ENB on the side
 
published by IISD, the International Institute for Sustainable Development
in cooperation with the Climate Change Secretariat
 
 

Special Report on Selected Side Events at UNFCCC COP-10

6 - 17 December 2004 | Buenos Aires, Argentina



Daily Web Coverage & Daily Reports:

6 December 2004

7 December 2004

8 December 2004

9 December 2004

10 December 2004

11 December 2004

13 December 2004

14 December 2004

15 December 2004

16 December 2004

17 December 2004

Brief Analysis



 


 

Events convened on Saturday, 11 December 2004

Update on climate actions in US States 


Presented by Northeast States for Coordinated Air Use Management (NESCAUM) and National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC)
 

Kenneth Colburn, NESCAUM, indicated that 17 US States now have requirements for renewable energy use

Kenneth Colburn, NESCAUM, indicated that the Northeast States recognize the need for early action on climate change, and stressed that these States have a history of leading by example on environmental legislation. He outlined actions in California to address vehicular emissions, with the “Pavley” law requiring a 30% carbon dioxide emissions reduction by 2016. He indicated that these provisions may be echoed in the Northeast, to cover 30% of the US automobile industry. Acknowledging that technology development is vital, he stressed that States are seeking to create drivers.

Frederick Butler, State of New Jersey, introduced the Regional green house gas Initiative (RGGI), which includes the participation of nine Northeast and Mid-Atlantic States. He outlined RGGI’s intention to develop a multi-State “cap-and-trade” program for carbon dioxide emissions from power plants, indicating that the design of the program should be completed by April 2005. 

 

David Hadley, Indian Utility Regulatory Commission, indicated that the world economy currently uses 14,000 terra watts of electricity, noting that this is expected to rise to 35,000 terra watts in 50 years

David Hadley, Indian Utility Regulatory Commission, considered the role of public utility commissioners in promoting climate change initiatives. He indicated that the US is on the verge of a major building cycle for energy generation, stressing that this represents an economic opportunity for companies to shift toward cleaner power plant technologies. He noted that while natural gas is increasingly expensive and nuclear power is not a feasible option, coal provides a cheap, reliable energy source, highlighting the potential role of coal gasification in reducing emissions from coal-fired power stations. He stressed the need for policy drivers to promote a technology shift and for education to ensure commitment to developing solutions.

Andrew Spahn, NARUC, introduced the report "Ending the Energy Stalemate," which provides a fresh look at US climate commitments, both domestically and internationally. He said the report considers how States can work cooperatively to develop initiatives encouraging the use of renewable energy. He said the report recommends that Congress develop a “cap-

and-trade” program for carbon dioxide, relying on permits to reduce the emission intensity of power plants.

Jim Marzilli, State of Massachusetts, indicated that limited public awareness of climate change in the US results in limited legislative activity. He emphasized that climate change must be framed as an economic security issue to bring it onto the US legislative agenda, and stressed that the US is not going to see leadership on climate change emerging from the federal government. However, he highlighted numerous State actions pursued across the country at the municipal and State levels. He identified two challenges, namely ensuring effective communication with the public, and bringing State and local policy makers together to discuss direct international engagement to allow them to go beyond action by the federal government.

Discussion: Participants commended US State-level action on climate change, and considered how the international community can encourage the re-engagement of the US federal government in the climate regime. Colburn acknowledged that the Presidential target to reduce green house gas (GHG) intensity by 18% by 2012 represents business as usual, since it follows current trends in energy efficiency increase. A participant flagged the danger of the federal government reducing the capacity of US States to act on climate change.

The contribution of regional governments in tackling climate change


Presented by the Government of Belgium

Suani Teixeira Coelho, Regional Government of São Paolo, identified sugar cane production and landfill management as areas with CDM potential for São Paolo

Nico Barito, Association for Provincial Governments of Indonesia, said climate change mitigation should not rely solely on expensive high-tech solutions and other alternatives are needed, especially in developing countries.

