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Volume 12 Number 471 - Friday, 11 June 2010
SB 32 AND AWG HIGHLIGHTS
Thursday, 10 June 2010

In the morning, the SBSTA plenary convened. Throughout the day, contact groups and informal consultations were held on issues including item 3 (preparation of an outcome to be presented to COP 16) under the AWG-LCA and Annex I emission reductions, legal matters and other issues under the AWG-KP.

SBSTA CLOSING PLENARY

SCIENTIFIC, TECHNICAL AND SOCIO-ECONOMIC ASPECTS OF MITIGATING CLIMATE CHANGE: The SBSTA plenary resumed in the morning to consider the proposal to request the Secretariat to prepare a technical paper on the options for limiting temperature increase to 1.5°C and 2°C.

Highlighting that the proposal could be an “attractive compromise" for many parties, VENEZUELA suggested language requesting that “the Secretariat, under their own responsibility, prepare an informal technical paper.” SAUDI ARABIA, with OMAN, KUWAIT and QATAR, opposed the proposal for a technical paper and encouraged forwarding the item to future sessions. The SBSTA adopted conclusions without referencing the proposed technical paper (FCCC/SBSTA/2010/L.7).

Underscoring that the technical paper would have assisted the most vulnerable countries prepare for the unavoidable impacts of climate change, BARBADOS emphasized that it is “ironic that other developing countries are blocking it,” asked whether “this is the solidarity and brotherhood they speak so eloquently about,” and stressed that “this is not a game, the existence of entire countries is at stake.”

SOUTH AFRICA, with COLOMBIA, Grenada, for AOSIS, AUSTRALIA, Spain, for the EU, JAMAICA, BOLIVIA, NIGERIA, GUATEMALA, and PAPUA NEW GUINEA, regretted the lack of an outcome on this item and supported further discussions at SBSTA 33. AOSIS expressed “incomprehension of objections” to compiling peer-reviewed scientific studies, but noted that “limited opposition” to the proposal “holds the promise of common consensus.” BOLIVIA regretted lack of agreement to analyze the 1°C target.

CLOSING STATEMENTS: Parties adopted the meeting’s report (FCCC/SBSTA/2010/L.1).

Yemen, for the G-77/CHINA, stated that it looked forward to considering issues identified by the Expert Group on Technology Transfer (EGTT) under the AWG-LCA and underscored action-based implementation of the Nairobi work programme on impacts, vulnerability and adaptation to climate change (NWP). Lesotho, for the LDCs, highlighted the importance of the NWP and research and systematic observation, and called for increased attention to the LDC work programme. Spain, for the EU, welcomed progress on the NWP, the EGTT’s work programme and standardized baselines under the CDM. Australia, for the UMBRELLA GROUP, noted progress on REDD and the UNFCCC reporting guidelines.

KUWAIT emphasized his country’s efforts to reduce the effects of climate change and financially support projects in other developing countries.

ICLEI-LOCAL GOVERNMENTS FOR SUSTAINABILITY welcomed progress on the NWP, highlighting the role of local governments in addressing climate change. Women’s Environment and Development Organization, for WOMEN AND GENDER NGOs, underscored that REDD should not worsen the livelihoods of women and called for, inter alia, gender equality.

World Coal Institute, for BINGOs, urged parties to include carbon capture and storage (CCS) under the CDM and establish regulatory frameworks that give incentives to CCS. International Trade Union Federation, for TRADE UNIONS, highlighted the importance of enhancing the NWP and raised concerns about the lack of progress on scientific, technical and socio-economic aspects of mitigation.

SBSTA Chair Konate declared SBSTA 32 closed at 1:10 pm.

CONTACT GROUPS AND INFORMAL CONSULTATIONS

ANNEX I EMISSION REDUCTIONS (AWG-KP): In the morning contact group, parties exchanged views on the draft conclusions.

On the way forward, in particular in relation to the work of the AWG-LCA, Spain, for the EU, supported by NORWAY, SWITZERLAND and JAPAN, urged for text reiterating the need for a coherent approach between the Convention and Protocol in relation to commitments by Annex I parties, as agreed by AWG-KP 6 (FCCC/KP/2008/8). Cautioning against “cherry picking” from other documents, CHINA urged focusing on the current state of negotiations. ZAMBIA suggested that progress has been made since Poznań and should be reflected in the outcome of this session. Highlighting the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities as well as Protocol Article 3.9 (Annex I further commitments), Brazil, for the G-77/CHINA, stressed the need to prioritize the AWG-KP’s work. JAPAN, with the RUSSIAN FEDERATION, underscored that both AWGs go “hand in hand.” The EU cautioned against a “narrow understanding” of the Convention and emphasized Annex I countries’ willingness in taking the lead with deep emission reductions.

On the update of a paper compiling pledges (FCCC/KP/AWG/2010/INF.1), SOUTH AFRICA, supported by the EU, NORWAY, BOLIVIA, the FEDERATED STATES OF MICRONESIA and the GAMBIA, proposed taking into consideration the information considered at this session, in particular the tables prepared by the Secretariat, showing the translation of current pledges into QELROs. Opposing this proposal, JAPAN and the RUSSIAN FEDERATION noted the different status of the information contained in the document and the mathematical calculation provided by the Secretariat. AUSTRALIA said that the tables are “highly hypothetical and do not reflect the views of parties.” Co-Chair Charles explained that the tables were introduced by the Secretariat for illustration purposes and have not been subject to intensive scrutiny by parties. He suggested continuing to work on the issue at the next session. BANGLADESH suggested updating the technical paper on transforming pledges into QELROs (FCCC/TP/2010/2) and, supported by the EU, that targets be expressed in gigatonnes.

