Published by the
International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD)
Vol. 12 No. 204
Saturday, 26 October 2002
UNFCCC COP-8 HIGHLIGHTS
FRIDAY, 25 OCTOBER 2002
The Eighth Conference of the Parties (COP-8) to
the UNFCCC continued to meet today in sessions of the SBSTA and SBI,
COP plenary, and several formal and informal contact groups. An
informal exchange of views on the Delhi Declaration was also held.
The SBSTA considered: cooperation with relevant
international organizations; UNFCCC Article 6 (education, training
and public awareness); cleaner or less greenhouse gas-emitting
energy; and the implementation of Protocol Article 2.3 (adverse
effects of P&Ms). The SBI addressed: progress on the implementation
of activities under decision 5/CP.7 (adverse effects); matters
relating to least developed countries (LDCs); arrangements for
intergovernmental meetings; and the Croatian proposal on its forest
cap. The COP plenary discussed follow-up to the World Summit on
Sustainable Development (WSSD) and the report of the CDM Executive
Board. Contact groups on the Consultative Group of Experts (CGE) on
non-Annex I national communications, Article 6, and land use,
land-use change and forestry (LULUCF) under the CDM also met.
COOPERATION WITH INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS:
The Secretariat presented a scoping paper on cross-cutting thematic
areas under the UNFCCC, the United Nations Convention to Combat
Desertification (UNCCD) and Convention on Biodiversity (CBD), and
presented WSSD outcomes on synergies between these conventions.
Parties discussed thematic areas, diverging on the terms of
reference for a workshop. Chair Thorgeirsson requested a contact
group, co-chaired by Jimena Nieto (Colombia) and Outi Berghäll
(Finland), to resolve outstanding issues and prepare draft
ARTICLE 6: The World Conservation Union (IUCN)
and UNEP outlined their activities related to the implementation of
Article 6. TUNISIA, with SENEGAL and CANADA, supported designating a
climate change day. BELGIUM offered to host a regional workshop on
Article 6 in 2003. The US cautioned against linking discussion on
Article 6 to reporting and financing issues. A contact group will be
convened by Fatu Gaye (Gambia) and Jean-Pascal van Ypersele
OTHER MATTERS: Cleaner or less greenhouse
gas-emitting energy: CANADA introduced draft decision text
supported by NEW ZEALAND, POLAND, the RUSSIAN FEDERATION and
SLOVENIA, and opposed by SAUDI ARABIA for the G-77/ CHINA,
SWITZERLAND, and the US. The text requests the Secretariat to ask
competent organizations to analyze the role of trade in cleaner
energy in meeting the objective of the UNFCCC and the Protocol, and
to report back to SBSTA-21. Several Parties reaffirmed their
objection to Canada’s original proposal on accounting for cleaner
energy exports. The EU said that only generic issues relating to
trade in cleaner energy should be discussed. Chair Thorgeirsson will
undertake consultations on this issue.
Implementation of Protocol Article 2.3:
Parties discussed issues relating to possible workshops. SAUDI
ARABIA argued for a draft decision requesting the Secretariat to
analyse the adverse effects of P&Ms on developing countries. Chair
Thorgeirsson said he would undertake consultations on this issue.
ADVERSE EFFECTS: Progress on implementation of
activities under decision 5/CP.7: Parties discussed
implementation issues on adverse effects, as well as outcomes of a
workshop on modeling held in Bonn in May 2002, and arrangements for
workshops on insurance and risk assessment.
The G-77/CHINA expressed concern about the lack
of financial support for the implementation of the decision.
Addressing the lack of funding for the workshops on insurance and
risk assessment, she called for a mechanism to finance the workshops
and proposed creating an expert group on adaptation. CANADA
expressed interest in supporting the workshops. Several Parties
stressed the importance of insurance related issues. SAMOA
highlighted two reports indicating that nearly all losses in
developing countries due to extreme events are not covered by
insurance. JAPAN and others cautioned against holding too many
workshops. IRAN stressed that the workshops should also address
adaptation to the impact of response measures. Chair Estrada called
on Daniela Stoytcheva (Bulgaria) and Enele Sopoaga (Tuvalu) to
conduct informal consultations with Parties on the terms of
reference for the workshops.
On modeling, Parties noted that additional
efforts are required. SAMOA said current models do not provide a
solid basis for policy-making.
Matters relating to LDCs: LDC Expert Group
(LEG) chair Bubu Jallow (Gambia) reported on the second meeting of
the Group and on progress in implementing the LEG work programme. He
highlighted a workshop held in Dhaka that aimed to develop national
capacity for national adaptation programmes of action (NAPAs). He
noted that the Group had decided against revising NAPA guidelines at
COP-8, preferring to do this at COP-9. The EU commended the work of
the LEG, and underscored the importance of adaptation for
sustainable development and poverty eradication.
CANADA noted that his country’s adaptation
support prioritizes LDCs. The G-77/CHINA said several activities
related to LDCs outlined in decision 2/CP.7 (capacity building in
developing countries) could be undertaken before completing NAPAs.
TUVALU noted difficulty in seeking funding for NAPAs from the GEF.
Chair Estrada will draft conclusions.
ARRANGEMENTS FOR INTERGOVERNMENTAL MEETINGS:
Effective participation in the UNFCCC process: The Secretariat
outlined options and proposals for the effective participation of
observers in the UNFCCC and Protocol intersessional workshops and
meetings of limited membership bodies. CANADA, with AUSTRALIA and
the EU, advocated transparency while recognizing financial
realities. The US supported participation through new approaches,
including a constituency system.
