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Thirteenth Session of the Subsidiary Bodies of the UNFCCC
Lyon, France; 4 - 15 September 2000

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Highlights from Thursday, 14 September
Contact groups met throughout the day to consider: the mechanisms; land use, land-use change and forestry (LULUCF); technology transfer; adverse effects; capacity building; and guidelines under Protocol Articles 5 (methodological issues), 7 (communication of information) and 8 (review of information). The Joint Working Group on Compliance convened to continue discussions on the Co-Chairs' text. A special meeting on LULUCF and the CDM was also held.

Photos: UNFCCC Executive Secretary Michael Zammit Cutajar during an interview with ENB writers. Zammit Cutajar spoke about progress made at SB-13, activities leading up to and expectations for COP-6.

Special Session on LULUCF and the CDM

In a special session, delegates considered the issue of including LULUCF projects within the CDM. Concerns with the inclusion of LULUCF CDM projects included: uncertainty; leakage; non-permanence; methodological issues in determining baselines; the potential for promoting inappropriate forestry; geographic and inter-generational inequity; and the potential size of LULUCF CDM credits enabling avoidance of emissions reductions. Arguments in favor of CDM projects included: their potential contribution to sustainable development in developing countries, and the importance of carbon sequestration. Proponents of LULUCF projects argued that many of the technical concerns are not unique to sinks projects, and that they may be addressed through appropriate project design. They suggested that the key distinguishing feature of sinks projects is permanence. Right: LULUCF Co-Chair Philip Gwage (on the left)

The US argued that in most respects, LULUCF projects were no different from other non-sink projects. He outlined the US proposal addressing concerns relating, inter alia, to baselines monitoring and leakages.

Bolivia expressed sympathy to AOSIS concerns and underlined the need to address uncertainty.

Samoa reminded delegates of the key issues to consider: storms; droughts and sea level rise. She recalled that the focus of the agreement was on reducing CO2 emissions by 2005 and that in 1992 there was still the expectation that these targets were realistic. She argued forcefully against the inclusion of LULUCF projects in the CDM, citing concerns related to North-South and intergenerational equity.

Arguing in favor of LULUCF projects in CDM, Brazil supported Bolivia's earlier submission from "an astrophysical perspective."

Jamaica made a passionate appeal against sinks in the CDM, highlighting concerns regarding permanence and leakage. He questioned incremental gains were worth the risk of uncertainty and asked whether delegates would be prepared to sail a boat without taking precautions to avoid the boat being punctured.

Development and Transfer of Technology

Delegates discussed the Co-Chairs' draft conclusions, noting that limited progress had been made in elaborating the elements for a draft framework to enhance the implementation of FCCC Article 4.5 (technology transfer). Right: Acting Chair Anthony Adegbulugbe (right) discussing the text on technology transfer

The Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change Table

The IPCC's "Good Practices Guidance and Uncertainty Management in National Greenhouse Gas Inventories" will be available at COP-6. It is currently available in PDF format at www.ipcc-nggip.iges.or.jp

Also available on CD-Rom at COP-6 will be reports on: LULUCF; Emissions Scenarios; Methodological and Technological Issues in Technology Transfer; and Sectoral Economic Costs and Benefits of Greenhouse Gas Mitigation. Currently, hard copies are available.

In the corridors...

Some observers expressed concern Thursday regarding the process used in formulating and presenting some conclusions and decisions in the contact groups. They alleged that some text that had not been discussed previously was "slipped in surreptitiously," while in other cases Parties' submissions appeared to have been "conveniently ignored." However, others noted that it was an arduous task to cope with the various group texts and proposals emerging.

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