STRUCTURE: With regard to the structure of work until COP 3, the Chair said that in the interest of flexibility the formation of subgroups should be postponed until a Bureau for the AGBM was established. A number of delegations supported postponing the formation of subgroups.
SCHEDULING: The schedule of future sessions of the AGBM are as follows:
The US noted that any expansion of the meeting time of the AGBM would have to be at the expense of other subsidiary bodies. The AGBM noted the explanation by the Secretariat that the amount of meeting time was fixed as a result of the decisions of COP 1 on the Convention budget and that any additional meeting time for the AGBM would have to be at the expense of the other subsidiary bodies.
ANALYSIS AND ASSESSMENT: The Chair stated that the BM provides that the process will include in its early stages an analysis and assessment, to identify possible policies and measures for Annex I Parties as contained in document FCCC/CP/1995/7/Add.1/Decision 1/CP.1, paragraph 4. He said that it will be necessary for the Parties to define the nature, content and duration of the analysis and assessment and its relation to other aspects of the process. With regard to requests for inputs to subsequent sessions of the AGBM, the Chair stated that the Group had to consider the matter of inputs from intergovernmental bodies.
A number of delegations expressed their views on the nature, scope and duration of analysis and assessment activities. The PHILIPPINES, on behalf of the G-77 and China, expressed concern over the lack of funding for this meeting, which limited the participation of developing countries and could be detrimental to the process itself. She affirmed G-77 support for the BM's balanced text, noting that no new commitments will be introduced for non-Annex 1 Parties. She added that non-Annex I Party remain committed to "advance" the implementation of commitments, which is contingent upon the fulfillment of Annex I Parties obligations. Over the course of the week, several delegations highlighted the significance of the issue. GERMANY stated that it would make a considerable contribution towards facilitating the participation of developing countries.
The Chair opened the final day by stating that several delegations had taken account of the Executive Secretary's comments on lack of funding for developing country participation and proposed that the record include the following: "The AGBM stresses the importance of the fullest participation of all Parties in their implementation of the BM. It expresses regret at the inadequacy of resources in the special voluntary fund to support such participation by eligible Parties and the hope that sufficient resources will be available for the second session." The US asked for a listing of those Parties that were offered funding but chose not to attend and asked about the scope of additional contribution being requested. The Executive Secretary gave a general summary of the current status of funding and said he would give specific figures during the meeting of the SBI. The Chair's proposal to include the text in the report of the AGBM was accepted.
SPAIN, on behalf of the EU, recalled that according to the BM, the early stage of the AGBM process includes analysis and assessment but also includes negotiations in parallel. He added that the output of the analysis and assessment has to be taken into account during the process of the negotiations. He said that environmental, technological and economic aspects should be considered. He added that the analysis and assessment process should identify achievable objectives, successful policies and appropriate policies and measures. The US stated that while the Convention itself is an historic achievement, it was clear from Annex I Parties' national communications that reaching the Convention's aim remains elusive. He said that although the US has developed one of the most comprehensive action plans, preliminary analysis shows that the US will not return greenhouse gas emissions to their 1990 levels by 2000. He noted that the analysis and assessment should suggest ways in which future approaches can be made more credible and effective, including analyses on emissions trends, current proposals, market mechanisms, and the economic and environmental consequences of actions and inaction, both global and national, on both Annex I and non-Annex I Parties. The US also issued a non-paper on the BM process.
INDIA said that it had been agreed in Berlin that the existing commitments of Annex I Parties are inadequate and need to be strengthened. He noted that the crux of the issue was to set quantified reduction targets within a specified time frame for Annex I Parties, without introducing any new commitments for non-Annex I Parties. He said that the analyses and assessment phase should not be carried out in a vacuum but should be integrated into the setting up of quantified targets and time frames. He pointed out that the BM includes indicative time horizons and proposed that specific scenarios be considered. He concluded by stating that the BM should not be renegotiated. SAMOA, on behalf of the AOSIS, stressed that the BM was adopted at the highest level. He noted that the BM does emphasize the need to strengthen Annex I Parties commitments within specified time frames and targets and the question was how much and by when. He welcomed the support for the AOSIS protocol and looked forward to hearing alternative protocols. He said that the analyses and assessments would help build the confidence of all Parties but should be limited to what is necessary to formulate policies. He concluded by stating that AOSIS was not interested in "targets hurriedly agreed on but never met nor targets endlessly analyzed and never agreed to."
