* Poor nations want timetable for releasing $100 bln in aid
* No major nations set goals for cutting gas emissions
* EU aid promises not enough to unlock Doha - poor nations
* Green groups say Doha talks on brink of collapse
By Barbara Lewis and Alister Doyle
DOHA, Dec 6 Bickering over when rich nations
will step up aid towards a promised $100 billion by 2020 to help
developing nations tackle the effects of climate change
threatened to derail talks in Doha between 200 countries.
Environmental activists said the two-week talks, due to end
on Friday, were "on the brink of disaster" after rich nations
failed to set dates for releasing the promised cash or to set
goals on curbing greenhouse gas emissions.
Offers of new aid from European nations failed to ease the
standoff over demands for a timetable for a tenfold increase in
aid towards a goal of $100 billion a year by 2020.
National pledges by Germany, Britain, France, the
Netherlands, Sweden, Denmark and the EU Commission in Doha
totalled more than 6.85 billion euros ($8.95 billion) for the
next two years - more than in 2011-12.
But developing nations said they wanted a clearer commitment
by nations including the United States and Australia for more.
A group of leading environmental groups - including
Greenpeace, the WWF and Oxfam - said they were launching "an
emergency call to governments to save Doha from disaster".
"This has been almost a laughable exercise," said Kumi
Naidoo, the head of Greenpeace.
The Doha meeting has had low ambitions from the start, and
failure would be less spectacular than at a U.N. summit in 2009
when world leaders including U.S. President Barack Obama did not
sign up to the new global package to combat climate change.
Only Lebanon, the Dominican Republic, Belarus and Ukraine
have set new emissions targets at Doha, as delegates also
haggled over an extension of the U.N.'s Kyoto Protocol that
bound about 35 rich nations to cut emissions by at least 5.2
percent below 1990 levels during the period from 2008 to 2012.
World greenhouse gas emissions are set to rise 2.6 percent
"There is very little time left. I encourage you to step up
your efforts," conference president Abdullah bin Hamad
Al-Attiyah of Qatar told delegates on Thursday night. OPEC
member Qatar has disappointed many by failing to curb emissions.
Scientists also said the Doha talks failed to reflect the
necessary urgency. Many delegations expressed alarm at the
typhoon that killed almost 400 people in the Philippines this
"We are not on track," Michel Jarraud, head of the World
Meteorological Organization, told Reuters. "Scientific evidence
is getting stronger."
The European Union, Australia, Ukraine, Norway and
Switzerland are willing to make further legally binding cuts in
emissions under Kyoto beyond 2012 until 2020.
But they account for less than 15 percent of world
emissions. Russia, Japan and Canada have pulled out, saying it
makes no sense to continue when big emerging nations led by
China and India have no binding goals.
And Washington never signed up for Kyoto. Kyoto backers
still see it as a blueprint to help unlock progress on a deal
last year to work out by 2015 a new, global agreement to fight
climate change that would enter into force in 2015.