US envoy Kerry positive for COVID as UN climate talks drag

Nov 18, 2022, 6:51 AM | Updated: 10:22 pm
German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock speaks during a news conference at the COP27 U.N. Climate...

German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock speaks during a news conference at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)

(AP Photo/Peter Dejong)

SHARM EL-SHEIKH, Egypt (AP) — John Kerry, the top U.S. envoy at this year’s U.N. climate talks in Egypt, has tested positive for COVID-19, a spokesperson said late Friday night, another potential setback for negotiations that were already going into overtime with no result in sight.

“He is fully vaccinated and boosted and experiencing mild symptoms. He is working with his negotiations team and foreign counterparts by phone to ensure a successful outcome of COP27,” spokesperson Whitney Smith wrote in a statement late Friday.

Kerry’s illness was sure to add to worries about the negotiations, which had been scheduled to end Friday. A former U.S. senator and secretary of state, Kerry has deep relationships with leaders around the world and carries a lot of weight in international talks. His meetings in Sharm el-Sheikh with China’s climate envoy Xie Zhenhua were closely watched for signs that the world’s two biggest polluters might agree a deal that would boost the overall talks.

Negotiations, at least those in public, hit a lull Friday afternoon as news conferences and plenaries were postponed or cancelled. Diplomats said they hoped for late night progress and changed airline reservations so talks could continue.

Delegates said there was some headway being made, especially on the most difficult sticking point. That’s the issue of rich industrialized nations providing money to vulnerable countries suffering from ‘loss and damage’ as a result of climate-related disasters.

“I think we’re in for a bit of a long haul,” World Resources Institute international climate director David Waskow said. “Loss and damage sits at the center in terms of what needs to be done to get this over the finish line.”

The United States appeared isolated in opposing a dedicated loss and damage fund after the European Union produced a surprise offer on the issue Thursday. But a State Department official confirmed that negotiations on the issue were ongoing.

A group of developing nations known as G-77 and China have insisted on a fund being established at the meeting and remained outwardly united on the issue late Friday.

Other delegates at the talks expressed hope that a deal might still be possible.

“We are very busy and they’re making some progress and they’ve gotten some clarity on all positions,” Molwyn Joseph, who spoke on behalf of small island states, told The Associated Press.

“There is the possibility that we could get an outcome, but also it could fall over at the last minute,” said New Zealand’s Climate Change Minister James Shaw. “And I think if that happened, it would be a real shame because this is as close (on loss and damage) as we’ve ever been before.”

Climate activist Nakeeyat Dramani Sam of Ghana chided delegates at this year’s U.N. climate talks, saying they would act faster to rein in global warming if they were her age.

“It is an emergency,” the 10-year-old told negotiators, holding a sign that read “Payment Overdue”. “If all of you were to be young people like me, wouldn’t you have already agreed to do what is needed to save our planet?”

But after receiving a standing ovation, it was back to nations squabbling over several thorny issues, with the Egyptian presidency acknowledging that the talks will go into overtime on Saturday, if not longer.

“Time is not on our side,” said Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry. Speaking as the summit’s chair, he pledged to try to find common ground going forward. “The global community is looking to us to be bold and ambitious.”

The EU proposal on ‘loss and damage’ payments Thursday would require emerging economies such as China — the second biggest historic polluter after the U.S. — to contribute to the fund.

“We’re making clear that Europe is on the side of the most vulnerable states,” German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock said. “Others can now show which side they are on.”

The EU proposal would also require stepped up efforts on reducing, or ‘mitigating,’ greenhouse gas emissions to slow global warming. It also adopts a call to phase down all fossil fuels — a measure first proposed by India and a dramatic step up from previous commitments to just phase down coal.

Unless emissions are cut more steeply, “no money in the world could pay for the damages and losses of the future,” Baerbock said.

EU climate chief Frans Timmermans said Friday that the bloc’s proposal on funding for loss and damage and mitigation is “a final offer” that seeks to “find a compromise” between countries as negotiators work out a way forward.

The environmental advocacy group Action Aid called the proposal a “wolf in sheep’s clothing” because it doesn’t go far enough.

