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First Move with Julia Chatterley
The U.N. Says We have Zero Years to Avoid Devastating Climate Change; Wildfires in Greece Highlight the Impact of the Climate Crisis; France Implements Top New Vaccine Rules. Aired 9-10a ET
Aired August 09, 2021 - 09:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JULIA CHATTERLEY, CNN BUSINESS ANCHOR, FIRST MOVE: Live from New York, I'm Julia Chatterley. This is FIRST MOVE and here is your need-to-know.
Climate crunch. The U.N. says we have zero years to avoid devastating change.
Devastating damage, meanwhile. Wildfires in Greece highlight the impact of the crisis.
And passes and protests. France implements top new vaccine rules.
It's Monday, let's make a move.
A pleasure to have you with us on this post-Olympics edition of FIRST MOVE. The medals netted out, the torch extinguished, and now the baton passes to
Beijing and the winter worries begin. China, of course hosting the next games just six months from now, but Tokyo pulling off what many thoughts
impossible, a relatively safe, yet highly unusual Summer Games, and a phenomenal medal haul as well for Japan by historical standards and some
great fireworks as you can see there, too.
And Team GB punching above its population adjusted weight. Good work, Team GB, of course, slightly biased there. But as always, we move on quickly.
Meanwhile, the weight of expectation sitting heavily on investors this morning, too, after that strong jobs report pushed markets to records on
Friday. Goldman Sachs now expecting three and a half million jobs added back by yearend. They are crediting vaccinations and the end of enhanced
jobless benefits, too.
Other good signs on Friday as well, strong orders from U.S. factories, which could be a sign that the shortage of parts is easing, and that could
then relieve pricing pressures, too. Good news for the Federal Reserve, if so, as it nears its crucial decision on tapering.
What about over in Asia? Well, Japan taking a post-Olympics break. That market closed for a holiday. Shanghai though rising some one percent after
a fresh nine percent spike in Chinese producer prices, that rekindling hopes for new monetary easing, which I think accounts for what we've seen
in the stock market.
Goldman Sachs, meanwhile, cutting its third quarter growth forecast for China due to delta variant uncertainty, but it did raise its Q4 outlook.
Much more on the Mandarin muddle later on in the show with Leland Miller of the China Beige Book.
For now, let's get to the drivers. No time for delay, no room for excuses. The U.N. Secretary General is summing up a landmark report on the climate
crisis, its conclusion should make everyone sit up. The situation is far worse than we feared.
Our chief climate correspondent, Bill Weir joins us now.
Bill, always fantastic to have you on the show. You know, for me, there's good and bad in this report, though the bad, of course, the devastating
impact that we, as humans are having on our beautiful Earth. The good of this is, it is entirely in our hands if we just own up to it, to tackle it.
BILL WEIR, CNN CHIEF CLIMATE CORRESPONDENT: Julia, absolutely right, and interesting in all the climate modeling that's gotten almost more robust in
recent years with better satellites, they are now factoring in political action or inaction, to figure out which scenarios will take us into the
worst, most painful futures.
But this is the result of 234 scientists from 66 countries spending eight years combing over 14,000 latest peer-reviewed science and it is
unequivocal now, there is zero doubt that it is humanity, mankind's addiction really to fuels that burn that is cranking up the thermostat.
They have moved up the possibility now and increase the possibility to more than 50 percent that we will hit that 1.5 degrees Celsius sort of red line,
the Paris Accords hope to stop that will hit that in the early 2030s. That's a decade sooner than previously thought -- Julia.
CHATTERLEY: Yes. What I actually like about this report, and you're pointing to it as well is that they go through the impact of every one
degree in further warming and say, look, these are the kinds of consequences that we're going to be looking at, and Bill, you travel around
the world. I know you were in Greenland last week looking at the devastating impact just a day's worth of melting that you saw there and the
impact that that's having.
Just give us your sense of what we're seeing and whether you see people's minds changing, just in light of the last year in both the weather that
we've seen, but also what lockdown and shutdown meant in terms of regeneration for the environment, too.
WEIR: What makes this so challenging, Julia, is that it varies. There will be no sort of Pearl Harbor, no 9/11 where everybody on the planet
experiences the same horror at the same time. It's varied in degrees.
So, in Greenland, they are living in the defrost setting, which is lovely. It's easier to catch fish and make a living. There's more tourists coming,
which is much worse than being on the roast or the baste setting in the global south, unfortunately.
WEIR: But all of these things are connected, as you say, enough freshwater melted from the land in Greenland to cover the entire State of Florida in
two inches of water in one day. And that melt is not stopping. And so part of this report says things like sea level rise are already baked in.
But whether it is two meters or 22 meters, it depends entirely on how fast humankind can change everything about modern life and how we power these
CHATTERLEY: Yes, and we have to make a change now. Bill, great to have you with us. Thank you so much for that.
WEIR: Thank you, Julia.
