Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Road to #Paris2015 Bonn talks: More delay and confusion as "US text" roundly rejected

I am presently in Switzerland touring Europe, while the climate talks in Bonn proceed, the last preliminary talks before the major UN climate conference in Paris that start on November 30.

I am keeping a close eye on negotiations as I travel. Climate Justice Info have just released Update No 1 from Bonn, which reveals more delay and confusion as a result of a negotiating text put forward by co-chairs United States and Algeria, which was strongly rejected by G77 and China.

ActionAid, Asian People’s Movement on Debt and Development and LDC Watch released the following media statement by Harjeet Singh, Climate Policy Manager at ActionAid.

"Rich nations have been ignoring the needs of developing nations over and over again. The new text drafted by the co-chairs was another example of highhandedness that is biased towards the interests of the US and other developed countries, leaving behind the needs of the poor and vulnerable,” said Harjeet Singh, Climate Policy Manager at ActionAid.

“If we construct the Paris climate deal on the terms of US and other rich nations, many of the people in the developing world won't survive the impacts of climate change," he added.

“The US co-chairs’ text is proof of the bias of this process for the positions and interests of developed country governments. It is unacceptable,” said Lidy Nacpil, coordinator of the Asian Peoples’ Movement on Debt and Development. “Ambition, the key principle of equity, and means of implementation must clearly be articulated in the text for negotiations if the process is to have any meaning.”

“A one sided draft text produced by the co-chairs in the eleventh hour of the negotiation is evidence of the total domination of the process by the few and powerful,” said Azeb Girmai, climate lead of the LDC Watch. “This nullifies the notion of the fairness of negotiations in the processes of climate regime. The co-chairs are now delaying the process taking us back to where we started. ”

What was wrong with the text?
1. The text allows developed countries to backslide on commitments
2. Central substantive demands by developing countries are missing
3. The text is one-sided and mitigation centric
4. The text creates differentiation among developing countries
5. The text shifts the pre-2020 burden

Some have even called no deal would be better than a deal that locked us into business as usual that favours Western developed countries andcorporations continued high emissions.

The Global Forest Coalition released this analysis:

"The draft Chairman proposals for the Paris deal: the agreement and the decision – need to be squarely rejected. The real danger of a bad deal is the fact that it will lock us into a permanent agreement of business as usual of burning the planet. The extreme hype around the Paris deal being desperately needed to “save the world” is scaremongering people into accepting a disastrously bad deal. Reminiscent of the days campaigning against the World Trade Organization (WTO) Doha Development Agenda, the call for no deal is better than a bad deal, rings true. No Paris deal is better than a bad and false Paris deal – exactly because just like the WTO Doha Development Agenda has locked the world into unfair trade rules on food and agriculture; will a false Paris Climate Agreement lock the world into a laissez faire regime of polluting as always, countries making cuts when they feel like it, manipulating accounting loopholes to cheat their way out of emissions cuts, and using and creating even more market mechanisms to commodify, financialize and profit from the remaining resources of the planet. If we are to make Paris about saving the planet, then it should be about rejecting the false deal that is on the table."

Sandeep Chamling Rai (@SandeepChamling), who Works for WWF Global Climate and Energy Initiative, stated in a tweet: "Switzerland & Umbrella group wants no reference to loss and damage in Paris Agreement #ADP2 ignoring the urgent desire of vulnerable.". The Umbrella group is made up of Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Kazakhstan, Norway, the Russian Federation, Ukraine and the US.

Read the update from Climate Justice Info and be angry. Very Very angry.

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