Daily report for 8 December 2009
Copenhagen Climate Change Conference – December 2009
On Tuesday, opening plenaries of the SBI and SBSTA took place. Contact groups and informal consultations also convened to consider various issues, including long-term cooperative action, a shared vision, finance, mitigation and technology under the AWG-LCA, Annex I emission reductions, other issues and potential consequences under the AWG-KP and REDD under the SBSTA.
ORGANIZATIONAL MATTERS: SBI Chair Liana Bratasida (Indonesia) opened SBI 31 and suggested leaving the sub-item on information contained in non-Annex I national communications in abeyance. Parties agreed and adopted the agenda and organization of work (FCCC/SBI/2009/9).
OPENING STATEMENTS: Australia, for the UMBRELLA GROUP, supported streamlining discussions under the SBI and stressed the “critical importance” to the Copenhagen outcome of high quality and timely reporting of inventories, policies and measures.
Sweden, for the EU, identified the need to focus on items that could move parties towards a global, ambitious and comprehensive outcome in Copenhagen and suggested giving priority to the fourth review of the financial mechanism under the SBI.
Switzerland, for the ENVIRONMENTAL INTEGRITY GROUP, emphasized that the Copenhagen outcome will be negotiated under the AWG-LCA and the AWG-KP. He said the Subsidiary Bodies will play an important role when methodological and technical details will be considered in a second step next year.
Lesotho, for the LDCs, stressed the need to fully implement the LDC work programme, in particular, national adaptation programmes of action (NAPAs).
Sudan, for the G-77/CHINA, expressed concern over lack of progress on capacity building under the Convention and the Protocol, and drew attention to financial and technical constraints related to non-Annex I communications. He lamented the failure by developed countries to meet their commitments.
Grenada, for AOSIS, called for progress on agenda items facilitating the adaptation of SIDS to climate change. Algeria, for the AFRICAN GROUP, underscored the central importance of funding from public sources that is additional, adequate, predictable and sustainable. TIMOR LESTE said that financing should be transparent and easy to access through a short process.
FINANCIAL MECHANISM: Fourth review of the financial mechanism: The Secretariat introduced the issue (FCCC/SBI/2009/Misc.10).
The G-77/CHINA said the fourth review provides an opportunity to look at gaps in implementation of obligations in a comprehensive manner. The LDCs emphasized dissatisfaction with implementation of the LDC work programme, stressing that funding should not be restricted to NAPAs. CHINA said developed countries must significantly increase their contributions to the fifth replenishment and reform the Global Environment Facility (GEF) to improve its capacity to facilitate implementation post-2012.
The EU welcomed review and guidance ahead of the conclusion of the fifth replenishment, noting the review should provide the basis for progressively defining the role of the GEF in the architecture being defined under the AWG-LCA.
Report of the GEF: The Secretariat introduced this item (FCCC/CP/2009/9) and the GEF presented on its report. Highlighting the US$ 2.7 billion already invested in mitigation, GEF Chair Monique Barbut emphasized GEF reform around four focal points: response to Convention guidance; country ownership; effectiveness and efficiency; and the fifth replenishment.
SWITZERLAND supported the GEF’s role as the operating entity of the financial mechanism and as a catalyst for leveraging finance, noting that it was crucial to improve performance. Algeria, for the AFRICAN GROUP, said GEF reforms are encouraging but inadequate, noting the need to strengthen urgent priorities for beneficiaries. BARBADOS acknowledged ongoing work to improve the GEF resource allocation framework and called for a strong fifth replenishment.
BENIN highlighted the need for closer linkages between the GEF focal points and the UNFCCC. Noting positive GEF reforms resulting in increased access to funds for LDCs, the GAMBIA expressed hope that the fifth replenishment would enhance funding under the LDC Fund. SYRIA called for a reconsideration of financial resource allocation, particularly for adaptation projects.
