Australia: Blog: UN climate change negotiations, Cancun, December 2010

Day 4: 2 December - Thursday's cocktail of issues

Sense of direction?

So where is Cancun heading? From discussions in the corridors it still appears that there is considerable uncertainty about what the parties are negotiating towards and that the Conference of the Parties (COP) Presidency is coming under significant pressure. Certainly it does not seem at this stage that a silver bullet has been identified to unlock the discussions, and many long-held views have been repeated in recent days. There are also concerns that discussions between the Mexican Presidency alongside the formal negotiations do not derail the formal negotiations in the same way as happened at Copenhagen. This seems like a tough call for the Mexicans - on the one hand they face the risk of discussions moving on far too slowly without such. On the other hand, as witnessed at Copenhagen, even if such negotiations do lead to an "outcome", the legitimacy of that outcome is likely to be thrown into doubt.

The post-COP picture

Efforts to put a clearer framework around an eventual outcome have been ramped up by the creation of a contact group chaired by Michael Zammit Cutajar, the former Chair of the Ad Hoc Working Group on Long-Term Co-operative Action to Enhance Implementation of the Convention (AWG-LCA), to consider the proposals for new protocols which have been on the table for some time and which were not really thrashed out at Copenhagen. However, this is part of a longer-term strategy. It seems to be the intention that this issue is not one that is expected to be resolved at Cancun and that any new protocol discussions would not be resolved until South Africa. Further, it remains the case that much of the content of those proposals is already being negotiated in the existing working groups. This parallel series of discussions therefore seems to add yet another negotiating stream to the mix. It remains to be seen whether this represents a significant opportunity and a key element to be taken forward at COP17.

Japan and the Kyoto Protocol

Perhaps the importance of this move is underscored by Japan's recent announcement that:

"Japan reiterates its firm position that our 2020 has been pledged under the Copenhagen Accord and that we will never inscribe our target in the Annex B to the Kyoto Protocol under any circumstances and conditions. This is because Japan is aiming at a truly effective global deal. Kyoto 2nd commitment period will never constitute a fair and effective single framework with the participation of all major emitters, which we are aiming at.

There is an argument that we should keep all the options open, not prejudging any legal outcome of the on-going negotiation. It is understandable approach under the non-convergence on this issue. For this very reason, we will never accept any Conference Meeting of the Parties (CMP) decision implying the setting of the 2nd commitment period or provisional extension of the 1st commitment period since this itself will prejudge the legal outcome."

Some might find it ironic that the home of Kyoto ended up applying this apparently lethal injection at an important juncture. Others have seen the writing on the wall for some time - Japan has always been open about the pre-conditions to its position.

The Kyoto Protocol (KP) negotiations

At a briefing yesterday on the negotiations under the AWG-KP discussions, it appears that there have nonetheless been meaningful discussions on the key areas of carry over of Assigned Amount units (AAUs) from the first commitment period to any future commitment period, the length of such commitment period, and on what the appropriate base year/reference year should be for emissions reductions. If it is true that Japan, in addition to the United States (US), will not accept a second Kyoto Protocol commitment period, then it remains to be seen how any of these discussions could be folded into an eventual outcome and how they will marry up with discussions under the AWG-LCA. It also appears that, despite vocal support of the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) in recent CDM contract group discussions, there is reluctance among the parties to commit to the future of market mechanisms post-2012 in the absence of firm targets.