CHATTERLEY: All right, one dramatic consequences both describing there, extreme weather and we're seeing it all over the world, including in
Greece, where the Prime Minister has thanked the nation's helping fight devastating wildfires there.
You're actually looking at pictures from a Russian plane dumping water over a blaze that's ravaging Evia Island, and that's where Eleni Giokos is.
Eleni, talk to us about what you've seen and the conversations that you're having with people there.
ELENI GIOKOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Julia, I mean, look, we arrived in Evia this morning. We've seen a few active fires. It has been devastating
and absolutely petrifying.
Where we are right now is a region where there's been active fires beyond these trees, and we've seen flames that have gone above the trees, and it
seems that it's under control now, but I just have to show you how the local community has come together to try and ensure that this fire doesn't
get out of control, because they are both villages surrounding this area.
You have locals that have brought water and resources ready to fight the blaze, and it has been unbelievable to see the assistance. Of course,
you've mentioned that international assistance has also arrived, 22 countries have sent resources, firefighters, the likes of helicopters, and
aircraft to try and get this place under control.
The locals that I've spoken to say they have never seen anything like this, though an absolute shock, you've seen devastation of forests.
This is what the forest normally looks like. As you can see, it's very lush and green, 450,000 hectares, Julia, has thus far been destroyed in Evia
alone. It is the second largest island in Greece in totality since the wildfires started in the country, 650,000 hectares has already been
This is now the seventh day of wildfires. It is completely out of kilter for this to carry on for so long. It's been compounded by extreme weather.
We've seen over 45 degrees Celsius for many days, and of course, that has impacted the rate at which this has spread.
One firefighter said to me, who has been working for 24 hours, nonstop, and he has put out many fires in his life, but he has never seen anything to
Here in Evia, it is almost like Ground Zero where the wildfires are in Greece, and it is aggressive. It's intense. And Julia, let me tell you, you
know, how many days do we still have to go before they can put this blaze out and under control? No one has an answer.
CHATTERLEY: No, and that's the all-important question, Eleni. You know, it's interesting, we've had these conversations with reporters on this
show, all around Europe, in particular over the last several weeks, and we hear the same things that the shock, the fact that people are saying that
we've never seen anything like this.
Eleni, what do they think caused this? Are they making the connection between what we were just talking to Bill there? And I'm sure you were
probably listening to that, too, the impact of climate change and the consequences of extreme weather and the devastating impact that we're
seeing. Do they talk about that? Are they talking about that there?
GIOKOS: Absolutely. Yes. They absolutely are. Look, the temperatures that were experienced in Greece, in all parts of Greece is completely rare. It
hasn't been felt in over 30 years. So, that has been shocking in itself. And they say that absolutely, climate change, and the heat has something to
do with us. But there have been some suspected cases of arson.
However, climate change here, the conversation about climate change is trumping all conversations. There is a fear that this is the start of
something that is going to continue year in and year out. And of course, you've got to have resources on the ground. And of course, you've also got
to be prepared.
There's been lack of water and getting resources to try and put out this blaze, Julia. The heat is not helping, the only good thing is that there is
no wind, so it is not spreading as fast as it could.
CHATTERLEY: Yes, I mean, you look for the sort of bright spots in it wherever you can, but we're just showing pictures actually now in Friday of
living in Greece with people being evacuated, too. It's devastating.
Eleni, thank you for bringing that story to us. Eleni Giokos in Greece there.
And later on in the show, we'll take you to Iran to show you further devastating consequences of the climate crisis. For now, we'll move on.
CHATTERLEY: Firework finale. The Summer Games in Tokyo have drawn to a close and the Olympic flame has been doused as we mentioned. Team U.S.A.
topping the leaderboard with China set to host the 2022 Winter Olympics in second place. And now of course, as I've mentioned, the winter worries
begin, as David Culver reports.
DAVID CULVER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): A surge of Chinese pride in Tokyo, China's athletes bringing home the second highest number of gold
medals, just narrowly losing to the United States, but setting the world stage for a fierce competition in February's Winter Olympic Games in
China, hoping for a show stopping repeat of 2008.
That was China's ceremonial stepping out onto the world stage, hosting the Summer Olympics in Beijing, at a moment many expected would lead to a
further opening up of the country.
The Games were a mesmerizing production, revealing China's potential to rival the West in both athletic competition and beyond.
BRIAN DEESE, DIRECTOR OF THE NATIONAL ECONOMIC COUNCIL: This competition is going to be one of the central challenges of this century.
CULVER (voice over): But since 2008, under the ruling Communist Party and its increasingly powerful leader, Xi Jinping, the People's Republic has not
only seen its economy soar, but also a rapid buildup and flexing of its military and cyber might, making countries like the U.S. increasingly
In less than six months, the Olympics are set to return to Beijing, and you can expect China to impress once again, starting with its hardware.