Sudan, for the G-77/CHINA, highlighted concerns relating to predictability and adequacy of funding. With MALI, RWANDA, ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA, and TIMOR-LESTE, she opposed the co-financing requirement, which she said is particularly burdensome for LDCs. UGANDA supported monitoring and evaluation of implementing agencies.
Assessment of the Special Climate Change Fund (SCCF): Zaheer Fakir (South Africa) and Cecilia Lei (Canada) will co-chair a contact group on this issue.
ANNEX I NATIONAL COMMUNICATIONS: National greenhouse gas inventory data for 1990-2007: The Secretariat introduced the issue (FCCC/SBI/2009/12).
Review of fourth national communications and preparation of fifth national communications: The Secretariat introduced the issue (FCCC/SBI/2009/INF.9). Anke Herald (Germany) and Quamrul Islam Chowdhury (Bangladesh) will co-chair a contact group on both items.
REPORTING AND REVIEW OF INFORMATION FROM ANNEX I PARTIES UNDER THE PROTOCOL: The Secretariat introduced the issue (FCCC/SBI/2009/INF.8). Anke Herald (Germany) and Quamrul Islam Chowdhury (Bangladesh) will co-chair a contact group.
ANNUAL COMPILATION AND ACCOUNTING REPORT FOR PROTOCOL ANNEX B PARTIES: The Secretariat introduced the item (FCCC/KP/CMP/2009/15 and Add.1). Anke Herald (Germany) and Quamrul Islam Chowdhury (Bangladesh) will co-chair a contact group.
NON-ANNEX I NATIONAL COMMUNICATIONS: Chair Bratasida reported on agreement by the main negotiation groups to defer sub-agenda items on provision of financial and technical support and further implementation of Convention Article 12.5 (initial and subsequent national communications) to SBI 32. She said additional guidance to the GEF relating to financial and technical support for non-Annex I national communications would be discussed by the contact group on the financial mechanism.
Brazil, for the G-77/CHINA, highlighted problems faced by non-Annex I parties in preparing their national communications, particularly with regard to access to funding through the GEF. He said the GEF replenishment should be driven by all parties, not just by the GEF Governing Council, and involve active participation of recipient countries. MAURITANIA identified some needs to be addressed, such as support for assessing levels of emissions.
CONVENTION ARTICLE 4.8 AND 4.9 (ADVERSE EFFECTS): Matters related to LDCs: The LDC Expert Group (LEG) reported on its work (FCCC/SBI/2009/13). MALI stressed the importance of building capacity to implement NAPA-related activities in different countries. Lesotho, for the LDCs, lamented that the level of funding available under the LDC Fund is insufficient to meet the costs of implementing submitted NAPAs. Rence Sore (Solomon Islands) will consult informally.
Progress on the implementation of decision 1/CP.10 (Buenos Aires Programme of Work): The Secretariat introduced the item (FCCC/SBI/2009/MISC.11/Rev.1). Chair Bratasida reported that she had developed draft decision text as mandated by SBI 30, but noted that time constraints would not allow in-depth consideration of the text. She said that at this session parties would be invited to take note of the draft text. Thinley Namgyel (Bhutan) will chair a contact group.
CAPACITY BUILDING (CONVENTION): Chair Bratasida reported on agreement to defer consideration of this agenda item to SBI 32 and said she would prepare a draft COP decision.
CAPACITY BUILDING (PROTOCOL): Chair Bratasida reported on agreement to defer consideration of this agenda item to SBI 32 and said she would prepare a draft COP/MOP decision.
PROTOCOL ARTICLE 3.14 (ADVERSE EFFECTS): Chair Bratasida noted constructive discussions at SBI 30 and said discussions will continue based on annex IV of the Report of SBI 30 (FCCC/SBI/2009/8, annex IV). A joint SBI/SBSTA contact group on Protocol Articles 3.14 and 2.3 will be co-chaired by Kristin Tilley (Australia) and Eduardo Calvo Buendia (Peru).
