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A Global Climate Summit Sees Hope and Hurdles in Paris; Saudi Arabia Allows Movie Theaters to Open; A Nigerian Bobsled Team is Set to Make History
Aired December 13, 2017 - 04:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
CARL AZUZ, CNN 10 ANCHOR: CNN 10, a down the middle explanation of world news events, is launching its third show of the week. Thanks for watching.
An international summit has begun in the French capital. It involves more than 50 leaders from around the world and its focus is on climate change.
Two years ago, Paris hosted an event called COP21, meaning Conference of Parties 21. It brought together negotiators from 195 countries and it had
the goal of reducing carbon emissions, where greenhouse gas emissions.
Most climate scientists say these emissions which are caused by human activity are contributing to rising global temperatures. And some critics
say the climate changes naturally and that the earth can adjust to it. In the 2015 summit, an agreement was reached. The countries would set their
own goals for reducing their emissions. It wasn`t binding, meaning countries didn`t actually have to fulfill their commitments.
But U.S. President Barack Obama, who was in office at that time, said the Paris agreement established a framework to address climate change and
called it the best chance to save the planet. Not everyone agreed, but all except two countries signed on to the deal and the two holdouts joined
But earlier this year, the U.S. said it would withdraw. Newly inaugurated President Donald Trump disadvantage the U.S. and would cause millions of
jobs. He added that America would push for a new agreement that was more fair.
Still, the other countries stayed in. And two years to the day after the initial deal was made, a new summit kicked off in Paris with the goal of
jumpstarting a transition that`s been lagging.
JIM BITTERMANN, CNN SENIOR CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): You don`t have to look far to see how complicated the climate change issue can become. In
fact, right outside the Paris Conference Center`s front door, there is a battle going on between 2 million Parisians and the 1 million suburbanites
who commuted to the city each day. Four years ago, city officials began closing down sections of express lanes along the River Seine in Paris,
hoping to replace cars and trucks with bicycles and pedestrians in order to limit pollutions.
But after a yearlong study, air pollution officials found that roadway closings only pushed the pollution from the river where no one lives to
Paris neighborhoods where people do live.
CHARLOTTE SONGEUR, AIR QUALITY ENGINEER: If you take out cars, you have better air quality. It`s better because less emission. But if you put
them in other places, in other routes, you will have more pollution.
BITTERMANN: What`s more, it was expected that an increase in traffic would encourage commuters to use public transit, but it hasn`t happened.
According to rail statistics, fewer people are commuting using suburban trains because service is deteriorating. One in four trains on some lines
are delayed because of breakdowns and strikes.
Commuters are increasingly furious with their lack of alternatives.
PIERRE CHASSERAY, ACTIVIST: To live in Paris, it`s too expensive. So, they have to go in the suburbs to live and take the metro, the public
transport, but it`s not really sure. It`s not really safe and you have many, many delays.
BITTERMANN: As well, the increase in traffic congestion on Paris streets adds time to commutes and can delay emergency vehicles which may get stuck
behind the idling cars.
City officials say it`s worth it for the pleasure Parisians and tourists derive from a leisurely walk or ride along the river.
CHRISTOPHE NAJDOVSKI, PARIS DEPUTY MAYOR FOR TRANSPORT: There are thousands or tens of thousands of people who are just using it now with
biking, with walking or just enjoying this new park in the center of the city of Paris.
BITTERMANN: That may be true in the summertime, however, when the weather turns, the strollers and riders disappear, but the cars do not.
What`s more, the city`s ambitious scheme to encourage bike sharing has had its own problems. The company behind it is reporting that because of
vandalism and theft, 15 to 20 percent of the bikes were lost each year and maintenance cost went through the roof.
ALBERT ASSERAF, STRATEGY EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, JC DECAUX GROUP: We have to work on each bicycle almost every 15 days.