On inviting Annex I parties to submit information on their expected use of LULUCF and the flexibility mechanisms  in the next commitment period, the PHILIPPINES requested also including text on the share of domestic reductions.

LEGAL MATTERS (AWG-KP): Co-Chair Albàn invited parties to consider the draft conclusions, keeping in mind the need to provide guidance to the Secretariat on the scope of the proposed paper and that a legal analysis is required. She explained that the conclusions on legal matters will be included in the set of conclusions to be prepared by the AWG-KP Chair.

SOUTH AFRICA, CHINA and Spain, for the EU, highlighted the need for the conclusions to reflect the context of the contact group’s work. SOUTH AFRICA stressed that the context is to ensure that there is no gap between the first and second commitment periods.

The FEDERATED STATES OF MICRONESIA, supported by SOUTH AFRICA and CHINA, but opposed by JAPAN, stressed that the language “with a view to avoiding a gap between the first and second commitment periods” is too weak, noting that in  decision 1/CMP.1 (consideration of Annex I parties' commitments for subsequent periods under Protocol Article 3.9), parties have already agreed “to ensure” that there is no such gap. The RUSSIAN FEDERATION, opposed by the GAMBIA, proposed deleting reference to the second commitment period, preferring language on “subsequent commitment periods.” The RUSSIAN FEDERATION, JAPAN and others also opposed reference to “environmental integrity,” identifying it as a political, not a legal, issue.

On the aim of the paper, parties discussed whether the text should read: “to address a possible gap,” “to ensure that there is no gap” or “to address and/or avoid a gap.” Many parties opposed requesting the Secretariat to carry out an “assessment” or “analysis,” preferring to request the Secretariat to “identify” and/or “explore.”

ITEM 3 (AWG-LCA): Opportunities for using markets to enhance cost-effectiveness of, and to promote, mitigation actions: During informal consultations in the afternoon, discussions focused on market-based approaches. Several parties emphasized the need to also discuss non-market approaches. Some parties highlighted that non-market approaches are being discussed in other fora and preferred to focus on market-based approaches.

Parties also exchanged views on whether to create new market mechanisms, what format such new mechanisms should take, what principles should guide them and what kind of agreement is needed in Cancún with regard to these mechanisms.

OTHER ISSUES (AWG-KP): Co-Facilitator Iversen reported on discussions by the LULUCF spinoff group, highlighting, inter alia, a decision to request the Secretariat to organize a pre-sessional workshop on forest management before the August session. AWG-KP Vice-Chair Dovland reported on the discussions on the basket of methodological issues and the flexibility mechanisms, noting that no new or revised text will be prepared before the next session.

IN THE CORRIDORS

On the penultimate day of the Bonn Climate Change Talks, the frenzied activity witnessed in the preceding days appeared to tail off. In the afternoon and evening, several delegates were seen mingling in the corridors, many of them looking forward to “Margaret’s paper,” reflecting the work done by the AWG-LCA during the meeting and wondering when the text would be released. “Unfortunately, it seems like we won’t have time to discuss the paper in our groups tonight,” commented one developing country delegate after it was announced that the paper would be made available after 10pm. “I hope that we can still agree to use it as a basis for our negotiations at the next session,” stated another.

For some, the focus had already began shifting to the FIFA World Cup with several delegates spicing up their interventions with football analogies. Many were heard expressing concerns about whether the AWGs would be able to wrap up their business before kick-off on Friday afternoon. “Finally, we’ll have a collective incentive to keep our closing interventions to under two minutes,” suggested one delegate whose country will be playing in the opening game of the tournament in Johannesburg.

ENB SUMMARY AND ANALYSIS: The Earth Negotiations Bulletin summary and analysis of the meetings will be available on Monday, 14 June 2010 online at: http://www.iisd.ca/climate/sb32/

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This issue of the Earth Negotiations Bulletin © <enb@iisd.org> is written and edited by Tomilola “Tomi” Akanle, Asheline Appleton, Kati Kulovesi, Ph.D., Anna Schulz, Matt Sommerville and Simon Wolf. The Digital Editor is Leila Mead. The Editor is Pamela S. Chasek, Ph.D. <pam@iisd.org>. The Director of IISD Reporting Services is Langston James “Kimo” Goree VI <kimo@iisd.org>. The Sustaining Donors of the Bulletin are the United Kingdom (through the Department for International Development – DFID), the Government of the United States of America (through the Department of State Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs), the Government of Canada (through CIDA), the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU), the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the European Commission (DG-ENV), and the Italian Ministry for the Environment, Land and Sea. General Support for the Bulletin during 2010 is provided by the Government of Australia, the Austrian Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, Environment and Water Management, the Ministry of Environment of Sweden, the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, SWAN International, Swiss Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN), the Finnish Ministry for Foreign Affairs, 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), the Government of Iceland, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), and the World Bank. Funding for translation of the Bulletin into French has been provided by the Government of France, the Belgium Walloon Region, the Province of Québec, and the International Organization of the Francophone (OIF and IEPF). Funding for translation of the Bulletin into Spanish has been provided by the Spanish Ministry of the Environment and Rural and Marine Affairs. The opinions expressed in the Bulletin are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of IISD or other donors. Excerpts from the 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>, +1-646-536-7556 or 300 East 56th St., 11A, New York, New York 10022, USA. The ENB Team at the Bonn Climate Change Talks - May/June 2010 can be contacted by e-mail at <kati@iisd.org>.

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