Report of main proceedings for 18 November 2013

Warsaw Climate Change Conference - November 2013

In the morning, the resumed SBI closing plenary and the COP President’s informal stocktaking plenary convened. Throughout the day, a number of contact groups, informal consultations and other meetings were held under the COP, CMP and ADP. These included: ADP open-ended consultations on the implementation of all the elements of both workstreams; open-ended informal consultations on decision-making in the UNFCCC process; and informal consultations on the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM).


SBI Chair Chruszczow thanked parties for their hard work Saturday night and into Sunday morning.

NON-ANNEX I NATIONAL COMMUNICATIONS: CGE: The SBI adopted conclusions and draft COP decisions (FCCC/SBI/2013/L.24 & Adds.1-2).

NAMAs BY DEVELOPING COUNTRIES: Team of technical experts under ICA: The SBI adopted conclusions (FCCC/SBI/2013/L.23). Switzerland, for the EIG, welcomed the work on the text, noting it empowers both the CGE and the ICA process, and represents the final building block of the MRV system.

CAPACITY BUILDING: Capacity building under the Protocol: The SBI adopted conclusions (FCCC/SBI/2013/L.18/Rev.1).

ADMINISTRATIVE, FINANCIAL AND INSTITUTIONAL MATTERS: Budget performance for the biennium 2012-2013: The SBI Chair informed that parties could not reach consensus and the SBI adopted conclusions and forwarded a draft decision to the COP (FCCC/SBI/2013/L.20).

REPORT ON THE SESSION: The Secretariat reported on the budgetary implications of activities requested under several agenda items. SBI rapporteur Mabafokeng Mahahabisa (Lesotho) introduced the report, noting substantive conclusions will be inserted in its final version.

AUSTRALIA, for Canada, the US, New Zealand and Japan, called for reflecting in the report that no consensus had been reached on the TEC and CTCN annual report, and that this item should be considered at SBI 40. BANGLADESH cautioned against forwarding this item to SBI 40, and, with CUBA, called on parties to devote time to concluding this issue in Warsaw.

SBI Chair Chruszczow said this issue was forwarded to the COP, and the SBI adopted its report on the session (FCCC/SBI/2013/L.1). He closed the meeting at 12:29 pm.


Opening the stocktaking plenary, COP/CMP President Korolec described work under the COP and CMP as progressing smoothly, and drew attention to finance as an area where “significant progress” has been made and where efforts need to be continued.

SBSTA Chair Muyungi informed parties that the SBSTA has successfully concluded, having adopted 15 conclusions. He indicated parties were unable to conclude three items, which will be forwarded to the COP/CMP President: REDD+ institutional arrangements (joint SBI/SBSTA item); response measures forum and work programme (joint SBI/SBSTA item); and methodological issues under the Protocol relating to Articles 5, 7 and 8. He noted two items on which no progress was made: report of the TEC and CTCN (joint SBI/SBSTA item); and market and non-market mechanisms, which will be taken up by SBSTA 40.

SBI Chair Chruszczow announced that the SBI closed and explained that while important steps had been taken, outstanding issues remained, including: REDD+ institutional arrangements; response measures; loss and damage; and the budget for the biennium 2014-2015. He reported that parties expressed diverging views on whether consideration of the report of the TEC and CTCN should be forwarded to SBI 40 or COP 19, and remitted this matter to the COP President.

ADP Co-Chair Runge-Metzger reported that draft decision text has been circulated and will be considered in the afternoon.

President Korolec asked the SBI and SBSTA Chairs to continue work on outstanding issues and report to him on Tuesday, 19 November; and announced that Ministers Bomo Edna Molewa (South Africa) and Lena Margareta Ek (Sweden) would assist him on loss and damage.

Fiji, for the G-77/CHINA, requested that those SBSTA items that have not been completed should be allocated appropriate time under the COP and CMP. Switzerland, for the EIG, welcomed progress on, inter alia, REDD+, noting slow progress on: market mechanisms; budget; enabling decisions for the ratification of the Kyoto Protocol’s second commitment period; and loss and damage. Australia, for the UMBRELLA GROUP, called for a strong signal from Warsaw that the ADP is on track to deliver, and said mitigation commitments from all will be necessary. He also highlighted progress on loss and damage. Bangladesh, for the LDCs, called for setting up an international mechanism on loss and damage in Warsaw, and lamented lack of agreement on the budget, calling for adaptation activities to be given high priority.

Chile, for AILAC, called for progress on the development and transfer of technologies, and the implementation of the Technology Mechanism. Nauru, for AOSIS, urged reaching a decision on loss and damage. Papua New Guinea, for the COALITION FOR RAINFOREST NATIONS, said REDD+ is “a package within reach” at COP 19. The EU called for concluding work on the budget for 2012-2013.


ADP OPEN-ENDED CONSULTATIONS ON THE IMPLEMENTATION OF ALL THE ELEMENTS UNDER BOTH WORKSTREAMS: In the morning, ADP Co-Chairs presented draft text on the implementation of all the elements of decision 1/CP.17, consisting of: draft Co-Chairs conclusions; and adraft decision on pre-2020 ambition and post-2020 action, including an annex with indicative elements of the 2015 agreement. Noting that “this week is about decision time,” ADP Co-Chair Kumarsingh emphasized that the draft decision is “merely indicative” and “not prejudicial to further work.He invited delegates to reflect on it and come back with reactions in the afternoon.

