressure on officials. NGOs underlined the importance of a new global accord. (SOUNDBITE) (English) WORLD WILDLIFE FUND (WWF), TASNEEM ESSOP "We do run the risk of losing the Kyoto protocol, the only rules base system that we have and what would be devastating is that the sum total of all of that could once again break down the trust that we have in the multilateral, the only process that is inclusive and gives voice to the most vulnerable." Around 15,000 people from 194 countries are participating in the talks. A new deal must include China and the U.S., the world's top carbon emitters, who have never ratified Kyoto. If it does not, several other countries such as Russia, Canada and Japan may not sign on. Jessica Gray, Reuters