Sabin Intaxaurraga Mendibil, Basque Government, said the Basque country controls GHG emissions with sectoral initiatives, voluntary GHG agreements with the industry and the Basque Carbon Trust, which implements CDM projects.

Alejandro Paljor, Provincial Government of Chaco, Argentina, said the Province of Chaco contributes to the fight against climate change by protecting forests and implementing other environmental programs.

Els Van den Broeck, Ministry of the Flemish Region, Belgium, said in order to integrate the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS) into regional climate policy, the Flemish Region aims to implement local mitigation 

measures and launch a tender for CDM projects.

Edoardo Croci, University Luigi Bocconi, said impacts of climate change are already visible in Lomborgia, and stressed that adaptation requires regional measures. He highlighted the contribution of regional policies to mitigation and the environmental benefits of such policies.

Ernst-Christoph Stopler, Ministry of Environment, Conservation, Agriculture and Consumer Protection of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany, explained how the EU ETS is being implemented in North Rhine-Westphalia, which accounts for 41% of Germany’s energy consumption. He emphasized that the EU’s Linking Directive also yields environmental benefits to regions outside the EU.

Donald Brown, Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, said 29 States in the US have mitigation strategies, which reduce global GHG emissions. He said a cap and trade system is being developed by certain States and various other measures are being implemented, including demand-side management, carbon sequestration, tax incentives for renewable energy and green purchase options.

Suani Teixeira Coelho, Regional Government of São Paolo, said her region accounts for 40% of Brazil’s GHG emissions and aims to reduce emissions through the development of hybrid vehicles, large-scale biomass cogeneration and waste management.

Tommaso Franci, Region of Tuscany, said Tuscany has a regional action plan for GHG emissions, a regional GHG inventory, a “Kyoto observatory” and an initiative to broaden the scope of the EU Emissions Trading directive.

Vanni Puccioni, Acra Consulting, highlighted that regional governments are effective in implementing climate policies that require a change in public behavior, and said regions should pool resources to broaden the EU ETS.
More information:

http://www.nrg4sd.net
Contact:

Nico Barito <barito@indo.net.id>
Sabin Intaxaurraga Medibil <s-intaxaurraga@ej-gv.es>
Alejandro Pajor <mprod.apajor@ecomchaco.com.ar>
Els Van den Broeck <els.vandenbroeck@lin.vlaanderen.be>
Edoardo Croci <edoardo.croci@unibocconi.it>
Ernst-Christoph Stopler <ec.stolper@t-online.de>
Donald Brown <brownd@state.pa.us>
Suani Teixeira Coelho <sma.suani_coelho@cetesb.sp.gov.br
Tommaso Franci <ambiente@mail.regione.toscana.it>
Vanni Puccioni <vpuccioni@acraconsulting.com>

Development dividend: Making the CDM work for developing countries


Presented by the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD)

John Drexhage, IISD, stressed the importance of a development dividend of the CDM, while calling for realistic expectations of what the CDM can deliver

Georg Børsting, Norwegian Ministry of the Environment, stressed the numerous expectations associated with the CDM, noting that one of the most important objectives of the CDM is to contribute to the sustainable development of host countries.

John Drexhage, IISD, outlined the concept of development dividend, underscoring the twofold purpose of the CDM, namely cost-effective GHG emissions reductions and sustainable development in host countries. Regarding how to design CDM projects with a development dividend capable of selling Certified Emission Reductions (CERs) at market price, Drexhage recommended, inter alia, using tax incentives for projects promoting sustainable development, assessing the growing list of carbon funds, and considering a shift from a project-based to a sectoral approach.

Brian Dawson, UN Development Programme, emphasized that the CDM can contribute to sustainable development and help integrate climate change

into national-level decision making. Dawson concluded that it will take time for the CDM to deliver a significant development dividend, noting that, to date, the CDM has entailed costs for host countries.