If it goes wrong, please don't tell anyone

Attempts have also been made to limit the fall-out from any perceived failure of the Cancun discussions. It has been made clear that the international negotiations are threatened by the talks potentially being written of by Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs). Further, though the stated aim of the AWG-KP is to negotiate a second commitment period, we have been warned that failure to achieve an agreement on this point at Cancun should not in itself be characterised as a broader failure. Though there is limited time between now and the start of a second commitment period, there do remain two years for negotiations to take place before the first commitment expires. However, as it takes time to get climate change projects registered, without any certainty by mid-2011 there will certainly be limited opportunity to take investment forward in that area. We had another discussion with a major energy company yesterday. The result was a refrain which we have heard repeated on many occasions but one which seems to get lost in the mire of these negotiations. The private sector will deploy huge amounts of money in the coming decades. That can go two ways - the green way or the brown way. A failure to set up national and international frameworks that incentivise "green" and discourage "brown" in the short term will result in "brown lock-in" for the foreseeable future.

CDM Contact Group

Moving back to more immediate concerns, the COP President has asked for a draft decision on guidance to the CDM-EB to be prepared for next week. There is only one further contact group for this decision to be discussed in addition to that which took place yesterday. However, informal discussions will also take place.

A list of issues was proposed for consideration by the parties. Discussions were nonetheless slow to get off the ground yesterday, with issues that are for discussion in other fora, such as the inclusion of Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) in the CDM, being brought into a discussion which could perhaps most usefully be limited to procedural and administrative issues for consideration by the CDM-EB. Despite the CDM-EB apparently being reluctant to be faced with a long "to do" list as they were in Copenhagen, it seems clear that parties still have a long list of matters up for consideration.

Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD) Update

Today is the likely start of the first Ad Hoc Working Group on Long-Term Co-operative Action to Enhance Implementation of the Convention (LCA) meeting on the text for a possible REDD+ decision. As with many other areas, this will initially involve a battle of forms. To recap, the official negotiating text going into Cancun had two optional sets of language - one which was the text from Copenhagen with numerous amendments and bracketing from countries such as Bolivia and Saudi Arabia and one that was essentially the Copenhagen text. In an attempt to move things forward the Chair of the LCA work stream released late last week a text which took the REDD text that was almost agreed at Copenhagen and worked it into the form for a possible decision text. In doing so some changes were included that sought to take things forward. One was the inclusion of a principle of environmental integrity that Bolivia had requested. Another was the inclusion of new text that could enable a decision on the possible sources of finance to be delayed until the next COP. So, rather than deciding now as part of a REDD+ decision, the LCA would be requested to "explore financing options, inter alia, funds and market based sources or a flexible combination for the full implementation of results based actions" and report back at the next COP. The (wishful?) thinking being that by parking this issue, agreement could be reached on other areas.

In the meantime, discussions have been occurring within various negotiating blocs. A number of countries want to work with the Chairs text and see real progress here. However, within groups such as the Group of 77 underdeveloped countries (G77) there has been tension and disagreement as countries such as Bolivia and Saudi Arabia resist engaging with the text on the basis that it does not include their suggestions. It is a measure of the strange world of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) that a country known for its deserts can potentially delay progress on a mechanism that would benefit a significant number of forest nations. One of the critical tests today will be therefore be whether the LCA contact group on REDD agrees to use the Chairs text as its starting point. The week ahead will be tough but there are a number of developing and developed countries committed to finding a way forward - despite the delaying tactics of others.

Day 3: 1 December - Mo' money, mo' money

Hot on the heels of the recent furore over climate finance, reported in the Guardian, the pick of yesterday afternoon's side events related to finance.

It remains the case that it is politically unacceptable in most industrialised countries for governments to agree to transfer the huge amounts of money required to tackle climate change to developing countries by way of grants, particularly in respect of the wealthier developing countries. Any number of reports and government positions point towards the private sector being required to provide in the range of 50 to 80 per cent of the hundreds of millions of dollars needed annually to tackle climate change. Indeed, this was recognised in the Copenhagen Accord, which refers to the "mobilisation" of finance.

How then could such private finance be mobilised and are we on the right lines when considering the institutional arrangements that are required for the disbursement of private, rather than public, finance?

