The first climate change negotiation for 2010 finds negotiators gathering today in Bonn, Germany, for their first meeting since the Copenhagen Climate Change Conference in December 2009.
While this 9-11 April meeting is anticipated to focus primarily on procedural questions, consideration of the substance of international climate change policy will be close behind. The first meeting of the High-Level Advisory Group on Climate Change Financing, on 31 March 2010, has initiated that Group’s efforts to study the potential sources of revenue for financing mitigation and adaptation activities in developing countries, with an interim report expected by the June Bonn meeting and a final report expected by the 29 November opening of the Cancun Climate Change Conference. Advisors at the highest level will convene soon for the first meeting of the Major Economies Forum on Energy and Climate from 18-19 April 2010, in Washington, DC, US. And the World People's Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth, which Bolivia pledged to convene soon after the Copenhagen meeting ended, will provide a forum, from 19-22 April 2010, during which various stakeholders are expected to develop alternative options for addressing issues related to global climate change.
In other sustainable development news, on the heels of the 11th Special Session of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) Governing Council/Global Ministerial Environment Forum (GCSS-11/GMEF), which met from 24-26 February 2010, in Bali, Indonesia, several recent meetings have addressed related issues. The declaration by ministers and Heads of delegation in Bali encouraged the Conferences of the Parties of the biodiversity-related multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs) to consider strengthening their efforts in enhancing synergies. This week an expert symposium on “Synergies in the Biodiversity Cluster” is meeting from 8-9 April 2010, in Helsinki, Finland. The meeting is being organized by the Ministry of Environment of Finland together with Nordic colleagues, with MEA representatives from biodiversity and chemicals conventions gathering to identify options and possibilities for enhancing coherence and synergies among the biodiversity-related conventions. The Bali meeting also called for the Global Environmental Outlook (GEO-5) to be more policy relevant, and a recent Global Intergovernmental and Multi-stakeholder Consultation, which took place from 29-31 March 2010, in Nairobi, Kenya, recommended that it should pay attention to internationally agreed goals and targets. Both the biodiversity synergies and GEO-5 efforts could benefit from another related event: the Open-ended meeting of government-designated experts on a compilation of internationally agreed environmental goals and objectives, which also met from 29-31 March 2010, in Geneva, Switzerland.
We will keep an eye on all of these procedural and substantive developments as the year, and the international policies, take shape.