Dinesh Babu, The Energy and Resources Institute, noted that 95% of Indian CDM projects developed to date use indigenous technologies, and questioned the technological additionality of these projects. Referring to the effective renewable energy policies in India, he said it was difficult for most energy projects to prove investment additionality. He underscored the challenge of balancing environmental integrity with stimulating project development.

Martha Castillo, Colombian Ministry of Environment, Housing and Territorial Development, presented five CDM projects in the renewable energy, transport and wastewater treatment sector, noting that the current 2% additional revenue from carbon finance is too low to develop CDM energy projects at the community level.

Andrei Marcu, International Emissions Trading Association (IETA), stressed that IETA member companies take sustainable development seriously, noting that the first objective for business is to lower compliance costs. Marcu said market mechanisms have provided low cost solutions, including hydrofluorocarbon CDM projects.

Discussion: A participant stressed the importance of understanding the national technical and institutional needs for technology transfer.
Contact:

Georg Børsting <georg.borsting@md.dep.no>
John Drexhage <jdrexhage@iisd.ca>
Brian Dawson <brian.dawson@undp.org>
Dinesh Babu <ydbabu@teri.res.in>
Martha Castillo <mpcastillo@minambiente.gov.co
Andrei Marcu <marcu@ieta.org>

Bioenergy’s response to climate change: Solutions in the real world


Presented by Responding to Climate Change (RTCC)

Alexia Stokes, LRBB-INRA, described the Slopes Decision Support System, a software program that provides advice on how best to manage a site vulnerable to climate change

Arthur Riedacker, European Technical Institute for Wood Energy, highlighted the steady increase in biomass use, and identified municipal waste, and agricultural and forestry crops and residues as sources of biomass. He stressed the benefits of biofuels for local and rural development through the provision of employment and local energy supply. He noted that the competition of biomass production with food production represents a challenge, and said supportive regulatory and legal frameworks are needed to allow biomass to compete with fossil fuels.

Giulio Volpi, WWF, presented Biopower Switch, a project assessing the potential for OECD countries to switch to biomass, indicating that biomass could supply 15% of OECD countries’ power demand by 2020. He said electricity from biomass currently represents about 1% of global electricity generation, and explained that most bioelectricity production is associated with forestry and wood processing industries, based on combined heat and power technologies, where captured heat is used for

industrial processes and heating. He indicated that a 10-30% switch to biomass in the OECD by 2020 would reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 538 to 1739 megatons. Highlighting the success of biomass policies in Sweden and Finland, he stressed the need to improve grid access for bioelectricity and impose environmental taxes on fossil fuel consumption.

Peter Read, Massey University, explained how a 4% change in the terrestrial carbon balance could generate carbon sequestration benefits equal to a 50% reduction in anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions by 2050. He highlighted the need for investment in soil quality and farmers’ engagement. He stressed that land availability is not a constraining factor, and highlighted synergies between food and bioenergy production in terms of maintaining soil fertility.

Alexia Stokes, Laboratory of Rheology of the Wood of Bordeaux (LRBB-INRA) outlined the benefits of tree cover for providing protection against soil erosion, land slides, and storm damage, stressing the importance of species diversity in forests for fixing soil and reducing topsoil erosion.

Dennis Murphy, Potlatch, explained how market incentives relating to land ownership are causing a depletion of natural capital in the US forestry industry, noting that the carbon sequestration capacity of US forests is predicted to decline. He highlighted shorter rotations, lower growing stocks and fragmented ownership as key factors.

Contact:

Arthur Riedacker <a.riedacker@wanadoo.fr>
Giulio Volpi <gvolpi@wwfepo.org>
Peter Read <pread2@attglobal.net>
Alexia Stokes <stokes@lrbb3.pierroton.inra.fr
Dennis Murphy <dennis.murphy@potlatchcorp.com

Mainstreaming adaptation in development: Idealistic or realistic?


