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FAQ: Annual climate negotiations are about to start. Do they matter?

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FILE - An offshore wind farm is visible from the beach in Hartlepool, England, Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019. The U.K. government's climate advisers on Wednesday slammed officials for their slow pace of action in meeting their “net zero” greenhouse gas emissions target and backtracking on fossil fuel commitments, saying Britain has “lost its clear global leadership position on climate action." (AP Photo/Frank Augstein, File)

A major, annual international climate meeting kicks off later this week in Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates.

World leaders are meeting from Nov. 30 to Dec. 12 to discuss the effects of climate change, efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and the increasingly pressing question of who will pay for the costs of a hotter planet.

Attendance at the annual negotiations has ballooned and hit an estimated 45,000 people last year. Thousands of climate scientists, mayors, activists, corporate executives and representatives of major oil companies will also fly to the petroleum-dependent host country to attend hundreds of side events.

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