The EU plan was a counter to a proposal made by the Group of 77 and China, which would create a fund but only require developed nations to contribute, excepting top polluters China and India.

China, which had been quiet during much of the talks, and Saudi Arabia both said the money for a loss and damage fund shouldn’t come from them. Developed countries should foot the bill, China said. Both also insisted that the 2015 Paris Agreement that aims to limit global warming to an ambitious 1.5 Celsius (2.7 Fahrenheit) increase should not be altered, which can be interpreted as not strengthening efforts.

A senior official from the Maldives voiced growing frustration at the way vulnerable countries keep getting caught up in battles between more powerful nations at the talks, even as their situation gets increasingly dire due to climate change.

“Small island states have just 86 months and we’re already feeling it,” the official said, referring to scientists’ calculations that greenhouse gas emissions have to be halved by 2030. “We can’t be sandwiched between global powers.”

Friday’s draft of the overarching decision on the outcome of the talks, issued by the Egyptian presidency, includes some vague references to reform to multilateral development banks but did not include or make reference to the detailed Bridgetown Initiative on financial reform from Barbados and its Prime Minister Mia Mottley.

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Samy Magdy, Frank Jordans and Olivia Zhang contributed to this report.

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Follow AP’s climate and environment coverage at https://apnews.com/hub/climate-and-environment

