Photo Credit: Naoyuki Yamagishi
After a tumultuous week, ECO is concerned that some Parties might be in danger of losing sight of the forest amongst the trees. ECO would like to remind parties that in Durban they set themselves a tall order to undertake a LOT of work this year – now is the time to stop the shenanigans, roll your sleeves up and get on with it.
ECO should not need to remind Parties how urgent it is to increase mitigation ambition! We need to make great progress this year in the KP and LCA, and in the ADP workplan.
As the KP rumbles on without urgency, Parties have not yet got to discuss how they will reduce the AAU loophole, nor the technical details of the QELROs. CP2 Parties and the ditherers need to up their game, so that their pollution reductions and targets contribute significantly and fairly towards closing the gigatonne gap.
Rapid progress in the LCA is needed on 1(b)(i), which lags far behind the KP in developing the QELROs promised in the Bali Action Plan. Countries that have jumped ship from the Kyoto Protocol need to show that their pledges are capable of being compared through common accounting and MRV systems.
ECO is disappointed with the silence from the 1(b)(ii) counties that have not yet brought forward pledges. We look for all countries to table NAMAs, both those that can do so unilaterally and those that need support.
The workplan to increase ambition must go on until the ambition gap has been closed. Agreement to have an agenda item and progress on the workplan on increasing short term ambition in the ADP is a non-negotiable and essential element of the regime. The ADP has a dual role on mitigation: to negotiate a fair, ambitious and binding deal by 2015 and to increase ambition in the short term by all Parties. This is a crucial space where some of the elements of the gigatonne gap-closing agenda can be addressed.
ECO fancies the work pro-gramme on long term finance as a constructive way to mobilize US$100 billion a year, but is kept awake at night worrying that, if not clearly connected to the LCA negotiations, it could come to nought. ECO does not want the co-chairs’ report to the COP18 to sit on yet another dusty shelf. ECO needs this report to actually spur decisions on new and additional sources of public finance to address urgent adaptation and mitigation needs. ECO is still not sure why some parties would choose to block the creation of this important spin-off group on finance under the LCA. ECO is painfully crossing both fingers and toes that all parties finally agree on the need for negotiating space to start drafting text before Doha for a decision on finance to be adopted there.
ECO is pleased that Parties have made progress on the NAPs, with a draft conclusion text outlining funding modalities. But more progress is needed this week – Parties need to show how support will be scaled up, including through direct access. NAPs preparation needs to commence as soon as possible so that they can provide input into post-2020 considerations, whilst simultaneously enhancing the implementation of existing NAPAs.
Given that the major work on loss and damage in 2012 will happen through the work programme expert meetings, Parties should agree on holding an informal meeting before the COP to assess the achievements of these expert meetings, and draft decision text there. A failure to sufficiently increase mitigation pledges will lead to an increase in loss and damage, which must be recognised. And ways to explore the institutional options from Durban and Cancun must be outlined in the run-up to 2015.
Listening to last week’s spin-off group on shared vision had a distinctly “Groundhog Day” feel, as Parties expressed their long known views. The first workshop on equity had some interesting and relevant discussion, which leads ECO to suggest that Parties focus their efforts on agreeing to the peak year in Doha. In order to stay below 2°C and keep 1.5°C within reach, the Qatari Presidency must highlight the need for Parties to agree to an early peak year. Consider the gauntlet thrown – this will be a key measure of success at Doha.
It is no secret that ECO favours a narrow scope of the first periodic Review, sticking to the Cancun agreed definition, which would support the effectiveness of the Review. ECO is hopeful that Parties can reach agreement in Doha through solution-oriented discussions in the spin-off group.
Lately, capacity building has been treated like Parties' forgotten child. ECO is therefore looking forward to two whole afternoons this week of the Durban Forum on Capacity Building. ECO hopes the Forum will concentrate on reviewing action on capacity building in the context of the many current and future capacity needs of developing countries, rather than those that applied in 2001.
