Kyoto and Beyond Report on Cancun COP16 The 4th installment in an ongoing series on multilateral agreements related to climate changewww.isciences.com February 1, 2011
IntroductionKyoto and Beyond is a series of presentations on the evolvinginternational climate treaty process that began with the UnitedNations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). Report on Cancun COP16 is a summary of the process of negotiations that transpired during COP16, Nov. 29-Dec. 10, 2010. Other presentations in the series include*: • Kyoto and beyond: the Evolution of Multilateral Agreements on Climate Change (2008) • Report on Copenhagen COP15 (2009) • Road to Cancun COP16 (2010) * Available at http://www.isciences.com/spotlight/kyoto_and_beyond.html
Contents COP16 Overview The Cancun Agreements Thoughts and Opinions Issues Still LoomingLooking Towards the Future
COP16 in Cancun Mexico Nov. 29 – Dec. 10, 2010Due to the frustrations that resulted from COP15 inCopenhagen, COP16 was intentionally under-publicized inorder to avoid giving the public false expectations. The tone leading up to COP16 was subdued, a mood that remained through the entirety of the talks. The talks were so downplayed that some Heads of State and top government officials did not attend. Image credit: Wikicommons For a day-by-day account of COP16 see slides 38-50.
COP16 Overview The UNFCCC Process Moves ForwardBy its conclusion, the climate meeting was deemed an overallsuccess and the UNFCCC climate treaty process was rejuvenated. “The Cancun Agreements” were considered substantive steps and were favorably reviewed by global climate analysts. The “Agreements” demonstrated that the UNFCCC process could achieve progress. Three of the world’s major carbon emitters, the US, China, and India, all approved the agreements.
The Cancun AgreementsMost importantly, COP16 resulted in a text titled “TheCancun Agreements” consisting of five main elements: 1) Financing through the Green Climate Fund 2) Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD+) 3) Increasing transparency through monitoring, reporting, and verification (MRV) 4) Formalizing the emissions reduction pledges made at COP15 in Copenhagen, Denmark 5) Creating a new Adaptation Framework Draft of the agreement is available at: http://www.isciences.com/spotlight/Report_on_Cancun_COP16/The%20Cancun%20Agreements.pdf
Unresolved IssueHowever, no second commitment period for the KyotoProtocol was established, leaving the future of the Protocoluncertain as it expires on December 31, 2012. On opening day of COP16, Japan, Canada, and Australia announced their refusal to consign to a 2nd commitment period, citing that the Protocol does not bind two of the top emitters: China, “a developing country”; and the US, which rejected the treaty in 2001. Towards the end of COP16, Russia also announced its opposition to a 2nd commitment period. The future of the Protocol was postponed once again, tabled until COP17 in Durban, South Africa. For background on the Kyoto Protocol see slide 37
Process BreakthroughCOP16 President Patricia Espinosa’s role in the negotiationprocess was crucial to the outcome. Her leadership paved theway for official acceptance of the Cancun Agreements. During negotiations Bolivian Ambassador and representative, Pablo Solon, protested decisions, claiming them to be “hollow,” and charging that developing nations were “bullied” by developed nations into Image credit: http://theforeigner.no accepting outcomes. Espinosa overruled Solon’s objections, asserting that involved delegates felt the fate of the consensus should not be determined by one objecting party in an otherwise unanimous vote.