This question was addressed yesterday at a joint side event which included Anant Sundaram, Professor, Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth and Bryce Rudyk, New York University School of Law. It was reported that 83 per cent of existing climate finance was funded "domestically" and 86 per cent was from private sources in 2007. However, the focus on public finance in the context of the international climate negotiations and institutions "misses" a broad range of finance. Further, it is relatively safe to assume, setting aside the proposals for what may be called a "Copenhagen" fund, that private finance mechanisms and institutions are required to grow in this area.

A number of institutional functions that are required in the context of climate finance were identified. These are:

  • Policy and rule-making
  • Securing commitments and raising funds
  • Disbursing funds
  • Promoting institutional coordination and linkage
  • Monitoring performance and securing accountability
  • Compliance

It was felt that many of these functions could be carried out by private entities. In addition, "institutions", do not necessarily have to have a staffed or physical presence but could amount to "norms" such as guidelines or principles that are adopted. Compliance mechanisms could involve not just international sanctions but also private remedies such as contracts.

Shaping these ideas into a working international finance mechanism would require considerable time but may be a way forward, or may be the inevitable result of the current negotiations.

However, it was also highlighted that when we think about securing funds, we need to think about novel means of doing so. One such means is the use of Special Drawing Rights (SDRs). According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the SDR is an international reserve asset, created by the IMF in 1969 to supplement its member countries' official reserves. Its value is based on a basket of four key international currencies, and SDRs can be exchanged for freely usable currencies. More details can be found at There have been several proposals to use SDRs in the context of mobilising climate finance.

A government can use SDRs in different ways, for example it can convert them into hard currency or bolster reserves at its central bank. The conversion of SDRs into currency requires interest to be paid. However, it appears that it could be agreed for SDRs simply to be cancelled for climate response purposes, under which circumstances no interest would require to be paid. This could generate a substantial "pot" of money that could be used in a number of different ways. One alternative, which was discussed yesterday at a side event hosted by the World Future Council, suggested that a Green Money Fund could manage the disbursement of funds generated through entities such as the African Development Bank. This mechanism was not characterised as donating, but as the creation of money. All nations could agree that the new funds should only be used for climate purposes. Apparently such action would not necessarily be inflationary. Everyone's a winner! If only I could get some SDRs to pay for Christmas...

And getting back to the markets....

Yesterday the Conference Meeting of the Parties (CMP) considered reports from the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM)-Executive Board (EB) and Joint Implementation Supervisory Committee (JISC). The Chair of CDM-EB went over the range of changes that have been implemented this year at the CDM-EB, including in relation to registration, issuance and review. The Parties were resolute in their support of the CDM (the European Union (EU) considers it to be an important PART of the international climate framework). Many used the plenary as a platform to call for the continuation of the CDM in the context of a second commitment period and called for clarity over the post-2012 framework. The "usual suspects" took the opportunity to highlight the importance of issues like standardised baselines and the inclusion of Carbon Capture and Storage(CCS) in the CDM. A CMP decision is likely to result but there is a sense that the CDM-EB does not want to be presented with the extensive shopping list that confronted it after Copenhagen, particularly where some of those issues have still not yet been implemented or are bedding down.

On the JI side, the JISC's report has generated significant interest among the relatively small JI club. The concept of offsets within a capped environment is clearly an interesting one, and one that some are seeking to give more air time against a background which seems to assume that JI dies after 2012. However, this is not necessarily the case, and legal memos have recently been written on this point. The JISC report also identifies opportunities in this area.

JI or a JI-like mechanism seems to offer a number of potential advantages. Despite the best efforts of many governments to ensure that every sector is covered by some kind of emissions mitigation policy, there are likely to remain areas where emission reduction projects can be implemented which would benefit from the support of Emissions Reduction Units (ERU) issuance. This would seem to be particularly the case where governments do not have the resources to implement mitigation policies in every sector of the economy.