CNN was recently invited to visit some of the Olympic venues. China building big and fast, well ahead of schedule.
CULVER (on camera): On the ground, you've got the buildings up, the brandings up inside, they're pretty much done, and really, they are waiting
on the athletes.
CULVER (voice over): Dramatic backdrops for the events with sweeping mountain views.
CULVER (on camera): Of course, as you look out, the venue is going to look a bit different come winter. This will all ideally be covered in white.
CULVER (voice over): Italian engineers working years in advance to bring the snowy Alps to Asia.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So we can control the quality of the snow.
CULVER (voice over): And China making a big environmental promise. These will be the first Games in which all of the competition venues will be
fueled 100 percent by green energy.
CULVER (on camera): We're on top of one of the slopes. As you look out, you can pan across and you see dozens of windmills, beyond that, solar
CULVER (voice over): But there are chilling realities that threaten to overshadow these Games. Chinese cities are quickly re-imposing targeted
lockdowns as the delta variant of COVID-19 spreads.
Extreme containment measures, while seemingly effective aren't exactly welcoming to the rest of the world
KARINE JEAN-PIERRE, WHITE HOUSE DEPUTY PRESS SECRETARY: We will continue to press China.
CULVER (voice over): China is also facing mounting pressure over the investigation into the origins of the virus, which has claimed more than
four million lives worldwide.
And then there are the growing calls for countries to boycott Beijing for alleged human rights abuses, specifically its treatment of Uighur Muslims
in Xinjiang. The worsening tensions between China and the West coinciding with an intensified nationalism at home, which begs the question, even with
all the expected pageantry and performance of the upcoming Beijing Winter Games, can China change how the world views the emerging superpower?
CHATTERLEY: And David joins us now. David, what a fascinating report. I mean, there's so much in there. We could spend this whole conversation
talking about the fact that it's a hundred percent green energy, which is, I think, a phenomenal move and statement by the Chinese here. But
unfortunately, I think we have to talk about some of the challenges whether it's the boycotts, the challenge, of course of COVID. And of course, it
explains why they are being so vigilant about rising COVID cases at this moment, which is also clearly a challenge.
CULVER: You know, Julia, you, you look at this, and you're right. There are a lot of positives to point out, but with that, there are negatives
that are going to overshadow much of these Games.
Let me show you just how sensitive it is here. As that report was playing, we balanced it out, we put both sides in there. But this is what you saw
here in Mainland China. You can see that. It says, "Please stand by." It is a censorship. We get that a lot here.
But that shows you just how sensitive some of these issues are, and that is going to play out over the next several months. And it's while they're also
dealing with this cluster outbreak that has spread to multiple clusters now. So, they're trying to get that under control.
And really, when you compare the numbers to the rest of the world and what other countries are seeing with the number of new delta variant linked
cases, China is doing pretty well, but they have this zero tolerance approach and they are determined to maintain that even though some experts
here have even suggested that perhaps that's not reasonable going forward, especially when you look ahead to the Olympics. Well, that's not going over
They are standing by that for now, and they've even, Julia, gone to the extent of removing and firing some local officials who have been over
certain areas that have had cluster outbreaks.
CHATTERLEY: David, what you just captured there, though, was pretty fascinating, sort of taking no risks on what the content of your report was
going to look like. And as you said, it was incredibly balanced and we discussed incredibly balanced in in both regards.
Just in light of that fact, and we know it's a frequent occurrence and it has been happening for a very long time, I think are there going to be
spectators invited to China for these Olympics from other nations around the world? How is that going to be handled?
CULVER: It remains to be seen. It is something that they say they are still working on, they're hoping to make this as close to a normal Olympics
as possible. But in order to make that happen, it's likely that they're going to have to put folks in quarantine for a good duration. And to give
you an example of what they're dealing with for the Tokyo Games, the Chinese athletes who have started to come back since late July and are
continuing to come back now that The Games have wrapped, they are going right to a centralized quarantine here in Beijing. They will spend 21 days
And then at the back end of that, after multiple tests, they're able to continue on with their lives within Mainland China.
CHATTERLEY: Yes, it's going to be fascinating to see how the athletes feel about this as well. David Culver, as always phenomenal reporting. Thank you
CULVER: Thanks, Julia.
CHATTERLEY: All right, let me bring you up to speed now with some of the other stories making headlines around the world. The Taliban have seized at
least five provincial capitals in Afghanistan in just a matter of days according to a local journalist.
Afghan officials fear catastrophe with only three weeks left of U.S. air support when all foreign troops are set to withdraw.
CNN international security editor, Nick Paton Walsh joins me now,
Nick, you can bring us up to speed with the latest on what we've seen, particularly over the weekend. But can you also answer the question of
whether any of this actually is unexpected, in light of the troop withdrawal that we're seeing?