Presented by the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES)

Hiroshi Ohki, Japan Center for Climate Change Actions, said the impacts of climate change are real and visible in various parts of the world, and stressed the need for society to deal with related damages

Akio Morishima, IGES, said while IGES’ early focus fell on climate change mitigation, they had now started work on adaptation. He noted that future activities will include the identification of ways to mainstream adaptation and cost-benefit analyses of adaptation measures.

Hiroshi Ohki, Japan Center for Climate Change Actions, said while the negotiators of the Kyoto Protocol had focused on mitigation, the need for adaptation measures had increased.

Ancha Srinivasan, IGES, presented the key findings from two workshops on adaptation in mountain ecosystems and small island countries, which discussed, inter alia, climate scenarios, impacts, and local as well as national adaptation. He said the workshops produced a list of main challenges for both mountain ecosystems and small island countries.

Shardul Agrawal, OECD, spoke on glacier retreat induced by climate change in Nepal, noting that the decrease in glaciated area will increase

the variability of river run-off, affecting the Nepalese hydro-power sector. He highlighted the dangers from the increased number and growing size of glacial lakes in Nepal, discussing various adaptation options including locating hydro facilities in non-threatened locations, establishing early warning systems, relocating settlements, and reducing direct risks.

Taito Nakalevu, Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme, spoke about opportunities and challenges for mainstreaming adaptation in Pacific island countries, discussing roadmaps that address agriculture, fishery, and health at the policy and operational levels.

Andrew Teem, Kiribati’s Ministry of Environment, Lands and Agricultural Development, presented Kiribati’s efforts to mainstream adaptation into national development strategies, underscoring the challenge of prioritizing investments in different adaptation measures.

Discussion: A panel of donor and country representatives, chaired by Shuzo Nishioka, IGES, discussed appropriate methods for mainstreaming adaptation, the need for institutional and funding arrangements, and lessons learnt from current programmes. Nishioka discussed temperature and precipitation anomalies observed in Japan during 2004, and noted their impacts on health.

Walter Vergara, World Bank, discussed projects in the Paramo ecosystem of Colombia, and said adaptation efforts should focus on well defined regions or ecosystems.

Roger Cornforth, New Zealand Agency for International Development, stressed the need to consider ways to mainstream adaptation in various sectors, and outlined New Zealand’s assistance to Pacific Island countries in mainstreaming adaptation.

Liana Bratasida, Indonesian Ministry for the Environment, spoke on integrating adaptation with development in Southeast Asia, and stressed the importance of utilizing local capacity and knowledge for mainstreaming adaptation.

Yohei Nishiyama, Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC), outlined the role of JBIC in supporting projects related to the Kyoto mechanisms, noting JBIC’s contribution to the World Bank’s Prototype Carbon Fund, financial support for Clean Development Mechanism and Joint Implementation projects, and assistance for capacity building in host countries.

Contact:

Akio Morishima <morishima@iges.or.jp>
Ancha Srinivasan <ancha@iges.or.jp>
Shardul Agrawal <shardul.agrawal@oecd.org>
Taito Nakalevu <taition@sprep.org.ws>
Andrew Teem <ast.ecd@metad.gov.ki

Presentation of the report Climate Change in Latin America: Challenges and Opportunities


Presented by the Government of Mexico

Fernando Tudela, Mexico’s Ministry of the Environment and Natural Resources, said Latin America is a pioneer in CDM projects, but noted that yields from these projects have been disappointing so far

Ricardo Sánchez, UNEP, introduced the report "Climate Change in Latin America," explaining that it had been prepared with broad stakeholder and sub-regional participation.

Fernando Tudela, Mexico’s Ministry of the Environment and Natural Resources, said the report is a way of taking stock of emissions trends in Latin America and the Caribbean prior to entering a new phase of negotiations. He highlighted the report’s main findings, including that: the increase in emissions of carbon dioxide per capita has been moderate; the transport sector is the largest GHG emitter in the region; changes in energy consumption have been limited; the region has been able to decouple economic growth from energy consumption patterns; and the reliance of the region on agro-electricity is a source of vulnerability. Tudela stressed the proactive stance of Latin America in tackling the impacts of climate change and vulnerability to extreme events through adaptation measures and mitigation policies.

