A COP17 Explainer
With all the coverage of the current UN climate talks in Durban, it’s not always easy to tell exactly what’s going on. There are tons of issues on the table, and for those of us on the outside, it can be a bit confusing to figure out what’s being discussed and what needs to get done.
Ecosystem Marketplace has a great explainer on the nuts and bolts of COP17.
The Kyoto Protocol is the biggest issue up for discussion, and it’s a contentious one. Most developed countries signed on to the agreement, meaning they committed to slashing greenhouse gases. But developing countries didn’t, and that’s split the two sides down the middle. The first part of the Kyoto Protocol runs out next year, and developed countries won’t hit the emissions target they originally agreed to.
But it also gets more specific, like REDD (Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation). That’s a way to prevent greenhouse gas emissions from deforestation. Luckily, deforestation is an issue both developing AND developed countries can agree on, and they’re hammering out more details in Durban right now.
Once you’re armed with all that information, it’s a little bit easier to understand what is and more importantly isn’t happening at COP17.
DateDecember 1, 2011
Brazil’s new forest law
As the world tries to find ways the reduce global emission in Durban, Eco, a publication of Climate Action Network CAN at COP17, is reporting on Brazils plans of igniting a real carbon bomb. A bill to change the country’s Forest Law is supposedly about to be approved, resulting in the increase of deforestation. The proposed bill, they say, will be sent to President Dilma Roussef for final cinsideration in coming weeks. One of the foreseeable consequences is that an area almost the size of France and Great Britain combined will loose legal protection, according to estimates presented by the Brazilian government itself. Since Brazil will be hosting the Rio+20 con fence next year, the situation is even more delicate.
In the corridors at Durban, these developments are causing considerable consternation. It is expected that Brazil President Dilma Roussef will send a clear message to the world that the country will meet all commitments announced previously in fighting climate change and protecting the Brazil forest.
DateNovember 30, 2011
TagsBrazil, CAN, carbon, climate, climate action network, cop17, Durban, forest, forum, South Africa, world climate conference
Fossil of the Day Award
It’s been a bad day for Canada at the COP17 yesterday – since it’s been awarded the first Fossil of the Day Award in Durban. The Climate Action Network, a worldwide network of roughly 500 Non-Governmental Organizations, said there were credible reports saying that before the end of the year, Canada is going to formally withdraw from the Kyoto Protocol. Canada even won second place following statements by their environment minister, who said, that Canada came to Durban “to play hardball” with the developing countries. The 3rd place fossil of the day had been awarded to the UK, following revelations “that UK ministers have done a deal with the Canadian government to support the entry of tar sand into the European fuel supply chain”.
The Fossil of the Day award were first presented at the climate talks in 1999 in Berlin, initiated by the German NGO Forum.
DateNovember 29, 2011
A CO2 budget for everyone on earth
German Minister for the Environment, Norbert Röttgen, is pleading for a CO2 emission limit for everyone on earth. It’s going to be difficult climate talks in Durban at the COP17 these upcoming weeks. (At least everyone agrees on that.) But to come to terms on climate protection goals, he says in an interview with Der Spiegel, a German weekly newsmagazine, inevitably there has to be a CO2-budget for the emission of greenhouse gases per capita in the future.
DateNovember 27, 2011