Parties don’t seem to be much closer to choosing a CTCN host from among the three ranked possibilities. Nor have they moved much in addressing the constitution of the advisory board. Additionally, the LCA contact group raised the issue of IPR as motivation for a spin-off group. As a result, some who are wary of IPR discussions pointed to the TEC as the appropriate venue. It's solidly within the TEC's mandate. Let's get on with it!
Developing countries have long insisted on the need for transparent and coordinated provision of financial support, to enable independent review of the extent to which commitments are fulfilled, as well as maximise the effectiveness of the funding. Moreover, transparency is vital to ensuring that the funds are equitably distributed over all developing countries in need of support, with priority for the most vulnerable developing countries.
At present, though there have been some positive steps taken in this direction, unless ECO was not invited that magical day, there is no common framework for measuring, reporting and verification (MRV) of international climate finance that fully captures existing financial flows.
ECO was happy to hear that at the end of 2011 the European Commission proposed a new EU regulation (referred to as the “MMR” Regulation) on monitoring and reporting for EU climate finance. The MMR (yet another acronym that delegates and observers should learn by heart) will standardize climate finance reporting requirements for EU Member States. We are glad to hear that the proposal is going through the EU legislative process this year, just in time to monitor the EU’s post-2012 financial commitments for climate action.
But the MMR still needs guidance from EU Member States on key concepts and methodologies to be included in the legislation: what is meant by climate finance and in particular “private climate finance”? What is “new and additional” climate finance and how are the baselines set for measuring this? How should the MMR count the climate-relevant activities and outcomes when reporting on projects with broader objectives?
In the grand tradition of EU stakeholder consultation processes, ECO knows that its ideas will be read and considered, and so takes the opportunity to recommend that the MMR include the following:
- detailed information on where the money is going
- comparable information that can be aggregated
- sources and recipient institutions as well as the channels used need to be visible in order to keep track of the financial flow
- Also, for this process to be really transparent, it is crucial that this information be made accessible to third parties, including recipient countries and NGOs and that the reported information be quadruple-checked by independent finance experts
But all this being said, ECO would like to remind all parties that any MMR or MRV proposal does not make any sense as long as there is no finance to MMR or MRV (or whatever you want to call it). At the end of the day, we need developed countries to start pledging substantial, scaled-up climate funding for 2013 onwards. Or the MMR will be yet another empty shell.
And because ECO knows that parties want to hear more about the major MRV reform behind the obscure acronym, the ACT Alliance and CAN-Europe went to great lengths to organize a side event on the role of private finance in climate action next Monday.
ECO will definitely be there.
Thank you chair for giving us the opportunity to present our views on behalf of CAN international. Public support and engagement at the local and national level is critical to the success of meaningful climate mitigation and adaptation policies and we welcome the opportunity to offer a few concrete proposals. In relation to the timeframe of the next work programme, we would suggest that to established a permanent work program that is fully reviewed and amended every four years.
In order to ensure an in-depth review of the implementation of each of the elements of the amended New Delhi Work Programme we would suggest partial biannual reviews that tackle the thematic areas under two parallel groupings:
(1) education, public awareness and training in one, and
(2) public participation and access to information in the second, international cooperation being crosscutting.
These partial reviews should take place every two years on an alternate basis. These reviews could include workshops as well as submissions made in advance focusing on best practices, challenges and gaps in implementation.
When reporting on implementation of article 6 related activities in their national communications, parties are encouraged to report specifically on actions taken for each of the six thematic areas and along the lines of indicators to be developed by the parties during the first partial review applying to each of the groupings.
We call for a mandate to the secretariat to request submissions and subsequently prepare a synthesis report on best practices related to the engagement of all stakeholders on national actions related to the UNFCCC. These actions include: preparation of national negotiating positions and reports to the UNFCCC (including national communications); and efforts to promote public participation in the negotiation process.
Thank you Mr Chair, we look forward to continue contributing to these discussions.