AOSIS prepares for the COP13/CMP3 of the UNFCCC

2007-11-07 AOSIS Download PDF

Topic: Climate

The AOSIS Preparatory Meeting for the UNFCCC Thirteenth Session of the Conference of
the Parties (COP 13) and the Third Session of the Conference of the Parties as the Meeting of
the Parties of the Kyoto Protocol (CMP 3) was held in St. Kitts-Nevis on 7 to 10 November
The opening ceremony was held at Frigate Bay Resort on 7 November. Delegates were
welcomed by Mr. Randolph Edmead, Director (Ag.) of the St. Kitts-Nevis Department of
Physical Planning and Environment.
Mr. Kilaparti Ramakrishna, Senior Advisor, Division of Environmental Law and
Conventions of the United Nations Environmental Programme explained that UNEP had
been pleased to contribute to the organization of the four regional UNFCCC COP 13/CMP 3
preparatory meetings.
Ms. Wanna Tanunchaiwatna, Manager of the Technology Support Mechanism of the
UNFCCC Secretariat on behalf of Ms. June Budhooram thanked the Government of St. KittsNevis for hosting the meeting.
Dr. Linus Spencer Thomas, Economic Policy Advisor, Ministry of Finance, Economic
Development and Planning, Grenada on behalf of the Chair of AOSIS welcomed all the
participants, in particular those from the Atlantic, Indian Ocean and Pacific regions.
The feature address was delivered by the Honourable Nigel Carty, Minister of State with
responsibility for Sustainable Development, Technology and Finance of St. Kitts-Nevis. Ms.
June Hughes, UNFCCC Focal Point of the host country delivered the Vote of Thanks.
Mr. Leon Charles, co-facilitator, Grenada, provided an overview of the workshop. He noted
that Bali would be the beginning, not the end of the process. It was important that AOSIS
have a clear, detailed negotiating position going into Bali. The group should ensure that there
were enough persons to cover all the issues and the various workshops and consultations. It
was imperative that the group develop processes for arriving at decisions. He then
enumerated the strengths and weaknesses of AOSIS.
AOSIS had a legitimate and important voice in the climate change process. It was recognized
as the most vulnerable group of countries with genuine issues and concerns. Among its
weaknesses, he listed its isolationist approach, wherein no attempt was made to network with
potential partners or to build support for its positions. He said that its positions were not
always clearly thought through. Principles were not translated into practical action. It did not
have clearly articulated objectives that could be achieved through alternate routes. On many
occasions negotiators resorted to national or personal positions. The group had a limited
number of persons to follow agenda items and the group had no method to follow up on
He hoped the workshop would deliver a strategic framework to guide negotiations, clearly
articulated negotiating positions on the key issues to be discussed further in Bali, strategies
for engaging with key negotiating partners, and an organized AOSIS team for Bali. He noted
that this was not designed to be an information exchange workshop.
The workshop would use a thematic approach. Each topic would be treated strategically and
not as a set of discrete agenda items. This would enable participants to exploit the synergies
among the topics. It would permit detailed treatment using the available personnel. This
process would increase and build the capacities of the regions across each topic. The plenary
session at the end would provide a venue to share information and endorse positions. As a
result all delegations would be able to participate in all topics. There was a risk that some
discussions would have to be repeated in the plenary.