Mexico’s Pivotal RoleUpon the start of COP16, Mexico was under pressure to createan atmosphere that would increase the likelihood of a legallybinding agreement being created. Prior to the talks, Felipe Calderon, President of Mexico, had made climate change a top priority through the development of domestic legislation as well as investment in international climate change policy. The success at COP16 proved Mexico’s willingness and ability to produce positive results. It also provided evidence to the international community that developing countries have significant influence and play an important role in the process. Upon the end of the talks, the U.S. praised the decisions made by Patricia Espinosa and congratulated Calderon for his leadership and for Mexico’s contributions and work. Coutesy: http://www.mexicool.com/15/mexico-map-of-mexico/
COP 16: Role of the Big EmittersIndia played a significant role during the talks. Jairam Ramesh,India’s Environment Minister, claims that many of India’scontributions were incorporated into the final text agreement. Contributions initiated by India included the idea for International Consultation and Analysis, a transparency mechanism created to ensure that developing countries carry out the necessary domestic mitigation actions. “India should be seen as part of the solution.” – Jairam Ramesh NOTE: India’s total carbon emissions are expected to reach between 4 billion and 7.3 billion tonnes by 2031. Image credit: http://www.daylife.com/topic/Jairam_Ramesh/photos
COP 16: Role of the Big EmittersChina offered, for the first time, to consider making its emissionsreductions target binding. The offer is anticipated to inspireincreased action in developed nations. China was also adamantthat countries should commit to a 2nd period of the Protocol. China’s target is viewed as one of the most ambitious of the participating countries, with a goal of cutting carbon intensity by 40-45% from 2005 levels by 2020. Image Credit: http://thebreakthrough.org/blog/2009/12/chinas_carbon_intensity_pledge.shtml However, China’s reductions remain voluntary for the time being, and the issue of reducing its total emissions budget is not addressed.
COP 16: Role of the Big Emitters U.S. representative Todd Stern, Special Envoy for Climate Change, emphasized upon arrival that the U.S. would not be accepting a text that resembled a “watered down” version of the Copenhagen Accord. This meant insistence on a more balanced package including elements such as the establishment of a Green Fund and improvements on adaptation and REDD+ Image Credit: http://tinyurl.com/4tyqu68 Stern also stressed the commitment from the United States and President Obama to work alongside the global community to find a solution to climate change.NOTE: The United States is the world’s 2nd largest emitter of greenhouse gases. Recently,the U.S. invested 90 billion dollars into renewable energy to reduce negative impact.
COP 16 Verdict The Cancun AgreementsAvailable at: http://www.isciences.com/spotlight/Report_on_Cancun_COP16/The%20Cancun%20Agreements.pdf
The Cancun AgreementsThe Green Climate Fund To be initiated in 2020, the Green Climate Fund will allocate $100 billion towards helping developing nations reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The fund will assist developing nations adapt to negative effects of climate change that have already occurred. This includes using shifting agriculture towards drought- resistant crops and building sea walls that protect against rising ocean levels and storm surges. A portion of the funds will be contributed by developed countries. (To view a table of the current pledged funds see slide 36.) The board that governs the fund will consist of 25 people representing developed and developing countries equally. The World Bank will be the trustee of the fund.
The Cancun AgreementsReducing Carbon Emissions from Deforestation (REDD+) The deal reached at COP16 emphasizes need for countries to reduce harmful emissions made from deforestation (see slide 35). An agreement was made to increase funds towards REDD+. Calls for the creation of incentives for local people, governments, and industries to alter their practices towards to agricultural methods that do not rely on the clearing of land by cutting down trees. The decision made on deforestation reduction was considered to be one of the most crucial agreements made during COP16.
The Cancun AgreementsTransparency Provision: Monitoring, Reporting, and Verifying Both developed and developing countries are required to give more frequent reporting of emissions through submissions of biennial reports. Developing countries will undergo international consultations regarding these reports. The agreements stress that this must be done in respectful, non-invasive manner. Reports are to be analyzed by technical experts. The provisions are meant to improve the reliability and quality of country pledges. The Cancun Agreements also call for the creation of workshops to clarify country targets and help estimate emissions reductions that could occur post-2012.
The Cancun AgreementsIncorporating the Copenhagen Accord into the UN ProcessThe deal brings the non-binding emissions reduction pledges made inthe Copenhagen Accord from COP15 into the formal UN process. NOTE: These voluntary pledges are anticipated to become legally binding in the future. BAU = “Business As Usual” Image Credit: http://www.iie.com/realtime/?p=1173
The Cancun AgreementsCancun Adaptation Framework The framework calls for assistance to the Least Developed Countries (LDCs) to create national adaptation plans and climate change strategies. The framework has established an Adaptation Committee in order to assure that issues related to adaptation are handled with more attention and focus under the UNFCCC. Certain small island states have already experienced damage due to climate change which has disabled adaptation in these areas. To address this issue, the Alliance of Small Island States proposed a plan to compensate countries for loss and damages. The plan includes possible insurance policies and rehabilitation.