SWITZERLAND said that the BM clearly states that analysis and assessments should be conducted in parallel and not prior to the negotiations. She said that most of the background work has already been carried by the IPCC, OECD, IEA and UNEP. She added that the AGBM could request the SBSTA to compile existing information based on agreed priorities and prepared by sector-specific expert panels. She noted that the list of priorities should include: energy efficiency; economic instruments in energy and transport, including aviation; renewable energies; and, CFCs and PFCs. AUSTRALIA stressed the importance of analyses and assessments for Annex I Parties and said that it should not be narrowed to particular prescriptive assumptions. She added that the work associated with such analyses and assessments should iterative and not limited to any particular period of the AGBM. She said that the emphasis of the AGBM in the early stages should be on providing analytic inputs and this emphasis would shift to negotiations at a later stage. The Secretariat was requested to compile information already prepared by the IPCC, OECD, IEA and the national communications.
CANADA enquired about the exact intent of the aim to elaborate policies and measures as well as to set quantified limitation reduction objectives. He said that the group should leave its options open in terms of analysis and assessment because many relevant works are underway in other international fora. He added that no formal working groups should be established now, and that the analysis be an iterative process with a continual flow back and forth between analytical inputs and negotiations. GERMANY stated its intention to work towards a negotiating process that leads to an ambitious protocol or legal instrument on the further reduction of greenhouse gas emissions for adoption by COP 3. She said that Germany would make contributions to facilitate developing country participation. She reaffirmed Germany's commitment to reducing its carbon dioxide emissions by 25% by the year 2005 and said that national reduction targets for the period beyond 2000 were being developed. She stated that it was "high time" to start negotiations on concrete policies as well as quantified reduction objectives for Annex I Parties and endorsed the proposal that the Secretariat prepare an annotated compilation of information for the next AGBM meeting. ARGENTINA stressed its support for the G-77 and China statement and said that the analyses and assessments should proceed "side-by-side" with negotiations. He supported the ideas expressed by India and Germany and added that the second IPCC assessment will provide valuable scientific insights and that the Secretariat could facilitate the sharing of relevant information.
CHINA noted that all the Parties must abide by the BM's provisions or risk distorting the process. Regarding assessment and analysis, it was essential to devote time to measures and procedures that have been taken by Annex 1 Parties, and that any attempt to change this would be unacceptable to developing countries and run counter to the "sincere participation" required. Supporting the assistance for developing country participation, he appealed for contributions to the voluntary fund. NORWAY stated that a thorough analysis was clearly needed, but sufficient time for the negotiation process must be ensured. He pointed out that although many assessments have already been carried out, the key principle of equitable burden sharing was missing. He noted that targets alone could never secure emission reductions and that coordinating policy instruments should be considered. URUGUAY expressed concern that some delegations suggested delaying the AGBM process, and noted that non-Annex I countries are making every effort to meet existing commitments, despite suggestions to the contrary. He supported a process that would not call into question the national development of non-Annex I Parties, and added that the credibility of the Convention is at stake with this process.
NEW ZEALAND reiterated the importance of analyses and assessments and said that analytic work will need to done throughout the AGBM process but could be emphasized less at a later stage. He said that sector specific measures or economy wide instruments could be considered as well as costs and benefits of measures. He urged the AGBM to ask SBSTA to review and report on ongoing work done by IPCC, OECD and IEA. BANGLADESH said that the AGBM should not renegotiate the BM but negotiate targets and timetables applicable to Annex I Parties commitments. Bangladesh's studies on vulnerability and mitigation measures were mentioned. The REPUBLIC OF KOREA said that the AGBM should concentrate on its given mandate and tasks and that the analyses and assessments of measures should be confined to the consideration of strengthening Annex I Parties' commitments. He noted the importance of developing "a concrete shopping list" based on existing information from Annex I Parties' national communications. JAPAN said that it would consider the ideas contained in the U.S. non-paper and supported the timetable for work suggested by Switzerland. He emphasized the importance of SBSTA and SBI to the process and stressed the need to coordinate the two bodies systematically in order to clarify their division of labor.
