Dec 12, 2011
COP 17 breathes life into climate fund, sets agenda for future treatyBack
© Reuse this
The ‘Durban Platform’ would result in the full implementation of the package to support developing nations, agreed last year in Cancun, Mexico. Particularly key, is the $100-billion a year Green Climate Fund, which would become fully operational in 2012.
Countries have already started to pledge toward start-up costs of the fund, said COP 17 president Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, also South Africa’s Minister of International Relations and Cooperation.
This meant that the fund could be made ready in 2012, and at the same time could help developing countries get ready to access the fund.
This, the Minister said would boost developing countries efforts to establish their own clean energy futures and adapt to existing climate change.
A standing committee would monitor the climate finance in the context of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and to assist the COP. It would comprise 20 members, equally representing the developed and developing world.
A focused work programme on long-term finance was also agreed, which would contribute to the scaling up of climate change finance going forward, and analyse options for the mobilisation of resources from a variety of sources.
Other elements of the package included the implementation of an adaptation committee, tasked to improve the coordination of adaptation actions on a global scale, as well as a technology mechanism, also to be fully operational by 2012.
The full terms of reference for the operational arm of the mechanism, the Climate Technology Centre and Network, were agreed to, along with a clear procedure to select the host.
The UNFCCC secretariat would issue a call for proposals for hosts in January.
Governments also agreed a registry to record developing country mitigation actions that seek financial support and to match these with support. The registry aims to be a flexible, dynamic, web-based platform.
Interestingly, under the Kyoto Protocol’s Clean Development Mechanism, governments adopted procedures to allow carbon-capture and storage projects. These guidelines would be reviewed every five years to ensure environmental integrity.
But, while pledging to make progress in a number of areas, governments acknowledged the urgent concern that the current sum of pledges to cut emissions both from developed and developing countries is not high enough to keep the global average temperature rise below 2 oC on preindustrial levels.
The climate change talks also resulted in 195 parties agreeing to negotiate an universal legal agreement on climate change by no later than 2015, which will take effect in 2020.
This pledge by developed and developing nations would result in work beginning immediately under an ad hoc working group.
Only 38 industrialised countries agreed a second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol from January 1, 2013, with the first commitment period coming to an end in December 2012.
Parties to this second period would turn their economy-wide targets into quantified emission limitation or reduction objectives and submit them for review by May 1, 2012.
“This is highly significant because the Kyoto Protocol’s accounting rules, mechanisms and markets all remain in action as effective tools to leverage global climate action and as models to inform future agreements,” said UNFCCC executive secretary Christiana Figueres.
A significantly advanced framework for the reporting of emission reductions for both developed and developing countries was also agreed, taking into consideration the common but differentiated responsibilities of different countries.
But, while a package to assist the developing world has been agreed to, as well as a roadmap to work towards a legally binding agreement, the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) described COP 17 as a “failure” by governments.
WWF director-general Jim Leape said that politicians in Durban have shown an “alarming inability to come to grips with the challenge of climate change”.
However, they did concur that a comfort of the Durban negotiations was the emergence of a large coalition of high-ambition countries, led by the most vulnerable nations and small island States, including many in Africa.
“Overall, the responsibility for this failure lies with a handful of entrenched governments, such as the US, Japan, Russia and Canada, who have consistently raised the level of ambition on climate change,” WWF global climate and energy initiative leader Samantha Smith said.
But UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon argued that the decision to launch a protocol or a legal instrument applicable to all parties under the UNFCCC was essential for greater action and for raising the level of ambition and the mobilisation of resources to respond to the challenges of climate change.
He believed that the agreements at COP 17 “represented an important advance in the work of climate change”.
Edited by: Mariaan Webb© Reuse this
Creamer Media Senior Researcher and Deputy Editor Online
To subscribe email email@example.com or click here
To advertise email firstname.lastname@example.org or click here
Updated 20 minutes ago Atterbury Property Developments is developing a R850-million, 103 000 m2 industrial and business park at the intersection of the N3 highway and Rand Airport road, next to the Elandsfontein interchange. Atterbury designed the park on a site it acquired in Gosforth...
Updated 39 minutes ago JSE-listed Pioneer Foods expects a muted first half, largely owing to an exceptional performance in the first half of the prior year, where adjusted headline earnings a share for continuing operations grew by 39%. The company was currently dealing with a weak rand...
Updated 1 hour 11 minutes ago President Jacob Zuma has said a greater investment in the country’s infrastructure would assist it during tough economic times. Zuma was speaking at the post State of the Nation discussion at the The New Age Business brief held outside Cape Town.
Recent Research Reports
Construction 2016: A review of South Africa's construction industry (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Construction 2016 Report examines South Africa’s construction industry over the past 12 months. The report provides insight into the business environment; key participants; local demand; geographic diversification; corporate activity; black economic...
Energy Roundup – February 2016 (PDF Report)
The February 2016 roundup covers activities across South Africa for December 2015 and January 2016 and includes details of a Government Gazette notice that confirms Cabinet’s decision to move ahead with the 9 600 MW nuclear procurement programme; State-owned power...
Energy Roundup - December 2015 (PDF Report)
The December 2015 roundup includes details of State-owned utility Eskom’s application to claw back R22.8-billion; South Africa’s ranking as an investment destination for renewable energy; and a nuclear expert’s thoughts on reactor designs for South Africa’s nuclear...
Water 2015: A review of South Africa's water sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Water 2015 Report considers the aforementioned issues, not only in the South African context but also in the African and global context in terms of supply and demand, water stress and insecurity, and access to water and sanitation, besides others.
Input Sector Review: Pumps 2015 (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s 2015 Input Sector Review on Pumps provides an overview of South Africa’s pumps industry with particular focus on pump manufacture and supply, aftermarket services, marketing strategies, local and export demand, imports, sector support, investment...
Liquid Fuels 2015: A review of South Africa's liquid fuels sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Liquid Fuels 2015 Report examines these issues in the context of South Africa’s business environment; oil and gas exploration; fuel pricing; the development of the country’s biofuels industry; the logistics of transporting liquid fuels; and...
This Week's Magazine
Lifting, transporting, installing and ballasting solutions provider Ale has expanded its global fleet of trailers and invested in the latest range of widening trailers that can be mechanically widened from 3 m to the desired width for any project. Ale ordered 48 axle...
The market for the BMW 7 Series in South Africa differs quite significantly from the rest of the world. China, the US and the Middle East almost exclusively buy the long-wheel-base version, using the German manufacturer’s luxury high-end sedan as a chaffeur-driven...
January new-vehicle sales fell by 6.9%, to 48 615 units, compared with the same month last year. Statistics released by the Department of Trade and Industry show that the domestic new passenger-car market declined by 6.1%, to 34 936 units, compared with 12 months ago.
Information technology (IT) equipment and infrastructure multinational Dell is providing open infrastructure systems for clients so that they can use any systems, including innovative new systems, that suit their business needs, says Dell Europe, Middle East and...
South Africa’s State-owned defence industrial group, Denel, has set up another international partnership, based in Hong Kong. This new subsidiary is Denel Asia and it is a joint venture (JV) with South African private sector company VR Laser.