Noting that adaptation to, and mitigation of, climate change impacts are

better dealt with on a regional basis, Luiz Gylvan Meira Filho, University of São Paulo, stressed the need for Latin America to take a proactive stance in negotiations for the post-2012 period, and adopt goals for the region’s strategy on climate change. He said the challenge for negotiators will be to formulate these goals and take into account the region’s specific circumstances.

Hernan Carlino, Argentina’s Secretariat of Environment and Sustainable Development, said climate change and GHG emissions-related policies must be seen as being beneficial to Latin American societies. He highlighted the need to promote renewable energies, increase energy efficiency, and preserve the region’s natural capital. He said education and access to information are essential.

Fabio Feldmann, IPSOS, explained the difficulties in fostering commitment from politicians and civil society to tackling climate change at the national level. He stressed the need for countries in the region to share experiences, and learn from each other in order to engage civil society and attain a common position for future negotiations.

Svein Tveitdal, UNEP, said the report forms part of UNEP’s initiative to support implementation of UNFCCC Article 6 (Education, training and public awareness). He identified parliamentarians, journalists, industry, the private sector and youth as target groups that can influence national policies.

Contact:

Ricardo Sánchez <ricardo.sanchez@pnuma.org>
Fernando Tudela <ftudela@semarnat.gob.mx>
Luiz Gylvan Meira Filho <lgylvan@uol.com.br>
Hernan Carlino <hcarlino@medioambiente.gov.ar>
Svein Tveitdal <svein.tveitdal@unep.org>

Adaptation to climate change in the water sector


Presented by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)

William Cosgrove, WWC, said the WWC is advancing a proposal to create a new UN Millennium Development Goal of halving the number of flood-related deaths by 2015

William Cosgrove, World Water Council (WWC), presented evidence of a steady increase in the number of hydrological disasters. He discussed strategies for risk management, including diversifying income levels, facilitating migration, improving physical infrastructure, and using satellite information in early warning systems.

Ajaya Dixit, Nepal Water Conservation Foundation, said the frequency and intensity of extreme events are increasing and the effectiveness of conventional management responses are becoming inadequate.

Marcus Moench, Institute for Social and Environmental Transformation, introduced core findings of a study on water issues in India. He said infrastructure must be adapted to variability and uncertainty, and stressed the need for effective linkages between water management, disaster mitigation, and economic and social change policies.

Ian Tellam, Netherlands’ Climate Change Studies Program (NCCSAP), said 

NCCSAP conducts scientific studies and vulnerability analyses to help developing countries formulate and implement climate change policies. He gave examples of vulnerability in developing countries.

Brett Orlando, IUCN, noted that scientific uncertainty cannot be eliminated, advocated factoring uncertainty in water management, and said adaptation to climate change cannot rely on technical fix, but needs to involve broad social change.

Frank Thomalla, Stockholm Environment Institute, presented on adaptation in tropical regions. He said savannahs are a global hotspot where climate variability causes severe erosion of ecological resilience, and described a vicious spiral of mutually reinforcing ecological and social vulnerability.

Bonizella Biagini, Global Environment Facility (GEF), indicated that the GEF has currently over US$110 million for adaptation projects, and said it is prepared to prioritize adaptation within the Special Climate Change Fund negotiated at COP-10.

Joop de Schutter, UNESCO, discussed adaptation in East Africa and the Nile Basin, stressed the need to reduce the vulnerability of the poorest, and listed UNESCO projects and activities in the region, including training and education programs.

Pavel Kabat, Climate Change and Biosphere Centre, listed messages that the IPCC fourth assessment report is expected to deliver, noting that heat waves and anomalies in winter precipitation are becoming more frequent. He stressed that due to inertia in climate systems, even successful efforts at mitigation would not prevent long-term negative climate change impacts and would not alter the need for adaptation.