The UK said that time must not be wasted renegotiating the BM. Analysis and assessment must be seen as an aid to the negotiating process, not a prior phase that could serve as a delaying tactic. He noted that this phase can assist by highlighting successful policies and measures, identifying policies with international application and assessing new aims. He added that the OECD and the IEA have already begun work on a possible process, and that the UK would regard the reduction of 5% to 10% below 1990 levels as an acceptable figure. COLOMBIA indicated that there should be no new commitments for non-Annex I Parties. She said that analyses and assessments could be done to facilitate strengthening the commitments of Annex I Parties and recommended the stock taking of specific measures at each stage. COTE D' IVOIRE, on behalf of the African group, stressed its support for the G-77 and China's statements. MALAYSIA noted that the AGBM needed to set a clear course so as not to divert from the review of the adequacy of commitments for Annex I Parties. He asked that the analysis and assessments be conducted in transparent way with full participation of all Parties.
REQUESTS FOR INPUTS TO SUBSEQUENT SESSIONS OF THE AGBM: In light of the linkages between inputs and analysis and assessment, the Chair said that statements on inputs could include references to relevant issues raised during discussions on analysis and assessments. He noted that it was important that the AGBM frame its requests for information carefully. He reminded delegates to keep in mind the following: time constraints; provisions of inputs by the subsidiary bodies; and, the process for obtaining information from the IPCC, given its own programme of work. He added that it was important to differentiate between those inputs required for the upcoming October session and those required for later sessions.
The RUSSIAN FEDERATION said although the BM is a complex and noble undertaking, practical matters needed to be addressed in the work on a legal instrument, particularly for countries with economies in transition. Measures to reduce emissions should be undertaken in the context of economic development needs. Taking the principle of "common but differentiated responsibility," there was a need for a more flexible approach perhaps through regional protocols based on either geographical or economic factors and incorporated through a ratification process. He supported the Indian proposal of selecting scenarios as well as the Swiss proposal of selecting expert panels. CHILE expressed dismay that discussions appeared to be moving backward rather than forward. He said that the BM is precise in its mandate and should not discuss all the issues relevant to the Convention. Under the BM, the AGBM cannot make those bodies do its work but should specify the questions to be asked.
SAUDI ARABIA said that analysis and assessment should be given sufficient time in order to facilitate negotiations on any future commitments. He added that although some delegations think this will delay the process, it will speed future negotiations because any information missing now will cause hesitation later. He said that the AGBM needs time to evaluate the existing commitments and should also consider the economic costs and the environmental benefits of each proposal beyond the year 2000. He noted that the cost is not limited to Annex I Parties and rejected the idea that this process was the "business" of only Annex I Parties. BRAZIL said the major tasks of this group are to decide collectively on overall emissions and to apply the concept of common but differentiated responsibility. He suggested a methodology for apportioning an appropriate share of contribution for each country based on environmental impacts. He also commented that the IPCC has taken its work very seriously and is devoting energy to international cooperation.
SAMOA, on behalf of AOSIS, stated that requests for inputs should not lead to "an open season" for data gathering, some of which may be superfluous. He added that through the IPCC a tradition of information gathering has been established. He said that inputs and assessments should not drive this process in an unfocused manner but the AGBM should instead ask for specific inputs. KUWAIT disagreed with the EU, noting that this Convention was more far-reaching that the Montreal Protocol, and required a more "open-minded" process. He cautioned that if this Convention's targets are exaggerated now, they cannot be relaxed later, nor can the economic deprivation be erased. He added that there may be a wealth of relevant material available, but there are not many works covering the economic impacts of reductions on developing countries. The NETHERLANDS stated that the key issues are clearly spelled out in the BM, and that assessments and analysis should not be used to determine whether policies and measures are needed. He added that the advancement of commitments would greatly benefit from the transfer of technology. He highlighted the importance of using international technical bodies, and supported Brazil's remarks on the possible inputs from the IPCC and balanced contributions from the Parties. He said that the AGBM should focus on provisions that enable the exchange of information on national communications, not the technical workings of each policy.
