Summit diary: Highs and lows from Johannesburg
Thursday 29 August 2002
Californians cook up a new idea with the help of solar energy
"Does it really work?" asked Lucas Nsukazi, frowning over a black pot – one of many "solar cookers" brought to the summit by a non-profit group from Sacramento, California. But after tucking into a bowl of steaming rice, the South African rural education activist was an enthusiastic convert. "For the first time I am eating and enjoying rice that is cooked directly by the sun's rays, which to me is unbelievable," he said. Stews, beans, mashed potatoes, sausages, bread and cake are being offered to visitors at the Ubuntu Village, where a parallel summit of development activists is under way. About two billion people still rely on wood, charcoal and dung for cooking, heat and light, the United Nations estimates. The cooker costs $2 (£1.30) to make and can whip up chicken stew "in a few hours", its makers, Solar Cooking International, say. And on top of that, it works unattended.
Pacific island in peril from the sea is ignored by summit powers
No one listens to the representative for Tuvalu, the Pacific island nation of 12,000 people that fears it will be lost to rising seas. When Paani Laupepa raises his hand he is ignored. "Tuvalu is flat," Mr Laupepa said. "We are at the front line of climate change." But Tuvala is not in any of the main negotiating groups. "These rich nations, they have such a bigger say," Jennifer Morgan of the environmental group WWF said.
Small beginnings fail to stand in mediator's way
He represents two tiny Caribbean islands with a total population of fewer than 67,000 people, but that hasn't stopped John Ashe from becoming one of the most important mediators at the UN summit. After preparatory meetings for the summit had trouble reaching agreement over money issues, organisers asked Mr Ashe, the United Nations ambassador for Antigua and Barbuda, to step in. "It was felt it was getting complicated, and I've dealt with complicated issues," he said. "I guess they couldn't find anyone else. They see me as harmless."
Scientists take first ever photograph of bird with a visible egg
Plastic fantastic! Carrier bags 'not eco-villains after all'
The ugliest animals on earth: Blobfish, axolotl and proboscis monkey battle it out to be named least attractive beast
Carbon dioxide accumulates as seas and forests struggle to absorb
Northern lights from around the world
- 1 Lego breaks out of the toy box and heads for the gallery
- 2 A bottle of wine a day is not bad for you and abstaining is worse than drinking, scientist claims
- 3 Piers Morgan attempts to save the Union by promising to go back to the US if Scotland votes 'No' to independence
- 4 Tyler, The Creator says having new U2 album automatically downloaded on his iPhone was 'like waking up with herpes'
- 5 Grandmas keep accidentally tagging themselves as Grandmaster Flash on Facebook
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
George Galloway on Scottish independence: The political class is doing what Hitler couldn’t – destroying Britain
Scottish independence: Nationalist leader Jim Sillars threatens pro-union companies with 'day of reckoning' after independence
Scottish independence: Yes campaign feels the heat as Alex Salmond's NHS claims come under furious attack
Scottish independence: Britain faces 'constitutional crisis' at next election
£23m Birmingham cycle scheme is attacked by Tory councillor for not catering to the elderly
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