Day 2: 30 November - Let's get down to business

Yesterday saw the start of "real business", with closed meetings taking place out of the public glare. Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA) and Subsidiary Body for Implementation (SBI), the two subsidiary bodies that feed into the Conference of the Parties (COP) and the Conference Meeting of the Parties (CMP), opened. They have a matter of days to reach conclusions on a broad range of issues, including aviation emissions, the inclusion of Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) as a Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) project type and discussions surrounding standardised baselines.


Many counties are ramping up efforts to deploy carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology as a means of reducing emissions of Carbon dioxide (CO²) to the atmosphere. This includes developing countries such as China. There have been discussions over a long period of time as to whether CCS projects should be eligible as a CDM project type after 2012. Views are strongly split on this issue, with some parties such as Saudi Arabia and Norway highly supportive. Brazil remains strongly against.

At SBSTA32 earlier this year in Bonn, a draft text was developed but no conclusion was reached. It has been forwarded to the current session and SBSTA agreed to continue its work on the basis of the last report of the SBSTA. Long-familiar positions were restated at the SBSTA plenary yesterday. Draft conclusions are to be consulted on during the week for adoption later this week. Informal consultations are to begin tomorrow afternoon.

SBSTA - Standardised baselines

The ability to move towards standardised baselines under the CDM remains a hot topic (see yesterday's blog). This issue is currently being discussed in SBSTA. As for CCS under the CDM, Parties have submitted views on this issue. Yesterday, the European Union (EU) set out a number of reasons for its support of standardised baselines. Brazil is against the proposals. Papua New Guinea (PNG) is supportive of the proposals. As for CCS, informal consultations will be conducted with a view to SBSTA reaching conclusions this week. We will endeavour to keep you appraised of developments!

SBSTA - Aviation and shipping emissions

International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) and the IMO have both made submissions to SBSTA on issues surrounding the regulation of shipping and aviation emissions. Both bodies have climate change policies in place.

ICAO has resolved that States and relevant organizations will work through ICAO to achieve a global annual average fuel efficiency improvement of 2 per cent until 2020 and an aspirational global fuel efficiency improvement rate of 2 per cent per annum from 2021 to 2050, calculated on the basis of volume of fuel used per revenue tonne kilometre performed. It has also resolved that, without any attribution of specific obligations to individual States, ICAO and its member States with relevant organizations will work together to strive to achieve a collective medium term global aspirational goal of keeping the global net carbon emissions from international aviation from 2020 at the same level with the support of member States and to undertake work to develop a framework for market-based measures in international aviation.

On the back of the High-Level Advisory Group on Climate Finance's (AGF) recent report, the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) commented that in any attempt to raise finance for climate change finance and adaptation, the shipping industry should not be liable for double regulation (under both the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and IMO)). Further, the IMO should be required to act in proportion to its emissions, which constitute less than 3 per cent of global emissions. One party went as far as to say that ships should not be used as a milk cow. Perish the thought. This may have been a reference to "cash cow", meaning that shipping emissions should not be regulated simply by way of imposing a tax/levy which is not linked to other issues such as environmental performance.


One issue to have rocked the carbon world in recent months was triggered by an NGO earlier this year requesting a revision of the methodology to measure emission reductions from HFC CDM projects. It was alleged that manufacturers have been "gaming" the CDM system by altering production in order to change the number of CERs that would be issued. The UN released its findings in relation to this issue on Friday. This was therefore of interest at yesterday's CDM-EB questions and answers session.

The CDM-EB has put the relevant methodology on hold. Revised rules will be prepared. However, these rules will only apply to existing projects after their current crediting period expires. The CDM-EB was keen to point out that the recent HFC controversy did not involve any "fraud" and that projects had been acting within the rules.

Another issue that was raised by stakeholders was the integration of sustainable development into the CDM-EB's work. It was pointed out that these issues are largely an issue for host countries to regulate. Members of the CDM-EB also reported on revised CDM procedures. The tentative feedback from interested parties seems to be that things are improving. However, there remains a significant backlog of projects to be worked through and there are still concerns over the length of time required to get projects registered.