INTERNATIONAL TRANSACTION LOG (ITL): The SBI took note of the information (FCCC/KP/CMP/2009/19).
ADMINISTRATIVE, FINANCIAL AND INSTITUTIONAL MATTERS: Budget performance in the biennium 2008-2009: UNFCCC Executive Secretary de Boer reported on budget performance in 2008-2009 (FCCC/SBI/2009/11, INF.10 and Corr.1). The SBI Chair will draft SBI conclusions and draft COP 15 and COP/MOP 5 decisions.
Continuing review of the Secretariat’s functions and operation: The SBI took note of the information presented by UNFCCC Executive Secretary de Boer.
Privileges and Immunities: On this issue (FCCC/SBI/2009/8), the Secretariat explained that the SBI would be invited to refer the draft treaty arrangements to COP/MOP 5. Dessima Williams (Grenada) will consult informally.
TECHNOLOGY TRANSFER: The Secretariat introduced the item (FCCC/SB/2009/4 and Summary, INF.6, and FCCC/SBI/2009/14). The Expert Group on Technology Transfer (EGTT) presented its 2009 report (FCCC/SB/2009/INF.6), as well as its report on performance indicators (FCCC/SB/2009/4 and Summary). The GEF reported on progress made in implementing the Poznań strategic programme on technology transfer (FCCC/SBI/2009/14).
Carlos Fuller (Belize) and Holger Liptow (Germany) will co-chair a joint SBI/SBSTA contact group to consider issues of common interest.
SBSTA Chair Helen Plume (New Zealand) opened SBSTA 31 and parties adopted the agenda (FCCC/SBSTA/2009/4) and agreed to the proposed organization of work.
OPENING STATEMENTS: Sudan, for the G-77/CHINA, noted the report on progress in implementing the Nairobi Work Programme on Impacts, Vulnerability and Adaptation (NWP). She supported the Third World Climate Conference statement calling for strengthening the Global Climate Observing System.
Grenada, for AOSIS, urged SBSTA to prepare a draft COP decision on REDD and REDD-plus. Australia, for the UMBRELLA GROUP, highlighted REDD and carbon capture and storage (CCS) under the CDM. Sweden, for the EU, as well as INDONESIA, SIERRA LEONE, the PHILIPPINES and ZAMBIA called for SBSTA 31 to prioritize REDD.
TECHNOLOGY TRANSFER: The Secretariat introduced the item (FCCC/SB/2009/4, Summary and INF.6). EGTT Chair Arthur Rolle reported on the EGTT’s work, highlighting documents on implementation of work in 2009 and performance indicators. Holger Liptow (Germany) and Carlos Fuller (Belize) will co-chair a joint SBI/SBSTA contact group.
PROTOCOL ARTICLE 2.3 (ADVERSE EFFECTS): Parties agreed to base discussions on Annex III of the SBSTA 30 report (FCCC/SBSTA/2009/3, Annex III) and focus on options that are likely to be agreed. Kristin Tilley (Australia) and Eduardo Calvo Buendia (Peru) will co-chair a joint SBI/SBSTA contact group on Protocol Articles 2.3 and 3.14.
NAIROBI WORK PROGRAMME: The Secretariat introduced this item (FCCC/SBSTA/2009/5, 6, 7, INF.5, MISC.9/Rev.1, MISC.10, and FCCC/TP/2009/2). The CONVENTION ON BIOLOGICAL DIVERSITY (CBD) reported on the Expert Group on Biodiversity and Climate Change. The IPCC reported on the contribution of the Task Group on Data and Scenario Support for Impact and Climate Analysis. The International Federation of Agricultural Producers, for FARMERS NGOs, proposed a programme of work on agriculture.
Kishan Kumarsingh (Trinidad and Tobago) and Don Lemmen (Canada) will co-chair a contact group.