BITTERMANN (on camera): The old bicycle rental stations are now being ripped out to make room for a three new higher tech bike-sharing scheme,
something which may solve some of the problems. But as city officials here have found out, convincing people to abandon their cars and go green is
proving more difficult than they first thought.
Jim Bittermann, CNN, Paris.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
AZUZ (voice-over): Ten-second trivia:
What is the largest country in the world without a river?
Saudi Arabia, Greenland, Australia, or Iran?
Thought it`s situated between the Red Sea and the Persian Gulf, Saudi Arabia does not have a river running through it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AZUZ: It also doesn`t have any movie theaters, or at least it won`t until next year when commercial theaters will be granted licenses to open up.
They`ve been banned for 35 years in the conservative Muslim country. But the change is part of a series of reforms taking place in the kingdom. The
nation`s crown prince has promised to destroy what he calls extremist ideologies and return Saudi Arabia to a, quote, more moderate Islam.
Part of the decision is economic, as Saudi Arabia tries to reduce its dependence on oil. Movie theaters could create jobs and encourage Saudis
to spend more money at home rather than vacation in nearby countries that have more entertainment options.
Some Saudi religious leaders oppose this idea. One cleric has called theaters a depravity and suggested they could hurt the kingdom`s morals.
The first cinemas are expected to open their doors in March.
Moving west from Saudi Arabia to the African country of Nigeria. It`s had a number of success stories in the Olympic Games, like when its soccer team
won gold in 1996. But Nigeria has never won a medal or even competed in the Winter Olympics.
Next February, three athletes representing Nigeria are set to compete in bobsledding. This is the first bobsled for any African country. The women
have already qualified and say they`re ecstatic.
Their driver, Seun Adigun, was born in the U.S. to Nigerian parents. She represented Nigeria in the 2012 Summer Games and she spoke to CNN about the
transition from one type of track to another.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEUN ADIGUN, NIGERIAN WOMEN`S BOBSLED DRIVER: This is beyond a dream come true, you know, to be able to bring something back to not only the country
of Nigeria, which has so gracefully given me my family, you know, my culture and everything that I stand by, but also, to the continent of
Africa and the world. You know, just kind of bring a gift for people to know that resilience is something that you can actually live to achieve and
that the fear of the unknown doesn`t need to be something that limits your ability to thrive in life. I mean, I think that those qualities in itself
will really, really be important for everyone to be able to take in.
RIHANNON JONES, CNN WORLD SPORT: Now, you mentioned that the fear of unknown. Let`s stay with that word "fear". It`s a pretty scary sport by
all accounts, is it not?
ADIGUN: Fear is really just another opportunity to learn. Fear is it shouldn`t be something that handicaps your idea of what it means to be
successful. It should be a driving force to how you live and take chances and do things that may not have even thought were possible.
JONES: And I understand, it all begun in a Texas garage just a few years ago, right? You hammered together a makeshift sled out of wood and scraps.
I mean, it`s quite remarkable what you`ve achieved from what you`re making in that garage, to (INAUDIBLE).
ADIGUN: Just the Mayflower, you know, really helped to catapult my ability to learn how to bobsled, as well as to help teach it. And, I mean, look at
now, that was a learning tool before and now, all of a sudden, I`m segued into being in real bobsleds. I mean, look at just the transition from
wooden sled to real sleds. I mean, this is absolutely amazing.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AZUZ: A man in an Arizona diner recently ordered some bacon and eggs. His bill was $17. He left a tip of $2,000. When going out to eat, 20 percent
is usually considered a good tip. This was more than 11,600 percent.
He left a note that said, please split with the whole staff, merry Christmas. That meant more than 200 bucks per employee.
His server said you hear about this kind of thing on the news, but you never think it will happen to you.
I guess she thought it was un-bill-ievable. Turned out, that was the tip of the iceberg. It seemed to tip off other customers to do the same thing.
Tip for tat with a tip of a hat. Bills began to fill, tipping the scales for hardworking employees whose tip jar runneth over with the spirit of
I`m Carl Azuz for CNN 10.