Remaining on the topic of market mechanisms, the European Union (EU) held a side event on Joint Implementation (JI) today. The focus was to discuss issues raised in connection with the Annual Report of the Joint Implementation Supervisory Committee to the CMP. A number of issues were considered, including the future of JI after 2012, how JI could be improved and how the provisions of the EU Emissions Trading System Directive could facilitate the further implementation of JI. The CMP will be discussing JI tomorrow. Cancun provides a useful opportunity for Parties to clarify the future role of JI.

Qatar anyone?

Those of you who like to plan in advance are likely to be interested to know that COP 18, 2012, will be held in Qatar. Rumour has it that accommodation is still available.

Day 1 (part 2): 29 November - Cancun Can!

Cancun Can! This was the perhaps ominous message sounded by the outgoing Danish Presidency at yesterday's Conference of the Parties (COP) opening ceremony. Ominous, given the recent fate of "Yes we can!", which was used not only in the United States (US) presidential election campaign but also in the early days of the much maligned COP15.

So can Cancun really?

Christiana Figueres summarised where expectations and hopes currently lie, calling for rich tapestry of decisions. Developed countries need to implement the $28 billion of fast start finance in a transparent and timely manner. The Bali Action Plan should be operationalised. But a number of issues need to be resolved. Under the Kyoto Protocol the danger of a "gap" between the first and any future commitment period needs to be addressed. Signals need to be sent to the private sector to encourage investment. Under the LCA discussions, targets need to be formalised, there needs to be accountability, mobilisation of finance, and the creation of a new fund... The list would seem like a long one, despite Christmas being just around the corner, had most of its elements not been discussed for several years now. The full text can be found on the UN website.

Ominously, in the corridors, a key question was whether or not the Cancun outcome would be sufficient to secure the future of the UN negotiations as a viable way forward. Many have pointed towards progress outside of the process, indicating that "things will happen" in any event. However, there is also a strong school of thought that extra-UN activity does require at least some common sense of purpose and a general direction at a UN level.


In a virtuoso "déjà vu" performance, a short debate ensued during the opening minutes of COP16 in respect of whether the parties should continue to adhere to consensus voting. Consensus was in many ways the undoing of Copenhagen, with all but a handful of Parties willing to adopt the Copenhagen Accord as a formal COP decision. As at Copenhagen (and throughout this year) there was no agreement on this point and the Presidency has organised ongoing consultations. Consensus is one of those "can't live with it, can't live without it" issues.

On the floor

Back in the negotiations, meetings went late into the evening. Some were more ambitious than others, with Grenada calling for a ratifyable, legally-binding agreement from the Ad Hoc Working Group on Long-Term Co-operative Action to Enhance Implementation of the Convention (AWG-LCA), whilst others focussed on the possibility of a balanced package of decisions. The European Union (EU) stressed that there was also a need for a balance between outcomes in the AWG-LCA and Ad Hoc Working Group on Further Commitments for Annex 1 Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (AWG-KP). In the COP/MOP many of the opening statements were familiar, with some parties calling for increased clarity on targets and others seeking more certainty on "how to get there" first (market mechanisms, accounting rules, etc). The opening of the AWG-KP began with a reminder that the AWG-KP (whose mandate was extended by a year at Copenhagen) is intended to conclude and report to the COP at Cancun. The same is true for the AWG-LCA. The rate of these somewhat plagued negotiating bodies will be interesting to behold.

The halls are alive...

... with the sound of music. Those of us in the EU's side event on standardised baselines were treated to a good hour or so of traditional Mexican musical entertainment. This did distract slightly from the central messages being conveyed: The Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) requires reform, though progress has been made; standardised baselines may represent a way forward in order to achieving better geographical disbursement of projects and reducing barriers to project implementation; this will be further investigated in detail.