REDD: Chair Plume urged parties not to mix technical discussions under the SBSTA with policy-related discussions under the AWG-LCA. The COLLABORATIVE PARTNERSHIP ON FORESTS outlined recommendations from the World Forestry Congress. The CBD said REDD methodologies based only on net deforestation rates could fail to reflect actual change in carbon stocks and to deliver biodiversity co-benefits. BANGLADESH and others called for consideration of participation of indigenous peoples. PAPUA NEW GUINEA supported creation of an instrument that works for countries reducing their deforestation rates, protecting existing forest and increasing forest area. Switzerland, for the ENVIRONMENTAL INTEGRITY GROUP, recommended a decision allowing SBSTA to continue methodological work after the COP. The PHILIPPINES and others recommended that the SBSTA consider drivers of deforestation. TANZANIA and MALI called for REDD methodologies to consider benefits for local communities. BURKINA FASO and SENEGAL emphasized consideration of all types of forest for REDD.
Lilian Portillo (Paraguay) and Audun Rosland (Norway) will co-chair a contact group to develop draft conclusions and a draft decision.
RESEARCH AND SYSTEMATIC OBSERVATION: The Secretariat introduced the item (FCCC/SBSTA/2009/MISC.12). The WORLD METEOROLOGICAL ORGANIZATION outlined the results of the Third World Climate Conference to develop a Global Framework for Climate Services and the GLOBAL CLIMATE OBSERVING SYSTEM (GCOS) reported on its updated Implementation Plan, noting that the additional annual cost of a fully effective GCOS will be US$ 2.1 billion.
The COMMITTEE ON EARTH OBSERVATION SATELLITES outlined its priorities and identified earth observation satellite data as a public good.
CHINA, TAJIKISTAN, EGYPT and SUDAN supported a greater focus on the needs of developing countries in terms of observing systems, and BURUNDI, KUWAIT and SAUDI ARABIA highlighted the importance of early warning systems. Chair Plume will prepare draft conclusions.
METHODOLOGICAL ISSUES (CONVENTION): Review of Annex I greenhouse gas inventories: The Secretariat introduced the item (FCCC/SBSTA/2009/INF.4). The SBSTA took note of the annual report and Chair Plume will prepare procedural draft conclusions for consideration at SBSTA’s closing plenary on 12 December.
Emissions from international aviation and maritime transport: The INTERNATIONAL CIVIL AVIATION ORGANIZATION (ICAO) and the INTERNATIONAL MARITIME ORGANIZATION (IMO) reported on their work. CHINA and others stressed that actions in these sectors should be in line with the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities. The BAHAMAS supported IMO and ICAO remaining the only bodies regulating emissions from international aviation and maritime transport. Chair Plume will prepare draft conclusions.
METHODOLOGICAL ISSUES (PROTOCOL): Implications of new HCFC-22 facilities seeking to obtain certified emission reductions for the destruction of HFC-23: Chair Plume noted lack of consensus on this issue since SBSTA 26. Samuel Adejuwon (Nigeria) will consult informally.
CCS under the CDM: BRAZIL, PARAGUAY and Grenada, for AOSIS, opposed CCS under the CDM at this time, while AUSTRALIA, SAUDI ARABIA, JAPAN, KUWAIT and the EU supported its inclusion. QATAR and others said CCS should be approved in Copenhagen. Chair Plume proposed holding informal consultations. SAUDI ARABIA preferred a contact group. Chair Plume will consult informally on how to proceed.
Common metrics: Mikhail Gytarsky (Russian Federation) will conduct informal consultations to prepare draft conclusions.
