Environment

Lima goes into extra time to avoid weak outcome

Activists in Lima, Peru, wear masks of heads of state of countries participatingin the climate change conference during a protest on Friday.

Activists in Lima, Peru, wear masks of heads of state of countries participatingin the climate change conference during a protest on Friday.  

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Parties complain of lack of transparency over introduction of latest draft of declaration

The U.N. climate talks being held here seem to be headed for an inconclusive finish as parties complained of lack of transparency and consultative process when the latest draft for the declaration was released early on Saturday morning.

The talks have been extended by a day and another plenary was scheduled for 10 a.m. on Saturday. But things look grim.

Objections had been raised to a draft text released late on Thursday and the whole of Friday dragged on with little progress, till early Saturday when a revised five-page draft was introduced without any consultation by the president of the Conference of Parties, Manuel Pulgar Vidal, at the informal meeting of the Ad Hoc Working Group on the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action (ADP).

Mr. Vidal, while introducing the draft, apologised for the lack of transparency in the process. The text was not completely perfect but it would be a reflection on a common ground, he said, hoping that countries can build on it together. The draft, released around 2.30 a.m., is a watered down version of Thursday’s seven-page one and, once again, the national contributions of countries is mitigation centric. Developing countries have been opposing the mitigation-centric approach of the developed countries, which are not ready to commit to financial targets or technology transfer. There is no reference to loss and damage, the finance portion is weaker than the earlier draft and there is no equity.

Countries can consider including their adaptation goals in the Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDC). There is a provision for assessment of the targets set by countries. However, there is no reference to common but differentiated responsibility and no mention of long term finance commitments from the developed countries.

This is a text which few would endorse at first glance, and countries protested that they were not consulted and a text which they had not seen was introduced. As a result, the like-minded developing countries, the Group of 77 plus China, the African Group, and the least developed countries all demanded for time to see the text before heading into the plenary session. Parties said that only the developed world and some other countries were consulted and it was a non-transparent process.

The ADP plenary is scheduled for 10 a.m. on Saturday but it might not be enough to resolve all the pending issues.

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Printable version | Jan 20, 2020 10:40:46 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/energy-and-environment/lima-goes-into-extra-time-to-avoid-weak-outcome/article6689404.ece

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