Earth Negotiations Bulletin

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Published by the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD)

Vol. 04 No. 172
Friday, 5 September 2003

CCD COP-6 HIGHLIGHTS

THURSDAY, 4 SEPTEMBER 2003

In the morning, delegates participated in an open dialogue session between NGOs and governments regarding agroforestry and nomad pastoralism. Informal consultations on the programme and budget, Regional Coordination Units (RCUs), Ad Hoc Group of Experts (AHGE), rule 47 of the Rules of Procedure, follow-up to regional meetings, synergies, and the criteria for the review of the CRIC continued throughout the day and late into the night. The Fifth Round Table of Parliamentarians concluded its work with the adoption of a parliamentary Declaration.

OPEN DIALOGUE SESSION

In the morning, Parties met in the second open dialogue session to discuss agroforestry and nomad pastoralism. In his opening remarks, CCD Executive Secretary Diallo stressed the linkages between farming, desertification and poverty. He noted that agroforestry contributes to preventing wind erosion, maintaining above- and below-ground moisture levels, and reducing the impacts of climatic extremes. Moderator Tahirou Diao (Sahel Defis/Djomga 21) introduced the theme of agroforestry. Delegates then heard presentations from several NGOs.

On agroforestry and agroecology in Central America, Evelyn Chavez, Agroforestry and Traditional Knowledge in Central America, ACICAFOC (Costa Rica), stressed participation of civil society in identifying solutions to desertification and land degradation. She noted the importance of: identifying and systematizing successful community experiences; promoting information exchange between organizations; and stepping up efforts to convey information, technical and financial resources to local communities. She said that lessons learned from ACICAFOC projects include the importance of involving civil society in disseminating successful experiences and engaging in an open dialogue with decision makers.

George Bright Awudi, Friends of the Earth-Ghana, presented a case study on tree planting and the existence of trees in dry-land areas as a basis for combating desertification and poverty alleviation. He highlighted bee-keeping as an alternative livelihood activity for individuals and communities.

Khukmatullo Akmadov, Man and Nature (Tajikistan), outlined forestation projects in Central Asia in which local communities and NGOs carry out activities supported by governments.

Moderator Diao then introduced the theme of nomad pastoralism. Khadija Razavi, Centre for Sustainable Development and Environment (Iran), presented a project on facilitating sustainability of biodiversity and livelihoods for mobile pastoralist communities in Iran. She noted that social capital is a critical economic resource and includes indigenous knowledge, customary leadership, interdependence, political alliances and mechanisms for conflict resolution. She said that elements identified by nomads for an action plan include implementing property rights and legal reform, developing policy incentives, strengthening management systems, and establishing mobile services and markets. She noted that guiding principles identified by local communities for similar projects include accountability, public participation, sustainability and equity.

Facho Balam, APPE (Chad), focused on causes and consequences of pastoralism, monitoring activities, lessons learned, and recommendations based on a study of nomadic and transhumant cattle and dromedary herders in Chad. He pointed to reasons for pastoralism, including the search for grazing land and water for animals, and the protection of the herds’ health. He underscored the low impact of dromedaries on the land, pointing to the study’s conclusion that cattle destroyed 50% of the vegetation in the grazing area.

Alawiyya Jamal, Sudanese Environmental Conservation Society, reviewed the Society’s dryland project in Um Jawasir, Sudan, which addresses environmental conservation, food security and poverty alleviation. She said the project provided water through boreholes, established agroforestry, and developed institutional and human capacity. She noted that the project resulted in the communities’ self-reliance, women’s land ownership, economic and marketing activities, and social interaction. She stressed that the project was successful due to its emphasis on community management and strong partnerships between stakeholders, NGOs, aid agencies, the Government and the CCD.

Parties and panellists then engaged in a discussion on agroforestry and pastoralism. On agroforestry, EQUATORIAL GUINEA suggested raising cattle on the products harvested for human consumption. Noting a recent regional workshop on coordination of arid zones, the DRYLAND COORDINATION GROUP (Mali) encouraged other regions to organize similar meetings to share experiences. ITALY underscored the synergistic aspect of agroforestry, noting its link to biodiversity, food security, poverty and carbon sequestration. With regard to the presentation on Costa Rica, GABON asked whether logging companies are obligated to reforest, and how wood products are processed. In response, Evelyn Chavez underscored a comprehensive approach to forest management. FAO noted that traditional communities have been practicing agroforestry long before the term was coined. The INTERNATIONAL CENTRAL ASIAN BIODIVERSITY INSTITUTE (Uzbekistan), CAPE VERDE and ETHOPIA highlighted the dangers of introducing exotic species as part of agroforestry. CHINA NATIONAL SAND CONTROL AND DESERT INDUSTRY SOCIETY stressed the importance of involving local experts in projects and programmes.

