Report of main proceedings for 6 March 1997

6th Session of the Ad Hoc Group on the Berlin Mandate

Delegates to the sixth session of the Ad Hoc Group on the Berlin Mandate (AGBM-6)considered a draft proposal submitted by the Chair on policies and measures (P&Ms).They commented on the organization and form of the proposal, but did not engage insubstantive debate. AGBM also received the report of the non-group on elements relatedto advancing the implementation of existing commitments in Article 4.1. The SubsidiaryBody for Implementation (SBI) reconvened to conclude its work on the review of thefinancial mechanism.

STRENGTHENING THE COMMITMENTS IN ARTICLE 4.2 (a) and (b) - POLICIES AND MEASURES

The Chair presented his draft conclusions on policies and measures (P&Ms), whichrepresent a streamlined version of Section II of the Framework Compilation onstrengthening the commitments in Article 4.2 (a) and (b). The draft conclusions containfour elements: proposals regarding policies and measures; general proposals; proposalsrelevant to the nature and mix of policies and measures; and lists of policies andmeasures.

"Proposals regarding policies and measures," address: adoption of coordinated P&Ms;preparation of National Action Plans; national and regional programmes for climatechange mitigation and protection; and enhancement of sinks and reservoirs. Some of theentries refer to P&Ms with different priority levels, while others cite specific items suchas removal of coal subsidies, technology development and transfer and promotion ofrenewable energy sources.

"General proposals" would support: identification of environmental and socio-economicimpacts of P&Ms; compatibility between P&Ms and national development programmes;and cost effective P&Ms. Some entries in "Proposals relevant to the nature and mix ofpolicies and measures," call for individual, rather than coordinated fulfillment ofcommitments and protection for developing countries, especially oil producing states.The section on "Lists of policies and measures" begins with a proposal from the Chairthat contains three lists regarding: policy objectives for all Annex I Parties; possiblemechanisms for implementation of P&Ms and a menu of P&Ms from which Parties couldchoose according to their national circumstances. The Chair’s proposal is followed byentries from several countries including Canada, the EU, Switzerland and Japan. Eachentry contains specific P&Ms.

The Chair said some Parties have submitted "negative" proposals, which note that theyobject to inclusion of specific issues. He proposed including a general chapeau notingtheir objections and said that all ideas retained in the negotiating text do not have to beincluded in the Protocol. The proposal also contains several symbols and letters and theChair said values would be attributed to them in future sessions. IRAN inquired about thepossibility of elaborating on each proposal. The Chair noted that other proposals could besubmitted later and asked delegates to refrain from making substantive statements.

POLAND requested that each reference to a new Annex specify which Parties will beincluded. NEW ZEALAND deleted its proposal calling for compulsory phasing out offossil fuel subsidies. The G-77/CHINA noted its intention to submit a proposal on P&Ms.The EU requested that certain P&Ms from its proposed list also be noted in the Chair’sproposed list of P&Ms. The EU said it would submit "List C," containing P&Ms to begiven priority by Parties listed in Annex X as appropriate to national circumstances. TheRUSSIAN FEDERATION requested retaining its proposals; one which states that aprotocol or another legal instrument should not change or replace statements of theConvention, including its principles, and one which states that Parties to the protocol areguided by principles of the Convention.

Delegates also commented on the Framework Compilation(FCCC/AGBM/1997/2 and Add.1). The EU deleted several paragraphs submitted by itsmember states because these submissions were superseded by the common EU proposal.The Chair noted that a section on education, training and public awareness included in theAddendum would also be included in the negotiatingtext.: : CONTINUING TO ADVANCE THE IMPLEMENTATION OFEXISTING COMMITMENTS IN ARTICLE 4.1<W0>

Chair Evans King (Trinidad and Tobago) then presented a report from the non-group on"Continuing to advance the implementation of existing commitments in Article 4.1." Hesaid that the group held two meetings in which a collegial atmosphere facilitated frankdialogue. Discussions led to a streamlined text with narrative sections and allowedproposal authors to see how other countries viewed their proposals.

The report contains a streamlined text of the section in the Framework Compilation oncontinuing to advance the implementation of existing commitments in Article 4.1. Itconsists of proposals requesting all Parties, inter alia, to implement programmescontaining measures to address emissions by sources and removals by sinks of all gases.It states that the process will reaffirm and continue to advance implementation ofcommitments in Article 4.1 and will not introduce any new commitments for non-Annex1 Parties.

Non-Annex I Parties’ implementation of Article 4.1 is contingent upon developed countryParties fulfilling commitments related to financial resources and technology transfer for:systematic observation and research; assessment at the national level of economic andsocial impacts of climate change and of various response strategies; national educationand training programmes; integrated plans for management of coastal zones, waterresources, agriculture, conservation and enhancement of sinks; data for initial nationalcommunications; and formulation, implementation, publication and updating ofprogrammes containing measures addressing climate change. The necessary resources forthe implementation of these activities are to be provided by the operating entity of thefinancial mechanism.