Thoughts and Opinions Ban Ki Moon, UN Secretary Christina Figueres, Todd Stern, U.S. UNFCCC Executive Special Envoy for Secretary Climate Change Pablo Solon, Bolivia’s Felipe Calderon, Patricia Espinosa, UN AmbassadorPresident of Mexico President of COP16 To view thoughts and opinions see slides 29-34.
Issues Still Looming: Temperature RiseScientists have stated that the current emissions reductionpledges could result in a temperature rise of 3.2°C insteadof 2°C as sought in the UNFCCC process. Some evenestimate a 4-5°C rise. Projected Global Temperature Increase Temperature Rise from Pre-industrial Time Credit: Rogelj et al, Nature Estimates Scientific range of uncertainty Observations Image adapted from: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/8635765.stm
Issues Still Looming: Temperature RiseThe likelihood of limiting increase of global averagetemperature to no more than 2°C is increasingly remote. The Gigatonne Breakdown: Prior COPs stressed the need to prevent a global temperature increase of more than 2 C in order to avoid “dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system.” Reducing the annual global GHG emissions budget to 44 Gigatonnes (Gt) by 2020 is required to limit warming to +2 C. However: Expected emissions for 2020 range between 48.8 to 51.2 Gt of CO2-equivalent, based on whether high or low emission reduction pledges will be fulfilled. A best-case scenario: If countries implement promised cuts, we would still produce between 0.5 and 8.8 Gt per annum over what scientists see as tolerable.
Still Looming: Future of the Kyoto Protocol?The most anticipated issue at COP16 was the future of the KyotoProtocol, and many hoped for an answer on whether therewould be a 2nd commitment period. No answer was determined, due to opposition from countries to sign on to an agreement that does not include binding emissions reductions for emerging economies such as China and India. The Cancun Agreements include a segment stating the goal to make a decision about the Protocol’s future as soon as possible. This would avoid a significant gap between the 1st and 2nd commitment periods. Developed nations are willing to extend the Protocol as long as all countries are committed to making emissions cuts, developing countries included. A final answer is anticipated at COP17 in Durban, South Africa
Looking Towards the FutureBetween 30 to 40 thousand heads of state, government officials,and climate change activists are expected to attend COP 17,scheduled on December of 2011 in Durban, South Africa. There will be heightened pressure on COP17 compared to COP16 due it being the last chance to reach a new climate change deal before the end of the first commitment period of the Protocol. There is an increase in global confidence that a deal can be found in Durban, whereas people were skeptical of a deal being reached during COP16 due to the perceived failure of COP15. Image credit: http://www.cop17durban.com/Pages/default.aspx
Conclusion Although COP16 signified a step in the right direction, many feel there is still much to be done. Nations risk dangerous impacts due to climate change, and feel there is need for further legislative action and increased international efforts. COP16 succeeded in restoring international faith in the UNFCCC’s climate change process. It restored confidence that UNFCCC Conference of the Parties convocations are able to facilitate agreements and set higher hopes for COP17 in Durban, South Africa.Kyoto and Beyond will keep you informed as these important events continue to unfold
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Citation When referencing this slideshow please use the following citation: ISCIENCES, L.L.C. Report on Cancun COP16. A slideshow; 4th installment in the series: Beyond Copenhagen. February 1, 2011. Ann Arbor, Michigan. www.isciences.com.www.isciences.com February 1, 2011
Appendix The following slides provide support for information presented in the preceding slides.www.isciences.com February 1, 2011
COP 15: A Brief Review COP15 was unable to accomplish the objective of establishing a new agreement that would follow the Kyoto Protocol. The Protocol, a commitment to reduce GHG emissions, expires Dec. 31, 2012. Though discussions occurred on the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) and on adaptation, the general consensus was that COP15 was unsuccessful. Independent of the official process, The Copenhagen Accord, a non-binding voluntary agreement on GHG emissions reductions was drafted on the last day by the U.S. and Brazil, South Africa, India, and China. (BASIC countries)Image credit: Wikicommons Return
