By Christine Campeau, Caritas Climate Change and Food Security Advisor
The latest United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) inter-sessional took place in Bonn, Germany from 31 May to 11 June 2010.
While some issues moved forward, there was only limited progress in more contentious matters, such as how to manage new financing, how to increase mitigation commitments by developed countries, and how to support greater mitigation in developing countries.
There is a general consensus that the need for adaptation is urgent.
This was confirmed by the US $30 billion over the next three years promised in Copenhagen to fast track these efforts and to help developing countries build capacities for future mitigation action.
While several funds have been established to provide climate change-related support to developing countries, accessing those funds still remains too complex. Improved coordination and oversight is needed to ensure that developing countries are able to access these finances according to their needs.
Industrialised countries have been the greatest contributors to current global climate crisis that we are now facing. It is a matter of justice that they now help by providing sufficient levels of financial and technological support for developing countries to mitigate and adapt to the effects of climate change.
This meeting saw the outgoing UNFCCC Executive Secretariat Yvo de Boer welcome Christiana Figueres from Costa Rica, who is taking over the position. Yvo de Boer’s predicted that if negotiators can deliver an operational architecture that provides confidence to governments, a fair, ambitious and legally binding deal is possible in South Africa next year.
In the meantime, climate activists shift their lens from Bonn to the G20/G8 summits taking place in Canada from 25 to 27 June 2010. There has been a lot of pressure on Prime Minister Stephen Harper to include climate change in the talks and to foster discussions around sustainable green growth.
In 2009, the G8 committed to a maximum 2C warming but the pledges committed in the Copenhagen Accord bring us a much higher degree range. Developing a plan to phase out subsidies and incentives for fossil fuels would be a good first step in restoring trust that has been deteriorated by the current level of mitigation commitments.
Determination must be increased and confidence between the developed and the developing countries must be cultivated.
We’ll keep our eyes on the talks in Canada to see if a promise to deliver can be realized and to ensure that those promises find their way back into the UNFCCC framework.