The report also contains proposals requesting all Parties to: regularly update nationalprogrammes that include P&Ms for increasing energy efficiency and improving thetransport sector and industrial process efficiency; provide annual greenhouse gasinventory data on the basis of IPCC compatible methodologies; and make available to theCOP strategies for mitigating climate change and national inventories of technologyneeds. Proposals included in the report would also require Parties to: foster bilateral,regional and global cooperation for: development of national inventories and indicators;development, application and diffusion of technologies; voluntary participation in AIJ;participation in the work of international bodies and programmes on climate changemitigation and adaptation; strengthening of legal and institutional frameworks;investment in climate-friendly technologies; and reporting on public education andparticipation.

Proposals would also require that in-depth reviews of Annex I Parties’ communicationsinclude a formal opportunity for other Parties to ask questions. Parties proposed that non-Annex A or Annex B Parties would submit to the secretariat: annual inventories ofgreenhouse gas emissions; measures implemented; and quantified effects of actual andpotential measures. Proposals would also require that all Parties establish a process forreviewing communications.

ELECTION OF SBSTA OFFICERS

The Chair then announced that progress was made on the election of officers other thanthe Chair for SBSTA. MOROCCO, on behalf of the African group, reported thefollowing nominees: Mr. Soobaraj Nayroo Sok Appadu (Mauritius) as the Vice-chair ofSBSTA and Mr. Alvaro Jose Rodriguez (Colombia) as Rapporteur. JAMAICA thankedthe African group for this offer and requested that it be recorded. SBSTA Chair TiborFarago noted that the official election would take place during the next SBSTAsession.

SUBSIDIARY BODY FOR IMPLEMENTATION

SBI Vice-Chair Jose Romero (Switzerland) reconvened SBI-5 to finish its work from theprevious week. He presented the draft conclusions of the informal group on financial andtechnical cooperation chaired by Manuel Dengo (Costa Rica). On review of the financialmechanism, SBI welcomed new information provided at this session, including the reportprepared by the GEF (FCCC/SBI/1997/2) and two workshops conducted by the GEF. Theconclusions also note that the Parties requested additional time for review of thisinformation. SBI also noted that information from other sources, including Parties, wouldbe particularly important for facilitating a fully informed review. SBI added that thereport of the UNGA Special Session would be of interest for reviewing the GEF.

SBI agreed to guidelines on the review process, invited Parties to submit views on thefinancial mechanism by 15 May 1997 and requested the secretariat to prepare acompilation and synthesis report of the submissions for SBI-6. SBI also highlighted theneed for full replenishment of the GEF.

The proposed guidelines note objectives, methodology and criteria for the review. Theobjectives will be to review the financial mechanism and to take appropriate measuresregarding its: conformity with Article 11 of the Convention; conformity with the COP’sguidance; effectiveness in implementing the Convention and in providing financialresources on a grant or concessional basis, including the transfer of technology; andeffectiveness in providing resources to developing country Parties under Article 4.3.

Under methodology, the review shall draw upon the following sources of information:information provided by Parties on their experiences regarding the financial mechanism;annual reviews by the COP on how the financial mechanism’s activities conform with theCOP’s guidance; the GEF’s annual report to the COP; reports from the GEF monitoringand evaluation programme; reports from the Commission on Sustainable Developmentand relevant bilateral and multilateral funding institutions; and relevant informationprovided by the other intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations.

Under criteria, the effectiveness of the financial mechanism will be assessed taking intoaccount the following: transparency of decision-making processes; adequacy,predictability and timely disbursement of funds for activities in developing countryParties; responsiveness and efficiency of the GEF project cycle and expedited procedures,including its operational strategy; amount of resources provided to developing countryParties, including financing for technical assistance and investment projects; amount offinance leveraged; and sustainability of funded projects.

SBI also took note of the information on relevant action by the Council of the GlobalEnvironment Facility contained in document FCCC/SBI/1997/Misc.3 and requested thesecretariat to provide subsequent SBI sessions with such information as it becomesavailable. The Vice-chair thanked delegates for their participation and adjourned SBI-6

: IN THE CORRIDORS

Score cards for AGBM-6 were mixed going into its final day. Some participantsexpressed frustration that new text still contains some widely divergent views and wereunderwhelmed at the state of play two sessions prior to Kyoto. Others noted that thesession simply met their expectations. Although a number of participants were critical ofthe specifics within the EU proposal, many praised the EU for adding momentum to theprocess. One person observed that only a few Parties had tabled proposals for QELROSso far, but noted that the game is not over yet .

THINGS TO LOOK FOR TODAY

AGBM: AGBM will meet at 10:00 am in Plenary I to complete its work.

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