Thoughts and Opinions of Ban Ki MoonOn Climate Change:“Business as usual cannot be tolerated, for it would condemn millions – no, billions – billions ofchildren, women, and men around the world to shrinking horizons, and smaller futures.”“This is a marathon race, not a sprint. Climate change was not created overnight. It will not be solvedovernight either.”On COP16:“I am deeply concerned that our efforts so far have been insufficient…that despite the evidence, andmany years of negotiation, we are still not rising to the challenge.”“Parties need to agree on how – and when – to move forward after Cancun on issues still underdiscussion.”“My High-Level Advisory Group on Climate Financing concluded that it is challenging but it is possiblefor developed countries to realize their goal of raising $100 billion dollars a year by 2020 to supportclimate action in developing countries. I encourage Parties to use the Group’s findings as inputs to yourclimate finance negotiations.” Return
Thoughts and Opinions of Felipe CalderonOn Climate Change:“Climate change is beginning to make us pay for the fatal errors we as humanity have committedagainst the environment. ““ As developing states grow, we are going to emit greenhouse gases ourselves. We’ll all be worseningthe problem. And the sad and paradoxical thing is that the smaller the states, the more vulnerable theyare. They haven’t in the past, nor today, aren’t emitting gases. They are not just vulnerable, they are onthe point of disappearance. I think we need new terms. “On COP16:“ It is less than what is needed, but it represents a significant step in the right direction.“ It would be a tragedy if our inability to see beyond our personal interests, our group or nationalinterests makes us fail. “ Return
Thoughts and Opinions of Christiana FigueresOn Climate Change:“ In the arena of climate change, the list of vulnerable nations is long, and growing. ““ Climate change will affect all aspects of the water supply. To make matters worse, water is alreadybeing badly managed in many locations. ““ No sector will be immune to climate change … Sooner or later, all businesses will need to climate-proof themselves. “On COP16:“ The deal here in Cancun will not guarantee all your short-term national interests, but reaching nooutcome here in Cancun will endanger everyones long-term well-being. ““ Cancun was a big step, bigger than many imagined would be possible. Governments renewed theirtrust in each other, but to succeed fully they need to press boldly ahead with what they have agreed. “ Return
Thoughts and Opinions of Patricia EspinosaOn Climate Change:“ There is a growing consensus on the need to act as quickly as possible. ““ Dealing with climate change is in reality an intensely political matter that goes to the very heart ofdevelopment strategies and to the way our economies are run. It is an issue that demands closeguidance from the highest levels of government. “On COP16:“ Throughout 2010, and in our meetings here in Cancun, we have sought to build understandings whilealso enhancing confidence. Every party must know what is happening and see that its views have beenconsidered. In negotiations between sovereign States, no group small or large can take decisions in thename of everybody else. We will need every single delegation to engage others in the building ofcompromise proposals in this final stretch. ““ I believe that an ambitious, broad and balanced package of decisions is within reach. That does notmean that we already have it in our grasp “ Return
Thoughts and Opinions of Todd SternOn Climate Change:“ The time for denial, delay and dispute is over. ““ Evaporation and rainfall are increasing; glaciers are retreating; sea ice is shrinking; sea level is rising;permafrost is melting; wildfires are increasing; storm and flood damage is soaring. The canary in thecoal mine is singing for all shes worth. “On COP16:“ What we have now is a text that, while not perfect, is certainly a good basis for moving forward..thenegotiations in the future will continue to be difficult ““ I think that it’s a positive thing to see a worldwide agreement, one that includes all of the majoreconomies. “ ReturnClick here to view video of Todd Stern’s remarks on COP16
Thoughts and Opinions of Pablo SolonOn Climate Change:“ Bolivia is a small country. This means we are among the nations most vulnerable to climate change,but with the least responsibility for causing the problem. Studies indicate that our capital city of La Pazcould become a desert within 30 years. What we do have is the privilege of being able to stand by ourideals, of not letting partisan agendas obscure our principal aim: defending life and Earth. ““ We face an unprecedented crisis, and false victories wont save the planet. “On COP16:“ For us, this is not a step forward. It is a step back, because what is being done here is postponingwithout limit the discussion on the Kyoto Protocol. ““ The text replaces binding mechanisms for reducing greenhouse gas emissions with voluntary pledgesthat are wholly insufficient. These pledges contradict the stated goal of capping the rise in temperatureat 2C, instead guiding us to 4C or more. The text is full of loopholes for polluters, opportunities forexpanding carbon markets and similar mechanisms – like the forestry scheme Redd – that reduce theobligation of developed countries to act.“ Return