NICK PATON WALSH, CNN INTERNATIONAL SECURITY EDITOR: I think certainly most analysts were expecting significant Taliban advances, and we are
certainly seeing that. The pace at which this has occurred in the last four to five days, I have said that staggered me is probably the most perilous
moment for the U.S.-backed Afghan government in the last 20 years, not really because of the cities themselves have fallen, Kunduz is the one
major one. Some of these have been more remote urban areas.
But because of the general idea being held that the Taliban could be kept in rural areas by Afghan Security Forces and what remains of U.S. airpower,
the Taliban have proven that false. There now, it seems today possibly taken their sixth provincial capital, Ghazni, a very important city, the
fight for that clearly raging at the moment, and possibly, too in Kunduz as well, which they took yesterday. Still, there appear to be Afghan Security
Forces trying to influence that as well.
But where does this go next? Well, certainly these larger cities, Ghazni and Kunduz are in very inconvenient places around the capital, Kabul. There
is a fear, I heard from a senior Afghan Security official that in the remaining 2021 days, in which the U.S. has said it will use their power to
push the Taliban back, Joe Biden did say -- President Joe Biden, when he announced the withdrawal, that they would attack those who attacked their
allies, as the U.S. was withdrawing.
The fear is that after those 21 days, what kind of battlefield could we see? Already, that U.S. airpower is not stopping the last five days of
extraordinary Taliban insurgent progress on the ground. So, a deeply troubling moment.
You might want to take comfort as a critic of how the U.S. has applied itself in Afghanistan, and that the inevitable is happening. But frankly,
you shouldn't, because it is coming at the extraordinary cost of Afghan lives on the grounds of very bleak few months ahead. Certainly, a very
bleak today. And then, of course, comes after decades of conflict for ordinary Afghans.
I can't really stress just how perilous this moment is for all that the West has put its resources into Afghanistan for -- Julia.
CHATTERLEY: Yes, and heartbreaking to watch, Nick. It's a futile question, but I'll ask it incredibly quickly. Does any of what we are seeing here
change minds? Even if it just means an extension of some kind of aerial support beyond the 21 days?
PATON WALSH: It's possible, certainly, the U.S. have made their job of air support significantly harder by getting out of the main air strips inside
Afghanistan. So, they have to do it from bases nearby or in the Middle East. That makes it a lot harder to implement the volume you need to change
the battlefield and also to be as pinpointed as you need, but not U.S. troops on the ground.
So yes, there has to be a swift decision certainly by U.S. leaders, but it might be too late to reverse the changes we've seen in the last week. It is
simply hard to tell at this stage -- Julia.
CHATTERLEY: Yes. Great to have you with us, Nick Paton Walsh there in London. Thank you.
Canada is allowing fully vaccinated Americans to enter the country again after nearly a year and a half. The U.S. is normally Canada's biggest
source of tourism dollars, but the Biden administration has yet to say when or how the U.S. will open it side of the border.
Football superstar, Lionel Messi bid an emotional farewell Sunday to the only club he has ever played for, the world famous Barcelona. His next move
isn't yet official, but some reports suggest he may be moving on to Paris to continue his career.
Okay, still to come here on FIRST MOVE. Undaunted by delta, the CEO of China's Beige Book remains optimistic on recovery despite a run of negative
And a super app for Africa. Gozem began as a motorcycle ride hailing operator, but now, it is scaling up. We speak to the co-founder about their
plan. That's all coming up, stay with us.
CHATTERLEY: Welcome back to FIRST MOVE and we'll call it a Monday mood on Wall Street this morning with blue chips set to pull back from records,
lots of volatility overnight, too, in the metals market, in particular gold suffering what's been called a mini flash crash on fears of U.S. Central
Bank tightening to combat inflation.
Gold of course, is seen as an inflation hedge. The precious metal gaining back some ground after falling below $1,700.00 an ounce. It is still down
around eight percent year-to-date. All majors also looking softer premarket as crude prices pullback near three percent.
Brent and U.S. crude falling on concerns that new Chinese COVID restrictions could slow its economic growth and China's worst COVID
outbreak in over a year just one of the country's economic headwinds, tech crackdowns, a stock selloff, and rising inflation all contributing to fears
of a growth slowdown.
In July, factory prices were up nine percent compared to a year ago. But despite the headlines, the man running the largest private data collector
in China says he remains optimistic about the growth outlook and that's why he joins us now.
Leland Miller is the CEO of China Beige Book. Leland, always fantastic to have you on the show, too. Tell me what your data is seeing and if you can
break it down into the manufacturing sector, the services sector, and then the retail consumer, I would be very grateful.
LELAND MILLER, CEO, CHINA BEIGE BOOK: Sure. So, from the beginning of the COVID recovery over a year ago, we saw industry leading services sort of
treading water and retail, you know, consumption proxy lagging way behind, and people were pretty optimistic because China emerged straight out of the
coronavirus recovery pretty well.