Contact:

William Cosgrove <wjcosgrove@compuserve.com>
Ajaya Dixit <adbaluwatar@wlink.com.np>
Marcus Moench <moenchm@i-s-e-t.org>
Ian Tellam <ian.tellam@etcnl.nl>
Brett Orlando <brett.orlando@iucn.org>
Frank Thomalla <frank.thomalla@sei.se>
Bonizella Biagini <bbiagnini@thegef.org>
Joop de Schutter <jds@unesco-ihe.org>
Pavel Kabat <pavel.kabat@wur.nl>

Earth observations: Momentum with the GEO Initiative


Presented by the Government of South Africa
 

Linda Moodie, US NOAA, said GEO will make efforts to improve access to earth monitoring data for developing countries

Georgios Amanatidis, European Commission, presented an overview of the ad hoc Group on Earth Observations (GEO), indicating that it was established in 2003 and currently involves 54 countries and 33 organizations. Noting a lack of coordination among global research initiatives, he outlined GEO’s purpose, structure and history.

Linda Moodie, US National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), reported on GEO’s fifth meeting, held in Ottawa, Canada, in November 2004, that produced a ten-year implementation plan expected to be approved in February 2005. She explained how the GEO System of Systems (GEOSS) will consist of existing observation systems, and promote the sharing and increased availability of observation data. She said the GEOSS will seek to enhance prediction of the earth system behavior and facilitate the use of data to support decision making.
 

Naoko Sugita, Japan’s Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, emphasized that GEO membership will be open to all governments, and that operational details will be finalized with the adoption of the implementation plan.

Junsaku Mizuhata, Japan’s Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, said the GEO governance structure consists of a plenary, a secretariat and an advisory body, and stressed its principles of voluntary participation and cooperation between countries and organizations.

Cornado Varotto, National Commission of Spatial Activities of Argentina, spoke on Argentina’s achievements in developing and operating monitoring systems, and highlighted Argentina’s possible contributions to GEO. He stressed the importance of establishing a capacity-building process for monitoring within GEOSS.

Discussion: Panelists explained that GEO will not create a new observation system but coordinate existing ones without supplanting their mandates and that the composition of the advisory body has not yet been determined. They said operation of GEOSS is planned to commence in 2008, resulting data will be shared in the public domain, and the implementation plan includes targets on capacity building. Regarding mechanisms to ensure that data is considered for decision making, Moodie acknowledged that promoting communication between scientific and policy communities is a challenge in every country.

Contact:

Georgios Amanatidis <georgios.amanatidis@cec.eu.int>
Linda Moodie <Linda.Moodie@noaa.gov>
Naoko Sugita <nsugita@mext.go.jp>
Junsaku Mizuhata <mizuhata@mext.go.jp>
Conrado Varotto <varotto@conae.gov.ar>

Watch the UNFCCC webcast of Side Events




 

 


 

The Earth Negotiations Bulletin on the side (ENBOTS) � <enb@iisd.org> is a special publication of the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) in cooperation with the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Secretariat. This issue has been written by Rado Dimitrov, Ph.D., Catherine Ganzleben, D.Phil., Kati Kulovesi, Charlotte Salpin, and Christoph Sutter, Ph.D. The photographer is Leila Mead. The Digital Editor is Diego Noguera. The Director of IISD Reporting Services is Langston James “Kimo” Goree VI <kimo@iisd.org>. Funding for the publication of ENBOTS at UNFCCC COP-10 is provided by the UNFCCC Secretariat. The opinions expressed in ENBOTS are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of IISD and funders. Excerpts from ENBOTS may be used in non-commercial publications only with appropriate academic citation. For permission to use this material in commercial publications, contact the Director of IISD Reporting Services at <kimo@iisd.org>. Electronic versions of issues of ENBOTS from COP-10 can be found on the Linkages website at http://www.iisd.ca/climate/cop10/enbots/. The ENBOTS Team at COP-10 can be contacted at Pabell�n 9 and by e-mail at <charlotte@iisd.org>.


 

 


 

 

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