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Political News UN Climate Talks Resume in Bonn
Posted by on 2013-05-30 12:26:50
contributed by gfoat

United Nations climate negotiations will resume for a fortnight-long session in Bonn, Germany, from the 3rd to the 14th of June. The talks come as the world recently crossed the threshold of 400ppm concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, at least 50 parts above what scientists suggest is safe (350ppm) and significantly higher than pre-industrial levels (270ppm). The meeting will consist of technical bodies as well as continued long-term talks. This will be the final confirmed negotiation session before the annual UN climate summit is held in Warsaw, Poland, in November.

"While the 400ppm barrier might sound abstract, the impacts of that increased carbon dioxide are very real." Harjeet Singh, International Coordinator on Climate Adaptation with ActionAid, said.

"We have already seen real changes to rainfall patterns, to crop yields, increases in storm surges and droughts that are starving and parching vulnerable people across the globe. These impacts are the heralds of a planetary emergency." Harjeet Singh, International Coordinator on Climate Adaptation with ActionAid, said.

"The gap between current pollution reduction pledges of rich countries and what science and historical responsibility requires is large - for the Bonn talks to be called a success we will have to see those targets go up." Meena Raman, negotiation expert with the Third World Network, said.

"Every tonne of reductions of their fair-share that rich countries refuse to do equals more damage to poor and vulnerable communities or more effort from poor countries." Harjeet Singh, International Coordinator on Climate Adaptation with ActionAid, said.

"Carbon offset markets have been a profound and shocking failure, that they continue to be on the table in these talks is deeply disturbing. Governments in Bonn need to stop throwing good money after bad, and instead invest in meaningful projects that will actually drive a clean energy transition and produce real emission reductions." Lidy Nacpil, director of Jubilee South - APMDD, said.

"Dirty energy and dirty money from big fossil fuel corporations have poisoned our communities and our collective decision-making for too long. The UN talks must kick-start the just transition to renewable energy globally, and stop the hand-out of tax payers' money to dirty energy corporations. We need to see a real commitment from governments in Bonn to making that change if we are to stop the climate crisis." Asad Rehman, Head of International Climate at Friends of the Earth EWNI said.

The negotiations will be undertaken under two technical bodies, the SBTSA and the SBI and the two "workstreams" launched at the Durban climate summit in 2011, known together as the Ad-hoc Working Group on the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action (ADP). They are:

  • Workstream One on developing an accord under the existing UN climate convention, 'with legal force' to be agreed by 2015 for application from 2020
  • Workstream Two on increasing "ambition" or the level of action and commitments under the Convention to tackle climate change between now and 2020.
    "The overwhelming priority and focus of work must be on scaling up pre-2020 actions, without them the 2020 'deal' will be too little too late." Meena Raman, negotiation expert with the Third World Network, said.

    "If the 2020 deal is made-up of a every country doing as it pleases with no allocation of fair-shares of effort, as proposed by the US, then it won't be worth the paper it's written on." Meena Raman, negotiation expert with the Third World Network, said.

    Key issues covered in these talks will be:

    1. The workshop on Wednesday 6th of June to determine the real-world impact of developed countries' 2020 climate pollution targets;
    2. The technical work on "new" carbon market-mechanisms; and
    3. Consideration of how to scale up access to renewable energy and stop dirty fuel production pre-2020.


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