But now, they turned a little bit -- they turned more negative in recent weeks because the government cut the RR, the reserve requirement ratio and
it looked like they were panicking, something must be happening. But what we've seen in our data is that manufacturing is still doing pretty well,
although, it may be plateauing soon, service has actually turned up. You know, the retail is still down a bit.
MILLER: So, the economy itself, despite the fact you've got these nasty tech sector headlines, you know, you've got these, you know, worries over
the Chinese government stimulating, why are they doing this? The economy has looked pretty good in July, it actually turned up from June.
The big question, of course, is delta and whether delta is going to throw everything we're talking about off course.
CHATTERLEY: Okay, let's go there, then I'll come back to what you are saying about some of the data because I do think the moment we start to see
China cutting reserve requirements or pushing more liquidity into the system, people go, uh-oh, there's clearly something that they're fighting
here, and they're trying to support growth.
Let's talk about delta though first, because I know you have a Facebook tracker to try and analyze sort of what the social media community is
telling you about what we're seeing in terms of COVID. What's your sense?
MILLER: Well, what we're doing is actually a little bit different in that we're tracking it through our corporate networks. But essentially, what we
are doing is we're trying to track to see how much of an impact COVID is really having. You know, Beijing is not known for releasing bad data or bad
news, and so we just want to see whether something may be, you know, bubbling under the surface that looks bad.
Now, we saw a tick up in May, right before the Guangdong shut down and little mini panic, and we've seen a tick up several weeks ago before the
headlines on this. So you know, we're watching this. We don't know right now whether this is going to be a minor hiccup of -- a minor shutdown of
activity or whether it really stops commerce and affects economic activity for the third quarter. August is going to be very important in figuring
CHATTERLEY: I mean, Goldman Sachs came out overnight and slashed their growth forecast for the third quarter. Actually, they raised their fourth
quarter growth estimates and that, relatively unchanged on the year, you're saying it's still too early to see how much of a negative impact will take
place in the third quarter.
MILLER: Right. I mean, a lot of this is perception. So, you know, the dynamic that we saw at the beginning of the pandemic recovery in China was
in industry leading and everything consumptions lagging behind. And there was this idea that oh, just wait, it is right around the corner, you're
going to see consumption surge or consumer spending surge. We never saw that in our data.
So we were never, you know, bullish about that suddenly ticking up. But we have seen services recover, and we have seen manufacturing continue to do
So when everyone got more negative after the RR cut, our trajectory was still pretty much the same. You're still seeing a recovery.
Again, everything comes down to delta, though, that'll be the tell.
CHATTERLEY: Yes, the wildcard here.
Let's talk about the tech crack down, because you mentioned it and I hear different views on what's actually taking place here. I speak to those in
China that say, for example, like the private education companies, that private education was getting prohibitively expensive, and the Chinese
authorities just want to add some degree of regulation to it. Then I speak to others who are saying, we're seeing a splintering of capital markets
with greater regulation, actually, on both sides, the U.S. and China preventing Chinese companies raising money in the United States, but for
Leland, what's your take on what we're seeing?
MILLER: Well, they can both sort of be correct. I think what has thrown people off the most, is that when there was a crackdown in financial, you
could attribute that to, you know, Jack getting his comeuppance, or when there was something that happened to some of the bigger companies, Meituan
or Tencent, oh, well, they are getting big there. They need to do some antitrust pushback. And then you see DiDi, oh, well, they flaunted the
So there's always a sub-drama that allows you to tell a different story. But the question is, what's the overarching theme? And I think the
overarching theme is from now, straight through the party Congress next year, you know it happens once every five years, it's where the leadership
will solidify Xi Jinping for another five or 10, or who knows how many years. They are supposed to pick successors -- very politically sensitive
I think between now and then, there's going to be a lot of things done by the government that show that -- sorry, to the party that show that the
party cares, the party is there for wealth equality, it's there against corruption, it's there against big business.
So, some of these strings are not connected to each other, except on the top line, they are all pointed in one direction. That is, the party is a
friend of the people. And I think we're going to be seeing more of this.
CHATTERLEY: Does it limit the growth of some of these Chinese tech startups? Because traditionally, they'd come to international markets to
get a wider access pool of money, also potentially more money as well than perhaps going to Hong Kong or the Shanghai STAR market. Does it restrict
their growth in any way or does the party solve that problem, too?
MILLER: Well, it depends on how intense the crackdown is. I mean, if you're talking about what antitrust regulation is supposed to do, it's
supposed to control the power of the big national giant so that startups have room to grow in an ecosystem. So, theoretically if done right, this
could be good for the tech sector.
You know, but the question is always, you know how far are they going to go? And is the goal to clip the wings of some of the bigger companies? Or
is it something bigger to show that societally, the party is in charge, not the tech companies.
The message hasn't been crafted, and I don't think they have a singular message yet. But that will be more -- that will reflect, I think, where
they are actually going on this a lot better than what we know now.
