Nairobi/Kenya, 3 December 2008 - Over 10,000 delegates representing government, industry, civil society and international organizations are currently participating in the UN Climate Change conference in Poznan. The outcome of the meeting is expected to help build momentum and chart the way towards the Copenhagen climate talks in December 2009, when governments will attempt to reach an ambitious and effective international climate deal for the period after 2012.
In Poznan, governments will move from discussion to negotiation and agree on a plan of action for the final year of negotiations. They are expected to make progress on key issues including capacity-building for developing countries, reducing emissions from deforestation and degradation (REDD), and technology transfer and adaptation.
Yvo de Boer, the Executive Secretary of the UN Climate Change Secretariat, told journalists the meeting will test governments' willingness to work on climate change amid a global economic slowdown. He said: "I think it is really important, especially in the context of the financial crisis, to see how we can craft a Copenhagen agreement that makes it clear how financial resources will be generated."
Representatives from developing countries are concerned that lack of adequate funding could hamper efforts to meet the challenge of combating and adapting to climate change.
The UN Environment Programme's Executive Director Achim Steiner will attend the Poznan meeting, and UNEP is also involved in a series of events and report launches as part of the conference including:
- An event on 'The UN system's response to support REDD' on 4 December with the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the UN Development Programme (UNDP) and the World Bank. The event highlights the UN-REDD Programme, which helps countries and international organizations to develop REDD schemes that are viable and sustainable.
- The launch of the 'Carbon and Biodiversity Demonstration Atlas', produced by UNEP's World Conservation Monitoring Centre (WCMC), will be launched on 5 December. Pinpointing overlaps of high carbon and high biodiversity areas, the atlas shows how investing in carbon-rich ecosystems can give the double dividend of combating climate change and fighting biodiversity loss.
- The launch of a report on 6 December on 'The Kyoto Protocol, the Clean Development Mechanism, and the Building and Construction Sector' which recommends ways to unlock the potential of the building and construction sector for combating climate change.
- A press conference on solar energy and an event with the World Bank on scaling up economic incentives and coping with climate change.
- The launch of a report on weather-related disasters and a year-end snapshot of Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) projects - that is, emission-reduction projects in the developing world that industrialized countries can invest in to help meet their emission reduction targets under the Kyoto Protocol.