Facts about Forests and Climate Change Global forests cover around 30% of the Earth’s land surface. Total carbon content is estimated at 638 Gt for 2005; this is more than the amount of carbon in the entire atmosphere. Deforestation, resulting in the immediate release of carbon stored in trees as CO2, is estimated at 13 million hectares per year. It is estimated that deforestation results in the emission of 5.8 Gt of CO2 per year to global greenhouse gas emissions. According to John Podesta, the President and CEO of the Center for American Progress, global emissions from deforestation are equal to total emissions from the transportation sector. The IPCC’s Fourth Assessment Report mentions that reducing deforestation would have the largest carbon stock impact in the short term. Return
COP 16: Climate Finance Pledges Country Amount pledged ($USM) Japan 15,000 European Union 9,595 France 1,697 The process of raising and delivering Germany 1,680 the funds will be conducted with Sweden 1,068 increased transparency. Norway 1,000 Spain 500 This will hold countries accountable Netherlands 467 and facilitate trust and cooperation Canada 396 while helping to bridge the gap Denmark 216 between developed and developing Belgium 201 European 133 countries. Commission Ireland 133 Finland 110 Portugal 48 Luxembourg 12 Slovenia 11 Malta 1 ReturnInformation collected from: http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/interactive/2010/nov/26/cancun-crucial-climate-data
The Kyoto Protocol The Protocol is a multilateral agreement aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Developed countries were assigned limits on emissions relative to 1990, and targets vary by nation. The protocol was signed by 84 countries and ratified by nearly all who signed. The US did not ratify. Countries who ratified are now bound by Protocol requirements. The Protocol, part of the UNFCCC, has been in force since 2005. The first commitment period ends in 2012 and no binding framework has been established post-2012. Four Conference of the Parties have taken place since the Protocol entered into force. Each COP has been accompanied by a CMP, a meeting specific to the Protocol. Return
COP 16: The Process Click one of the following dates for an account of the events. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday,November 29th November 30th December 1st December 2nd 2010 2010 2010 2010 Monday, Sunday, Saturday, Friday,December 6th December 5th December 4th December 3rd 2010 2010 2010 2010 Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday,December 7th December 8th December 9th December 10th 2010 2010 2010 2010 Return to Presentation
Key Events Monday, November 29th 2010 A welcoming ceremony took place to mark the beginning of COP16 Climate Change Talks in Cancun, Mexico with President Felipe Calderon in attendance. Barack Obama and David Cameron, UK Prime Minister, not in attendance. Meetings related to the Kyoto Protocol, side meetings with groups such as the Alliance of Small Island States, and meetings of non-governmental organizations began. Anticipation in the air of whether or not the talks would produce a concrete agreement.Click here to view an official write up of 11/29/2010 Return
Key Events Tuesday, November 30th 2010 The Presentation of EU report on fast start financing took place, where the European Union and member states presented a report on the progress in implementing a fast-start financing commitment. An update was given on the progress of the finance portal being developed for climate change by the UNFCCC. Bolivian Ambassador Pablo Solon presented Bolivia’s perspective of the Cancun Agenda including the multilateral process at COP16, the need for a 2nd commitment period of the Protocol, the dangers of carbon markets, and the relationship of climate change policy to human rightsClick here to view an official write up of 11/30/2010 Return
Key Events Wednesday, December 1st 2010 Day was titled UN Water Day as it was centered around dialogues for water and climate change. Meetings included: Panel on Droughts, Panel on Water Food and Energy, and the Economics of Adaptation to Climate Change.Click here to view an official write up of 12/1/2010 Return
Key Events Thursday, December 2nd 2010 Some meetings focused on climate change in the media and the difficulties within the media to correctly portray climate change. Journalists from both developed and developing countries discussed issues that both separate and unite media experts from different nations with diverse cultures from one another. Other significant meetings included: The Impact of Fires and U.S. Climate Change Assistance to Developing Countries.Click here to view an official write up of 12/2/2010 Return