However, without such musical accompaniment, the halls at Cancun Messe would have been unusually empty. There seem to be a number of reasons for that. The absence of negotiators and their teams (the Moon Palace was much livelier) scurrying between meetings leads to a lack of dynamism. The Cancun Messe is really huge and is a sensible size for the task at hand. Many observers seem simply to have stayed away or are coming for a few days. Finally, there were reports of people spending as much as three hours stuck on buses trying to get to the venue. The business Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) (BINGO) meeting, which was crammed full at Copenhagen, counted only a handful of representatives. Many were reportedly still in transit to the venue.

Day 1 (part 1): 29 November - Andale! Andale! (Starting with REDD)

The buses are still empty on the slow drive along a broad, palm tree-lined highway that winds its way from where most of the hotels are to the Cancun Messe. A journey that took 45 minutes yesterday takes no longer today, perhaps because of the system of "Zil lanes" which has been implemented. Is this true just for the early bird or will transport logistics start to hamper access to negotiations or side events?

The Cancun Messe itself is a large, new conference centre. From the outside, the cream paintwork does little to soften its austerity. This will be the domain of observers, including both business and environmental Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs). Negotiations themselves will take place at the Moon Palace, a more typical Cancun beach resort. Hopefully this location will facilitate discussions, at least among negotiators, if not between them and the outside world.

We will report back on the opening plenaries on Tuesday morning London time, in the mean time Andrew Hedges has painted a portrait of the current issues surrounding the Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD) negotiations, which are hoped to bear fruit.

Forest Faultlines - Key challenges in reaching a REDD+ decision at Cancun

The strapline for REDD+ since Copenhagen has been consistent: an almost agreed text that, with some negotiation and goodwill at Cancun, could move forward as a COP decision. Nothing in the UNFCCC negotiations is ever that easy though. In practice, as Cancun commences there remain significant challenges to reaching an independent REDD+ decision as part of a "balanced package" outcome.

A Quick Recap

The dominant conceptual theme for forests and climate change at present is Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD+). This encompasses not only reducing rates of deforestation and forest degradation (the REDD element) but also enhancement of forest carbon stocks, conservation and sustainable management of forests (the + element). Although the country parties at Copenhagen failed to formally agree a new regulated international mechanism under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to support REDD+, the almost agreed draft text provided some clear guidance on principles, including:

  • participation under the mechanism should be voluntary and in accordance with a country's capabilities and national circumstances;
  • a definition of the scope of the activities that fall under the mechanism (at present, this is likely to cover the full scope of REDD+ outlined above);
  • the safeguards relevant to REDD+ activities, including the prevention of leakage, ensuring participation of stakeholders such as indigenous peoples and ensuring existing forests are not converted to plantations;
  • the elements to be developed by developing countries wishing to participate, such as national action plans, forest reference levels and monitoring and reporting systems ;
  • recognition that a country's ability to participate under the mechanism should proceed in phases which move from capacity building to implementation and finally to results based actions; and
  • a work program for UNFCCC technical bodies to assist the mechanism to become operational.
Themes from Nagoya

The recent conference of the parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) in Nagoya highlighted some fundamental ideological issues that will recur in the coming two weeks.

The forum for these issues was the heated discussions around the draft decision for the Strategy for Resource Mobilisation. Proposals developed during the year through CBD Secretariat organised workshops were included in the draft decision text. These proposals centred on policy options for innovative financial mechanisms. Examples included, payment for ecosystem service schemes, biodiversity offset mechanisms and markets for green products. A number of developing countries now developing national REDD+ plans under multilateral initiatives such as the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility are considering utilising PES schemes to achieve their objectives.

Bolivia on behalf of ALBA (an alternative trade bloc created in 2004 to develop alternatives to 'profit and the free market' which also includes Venzuala, Cuba, Bolivia, Ecuador and Nicaragua) led the critique of the proposals to consider innovative financial mechanisms. As a result, the draft text on these mechanisms was separated into another decision text. With limited time and a text that soon became strewn with brackets, the Mexican chair of the working group successfully proposed the withdrawal of the document.