The meeting debated the proposed process of the meeting and decided that the presentations
on all the thematic areas be made in plenary before breaking out into the five working groups:
mitigation, adaptation, technology, financing, and implementation measures.
Developing The Strategic Framework
Mr. Dan Bondi Ogolla, Chief Legal Adviser of the UNFCCC Secretariat delivered a
presentation of the Key Issues for Bali and Beyond. He began by reviewing the key
conclusions of the IPCC’s Fourth Assessment Report. He then noted the political will on
climate change that seemed to be emerging. Climate change was now being discussed at the
highest political levels. The UN Security Council had discussed it in March 2007. A UN
High Level Event on Climate Change had been convened in September. The G8 Summit had
discussed it in June, and an Informal Ministerial Consultation had occurred in October. There
was broad consensus that Bali should produce a framework for a post 2012 regime. A
decision was required which would determine the form and scope of the future Dialogue
process. The deadline to complete the work of the Ad Hoc Working Group (AWG) should
also be set. He noted that the next COP/MOP would undertake the second review of the
Kyoto Protocol. That work had to begin in Bali if the review were to be meaningful.
Ms. Wanna Tanunchaiwatana, UNFCCC continued the presentation explaining the processes
and terminology used in UNFCCC negotiations. She then proceeded to explain some of the
SBSTA issues that would be discussed in Bali. In Development and Transfer of Technology,
the future of the Expert Group on Technology Transfer (EGTT) would be decided. The
development of performance indicators to monitor progress in technology transfer would be
considered as well as ways and means to address the financial requirements of technology
transfer. The Secretariat would report on progress made in implementation of the Nairobi
Work Programme (NWP). The outcomes of the two workshops held to address deforestation
in developing countries would be presented. A draft decision on key elements, capacity
building, pilot projects, resources and policy approaches was expected. In Research and
Systematic Observations (RSO), Parties would negotiate a decision on revised reporting
guidelines on GCOS for Annex I Parties.
Ms. June Budooram, Manager, Support to Non-Annex I Parties, UNFCCC Secretariat
presented some of the issues to be discussed by the SBI. It would begin the Fourth Review of
the Financial Mechanism of the Convention (GEF) and provide further guidance to the GEF.
The GEF would present its annual report. Negotiations would continue on activating the
Adaptation Fund of the Kyoto Protocol. Discussions would be held on implementation of
Articles 4.8 and 4.9 of the Convention as well as implementation of Decision 1/CP.10.
Matters related to Least Developed Countries (LDCs) would be debated including the
mandate of the LDC Expert Group (LEG), the LDC fund and NAPAs. Discussions would be
held addressing Article 6 of the Convention, i.e. capacity building. The New Delhi Work
Programme would be reviewed and possibly extended. This included a review of CCiNet, a
UNFCC web portal. The GEF and UNFCCC Secretariats would present their proposals for
monitoring and evaluation of capacity building. Capacity building for Economies in
Transition (EITs) and also under the Kyoto Protocol would be discussed. The functions,
operations and budget performance of the Secretariat for 2006/07 would be reviewed. The
privileges and immunities of individuals serving on bodies under the Kyoto Protocol would
also be reviewed.
In the general discussions which followed, the Secretariat advised that there was no need for
a UN General Assembly decision to establish a new process to negotiate a post 2012 regime.
The COP as the supreme organ of the Convention had the authority to do so.
Samoa pointed out that the GEF Council would soon be meeting and that constituencies needed to express
their concerns at that time. It was noted that 2009 was the deadline for negotiations to be
concluded on a post 2012 regime to ensure that there was no break in commitment periods.
Dr. Spencer Thomas of Grenada delivered a presentation on AOSIS and the New
International Climate Change Regime. He explained that the priorities of the Members were
conditioned by their vulnerability and their need to ensure the well-being of their citizens.
Their responses had been to attempt to enhance their capacities and resilience. This required
the development of methodologies and mechanisms for adaptation and the financial resources
to implement these measures. He noted the need for the international community to undertake
concrete and immediate actions to reduce their emissions of greenhouse gases. This would
reduce the amount of adaptation that AOSIS members would have to undertake.
Basic Principles And Strategies For Multilateral Negotiations
Mr. Kilaparti Ramakrishna, Senior Adviser, Division of Environmental Law and
Conventions, UNEP delivered this presentation. He covered topics such as the mechanics of
negotiation, the terminology used, the development of a good negotiator, and the important
players in the process. He stressed the need for all delegates and delegations to prepare
properly for negotiations. The information he presented was available along with other
resources at Discussions
followed on the effectiveness of the UNFCCC process. It was noted that it was a complex
process that became more intricate as each COP adopted more decisions. Public awareness
had increased and as a result held the promise for more effective implementation. However, it
was noted that the Convention had no enforcement mechanism.
Developing The Negotiating Positions: Thematic Analysis
On the COP/MOP Preparatory Workshop, Dr. Thomas noted that it would include the
development of negotiating positions and the need for clarity, establishing negotiation
leverage, developing a communication mechanism and establishing a management process.
The representative of Cape Verde pointed out that the issue of desertification was most
important to them. This issue could be used to elicit the support of West African countries.
Mr. Dan Bondi Ogolla, UNFCCC then began his presentation on the Mitigation Theme. He
reviewed the Dialogue and AWG processes and the need for these to be coordinated. He then
explained the Russian Proposal on unilateral commitments which had a procedural and a
substantive component. He went on to the Belarus Proposal for a CMP decision for
provisional application of the amendment to the Kyoto Protocol. He explained that Saudi
Arabia would push for a decision on the Compliance Amendment of the Kyoto Protocol.
Non-annex I Parties appear to support Saudi Arabia while Annex I Parties strongly oppose it.
They preferred to discuss this under Article 9 of the Protocol.
Ms. Maria Jose Sanz, Programme Officer of Adaptation, Technology and Science
Programme, UNFCCC Secretariat provided an update on the topic of Reducing Emissions
from Deforestation in Developing Countries. She noted the methodological concerns on
leakage, non-permanence, scale, flooding the carbon market, and the likelihood that Annex I
countries would reduce their domestic efforts to reduce their emissions. She noted that the
central problem was the control of illegal logging. There was a need to devise policy
approaches and develop positive incentives. Financial mechanisms and other incentives had
to be devised. The Parties had submitted several proposals which would be considered and
would form the basis of a possible decision.