CHATTERLEY: Yes. And in the meantime, for investors and buyers beware. Leland Miller, thank you for your insights, as always, the CEO of China
Beige Book there.
The market opens next. Stay with us.
CHATTERLEY: Welcome back to FIRST MOVE and it's a mixed open for Wall Street after last week's across the board gains. Tech trying to regain some
of the ground it lost Friday, as well as bond yields rose off the back of that strong jobs report.
Warren Buffett, however, remaining cautious. Berkshire Hathaway earnings over the weekend showing the Oracle of Omaha a net seller of stocks for the
third straight quarter, in fact. Major tests to await to investors in the days ahead, key readings on the U.S. consumer and wholesale inflation. Meme
madness, too. Popular Reddit stock, AMC, the cinema chain gets ready to report results later today. And meme stock market or stock market place,
Robinhood, higher again in early trade after rallying 56 percent last week. Its post IPO weakness truly in the rear view mirror. We asked, but we do
And Bitcoin back above $45,000.00 once again. The cryptocurrency successfully testing a key technical level. Bitcoin now more than 55
Okay, returning now to our top story today, the U.N.'s major report on the climate crisis. More than 200 scientists from 66 countries have worked on
it. It cites more than 14,000 pieces of scientific research and the picture is clear, the world is warming up far faster than we thought, and it is the
first time, the U.N. has said it's unequivocal, the crisis is entirely man made.
Fred Pleitgen is showing us the dramatic impact we're having on the planet through the prism of a landmark in Iran. Here is his exclusive report.
FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice over): From a lush natural paradise to a dry, salty desert. Global warming is
literally evaporating what once was the largest lake in the entire Middle East, Lake Urmia in Iran, the sixth largest salt lake in the world.
PLEITGEN (on camera): All around Lake Urmia, you can see the impact of the global climate emergency on the communities here, on the people, their
livelihoods, and of course also their future.
The authorities tell us today, Lake Urmia is less than half the size of what it used to be.
PLEITGEN (voice over): The shrinkage is due in part to dam projects around here, but mostly due to years of severe drought as our planet gets hotter.
Ahad Ahmadi (ph) was a tourist photographer on the boardwalk in what used to be the beach resort, Sharaf Hane (ph). Believe it or not, this photo was
only taken in 1995 when tourists still flocked here he says.
"People would come here for swimming and would use the mud for therapeutic purposes. They would stay here for several days," he says.
The ferryboats many used to cross the lake, now lay stranded on the salty crust slowly rusting away.
This Google Maps animation shows just how fast Lake Urmia has shrunk, going from 5,400 square kilometers in size to just 2,500 and about 30 years. Lack
of rain and water shortages are a problem all across Iran. Precipitation in Iran is down by more than 50 percent this year, according to the country's
Center for Drought and Crisis Management.
Severe lack of water recently led to protests, some violent in the southwest of the country. Iran Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khomeini saying
he understands the protesters and that their issues must be addressed.
Iran's new President saying he has understood the message. "The matters have been detected, and I assure the people that the solutions have been
delineated, and we have benefited from the views of experts and scholars, and this will urgently be dealt with," he said.
At Lake Urmia, water shortage is not the only problem. The dusty salty ground left behind when the lake receded led to salt storms, causing eye
infections and respiratory problems for people around here. The local environmental protection agency planted these bushes which they say mostly
succeeded in stopping the worst effects.
"As the bushes grow here, they have more leaves and the moving sand gets trapped inside," he says, "So it acts as a trap which keeps the sand
Iranian authorities say they've made saving Lake Urmia a priority and that a halt to new dam projects and diverting other water sources towards the
lake have at least slowed its decline. But farmer Kumar's Purjebeli (ph) shows me his main concern. The water he is able to get from as well is very
salty, killing off many of the buds on his tomato vines and slowly causing his walnut trees to wither.
"The day the soil will become unfarmable is not far away," he says, "When you water the earth to a depth of 110 centimeters, it infiltrates the soil
and the salt will stay there and its level increases every year."
And the salt concentration in Lake Urmia is dramatically increasing as the water body shrinks. Microorganisms that flourish in salty water have died
much of what's left of the lake in a reddish pink color. The deputy head of this province's environmental protection agency tells me he believes there
are now about six billion tons of salt around the lake.
Still, he says he is confident they can stop the lake from drying up.
"Pausing all dam construction projects has been very effective," he says. "But some of the rivers that feed the lake were full of sediment, so the
water didn't reach all the way to here. We've cleaned up the river beds to increase the water inflow."
Those measures are making a big difference the authorities say, but they are also under no illusion. What they urgently need here is more rain, to
stop Lake Urmia, a natural treasure of this region from vanishing into thin and salty air.
Fred Pleitgen, CNN, Urmia, Iran.
CHATTERLEY: Just astonishing images.