Challenges at Cancun

The substantive concerns of Bolivia and other Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America (Spanish: Alianza Bolivariana para los Pueblos de Nuestra América) (ALBA) member countries are likely to be aired again at Cancun. Key concerns can be drawn from the recent declaration issued by ALBA (issued on 5 November 2010). These derive from their view that proposals such as carbon markets or the production of environmental goods and services amount to the commodification of nature. Their stated commitment is to prevent "capitalism from continuing to expand in the spheres that are essential to life and nature".

Throughout 2010 these concerns have translated into interventions by Bolivia and other countries to propose the re-opening of much of the draft REDD+ text agreed at Copenhagen. Examples include proposed text such as that REDD+ mechanisms "not be market mechanisms on forest related actions" or that they "not be offset mechanisms that implies developed countries will use emission reductions that were made by developing countries in order to fulfil emission reduction commitments".

With some deft work by the chair in Bonn earlier this year, these and other proposals to re-open the text have been included in a separate option to the negotiating text going into Cancun. Option 1 is therefore the original Copenhagen text with an amalgamation of new text proposals and bracketing of existing text. Option 2 is the Copenhagen text as it stood at the end of Copenhagen.

The challenge will be to move forward with Option 2 but in a manner that can address or remove the objections of the countries behind the significant changes included in the Option 1 text. Their resolution is critical. As the AGF has recently demonstrated, there are significant challenges to reaching the billions annually required to fund mitigation and adaptation if the sources of such finance are limited to developed country public finance. The key will be ensure the means to bring in private finance (whether by carbon markets or other means) is designed and implemented in a way that there are strong safeguards against negative outcomes. To develop these in the short timescales available to prevent dangerous climate change will require recognition under a REDD+ text that such mechanisms can play a role alongside increased and sustained public finance.


The Norton Rose Group climate change team will be attending the United Nations Climate Change Conference to be held in Cancun, Mexico, from 29 November to 10 December 2010.

The team will be providing insight both before the negotiations start and during the negotiations as they happen. Daily updates will be posted on this blog, and can be received on email by sending a reply email. Follow the team on twitter at

The Conference encompasses
  • The sixteenth Conference of the Parties (COP) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
  • The sixth Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (Conference Meeting of the Parties (CMP))
  • The thirty-third session of the Subsidiary Body for Implementation (SBI)
  • The thirty-third session of the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA)
  • The fifteenth session of the Ad Hoc Working Group on Further Commitments for Annex I Parties under the Kyoto Protocol (AWG-KP)
  • The thirteenth session of the Ad Hoc Working Group on Long-term Cooperative Action under the UNFCCC (AWG-LCA)

Please see the links to our "Building blocks" (pdf 201 KB), "Understanding the process" (pdf 193 KB) and "NAMAs" (pdf 200 KB) briefings for Cancun on the right hand side of this page. This will be updated with further publications during the week.

View the recording of our pre-Cancun climate change negotiations webinar, hosted by Tim Baines and Andrew Hedges of Norton Rose LLP.

Overview schedule of the Conference.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

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    The documents and related graphics published on this server could include technical inaccuracies or typographical errors. Changes are periodically added to the information herein. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers may make improvements and/or changes in the product(s) and/or the program(s) described herein at any time.


    Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:

    • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
    • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
    • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.

    Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.

    Information Collection and Use

    We require site users to register with Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to view the free information on the site. We also collect information from our users at several different points on the websites: this is so that we can customise the sites according to individual usage, provide 'session-aware' functionality, and ensure that content is acquired and developed appropriately. This gives us an overall picture of our user profiles, which in turn shows to our Editorial Contributors the type of person they are reaching by posting articles on Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) – meaning more free content for registered users.