On pastoralism, NATURAMA (Burkina Faso) requested more information on land tenure issues regarding equity and security. GROUPEMENT DES AIDES PRIVÉES (Niger) noted options for making animal corridors in order to minimize bushfires due to pastoralism and transhumance. Regarding bee-keeping, NIGERIAN ENVIRONMENTAL STUDY said it is an environmentally-friendly activity that can generate income equivalent to agricultural activities. SUDAN noted agricultural experiments using desert groundwater. He asked how an evolving and changing world affects pastoralists’ livelihoods; and CHINA NATIONAL SAND CONTROL AND DESERT INDUSTRY SOCIETY asked how a relationship could be developed between modern and traditional cultures of pastoralists. UGANDA noted the importance of access to services for pastoralists. He suggested animal husbandry to raise herd quality and reduce herd size. MOROCCO asked what role NGOs can play in addressing the issue of sedentism, and whether NGOs can play a role in the transition from traditional to modern pastoralism.

ZAMBIAN ALLIANCE OF WOMEN noted that some communities are concentrated in corridors to protect them from diseases. Inquiring whether this was also a problem for nomadic pastoralists, she underscored a potential conflict with combating desertification and eradicating poverty in this regard. SWITZERLAND stressed the importance of traditional pastoral systems in light of increasing pressures on land by growing populations and livestock. ORGANISATION MAURITANIENNE POUR LE DEVELOPPEMENT DES ZONES ARIDES ET SEMI ARIDES (Mauritania) highlighted his country’s pastoral code that takes into account mobility as an economic activity. He said the code is also being used as a baseline for conflict resolution.

BELGIUM, with CANADA and ETHIOPIA, called on the COP to provide NGOs with more opportunities to share their views and experiences, and BRAZIL stressed the importance of NGOs in policy making. ENDA TIERS MONDE (Senegal) emphasized the importance of partnerships with NGOs to ensure that ongoing decentralization can lead to communities taking their own responsibilities. ITALY stressed the utility of facilitating NGO involvement in the CST GoE to improve the scientific and technological advice produced for the CCD’s implementation. EARTHACTION INTERNATIONAL (Chile) called on the COP and relevant agencies to support initiatives on collecting, documenting, and systematizing experiences gained by civil society.

COW

The COW met briefly in the evening. Chair Anaedu said that informal consultations on the programme and budget and RCUs were ongoing. Noting the "scarcity" of participants in the room, he postponed the discussion on the draft decisions until Friday, 5 September.

INFORMAL CONSULTATIONS

RULE 47 OF THE RULES OF PROCEDURE: Delegates agreed to a draft decision, which requests the CCD Secretariat to include consideration of this issue on the COP-7 agenda.

AD HOC GROUP OF EXPERTS: Procedures and institutional mechanisms for implementing the CCD (Article 27): Some developed countries opposed a request that the CCD Secretariat prepare a document noting the implementation regimes of other conventions. Delegates agreed, with minor amendments, to a draft decision that requests, inter alia, the AHGE to reconvene at COP-7 and that the CCD Secretariat prepare a new working document based on the submissions of Parties.

Arbitration and conciliation procedures (Article 28): Delegates completed the draft decision, which, inter alia, reconvenes the AHGE to examine and recommend Annexes for arbitration procedures and for conciliation at COP-7. It also requests the COP to invite Parties and interested organizations to communicate their views on this issue, and the CCD Secretariat to prepare a compilation of the views and an updated version of the Annexes to reflect such views.

PROGRAMME AND BUDGET: Informal consultations on the programme and budget continued throughout the day and into the evening. The text remains heavily bracketed.

FOLLOW-UP TO REGIONAL MEETINGS: Delegates agreed on text of the previously bracketed paragraph of the draft decision on the access of SIDS and African countries to GEF financial resources, thus finalizing the decision.