Okay, coming up after the break, Gozem going places. What began as a simple ride hailing app is now aiming to supersize. All the details, next
CHATTERLEY: Welcome back to FIRST MOVE. Cutting through the chaos of hectic streets, Gozem, the startup that began as a motorbike ride hailing
firm is on the road to becoming an African super app by adding grocery deliveries, financial services, and even digital wallets. Cofounded by
entrepreneurs from Nigeria and Switzerland, Gozem operates primarily in French speaking cities in West and Central Africa. It has half a million
registered users, with one estimate suggesting 800 million people in Sub Saharan Africa is still without mobile internet. The digital divide means a
huge challenge for the region.
Raphael Dana is cofounder of Gozem and joins us now. Raphael, fantastic to have you on the show. I think one of the things our audience has to
understand to start off with is you've only been going for three years. They have been incredibly tough, but also lucrative for online companies
such as yourselves. Put your own firm into perspective for us. What do you do and what do you offer as of today?
RAPHAEL DANA, COFOUNDER, GOZEM: Yes, good morning, Julia. Thank you for having me with you. Yes, so Gozem, we're a super app in West and Central
Africa. So what we do is that we're mostly inspired by Grab and Gojek from Southeast Asia. So, we have four businesses: We do transport, we do e-
commerce, we do financing, and we also have a digital wallet.
So, we've started in ToGo in 2018. Since then, we've added Benin and Gabon as countries. This year, we're going to open Cameroon, and by the end of
2022, we would like to be in all the Sub Saharan French speaking countries in Africa.
CHATTERLEY: That is some incredibly swift expansion across different locations, different parts of Africa. I guess, my first question to that
would be, are you spreading yourself too thinly, even if you have a model like a Grab, as you said, or a Gojek, too, to look at in terms of what
DANA: So, we're looking at the French speaking Sub Saharan Africa as one big market. It's around 240 million people. It is the same language, where
we're having just two currencies. It is the same kind of legal system, and we're solving more or less the same problem. We have a big market of a
motorcycle riding, and also in terms of delivery, in terms of financing. We are everywhere of the same niche, but the most important is currently we
have mostly no competition to this market.
CHATTERLEY: So, of the 500,000 registered users that I mentioned in the introduction, how many of them are using their motorbike ride hailing, for
example, versus the proportions of people that are using some of the other businesses that you said you're looking at whether it's the use of cars,
for example, or delivery, even logistics, I know is a plan going forward, too?
DANA: Sure. So, the model of the super app is you need to have one activity that bring back the user on the daily repeat. So, if you look at
WeChat, in China, people are using the chat, and they go every day, and then they add other services.
In our case, transportation is the main daily repeat. So, transportation is the backbone of our business. During the COVID, we added the delivery
services, then our driver needed a cheaper solution to finance the bike. We've started financing, and since day one, we have a digital wallet that
is going to be expanding soon when we're going to be under license.
CHATTERLEY: So what you're saying is --
DANA: Sorry --
DANA: Yes, but in terms of activity, now, it's mostly transportation.
CHATTERLEY: Yes, but that makes sense. To your point, it is allowing you to cross sell, get people the financing access, perhaps they need to hire a
bike or to buy a bike in order to be a driver for you, for example, or those that are already on the platform, then perhaps use the delivery
option. One is sort of the foundation and it grows from there.
DANA: Yes, I would say it's a virtuous ecosystem because when you have transport, we have a motorcycle, we have tricycle, and we have cars so
people can move people around. But at the same time, we do delivery, and it's the same supply. So, it's the same drivers who are doing this. At the
same time, those drivers needs a cheaper vehicle in terms of the financing so we can provide this as well.
And as we're doing financing and wire transactions, we need the wallet, so every business is helping all the other businesses.
CHATTERLEY: Can you give us a sense of numbers just in terms of the kind of growth that you're seeing?
DANA: Yes, sure. So, right now, we have over 2,500 drivers operating into our platform. Last month, they made 300,000 trips all over our countries.
In terms of financing, we've deployed 400 bikes in July, and that's growing. And yes, well, as you said, 500,000 registered users and we have
almost like a million app downloads soon.
And yes, I think in terms of GMV, our gross merchandising value which is the new real KPI into our business, we are on a $10 million run rate
CHATTERLEY: You know, it's interesting, I can see the allure and the opportunity, I can tell by your accent that I don't believe that you were
born on the African continent. But you've got a subset of people that are increasingly tech savvy, optimistic, and innovation startup culture, I
think there; relatively low levels of banked proportion of the population.
So, in terms of the fit here, I can see perhaps the allure. Is that why you chose Central and West Africa to locate the business?
DANA: So, I think when we come back to the super app model, the less the ecosystem is developed, the better is your opportunity. So as an example,
if you want to build a super app in New York City tomorrow, it's impossible. You're going to go in any vertical, you have 10 players with
billions of dollar everywhere. So, you can do one app that is going to do everything.