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              German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock speaks during a news conference at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit on his way out on Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Xie Zhenhua, right, China's special envoy for climate, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Germany's climate envoy Jennifer Morgan walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Attendees listen to a review of the state of discussions at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Nakeeyat Dramani Sam, of Ghana, holds a sign that reads "payment overdue" at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. She made a plea for negotiators at the summit to come to an agreement that could help curb global warming. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Wael Aboulmagd, special representative of COP presidency, left, listens with Sameh Shoukry, president of the COP27 climate summit, at the summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock speaks during a news conference at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit on his way out on Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Xie Zhenhua, right, China's special envoy for climate, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Germany's climate envoy Jennifer Morgan walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Attendees listen to a review of the state of discussions at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Nakeeyat Dramani Sam, of Ghana, holds a sign that reads "payment overdue" at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. She made a plea for negotiators at the summit to come to an agreement that could help curb global warming. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Wael Aboulmagd, special representative of COP presidency, left, listens with Sameh Shoukry, president of the COP27 climate summit, at the summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Germany's climate envoy Jennifer Morgan walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Attendees listen to a review of the state of discussions at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Nakeeyat Dramani Sam, of Ghana, holds a sign that reads "payment overdue" at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. She made a plea for negotiators at the summit to come to an agreement that could help curb global warming. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Wael Aboulmagd, special representative of COP presidency, left, listens with Sameh Shoukry, president of the COP27 climate summit, at the summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock speaks during a news conference at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit on his way out on Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Xie Zhenhua, right, China's special envoy for climate, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Germany's climate envoy Jennifer Morgan walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Attendees listen to a review of the state of discussions at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Nakeeyat Dramani Sam, of Ghana, holds a sign that reads "payment overdue" at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. She made a plea for negotiators at the summit to come to an agreement that could help curb global warming. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Wael Aboulmagd, special representative of COP presidency, left, listens with Sameh Shoukry, president of the COP27 climate summit, at the summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock speaks during a news conference at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit on his way out on Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Xie Zhenhua, right, China's special envoy for climate, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Germany's climate envoy Jennifer Morgan walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Attendees listen to a review of the state of discussions at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Nakeeyat Dramani Sam, of Ghana, holds a sign that reads "payment overdue" at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. She made a plea for negotiators at the summit to come to an agreement that could help curb global warming. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Wael Aboulmagd, special representative of COP presidency, left, listens with Sameh Shoukry, president of the COP27 climate summit, at the summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock speaks during a news conference at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit on his way out on Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Xie Zhenhua, right, China's special envoy for climate, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Germany's climate envoy Jennifer Morgan walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Attendees listen to a review of the state of discussions at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Nakeeyat Dramani Sam, of Ghana, holds a sign that reads "payment overdue" at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. She made a plea for negotiators at the summit to come to an agreement that could help curb global warming. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Wael Aboulmagd, special representative of COP presidency, left, listens with Sameh Shoukry, president of the COP27 climate summit, at the summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock speaks during a news conference at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit on his way out on Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Xie Zhenhua, right, China's special envoy for climate, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Germany's climate envoy Jennifer Morgan walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Attendees listen to a review of the state of discussions at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Nakeeyat Dramani Sam, of Ghana, holds a sign that reads "payment overdue" at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. She made a plea for negotiators at the summit to come to an agreement that could help curb global warming. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Wael Aboulmagd, special representative of COP presidency, left, listens with Sameh Shoukry, president of the COP27 climate summit, at the summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock speaks during a news conference at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit on his way out on Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Xie Zhenhua, right, China's special envoy for climate, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Germany's climate envoy Jennifer Morgan walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Attendees listen to a review of the state of discussions at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Nakeeyat Dramani Sam, of Ghana, holds a sign that reads "payment overdue" at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. She made a plea for negotiators at the summit to come to an agreement that could help curb global warming. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Wael Aboulmagd, special representative of COP presidency, left, listens with Sameh Shoukry, president of the COP27 climate summit, at the summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock speaks during a news conference at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit on his way out on Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Xie Zhenhua, right, China's special envoy for climate, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Germany's climate envoy Jennifer Morgan walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Attendees listen to a review of the state of discussions at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Nakeeyat Dramani Sam, of Ghana, holds a sign that reads "payment overdue" at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. She made a plea for negotiators at the summit to come to an agreement that could help curb global warming. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Wael Aboulmagd, special representative of COP presidency, left, listens with Sameh Shoukry, president of the COP27 climate summit, at the summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock speaks during a news conference at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit on his way out on Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Xie Zhenhua, right, China's special envoy for climate, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Germany's climate envoy Jennifer Morgan walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Attendees listen to a review of the state of discussions at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Nakeeyat Dramani Sam, of Ghana, holds a sign that reads "payment overdue" at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. She made a plea for negotiators at the summit to come to an agreement that could help curb global warming. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Wael Aboulmagd, special representative of COP presidency, left, listens with Sameh Shoukry, president of the COP27 climate summit, at the summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock speaks during a news conference at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit on his way out on Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Xie Zhenhua, right, China's special envoy for climate, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Germany's climate envoy Jennifer Morgan walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Attendees listen to a review of the state of discussions at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Nakeeyat Dramani Sam, of Ghana, holds a sign that reads "payment overdue" at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. She made a plea for negotiators at the summit to come to an agreement that could help curb global warming. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Wael Aboulmagd, special representative of COP presidency, left, listens with Sameh Shoukry, president of the COP27 climate summit, at the summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock speaks during a news conference at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit on his way out on Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Xie Zhenhua, right, China's special envoy for climate, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Germany's climate envoy Jennifer Morgan walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Attendees listen to a review of the state of discussions at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Nakeeyat Dramani Sam, of Ghana, holds a sign that reads "payment overdue" at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. She made a plea for negotiators at the summit to come to an agreement that could help curb global warming. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Wael Aboulmagd, special representative of COP presidency, left, listens with Sameh Shoukry, president of the COP27 climate summit, at the summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock speaks during a news conference at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit on his way out on Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Xie Zhenhua, right, China's special envoy for climate, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Germany's climate envoy Jennifer Morgan walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Attendees listen to a review of the state of discussions at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Nakeeyat Dramani Sam, of Ghana, holds a sign that reads "payment overdue" at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. She made a plea for negotiators at the summit to come to an agreement that could help curb global warming. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Wael Aboulmagd, special representative of COP presidency, left, listens with Sameh Shoukry, president of the COP27 climate summit, at the summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock speaks during a news conference at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit on his way out on Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Xie Zhenhua, right, China's special envoy for climate, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Germany's climate envoy Jennifer Morgan walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Attendees listen to a review of the state of discussions at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Nakeeyat Dramani Sam, of Ghana, holds a sign that reads "payment overdue" at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. She made a plea for negotiators at the summit to come to an agreement that could help curb global warming. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Wael Aboulmagd, special representative of COP presidency, left, listens with Sameh Shoukry, president of the COP27 climate summit, at the summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock speaks during a news conference at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit on his way out on Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Xie Zhenhua, right, China's special envoy for climate, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission, second from right, walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Germany's climate envoy Jennifer Morgan walks through the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Attendees listen to a review of the state of discussions at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Nakeeyat Dramani Sam, of Ghana, holds a sign that reads "payment overdue" at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. She made a plea for negotiators at the summit to come to an agreement that could help curb global warming. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Wael Aboulmagd, special representative of COP presidency, left, listens with Sameh Shoukry, president of the COP27 climate summit, at the summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              A hand reads "pay" calling for reparations for loss and damage at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)
            