Ms. June Budhooram, UNFCCC was the resource person for Adaptation. She noted that this
continued to gain prominence and was one of the building blocks for a future international
agreement. The findings of the IPCC AR4 would be discussed. Progress on implementation
of the NWP would be discussed as well as the need for the establishment of a Group of
Experts on Adaptation. There were several crosscutting issues that would be addressed
including resources, research and systematic observations, capacity building and national
communications. An expected outcome of the NWP was enhanced capacity to undertake
vulnerability and adaptation assessments. The NWP was also expected to catalyse innovative
actions by Parties and Intergovernmental Organizations (IGOs). The issue of the adverse
impacts of response measures would be a contentious one once again.
Mr. Clifford Mahlung of Jamaica was the resource person for Financial Mechanisms. The
Fourth Review of the Financial Mechanism of the Convention (GEF) would be undertaken.
The UNFCCC Secretariat had launched an Investment and Financing Project in May 2007
which focused on the needs of developing countries. The GEF would present its annual report
and the COP would provide new guidance to the GEF. Regarding the Adaptation Fund under
the Kyoto Protocol, the only outstanding issue to make it operational was the institutional
arrangements. A conservative estimate on the size of the fund was US$250 million and it was
expected to grow to US$1.6 billion by 2012. The GEF was the only institution which had
expressed an interest in managing the fund. Developing countries should ensure that it
worked in their best interest, that it not be dominated by the GEF Council, that access to the
fund not be subjected to additionality criteria, that the needs of particularly vulnerable
countries be taken into consideration, that it fund concrete adaptation projects, and that it
allow voluntary contributions to the fund.
Ms. Wanna Tanunchaiwatana, UNFCCC was the resource person on Technology. Bali should
endorse a set of actions for enhancing the implementation of technology transfer framework,
agree on a new set of terms of reference for the EGTT or the new group to be formed, agree
on the mechanism to monitor progress on implementation, and agree on the establishment of
a Technology Fund.
Mr. Paul Desanker, Team Leader, Capacity Building and Outreach, UNFCCC Secretariat was
the resource person for Implementation Measures. He described the outcome of the workshop
on monitoring and evaluation of capacity building which had just concluded in Antigua and
Barbuda, including the need to establish regional nodes of CCiNet and for the development
of a new work programme.
The participants then went into closed meetings to discuss the five thematic areas in separate
simultaneous sessions. The results of their deliberations were presented in a closed Plenary
Session of AOSIS and formed the basis of the group’s negotiating position for Bali.
Human Dimension Of Global Climate Change
Ms. Iruthan Adam and Mr. Edward Cameron of the Republic of the Maldives made a
presentation on the ministerial meeting in the Maldives to be held on 13 and 14 November
2007. The rationale behind the Maldives Initiative is that it is time that people be put back at
the centre of the climate change process. A draft Declaration and Statement had been
prepared and circulated to Members of AOSIS. There was much concern that the issue of
human rights would predominate this meeting and could become a divisive issue within the
group. In addition, this topic would clutter an already packed agenda in Bali. The Maldives
delegation noted that this would be a tool for advocacy, that the timing could have been better
and that a much simpler Declaration would be tabled in the Maldives.