CONTACT GROUPS AND INFORMAL CONSULTATIONS
ANNEX I EMISSION REDUCTIONS (AWG-KP): Co-Chair Leon Charles (Grenada) opened the morning’s contact group on “numbers.” The contact group agreed on their work programme in Copenhagen and created a smaller group to address the length and number of commitment periods and base year. Co-Chair Charles emphasized that five issues need to be resolved: a reasonable level of ambition for aggregate and individual Annex I emission reductions; clarity on use of the flexibility mechanisms and LULUCF in the pledges on the table; the length and number of commitment periods (whether five or eight years); a legally-binding base year and other reference years; and starting points for translating pledges into quantified emission limitation and reduction objectives (QELROs).
The Secretariat presented the updated informal note compiling information relating to possible QELROs as submitted by parties, highlighting improved clarity on the impact of use of mechanisms and LULUCF on pledges, as well as on the pledge by Kazakhstan to reduce emissions by 15% by 2020 from 1992 levels.
The EU requested information on whether carrying over Assigned Amount Units (AAUs) from the first to the second commitment period was included as an assumption in the emission reduction range in the IPCC’s Fourth Assessment Report of 25-40% from 1990 levels, in order to further clarify the relation between level of ambition and what is required by science. The RUSSIAN FEDERATION highlighted its recent pledge to reduce emissions by 20-25% from 1990 levels by 2020. The Federated States of Micronesia, for AOSIS, emphasized the gap between what is required by science and the 13-19% aggregate reduction reflected by the current pledges. She stressed that this level of ambition is far from the pathway desired by vulnerable countries.
OTHER ISSUES (AWG-KP): During the first contact group meeting, discussions focused on how to organize the group’s work. AWG-KP Vice-Chair Harald Dovland (Norway) reminded parties that the focus is on preparing draft COP/MOP decisions or Protocol amendments. He outlined the division of the group’s work into the basket of methodological issues, the flexibility mechanisms and LULUCF. He said discussions on the basket of methodological issues (comprising possible new greenhouse gases, common metrics to calculate carbon dioxide equivalence of emissions by sources and removals by sinks, and the 2006 IPCC Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories), would be based on Annex III of document FCCC/KP/AWG/2009/10/Add.3/Rev.3 (elements of draft COP/MOP decisions on other issues). On common metrics, Vice-Chair Dovland noted a potential overlap with the SBSTA’s work.
Vice-Chair Dovland then highlighted paragraph 49(c)(xii) of the report of AWG-KP 6 (analysis of efforts and achievements to date, including during the first commitment period), and indicated that following consultations delegates had agreed to deal with the issue in the “numbers” group rather than by the other issues group.
On the flexibility mechanisms, he said the aim would be to clean up the text of the draft decisions (Annex III of document FCCC/KP/AWG/2009/10/Add.3/Rev.3). Parties also agreed to continue work on LULUCF through a spin-off group co-facilitated by Bryan Smith (New Zealand) and Marcelo Rocha (Brazil).
LONG-TERM COOPERATIVE ACTION (AWG-LCA): Parties established drafting groups on:
- shared vision, facilitated by Sandea de Wet (South Africa);
- finance, co-facilitated by Farrukh Khan (Pakistan) and Jukka Uosukainen (Finland);
- technology, co-facilitated by Kishan Kumarsingh (Trinidad and Tobago) and Kunihiko Shimada (Japan);
- capacity building, co-facilitated by Lilian Portillo (Paraguay) and Georg Børsting (Norway); and
- adaptation, co-facilitated by William Kojo Agyemang-Bonsu (Ghana) and Thomas Kolly (Switzerland).
- On mitigation, Chair Zammit Cutajar suggested that drafting groups will meet on:
- nationally appropriate mitigation actions (NAMAs), supported by public finance, facilitated by Margaret Mukahanana-Sangarwe (Zimbabwe);
- REDD-plus, facilitated by Tony La Viña (the Philippines);
- general aspects of sectoral approaches and the agricultural sector, facilitated by Magdalena Preve (Uruguay); and
- response measures, facilitated by Richard Muyungi (Tanzania).
Chair Zammit Cutajar further explained that mitigation issues not considered by drafting groups will first be addressed in closed informal consultations under his chairmanship.
