For some reason, I forgot to cover this session in my last blog. One of the webcasts from the High Level sessions was billed as an ‘informal roundtable’ of ministers. In fact, it was neither informal nor at a round table. Instead, the session was in the traditional format of serried rows of ministers and aides with set speeches which – as the COP President in the Chair kept reminding them – were not on brief.
The brief, however, was issued in advance and challenged the delegates to offer their views against the following questions (with about four minutes for each speaker!):
– How, as part of a balanced outcome at COP 15, can industrialized countries specify quantified emission limitation and reduction objectives and how can developing countries state their efforts to undertake and implement nationally appropriate mitigation actions, enabled by an agreed set of supporting elements?
– What strategic cooperative actions would be most effective in supporting measurable, reportable and verifiable actions by developing countries while allowing their sustainable economic development to accelerate?
– How can countries, especially the most vulnerable, be assisted in preparing themselves for unavoidable climate change? How can resilience be built and economic diversification accelerated?
– How can vulnerable regions assess risk, put in place risk management and risk reduction strategies?
– How can scaled-up international cooperation and support be provided to assist in the urgent implementation of adaptation actions?
– What role should the UNFCCC process play in enhancing international technology cooperation? How to promote more focused action-oriented regional and international technology cooperation programmes and initiatives to accelerate the deployment, diffusion and transfer of technologies?
– What are the most promising approaches for generating measurable, reportable and verifiable financial resources?
(a) What needs to be funded?
(b) How can new and additional funds be generated? (On the basis of voluntary contributions by industrialized countries; through assessed contributions; by reserving a portion of assigned amount units `upfront’; through levies on instruments or mechanisms that are created or continued through the outcome at COP 15?)
– What type of institutional framework will be required?
(a) How can existing institutional arrangements be improved to avoid proliferation of institutions and funds;
(b) What new institutional arrangements can be established to provide new and additional financial resources and investment;
(c) What would be the nature of governance structures;
(d) How should financial support provided through different bilateral and multilateral channels be deployed for measurable, reportable, verifiable action and nationally approved adaptation strategies.
Answers on a postcard, please. Who said the UN lacks ambition?