In the afternoon, ADP Co-Chair Kumarsingh invited parties’ initial reflections on the draft decision text. Malaysia, for the G-77/CHINA, expressed concern that there is no: mention of equity or loss and damage; roadmap on technology transfer; emphasis on key Convention principles and provisions; and scaled up mitigation commitments for developed countries. Nepal, for the LDCs, lamented a lack of focus on support.

Venezuela, for the LMDCs, underscored the need to enhance ambition on finance, technology and capacity building. INDIA expressed concern that the text “presumes” that in the 2015 agreement each party will have commitments on mitigation, adaptation, finance, technology development and transfer, and capacity building.

Calling for narrowing down and clearly defining the elements in the text, Switzerland, for the EIG, expressed readiness to accept the text as a starting point.

Nauru, for AOSIS, called for a workplan with specific mandates and deliverables. COLOMBIA, reflecting the views of AILAC, described the text as a “good basis,” underscoring that parties need to leave Warsaw knowing how to move forward, calling for a compliance mechanism in the 2015 agreement.

Describing the text as a “very good version zero,” Swaziland, for the AFRICAN GROUP, called for, inter alia: more ambition; and ex ante information not only on mitigation, but also on adaptation and means of implementation. The EU called for: a workplan with deadlines; up-front transparency and an assessment phase under workstream 1; and concrete actions under workstream 2.

BOLIVIA highlighted that the draft text lacks discussion of means of implementation, and underlined that developing countries undertake voluntary NAMAs, not commitments. On “nature and extent of differentiation,” IRAN preferred using agreed and common Convention language. Noting that the text does not reflect the different views expressed, ECUADOR called for “quick” submissions from parties on their expectations, and said he was ready to engage without necessarily using the Co-Chairs’ text. CHINA, called for working in a focused way, and an outcome text that is balanced “both between and within” the two workstreams. Consultations continued in the evening.


DECISION-MAKING IN THE UNFCCC PROCESS (COP): The afternoon open-ended informal consultations on decision-making in the UNFCCC process were co-facilitated by Gabriel Quijandria Acosta (Peru) and Beata Jaczewska (Poland). Parties agreed to open this and the following meetings to observers.

Parties welcomed the forward-looking nature of, and identified elements for, discussions, including: “party-drivenness”; transparency and openness; inclusiveness; fairness and equal treatment; efficiency and effectiveness; responsibilities of parties, presiding officers and the Secretariat; the need to avoid package deals; and that discussions of the proposal from Mexico and Papua New Guinea to amend Convention Articles 7 and 18 be kept separate from these discussions. The Secretariat will prepare a paper listing issues for substantive discussions. Informal consultations will continue.

CDM (CMP): In the afternoon, delegates consulted informally on a draft decision on issues relating to the CDM. On governance, they discussed text encouraging the CDM Executive Board (EB) to enhance its interaction with designated national authorities and designated operational entities. On baseline and monitoring methodologies and additionality, views diverged on whether to request the EB to: simplify the monitoring methodologies and procedures by allowing the validation of monitoring plans after registration; remove the threshold of component project activities addressing microscale activities in programmes of activities; extend the use of positive lists, combined with conservative default values for project types where there is a low risk of non-additionality; and improve the financial additionality assessment by including all costs and revenues, notably the revenues expected from certified emission reductions (CERs). Informal consultations will continue.


As delegates kicked off the second half of the conference at the Warsaw National Stadium, another conference, deemed “controversial” by many, convened three kilometers away. At the International Coal and Climate Summit, UNFCCC Executive Secretary Christiana Figueres delivered a keynote speech, warning that “the coal industry faces a business continuation risk it can no longer afford to ignore.” Previously, an open letter signed by several NGOs requested Figueres to withdraw from the event, worried that her presence would lend credibility to a conference “that should not be legitimized.” Responding to these concerns, and subsequently gaining a somewhat cautious approval from one NGO representative, Figueres specified in her keynote address that her presence “is neither a tacit approval of coal use, nor is it a call for the immediate disappearance of coal. But I am here to say that coal must change rapidly and dramatically for everyone’s sake.”

Back at the National Stadium, delegates seemed refreshed and even upbeat as the SBI swiftly concluded its work, prompting praise by some delegates for “marvelous” work in completing the MRV system. In the ADP, the production of a draft decision text generated considerable interest. As delegates packed into a meeting room, a delegate noted that while meeting rooms, rather than plenaries, facilitate an interactive environment, this can come at the expense of inclusiveness, as “only those who arrive first will get a seat at the table, and the chance to speak,” while another liked the arrangement, which, to him, is “reminiscent of indabas.” Several noted the “unenviable” task of the Co-Chairs to pen the first ADP draft decision, which some called a “bare minimum,” and others described as “a useful start.” Another delegate seemed pleased with the buzz in the room, in contrast to what he perceived as a “complete lack of urgency” in the negotiations last week. With ministers in town, and “decision time” in the ADP imminent, it remains to be seen if this timid hopefulness is here to stay.

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