Organizational Issues
Mr. Kilaparti Ramakrishna, UNEP presented on Engaging Potential Negotiating Partners.
He highlighted the need to identify the key negotiating groups, the importance of networking,
identifying friendly coalitions and presented the attributes of a good negotiator. Mr. Carlos
Fuller, Belize reported on the UNEP COP 13 Preparatory Meeting for GRULAC, and Mr.
Kevin Conrad, Papua New Guinea reported on the Preparatory Meeting for Asia.
Ms. Wanna Tanunchaiwatana, UNFCCC presented the Basic Requirements for an Effective
Media Strategy. She said that over 650 news organizations would be present in Bali. The
BBC and CNN would each have over 20 members of staff. She recommended that AOSIS
develop a communication strategy and name a communication officer with contact details to
liaise with the Secretariat and the media. A senior diplomat who could communicate with the
media on all issues should also be named. AOSIS should produce regular products such as
press releases, fact sheets and brochures. Target group within the countries should be
identified and their concerns should be highlighted. Many celebrities would be at the COP
including Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger of California, former US Vice President and
Noble Laureate Al Gore and actor Leonardo De Caprio. They should be engaged to repeat the
AOSIS messages. The Secretariat had appointed Mr. John Hay (J. as its
media contact person at the COP.
Ms. June Budhooram reminded participants of the Finance Ministers Meeting to be held in
Bali. This was by invitation only and was for the Asian Ministers of Finance. She also
informed the meeting that the reports on the assessment of funding to assist countries in
meeting their targets as well as the report on the GEF to the COP will be available next week.
Further, she advised that in 2008 the Secretariat would provide resources for developing
countries to arrive a day earlier at SB28 for regional consultations prior to the meeting of G77
and China.
The participants then went into closed meetings to discuss the logistical and administrative
arrangements for Bali.
As there was no other business, the Secretariat was invited to take part in the formal closing
of the meeting.
Mr. Kilaparti Ramakrishna, Senior Advisor, Division of Environmental Law and
Conventions of the United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) informed that UNEP
will try and invest more in these preparatory meetings but it is dependent on the needs that
the group may have. Hence, the meeting was advised to let UNEP know how they may assist
the group further.
Mr. Dan Bondi Ogolla, Chief Legal Adviser of the UNFCCC Secretariat thanked the
organisers of this meeting, UNEP for the financing and the facilitators and chairs for their
inputs. He reiterated that it is useful to have negotiating positions first in order to present
others with a unified position and therefore must thank UNEP for this initiative in
supporting the regional groups to undertake this preparatory meeting. He also thanked the St.
Kitts authorities for ensuring that the Secretariat was accommodated and the participants for
their enthusiasm. He expressed the hope that this will count towards an effective participation
at Bali.
Mr. Joseph McGann, MACC Project Manager/Technical Leader expressed thanks to the
organizers on behalf of the Centre and MACC for putting this meeting together. He informed
that initially they were hesitant as they were uncertain when or where this process would start
but it worked out in the end as a win-win situation for them in that it provided an opportunity
for their NFPS to be prepared in terms of the regional positions. He advised that the
Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre would have a booth at the COP and would
organize a side event at 6 PM on 10 December to which all AOSIS Members were invited.

The representative from the Solomon Islands, speaking on behalf of the Pacific Islands
thanked UNEP and UNFCCC for their support in brining the group together. The hope was
expressed that this process be institutionalized. The host, St. Kitts was thanked for working
tirelessly behind the scenes and the Chair, Grenada for its leadership in taking the meeting
through the many issues that were discussed.
Ms. Karen Smith (Barbados) on behalf of CARICOM expressed her appreciation to UNEP
and the UNFCCC Secretariat for organizing the meeting and to the Government of St. KittsNevis for hosting the event. On behalf of all the delegates she indicated that the group wished
that this would become a regular event. Special thanks were expressed to Grenada for their
leadership at the workshop.
Final thanks were expressed by June Hughes on its government’s behalf to UNEP, SPREP,
MACC and UNFCCC for making this meeting possible.

Sub Topic: Cross-cutting


Meeting: COP13