When you arrive, like in our case, in West and Central and more specifically in the Francophone Africa, we can -- our user are in the same
experience. So, they're always happy to try a new service. And yes, the adoption is phenomenal so far.
CHATTERLEY: Gokada for Nigeria. Vodacom, another one that's looking to build a super app, what differentiates you?
DANA: So, I think in our case, it's about transport. So, I think Gokada is also about transport. But I think what we do is that we're building all the
verticals, the service -- the services really quickly. Okay. As I said, we're inspired by Grab and Gojek. Those two companies are phenomenal in
Southeast Asia. So, we have a role model we can follow. We have an amazing technology team internally that is building everything.
So yes, I think what we want is to really add all the services really quickly and have a really strong focus on the Francophone part with those
240 million and then we'll look at opportunities to extend in other countries around us.
CHATTERLEY: I have 30 seconds left, Raphael? Are you in the market for money? Are you raising money to afford and finance the expansion?
DANA: So, we raised $12 million, right? So far, we have -- we are closing $5 million now, but we will keep on raising. We will keep on raising. We
have a big ambition. Thank you for asking, but so far so good.
CHATTERLEY: Fantastic. Good to hear. And I look forward to hearing more about your progress as you continue to expand. Raphael, great to have you
on the show. Thank you. Raphael Dana there, CEO of Gozem there.
DANA: Julia, thank you very much.
CHATTERLEY: Thank you. All right, coming up, something new on the menu in France. Citizens and tourists must pass the flash their pass, before biting
into their baguette in the restaurants. Details coming up.
[VIDEO CLIP PLAYS]
CHATTERLEY: A passport protest. Thousands taking to the streets of Paris for another weekend of demonstrations. Citizens marching against the new
Health Pass needed to get into places like restaurants, cinemas, and other public spaces. Those who cannot shoot proof of vaccination are not allowed
to enter. And those new requirements taking effect today.
Jim Bittermann joins us now from Paris. Clearly, there are some people there, Jim, who are disappointed and distressed at the prospect of having
to get a vaccine in order to get into these places. But what are the majority of people saying because President Macron has said look, we're
trying to keep cases down, we're trying to keep you safe.
JIM BITTERMANN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, exactly and I think that a lot of people understand that completely and they have
gotten their COVID passes, their Health Passes that in fact show whether they've been vaccinated or tested negative.
We were at a bus terminal this morning. They sent out notices to the passengers along with their tickets and basically said you've got to have
the pass. Don't forget that. And so, people came pretty well armed.
We're at a restaurant here and like you mentioned in fact, the restaurants, bars, and cafe, you've also got to show your pass. But one of the things
interesting about this place is that they have a machine, this machine here, you put your pass on this and it reads your pass. It reads the QR
code on the pass and that allows the personnel here not to be the people that say no, basically with a pass, you can -- the machine tells the person
whether or not they can go in or not.
And it's a little less -- so, there's a little less argument possible among the customers, although the manager we talked to her earlier and she said
they had lost some business because of this pass, but she doesn't think it's going to be too devastating over long term.
Here's the way she said that people are going to react into it.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LAURA RAIMUNDO, ASSISTANT DIRECTOR, L'AVENUE RESTAURANT: So, if people can handle themselves by doing it like appropriate adults.
We're counting on the behavior of everyone.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BITTERMANN: So, I mean, I think over a long term, Julia, people are going to get used to carrying around this COVID pass, this Health Pass that they
have got to have and as a consequence, they won't be so bad, but right now, of course, it'll be, I think, at little getting used to. It just started
this morning -- Julia.
CHATTERLEY: Jim, there's some fabulous outfits going on behind you. I was just distracted by some of the fashion. It's such a joy to be in Paris with
you there, but so what we're looking at behind you over your left shoulder is actually the scanner which I think is actually quite fabulous and I
think to make things easy, it's quite interesting to hear the owner of a restaurant saying, look, we are going to lose some business, but actually,
people have to be adults, people have to be grown up and this is the way we all stay safe.
The potential business losses of people not coming is what you deal with.
BITTERMANN: We've seen a few people turned away, a little disappointed, but you know, if everybody else is in this game together, I mean, it's
like, well, maybe I should have had my Health Pass with me, you know. It's that kind of a thing. It's -- especially with a machine like this, the onus
is not on the personnel, it's more on the government and everyone else, and so, the restauranteurs don't feel like they are turning away clients.
CHATTERLEY: Yes, absolutely. You don't want to get into a disagreement with somebody, that's the sort of point I was going towards with the
scanner as well, you know, it's there. You are allowed to in or you're not.
Jim, go get your Health Pass, so we will have to bring you a coffee out in the interim. Great to have you with us. Thank you so much, Jim Bittermann
there in Paris. Thank you.
BITTERMANN: You bet.
CHATTERLEY: That's it for the show. Stay safe. I'll see you tomorrow.
"Connect the World" with Becky Anderson is next.