The UN Climate Change Conference in Bonn begins today and is to conclude on June 17. The conference will include the 34th sessions of the Subsidiary Body for Implementation (SBI) and the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA). It also comprises the second part of the 16th session of the Ad Hoc Working Group on Further Commitments for Annex I Parties under the Kyoto Protocol (AWG-KP) and the second part of the 14th session of the Ad Hoc Working Group on Long-term Cooperative Action under the Convention (AWG-LCA).
The SBI is expected to tackle national communications, the financial mechanism, least developed countries (LDCs), capacity building and technology. Following the Cancun Agreements, the SBI’s provisional agenda (FCCC/SBI/2011/1) also includes proposed new items on: work programmes relating to reporting by Annex I and non-Annex I countries; adaptation; and response measures. The SBSTA is expected to discuss the Nairobi work programme on impacts, vulnerability and adaptation; methodological issues; technology; and research and systematic observation. Its provisional agenda (FCCC/SBSTA/2011/1) also contains proposed new items, including the work programme on agriculture, and impacts of climatechange on water and water resource management. Under the agenda item on reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries (REDD), the SBSTA is also expected to create a new work programme on issues identified in Decision 1/CP.16, which is part of the Cancun Agreements.
Having reached agreement on its agenda (FCCC/AWGLCA/20011/5) in April, the resumed AWG-LCA 14 is expected to deal with substantive issues for the first time since the adoption of the Cancun Agreements last December. Meanwhile, the resumed AWG-KP 16 is expected to negotiate overarching policy issues in a contact group established in Bangkok.
In another development, the 33rd session of the Intergovernmental Panel on ClimateChange (IPCC) was held from 10-13 May 2011 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. The session was attended by 331participants, including 276 representatives from governments and 39 delegates from UN, intergovernmental, and observer organizations. During this session, the Panel accepted the Summary for Policy Makers (SPM) of the Special Report on Renewable Energy Sources and ClimateChange Mitigation (SRREN) approved by Working Group III, and addressed issues such as the programme and budget, matters related to other international bodies, and progress reports.
A very interesting read, the SRREN highlights some enabling policy requirements to maximise the mitigation potential of RE, to wit: 1) Policies have promoted an increase in RE capacity installations by helping to overcome various barriers. [1.4, 11.1, 11.4, 11.5, 11.6]. Barriers to RE deployment include: a) institutional and policy barriers related to existing industry, infrastructure and regulation of the energy system; b) market failures, including non-internalised environmental and health costs, where applicable; c) lack of general information and access to data relevant to the deployment of RE and lack of technical and knowledge capacity; and d) barriers related to societal and personal values and affecting the perception and acceptance of RE technologies. [1.4, 9.5.1, 22.214.171.124]; 2) Public resesarch and development (R&D) investments in RE technologies are most effective when complemented by other policy instruments, particularly deployment policies that simultaneously enhance demand for new technologies. Together, R&D and deployment policies create a positive feedback cycle, inducing private sector investment. Enacting deployment policies early in the development of a given technology can accelerate learning by inducing private R&D, which in turn further reduces costs and provides additional incentives for using the technology. [11.5.2]; 3) Some policies have been shown to be effective and efficient in rapidly increasing RE deployment. However, there is no one-size-fits-all policy. Experience shows that different policies or combinations of policies can be more effective and efficient depending on factors such as the level of technological maturity, affordable capital, ease of integration into the existing system and the local and national RE resource base. Etc.
I am attaching the SRREN summary version for policymakers.
All the best,
Zelda DT Soriano
Political Advisor, Greenpeace Southeast Asia
06/06/2011 – 12:00