VENEZUELA said that any action undertaken by Annex I Parties to reduce emissions will affect the economies of developing countries, and that any assessments should include these effects. He pointed out that there were few cross-comparisons of the impacts of the measures of one set of countries on another and that an integrated analysis was needed. He believed that inputs should not be curtailed. JAPAN suggested that work should be carried out in light of the best available scientific information, and that the SBSTA and SBI should play important roles. Each of the Parties should submit a national communication, which should be reviewed in depth, and all measures should be compiled and synthesized both on a sectoral and national level. He added that there are many sources of information available, and supported the compilation of an inventory of all existing information. POLAND supported the statement made by the Russian Federation, and stated that the AGBM should ask SBSTA to analyze national policy actions based on national communications and OECD/IEA work. He said that the AGBM should work with inputs from the subsidiary bodies to analyze and recommend particular scenarios to the COP. CHINA noted that the word "inputs" appeared to have many different interpretations. He said that the "inputs" submitted by the Parties in the form of draft protocols and interventions should be the basis of negotiations on a legal instrument. He emphasized that only Parties to the Convention can be Parties to the Protocol. He said that inputs such as the submissions made by international organizations and the subsidiary bodies provide information and that all submissions must conform to the BM. He concluded by stating that he could not accept the German elements proposal because it called for additional commitments from certain large developing countries and was contrary to the BM.
AUSTRALIA stated that climate change is a global problem and that the actions taken by Annex I Parties had implications for developing countries. She said that inputs to analysis and assessments must encompass the full range of economic, environmental and social studies from national and international sources and must consider all sources and sinks. In addition, studies of activities implemented jointly were also deemed important to the AGBM process. She proposed both top-down approaches including economic modeling used by OECD and IEA and bottom-up approaches including examinations of sectors and cost effective technologies. She suggested the early completion of Annex I Parties' communications. She supported the consideration of the AOSIS protocol and the German elements as inputs to analysis and assessment activities. The CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC highlighted the lack of funding for developing countries. He supported the AOSIS statement and the need for strengthening Annex I Parties commitments. He also commented on the national micro-project estimating carbon dioxide emissions from fuel wood use.
The US stated that it was fully aware of the BM's provisions. He said a comprehensive approach is needed because actions by Annex I Parties would affect non-Annex I Parties. He said that although national communications from non-Annex I Parties were not yet due, many non-Annex I Parties are taking successful measures and that information on these would be useful to Annex I Parties. He provided a partial list of organizations that could provide inputs on the following: analysis on the AOSIS protocol and the German and UK proposals; market and sectoral approaches; fiscal mechanisms and activities implemented jointly; future forecasts and historic emission trends, energy, successful technological options, and methane. The organizations included: the US EPA, OECD, UNEP, IPCC, World Bank, IMF, FAO, US Department of Energy, IIASA, Carnegie Mellon, Oxford Consulting, the Brookings Institute, Alliance to Save Energy, relevant research institutes at Stanford, Yale, MIT and Harvard, EDF and the NRDC. He supported the convening of an expert panel. NIGERIA said that the one salient point that recurred throughout the discussion was that analysis and assessment activities were central to the AGBM process. He suggested a gradient scale approach with analyses of policies and measures followed by constructive negotiations. He asked whether speculation or scientific fact was going to be negotiated. He noted that the two processes cannot occur simultaneously. He requested the Secretariat to "tap" all relevant regional organizations in the world including OPEC and OLADE and emphasized the lack of funding for the participation of developing countries.