Chair Zammit Cutajar also proposed that consultations be conducted on non-market approaches to cost-effectiveness, facilitated by Maria del Socorro Flores (Mexico), and the crosscutting issues such as sources and scales of adaptation funding, and matching NAMAs with support. Chair Zammit Cutajar will also consult parties bilaterally on the legal form of the outcome.
AUSTRALIA suggested considering institutional arrangements and MRV as crosscutting issues, while BARBADOS expressed concern with the latter suggestion. SAUDI ARABIA underlined the importance of negotiating “the full package” and several countries, including the EU, JAPAN and CUBA, called for ensuring coherence.
The G-77/CHINA, with BOLIVIA and ALGERIA, expressed concern with the proliferation of groups. EGYPT noted that substance should be discussed before interlinkages and, with VENEZUELA, stressed that there should be “one outcome in one process” and not “different outcomes in different processes."
The EU noted the importance of discussing HFCs and bunker fuels, and AUSTRALIA, with MALAWI, proposed establishing a drafting group on bunker fuels. BARBADOS highlighted the need to consider a mechanism to address loss and damage.
POTENTIAL CONSEQUENCES (AWG-KP): In the afternoon contact group, parties moved forward with a second reading of the text (FCCC/KP/AWG/2009/12/Rev.2).
The EU stressed that it is premature to decide whether the text will become a COP/MOP decision or conclusions, while South Africa, for the G-77/CHINA, hoped that they would achieve more than a conclusion.
Parties then moved bracket-by-bracket through the text, discussing paragraphs under framing of the work, vulnerability and ability to respond to the impacts of potential consequences, and deepening understanding.
SHARED VISION (AWG-LCA): During morning informal consultations, parties discussed whether to use non-paper No. 33, resulting from the discussions in Bangkok, or No. 43 from Barcelona, as the basis for negotiations. Several parties said their earlier proposals were not reflected in the non-papers. Informal consultations continued in the afternoon.
MITIGATION (AWG-LCA): In the afternoon informal consultations on mitigation, parties commented on issues not addressed by drafting groups such as: mitigation by developed countries, market-based mechanisms, autonomous measures by developing countries, and maritime and aviation emissions.
Developing countries said drafting work should begin on sub-paragraph 1(b)(i) of the BAP as soon as possible, suggesting comparability of efforts as a starting point. Some countries proposed focusing on targets. A party underlined the importance of developed country mitigation in line with science and in a legally-binding form. Several developing countries stressed that bunker fuels should be addressed under the Protocol. Some developed countries proposed also discussing common mitigation frameworks contained in non-paper No. 28.
A drafting group on mitigation by developed countries will be launched and bilateral consultations will be conducted on bunker fuels and on market-based approaches.
Mitigation by developing countries (AWG-LCA): Afternoon informal consultations on mitigation by developing countries under sub-paragraph 1(b)(ii) of the BAP focused on NAMAs supported by public finance. Parties conducted the first reading of the sections on support and enabling activities for NAMAs, and a NAMA mechanism in non-paper No. 51. Discussions focused, inter alia, on the role of low-carbon emission strategies in relation to NAMAs, with several developed countries supporting the strategies and several developing countries opposing them. On a NAMA mechanism, a group of developing countries supported the option that proposes establishing a registry for actions and support.
FINANCE (AWG-LCA): During informal consultations parties discussed institutional arrangements reflected in non-paper No.54. Debate centered on whether to “operationalize” or “strengthen” the financial mechanism of the Convention, with delegates unable to agree on this. A proposal was made for several parties to meet informally to reach agreement.
TECHNOLOGY (AWG-LCA): The informal drafting group on technology met in the morning and afternoon. Parties discussed common elements to be captured in a new text, including: a technology mechanism or platform; centers and networks; a country-driven approach and; financial support for eligible activities. A revised, concise non-paper will be produced for Wednesday.
