UN Climate Change Talks in Bonn
Second round of Bonn UN Climate Change Talks in 2010 designed to pave way for full implementation of climate change action across the globe
Bonn, 31 May 2010 - A fresh round of UN Climate Change talks kicked off on Monday with representatives from 182 governments meeting in Bonn to take forward work from last year's UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen (COP 15). The talks are designed to pick up on issues that were not resolved in Copenhagen and to pave the way for the full implementation of
climate change action across the globe.
"The Copenhagen meeting may have postponed an outcome for at least a year, but it did not postpone the impacts of climate change," said UNFCCC Executive Secretary Yvo de Boer. "The deadline to agree an effective international response to climate change at Copenhagen was set because governments, when launching negotiations in Bali in 2007, recognised the scientific warning on climate for what it was: a siren call to act now, or face the worst," he added.
From Tuesday, government delegates countries will begin discussing a new negotiating text under the Ad Hoc Working Group on Long-term Cooperative Action under the Convention (AWG-LCA).
At the UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen at the end of 2009, governments extended the mandate of the AWG-LCA as the negotiating group tasked to deliver a long-term global solution to the climate challenge. Governments meeting in Bonn in April this year subsequently invited the Chair of the group, Margaret Mukahanana-Sangarwe, to prepare a new text in time for the June negotiating session.
"Climate negotiations over the next two weeks will be on track if they keep focused on a common way forward towards a concrete and realistic goal in Cancún. There is a growing consensus on what that the goal for Cancún can be - namely, a full, operational architecture to implement effective, collective climate action," said the UN's top climate change official Yvo de Boer.
The Ad Hoc Working Group on Further Commitments for Annex I Parties under the Kyoto Protocol (AWG-KP) will also meet in Bonn from Tuesday, in parallel to the AWG-LCA. The focus of this group is on emissions reduction commitments for the 37 industrialized countries that have ratified the Kyoto Protocol for the period beyond 2012.
"I encourage governments to now develop greater clarity on the future of the Kyoto Protocol, since this issue cannot be left unattended until Cancún," Yvo de Boer said.
Mr. de Boer also called on industrialized countries to fulfill the financial pledge they made at Copenhagen. These countries promised to deploy USD 30 billion from now to 2012 in short-term finance to kick start climate action in developing countries. "Cancún can deliver if promises of
help are kept and if promises to compromise are honored in the negotiations," he said.
In addition to the two working groups specifically designed to negotiate a long-term response to climate change, two UNFCCC standing committees - the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA) and the Subsidiary Body for Implementation (SBI) - are meeting in Bonn.
The SBSTA will for example deal with the issue of building capacity in developing countries to measure emissions from deforestation. And it will convene a research dialogue between governments and research organizations to generate discussion on the latest information on climate change science. The SBI is for example expected to agree on the modalities for the review of the Kyoto Protocol's Adaptation Fund in Mexico at the end of this year.
"Recent pledges by Spain and Germany towards the adaptation fund have been useful first steps to build trust among developing nations," said the UNFCCC Executive Secretary. "But we must see more concrete contributions from other countries in the run-up to Cancún which show that developed countries are ready to deliver on what they promised five months ago in Copenhagen," he added.
The Bonn gathering is being attended by more than 4,500 participants, including government delegates, representatives from business and industry, environmental organisations and research institutions.
The next UNFCCC negotiating session is scheduled to take place 2-6 August in Bonn, followed by a second one-week intersessional meeting (precise and date and time yet to be announced) before the UN Climate Change Conference 29 November to 10 December in Cancún.
About the UNFCCC
With 194 Parties, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) has near universal membership and is the parent treaty of the 1997 Kyoto Protocol. The Kyoto Protocol has been ratified by 191 of the UNFCCC Parties. Under the Protocol, 37 States, consisting of highly industrialized countries and countries undergoing the process of transition to a market economy, have legally binding emission limitation and reduction commitments. The ultimate objective of both treaties is to stabilize greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that will prevent dangerous human interference with the climate system.