Arrangements for COP/MOP-1: The Secretariat
presented a paper on the arrangements, proposing an integrated
approach. The EU, CANADA, AUSTRALIA and JAPAN, opposed by SLOVENIA,
supported one combined session for the sake of efficiency, noting
some details need to be clarified. The US stressed the need to work
on budgetary issues to ensure that its contributions are used to
support the UNFCCC process. Chair Estrada said the Secretariat would
prepare conclusions on this item.
Date and venue of COP-9: In the absence of an
offer from the Eastern European regional group, ITALY offered to
host COP-9. The COP President would be elected from the Eastern
European region. Delegates decided to authorize the Bureau to decide
on the venue.
OTHER MATTERS: Croatian proposal: Delegates
requested the SBSTA informal group, chaired by Jim Penman (UK), to
also consider the Croatian proposal regarding its cap for forest
management. The group will prepare draft conclusions.
WSSD FOLLOW-UP: Executive Secretary Joke
Waller-Hunter reported on the outcomes of the WSSD. She noted that
the Summit reaffirmed sustainable development’s central place on the
international agenda and recognized climate change as an important
development issue. She highlighted that the Johannesburg Plan of
Implementation called for: greenhouse gas emission reductions;
ratification of the Kyoto Protocol; provision of technical and
financial support and capacity building; increase of energy access
and the share of renewable energy resources; and enhancement of
synergies between the CBD, UNCCD and UNFCCC. The COP took note of
the report of the Executive Secretary.
REPORT OF CDM EXECUTIVE BOARD: CDM Executive
Board chair John Ashe (Antigua and Barbuda) introduced the Board’s
first report. He noted that it addresses, inter alia: the
implementation of work plan tasks; financial and operational
procedures; communication between the Board and stakeholders; and
the draft rules of procedure. He identified issues requiring a COP
decision, emphasizing the rules and modalities for small-scale CDM
projects and the draft rules of procedure. He announced the
resignation of a Board member from the Asia region. The EU said that
further guidance on standards and procedures is necessary. The
RUSSIAN FEDERATION supported small-scale projects. The US, with
ARGENTINA, CHILE, COLOMBIA, and VENEZUELA, argued for transparent
rules of procedure. ARGENTINA noted that some Parties hold
unrealistic expectations about the CDM. AUSTRALIA and CANADA urged
Parties to reach agreement on the rules. INDIA, with SRI LANKA,
proposed developing country concessions for accreditation of
THE DELHI DECLARATION: COP-8 President Baalu
invited Parties to discuss the Delhi Declaration informally.
Numerous speakers supported the Chair’s proposal for an
implementation-oriented declaration focusing on climate change and
sustainable development, building on the WSSD outcome. Several
Parties proposed urging the ratification of the Kyoto Protocol, and
emphasized a focus on adaptation and poverty eradication. Many
argued for a two-pronged approach that would stress mitigation and
adaptation. Several Annex I countries supported a forward-looking
declaration that would emphasize the need to broaden and deepen
commitments globally in preparation for the second commitment period
Stressing the principle of common but
differentiated responsibilities, a number of developing country
representatives said Annex I Parties must take the lead, and opposed
any process that would lead to new developing country commitments.
One Annex I Party stressed economic growth as the key to
environmental progress, and the right of all to prosperity,
cautioning against burdensome targets for developing countries. Many
countries supported an emphasis on renewable energy. Others stressed
energy efficiency and advanced fossil-fuel technologies. Some
delegations called for a spirit of cooperation in the process of
drafting the Declaration. Consultations will continue informally.
CGE: Chair José Romero said that new texts on
improving the guidelines had been received from the EU and from
AUSTRALIA, CANADA, JAPAN and the US. Parties agreed to delete
several provisions in the chair’s text in accordance with a
ARTICLE 6: Co-Chairs Gaye and van Ypersele
convened this group in the evening. CHINA, supported by BOTSWANA and
SENEGAL, and opposed by the EU and SRI LANKA, proposed that NGOs
only be allowed to make submissions on the work programme if
requested to do so by their national focal points. NAMIBIA stressed
the importance of tertiary level training for scientists and
researchers and proposed that the Secretariat prepare a registry of
available training resources. The Group heard divergent views on
designating an international climate change day.
LULUCF UNDER THE CDM: Parties addressed the
issue of non-permanence. The G-77/CHINA delivered a proposal that
focused on: principles; elements; and cross-cutting issues relating
to non-permanence. The EU proposed a system for accounting that
relies on Temporary Certified Emissions Reduction Units (TCERs).
Parties discussed issues relating to risk, insurance, liability, and
carbon rights. They agreed on the need for formal economic analysis
of potential accounting systems. Co-Chair Sach introduced the issue
of baseline methodologies and discussions continued late into the
IN THE CORRIDORS
Delegates were overheard discussing the future of
the regime Friday evening. The informal exchange of views on the
Delhi Declaration held earlier in the day was marked by emotional
posturing on developing country commitments, the like of which was
last seen in Buenos Aires. Rumours flew about the possibility that
some developing countries might prevent mention of non-Annex I
commitments in the Declaration by demanding a new instrument on
THINGS TO LOOK FOR TODAY
PROTOCOL ARTICLES 5, 7 AND 8: This contact group
will meet at 10:00 am in Hall 4.
REGISTRIES: The contact group on registries will
meet at noon in Hall 2.
R&SO: This contact group will convene at noon in
Hall 3, and again at 5:00 pm in Hall 4.
CGE: This contact group will meet at 3:00 pm and
at 8:00 pm in Hall 5.
LULUCF UNDER THE CDM: This contact group will
meet at 3:00 pm in Hall 4.
P&MS: The contact group on P&Ms will convene at
8:00 pm in Hall 2.