PERU felt that the basic aspects being discussed regarding inputs are: priority criterion; a "middle of the road" stance as to whether analysis and assessments should occur simultaneously with negotiations; information on the economic impacts for developing countries of Annex I Parties adopting emissions reductions, and the definition of the Parties' positions with regard to contributions. NORWAY supported the Netherlands and commented that the IPCC was the key body for giving technical and scientific advice. He pointed out that the BM mentioned the IPCC's role and that the AGBM should contact IPCC in order to work out practical solutions. COLOMBIA commented that inputs are a key element of the BM and that the AGBM must be clear about time frames. She stated the group should proceed with negotiations parallel to analysis and assessment activities. She supported comments made by Peru, and noted that the only way to achieve the goal of the Convention was to move forward in all areas. GERMANY stated that apparently considerable doubt remained on the German position, in light of comments by China. She said that with regard to the German elements paper submitted in September last year, the reference to a certain category of developing countries was outdated. She added that other policies, also in the paper, have been seen by many delegations as a useful input for negotiating new commitments. FRANCE supported the EU and emphasized the need not to delay until the end of the process to embark upon negotiations. He said that without a parallel process, it would be difficult to agree when the analysis should stop and negotiations should start. MAURITIUS said the BM is precise, and contains a clear direction and mandate. He noted that many delegations said there is enough material existing, and suggested that this information be used as inputs in the AGBM process. Supporting Norway, he said that an active role for IPCC would prove fruitful.
At the end of the third day, the Chair said that he would produce a preliminary paper after consulting with different delegations regarding the distribution of time between analysis and assessment activities and negotiations. He said that governments should come up with lists of possible inputs and added that an objective synthesis of views would help orient the delegates, as would an annotated compilation of publications relevant to analysis and assessment, and a specialized document based on national communications. The Chair allowed two more interventions on this topic at the start of the fourth day. The CLIMATE ACTION NETWORK (CAN) stated that the success of the BM process will not be judged on the basis of discussions on analysis and assessment but by the first emission reduction steps for the Convention. He noted that while few developed countries are opposed to the early initiation of negotiations, there was an evident lack of leadership. CAN proposed a timetable which would begin negotiations on an emission reduction protocol in October, and urged delegates not to stop the BM process before it had started. BANGLADESH, supporting Germany, stated that the AGBM must start negotiations on policies and measures for Annex I parties, and added that analysis and assessment could be done simultaneously.
The Chair suggested using the substantive ideas of the BM, such as analysis and assessment, policies and measures, quantified limitations, as the basis for agenda items for the second AGBM session (AGBM 2). SPAIN, on behalf of the EU, mentioned four necessary elements for the agenda: structure and possible elements for the contents of the Protocol; methodology on drafting the Protocol; consideration of the inputs received; and, further work for the AGBM, such as setting deadlines for proposed inputs on objectives and time horizons. SAMOA, on behalf of the AOSIS, said that the Secretariat should prepare a document that addresses inputs for analysis and assessments in accordance with paragraph 5 of the BM (protocol proposals). He added that Parties should cover the following topics: quantified limitations and reduction objectives; coordination mechanisms; institutional arrangements; and, transfer of technology.
SAUDI ARABIA, supported by KUWAIT, stressed the need to concentrate on analysis and assessment activities during AGBM 2, and questioned whether negotiations could proceed in absence of adequate information. He said that methodologies should be identified. The PHILIPPINES, on behalf of the G-77 and CHINA, stated that the G-77 was still discussing this issue. SWITZERLAND suggested that their proposals to establish technical advisory panels, along with prioritized topics for work, could be addressed in upcoming session. NIGERIA, supporting both the G-77 and China and Saudi Arabia, said that he would hold the Chair to his promise of reviewing sources of information. He said that the AGBM should not be restricted to the IPCC in carrying out analysis and assessments. He added that many compromises had been made in past negotiations and that certain bottom-line needs could not be compromised in this meeting. US said that it would be more useful to describe specific analytical inputs. He requested the Secretariat to circulate its document prior to AGBM 2 in October, adding that the results could be used to decide which outside inputs are required. He stated that the upcoming session should be used to begin a study of global emissions trends and that the Secretariat could ask governments to nominate experts and then select a panel from among these nominations. AGBM 2 would also be a good time to consider fiscal mechanisms and activities implemented jointly.
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