English (PDF – 400 KB) - International Institute for Sustainable ...


English (PDF – 400 KB) - International Institute for Sustainable ...

Status of the UNFCCC

Negotiations: Outcomes of the

Bonn Climate Change Talks,

March 2009

Deborah Murphy,

Associate, Climate Change and Energy


• First round of negotiations leading up to COP 15.

• Main objective of Bonn talks was to work towards

negotiating text.

• No real surprises or tangible results, but none

were expected.

– Narrowed gaps and made progress to new agreement.

– Debut of Obama administration on international stage.

– Some acrimony on final evening of negotiations under

AWG-KP over developed country targets.

Recent Climate Change Events

• Recent climate change events and findings


– Second lowest amount of Arctic sea ice coverage

during winter 2008-09.

– Ice bridge between Antarctic Peninsula and Charcot

Island disintegrated April 2009.

– Garnault review (2008) predicts exceptionally hot

summers for Australia to occur every one or two

years, making drought conditions virtually permanent.

– Current Pine Beetle infestation 10 times larger than

previous outbreaks.


• GHG emission reductions are at the heart

at the negotiations and take place in both


– AWG-LCA: a long-term goal for emission

reductions as one issue of the “shared vision”

– AWG-KP: negotiating the emissions reduction

required by Annex I Parties under the Kyoto

Protocol in the subsequent commitment

period (after 2012)

Mitigation: AWG-LCA

• Mitigation by developed countries focused on

nature and definition of commitments.

• Mitigation by developing countries.

– Focus on NAMAs, MRV.

– Differentiation between developing countries


• REDD - Convergence on REDD+ mechanism.

• Sectoral approaches, role of markets, response

mechanisms, catalytic role of convention also


Mitigation: AWG-KP

• Discussion focused on scale of emission reductions by

Annex I in aggregate

– No agreement reached.

– Secretariat to compile existing Annex I Party pledges.

• Approach not received well by developing countries.

Desire more principled approach.

• Flexibility mechanisms

– Potential expansion of and improvements to market



– Canada proposal for assuming zero emissions or removals for

cases of carbon saturation in cropland management.


• Controversial discussion on linkages between AWGs.

– Developed countries emphasized need to

maintain coherency.

– Some parties indicate unwillingness to negotiate

targets in AWG-KP due to lack of US/China


– Faced heavy developing country criticism.

– Concern for “spillover” into AWG-LCA talks.


• Framework for adaptation has begun to take


– Discussions focused on matching adaptation support

with finance and technology, and capacity building

• Developing countries want adaptation funding to

be new, predictable and additional to ODA; with

governance under COP.

• Developed countries stressed need for mutual

accountability, robust governance principles and

coherence with other institutions.


• Technology and financing discussed as one issue

under AWG-LCA. Issues closely linked.

• Need for a balanced approach to mitigation and

adaptation technologies.

• Discussion of R&D activities and needs.

• Options on how to address intellectual property


– Licensing, patent pooling, exclusion from patents,

flexibilities in IPR system, exemptions.


• No consensus on scale, mobilization, governance or

proportion (public-private) of funds.

• Discussion of various party proposals.

– Mexican Green Fund.

– Norway: Carbon credit revenue.

– South Korea: Crediting NAMAs.

– Switzerland: Carbon tax of US$2 per tonne.

• LDCs have called for US$2 billion to finance adaptation


• China observes that carbon market revenues are just one

option and should not replace other responsibilities.

– Example of softening Chinese rhetoric.

Moving towards Copenhagen

• Both AWGs plan to meet five more times over


– June: Bonn.

– August: Bonn.

– September/October: Bangkok.

– November: TBD.

– December: Copenhagen.

• June 1-12 meetings will include 6 th session of

AWG-LCA, 8 th Session of AWG-KP, 30 th session of


Submissions to AWG-LCA

• Prior to June countries have been asked to submit views

on variety of topics to UNFCCC bodies.

• Excerpts on negotiating text and/or agreed outcome:

– USA: committed to agreement in Copenhagen based on “robust

targets and ambitious actions that will be embodied in US

domestic law”.

– Canada: All parties to submit GHG reduction or limitation

pathways to COP. All parties must submit national inventories of

anthropogenic emissions to the COP. Quantified emissions

limitation or reduction commitments for 2020.

– China: Mid-term emission reduction target for developed Parties

of 40% below 1990 levels by 2020.

The United States and

the negotiations

• Despite not being able to contribute significantly given lack

of time to develop a mandate, US shows tenor of

constructive engagement.

– Standing ovation from NGO community to senior official from

State Dept. at briefing held by U.S. Government.

– New attitude and positive tone.

– Positive signs from Obama administration (large “green” stimulus

component, domestic cap-and-trade talks).

– Will still take time to develop international negotiating positions.

– Bottom up approach likely to be required.

• Many other countries waiting for U.S. plan to better

determine their strategies.


• Number of issues to be resolved between

now and Copenhagen.

• Will new agreement be a successor to the

KP or a new Protocol or treaty?

• Real risk that final deal may not be reached

at COP 15 or that only a framework agreed

to with details to be ne

Thank You


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