REDD (SBSTA): In the contact group on REDD, parties discussed the draft COP decision text in Annex I of document FCCC/SBSTA/2009/3. INDONESIA and the EU called for clarification on the division of work on REDD under the SBSTA and AWG-LCA. PAPUA NEW GUINEA, CHILE, Switzerland, for the ENVIRONMENTAL INTEGRITY GROUP, and others said discussion on reference levels should be a priority. GUYANA and COLOMBIA stressed the need to create opportunities for countries with low deforestation rates to participate. BRAZIL and the EU called for national forest monitoring systems. BRAZIL expressed concern with language on independent review. NEW ZEALAND, the US, INDIA, the ENVIRONMENTAL INTEGRITY GROUP, PERU and others said language on independent review is needed, while CHINA suggested that discussion of review occur under the AWG-LCA. PARAGUAY, COLOMBIA and others supported text on engagement of indigenous peoples.
Informal consultations will begin on Wednesday.
IN THE CORRIDORS
Much of the buzz in the corridors on Tuesday afternoon and evening was focused on the Danish text for a political “Copenhagen Agreement under the UNFCCC,” which was leaked publicly by the UK’s Guardian newspaper. The initial reaction by many parties and observers was excitement as rumors about the “secret” Danish text were finally confirmed. Many therefore rushed to download or print out the document and study it. Some developing country delegates seemed angry at what they characterized as a “secretive” and “non-transparent” initiative. “This would amount to hijacking the high-level segment and giving our leaders the impression that we have done nothing the whole year,” alleged one developing country delegate.
However, most veterans and observers close to the process were more interested in knowing “which version” of the text was leaked, and whether it was in fact the document they had already seen in November. “Some changes, but nothing earth-shattering,” commented a veteran developing country negotiator when shown the so-called “new” leaked version.
Reactions to the implications of the leak and the substance varied. “Now it is all out in the open - all the sensitive issues, everything. Maybe it will end up having a positive impact now that everyone has seen the text early on,” was a comment that summed up some participants’ views. However, others expressed “outrage” about what they saw as weakness in terms of substance and legal form: “A political agreement with little substance, for instance, no range for developed countries’ emission reductions in the text on a global long-term goal, is not strong enough,” commented one observer.
Others began speculating about how many more texts would be tabled during the Conference as rumors spread that several negotiating groups and ad hoc coalitions were in the process of drafting their own texts. “I’m aware of four different initiatives,” confessed an insider, “And the last thing we want is a beauty contest over competing texts.” “I wonder if we’ll end up with the COP Presidency tabling a ‘take it or leave it’ text at some point?” asked one participant.
Meanwhile, some delegates were also discussing news that the US Environmental Protection Agency would be able to regulate greenhouse gas emissions under the Clean Air Act since they were now considered a threat to health. Some were speculating whether this might affect the US level of ambition. “At a minimum it provides needed momentum and might provide flexibility in the US negotiating position,” opined one civil society participant. However, others suggested that increased ambition is unlikely without concrete action by the US Congress.
This issue of the Earth Negotiations Bulletin © <[email protected]> is written and edited by Tomilola “Tomi” Akanle, Asheline Appleton, Kati Kulovesi, Ph.D., Anna Schulz, Matthew Sommerville, Chris Spence, and Yulia Yamineva. The Digital Editor is Leila Mead. The Editor is Pamela S. Chasek, Ph.D. <[email protected]>. The Director of IISD Reporting Services is Langston James “Kimo” Goree VI <[email protected]>. 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 2009 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 at this meeting has been provided by the International Organization of the Francophonie (IOF). Funding for translation of the Bulletin into Spanish at this meeting 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 <[email protected]>, +1-646-536-7556 or 300 East 56th St., 11A, New York, New York 10022, USA. The ENB Team at the Copenhagen Climate Change Conference can be contacted by e-mail at <[email protected]>.