              Activists take part in a protest at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)
            
              A delegate from Burundi listens to a review of the state of discussions at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Sameh Shoukry, president of the COP27 climate summit, leaves after a review of the state of discussions at the summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
            
              Akihiro Nishimura, minister of the environment of Japan, reviews notes with others at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)
            
              German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock speaks during a news conference at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)
            
              Demonstrators stand near a pipeline like object that reads "don't gas Africa" at the COP27 U.N. Climate Summit, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)
            
              A tree has lost its leaves in a small park in Frankfurt, Germany, Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)

AP

FILE - Florida state Rep. Joe Harding listens during a Local Administration and Veterans Affairs Su...
Associated Press

‘Don’t Say Gay’ Florida lawmaker indicted on fraud charge

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — The Florida lawmaker who sponsored the controversial law critics call “Don’t Say Gay” has been indicted on charges of defrauding a federal coronavirus loan program for small businesses, officials said Wednesday. Federal prosecutors said Rep. Joe Harding, 35, illegally obtained or tried to obtain more than $150,000 from the Small Business […]
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Associated Press

Pentagon splits $9 billion cloud contract between 4 firms

WASHINGTON (AP) — Google, Oracle, Microsoft and Amazon will share in the Pentagon’s $9 billion contract to build its cloud computing network, a year after accusations of politicization over the previously announced contract and a protracted legal battle resulted in the military starting over in its award process. The Joint Warfighter Cloud Capability is envisioned […]
16 hours ago
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Associated Press

Apple: Most iCloud data can now be end-to-end encrypted

BOSTON (AP) — As part of an ongoing privacy push, Apple said Wednesday it will now offer full end-to-encryption for nearly all the data its users store in its global cloud-based storage system. That will make it more difficult for hackers, spies and law enforcement agencies to access sensitive user information. The world’s most valuable […]
16 hours ago
FILE - A group of visitors return to Stephen C. Foster State Park after an overnight camping trip o...
Associated Press

Interior secretary: `Unacceptable’ to mine near famed swamp

SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) — A member of President Joe Biden’s Cabinet is urging Georgia officials to deny permits for a proposed mine near the edge of the famed Okefenokee Swamp and its vast wildlife refuge, saying the plan poses “unacceptable risk” to the swamp’s fragile ecology. “I write to express serious concerns regarding proposed mining […]
16 hours ago
Associated Press

How major US stock indexes fared Wednesday 12/7/2022

More weakness in tech stocks sent Wall Street mostly lower after another day of wobbly trading. The S&P 500 ended 0.2% lower Wednesday, its fifth straight loss. The Nasdaq, which is heavily weighted with tech companies, lost 0.5%. The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended just barely in the green. Treasury yields fell. Campbell Soup rose […]
16 hours ago
Associated Press

Campbell, MongoDB rise; Smith & Wesson, AeroVironment fall

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks that traded heavily or had substantial price changes Wednesday: Mastercard Inc., down 11 cents to $347.42. The processor of debit and credit card payments raised its dividend and approved a $9 billion stock buyback program. Pinterest Inc., down 4 cents to $22.68. The digital pinboard and shopping tool company announced […]
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