Key Events Friday, December 3rd 2010 Discussions occurred on China’s progress in becoming a world leader in clean energy technology which, in turn, increased the pressure on the U.S. The Environment Minister for India claimed to have a possible solution to solve deadlock between developed and developing nations over how to equally share the burdens of climate change. Included in this proposal, countries would report actions they take to decrease the negative effects of climate change. Other significant meetings included: Climate Change and Health, and Partnerships for City Adaptation Strategies in Megacities.Click here to view an official write up of 12/3/2010 Return
Key Events Saturday, December 4th 2010 A week-end press conference is held in which Christiana Figueres assured listeners that governments were working cohesively and diligently. Discussions were centered on the question of the future of the Kyoto Protocol and the importance of both participation and support. By this day, expectations were still low that an agreement would be reached.Click here to view an official write up of 12/4/2010 Return
Key Events Sunday, December 5th 2010 No meetings were scheduled. COP16 President, Patricia Espinosa, held an informal plenary for country delegates and the Environment Ministers who had just begun to arrive. Espinosa announced a new method of working in which ministers from developed countries would be paired with those from developing countries to work on specific issues. Examples of the pairings include the following: Sweden and Grenada to discuss shared vision, Spain and Algeria to discuss adaptation, Australia and Bangladesh to discuss financing technology and capacity building, and the United Kingdom and Brazil to discuss the Kyoto Protocol.Click here to view an official write up of 12/5/2010 Return
Key Events Monday, December 6th 2010 Informal groups and meetings were held to discuss climate change impacts, vulnerability, and adaptation. Countries spoke about expectations for COP17 in Durban, South Africa as well as opinions of how “legally binding” can be defined. Important meetings included: The Air We Breathe Isn’t What It Used To Be and U.S. State and Regional Climate LeadershipClick here to view an official write up of 12/6/2010 Return
Key Events Tuesday, December 7th 2010 This marked the day of the “high-level” segment of the talks, which is the portion that many of the important decisions and agreements are to be made. Christiana Figueres gave a speech about the necessity of creativity and reason when developing an agreement as well as stressed the importance of increased cooperation amongst the participating countries. She brought to the table the question of vulnerability and requested that the Ministers consider those who are most vulnerable to climate change when discussing possible agreements. UN Secretary Ban Ki Moon gave a speech noting that, while a final agreement is not required at COP16, there is expected to be progress on all issues in some capacity. Felipe Calderon spoke and addressed the fact that billions internationally expected to see results from COP16 and that there could not be failure to deliver.Click here to view an official write up of 12/7/2010 Return
Key Events Wednesday, December 8th 2010 Negotiations began to further intensify. Delegates met throughout the day to discuss issues related to Clean Development Mechanism, Mitigation, the Adaptation Fund, and Joint Implementation. There were also discussions focused on settling political differences. Patricia Espinosa gave a statement mentioning the Mexican Presidency’s commitment to transparency. At this point the cooperation was increasing and it became clear that all parties involved were determined to come to an agreement.Click here to view an official write up of 12/8/2010 Return
Key Events Thursday, December 9th 2010 Informal meetings involving the Ministers were held all day, as was announced by Patricia Espinosa in order to promote transparency. Espinosa was confident that a package could be found and agreed upon by the end of the talks. She requested that the Ministers share the findings of their discussions. These findings included: Sweden highlighting a temperature goal, a long-term goal for emissions reduction, and a peaking cap of global emissions; Norway and Ecuador spoke on REDD+ and issues related to financing and a connection between a national and sub-national level. Consultations were encouraged to be held throughout the night to ensure that a decision would be made by the following, final day.Click here to view an official write up of 12/9/2010 Return
Key Events Friday, December 10th 2010 The talks concluded with a final agreement made titled “The Cancun Agreements” A text was created and announced the following day, December 11th.Click here to view an official write up of 12/10/2010 Return
Carbon IntensityDefinition: The amount of carbon dioxide emitted per unit of economic outputGDP.NOTE: For China in particular, this will mean the carbon emissions from energyconsumption and industrial activity, which are the source of most of the country’semissions. Return
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