SYNERGIES: The draft decision on strengthening relations with other conventions and international organizations was approved by the informal group, which resolved all contentious text, including paragraphs on the joint work programme of the CCD and the CBD, and on encouraging Parties to focus on integrated and sustainable ecosystem programmes and projects.

ADDITIONAL PROCEDURES OR MECHANISMS TO ASSIST CCD IMPLEMENTATION: The informal group’s draft decision, which outlines the criteria against which the terms of reference and the operations of the CRIC will be reviewed at COP-7, was approved without change.

REGIONAL COORDINATION UNITS: The draft COP decision was approved after delegates resolved language on ways of funding the existing three RCUs.

FIFTH ROUND TABLE OF PARLIAMENTARIANS

The parliamentarians continued their round table meeting throughout the day. In the morning, they addressed initiatives by members of parliament to seek the full support of the GEF in the implementation of the CCD, and debated a draft Declaration on the role of parliamentarians in promoting sustainable development and implementing the CCD at national level. In the afternoon, participants discussed the revised draft Declaration, which was adopted by acclamation. The Declaration proposes, inter alia: the creation, under the auspices of the Inter-Parliamentary Union, of a Parliamentary Network on the CCD; and the involvement of elected representatives at regional, subregional, national and local levels to influence and monitor their governments� actions relating to the CCD. It also requests the CCD Secretariat to organize the next round table during COP-7, and follow-up on actions recommended by the parliamentarians.

IN THE CORRIDORS

After drawn-out negotiations, Parties finally reached agreement on RCUs. The agreement foresees keeping the existing RCUs afloat, by inviting continuation of funding from voluntary contributions to the supplementary fund, with hosting organizations supporting their running costs. In another corner of the Palacio de Convenciones, the "Havana budget marathon" ran late into the night, with red-eyed delegates fighting all their worth to concede as little as possible into unwanted budget enlargements. One drowsy-looking participant estimated that a final agreement might see the budget enlarged by 15-20%. The exact details of Chair Ashe�s brokerage remain hidden behind the "finishing line."

THINGS TO LOOK FOR TODAY

COP PLENARY: The closing COP Plenary will convene in Sala 1, to adopt the draft decisions forwarded by the COW, and to elect the CRIC Chair.

INFORMAL CONSULTATIONS: Informal consultations on the programme and budget are expected to continue throughout the day.

COW: The COW will resume in the morning to approve the draft decisions.

Please check the Journal and monitors for more information.

ENB SUMMARY: The Earth Negotiations Bulletin Summary of CCD COP-6 will be available on Monday, 8 September at http://www.iisd.ca/linkages/desert/cop6

This issue of the Earth Negotiations Bulletin� enb@iisd.org is written and edited by Karen Alvarenga karen@iisd.org, Dagmar Lohan, Ph.D. dagmar@iisd.org, Lisa Schipper lisa@iisd.org, Richard Sherman rsherman@iisd.org, and Andrey Vavilov, Ph.D. andrey@iisd.org. The Digital Editor is Leslie Paas leslie@iisd.org. The Editor is Pamela S. Chasek, Ph.D. pam@iisd.org and the Director of IISD Reporting Services is Langston James "Kimo" Goree VI kimo@iisd.org. The Sustaining Donors of the Bulletin are the Government of the United States of America (through the Department of State Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs), The Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Government of Canada (through CIDA, DFAIT and Environment Canada), the Swiss Agency for Environment, Forests and Landscape (SAEFL), the United Kingdom (through the Department for International Development - DFID and Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs - DEFRA), the European Commission (DG-ENV), the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the Government of Germany (through the German Federal Ministry of Environment - BMU, and the German Federal Ministry of Development Cooperation - BMZ). General Support for the Bulletin during 2003 is provided by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the Government of Australia, the Ministry of Environment and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Sweden, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade of New Zealand, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Norway, Swan International, the Japanese Ministry of Environment (through the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies - IGES), the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (through the Global Industrial and Social Progress Research Institute - GISPRI), and the Ministry for Environment of Iceland. The opinions expressed in the Earth Negotiations Bulletin are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of IISD or other donors. Excerpts from the Earth Negotiations Bulletin may be used in non-commercial publications with appropriate academic citation. For information on the Bulletin, including requests to provide reporting services, contact the Director of IISD Reporting Services at kimo@iisd.org, +1-212-644-0217 or 212 East 47th St. #21F, New York, NY 10017, USA.

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