    We are only able to provide the material on the Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) site free to site visitors because we can pass on information about the pages that users are viewing and the personal information users provide to us (e.g. email addresses) to reputable contributing firms such as law firms who author those pages. We do not sell or rent information to anyone else other than the authors of those pages, who may change from time to time. Should you wish us not to disclose your details to any of these parties, please tick the box above or tick the box marked "Opt out of Registration Information Disclosure" on the Your Profile page. We and our author organisations may only contact you via email or other means if you allow us to do so. Users can opt out of contact when they register on the site, or send an email to with “no disclosure” in the subject heading

    Mondaq News Alerts

    In order to receive Mondaq News Alerts, users have to complete a separate registration form. This is a personalised service where users choose regions and topics of interest and we send it only to those users who have requested it. Users can stop receiving these Alerts by going to the Mondaq News Alerts page and deselecting all interest areas. In the same way users can amend their personal preferences to add or remove subject areas.


    A cookie is a small text file written to a user’s hard drive that contains an identifying user number. The cookies do not contain any personal information about users. We use the cookie so users do not have to log in every time they use the service and the cookie will automatically expire if you do not visit the Mondaq website (or its affiliate sites) for 12 months. We also use the cookie to personalise a user's experience of the site (for example to show information specific to a user's region). As the Mondaq sites are fully personalised and cookies are essential to its core technology the site will function unpredictably with browsers that do not support cookies - or where cookies are disabled (in these circumstances we advise you to attempt to locate the information you require elsewhere on the web). However if you are concerned about the presence of a Mondaq cookie on your machine you can also choose to expire the cookie immediately (remove it) by selecting the 'Log Off' menu option as the last thing you do when you use the site.

    Some of our business partners may use cookies on our site (for example, advertisers). However, we have no access to or control over these cookies and we are not aware of any at present that do so.

    Log Files

    We use IP addresses to analyse trends, administer the site, track movement, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses are not linked to personally identifiable information.


    This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that Mondaq (or its affiliate sites) are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of these third party sites. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this Web site.

    Surveys & Contests

    From time-to-time our site requests information from users via surveys or contests. Participation in these surveys or contests is completely voluntary and the user therefore has a choice whether or not to disclose any information requested. Information requested may include contact information (such as name and delivery address), and demographic information (such as postcode, age level). Contact information will be used to notify the winners and award prizes. Survey information will be used for purposes of monitoring or improving the functionality of the site.


    If a user elects to use our referral service for informing a friend about our site, we ask them for the friend’s name and email address. Mondaq stores this information and may contact the friend to invite them to register with Mondaq, but they will not be contacted more than once. The friend may contact Mondaq to request the removal of this information from our database.


    From time to time Mondaq may send you emails promoting Mondaq services including new services. You may opt out of receiving such emails by clicking below.

    *** If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of services offered by Mondaq you may opt out by clicking here .


    This website takes every reasonable precaution to protect our users’ information. When users submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected using firewalls and other security technology. If you have any questions about the security at our website, you can send an email to

    Correcting/Updating Personal Information

    If a user’s personally identifiable information changes (such as postcode), or if a user no longer desires our service, we will endeavour to provide a way to correct, update or remove that user’s personal data provided to us. This can usually be done at the “Your Profile” page or by sending an email to

    Notification of Changes

    If we decide to change our Terms & Conditions or Privacy Policy, we will post those changes on our site so our users are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it. If at any point we decide to use personally identifiable information in a manner different from that stated at the time it was collected, we will notify users by way of an email. Users will have a choice as to whether or not we use their information in this different manner. We will use information in accordance with the privacy policy under which the information was collected.

    How to contact Mondaq

    You can contact us with comments or queries at

    If for some reason you believe Mondaq Ltd. has not adhered to these principles, please notify us by e-mail at and we will use commercially reasonable efforts to determine and correct the problem promptly.

    By clicking Register you state you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions