Cancun Agreement: A Step in the Right Direction ? (P-37)

Cancun Agreement: A Step in the Right Direction ? (P-37)

Publication details

  • Monday | 20 Dec, 2010
  • Shakeel Ahmed Ramay
  • Policy Briefs/Papers
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Background The Bali summit of UNFCCC was a turning point for climate change negotiations after Kyoto Protocol. Countries recognized that inactions to combat climate change will increase the cost and losses to the planet. The difficulty of reaching a consensus among all countries during negotiations was realized at the outset of the Bali summit. One of the major issues of contention was that of mitigation as developed countries persistently demanded that developing countries contribute in mitigation efforts. However, at end of Bali, the Bali Action Plan was formulated on which all countries agreed. It was also decided that negotiations will be built on the basis of the Bali Action Plan. The Bali Action Plan has four pillars; Finance, Technology Transfer, Adaptation and Mitigation. At the core of the agreement lay the recognition that standards of equity and a comprehensive shared vision will act as the guiding principles at future negotiations. It was also decided that at Copenhagen UNFCCC will reach at some decision. However, right after the Bali Summit differences become more evident and began widening amongst countries. Developed countries began employing different tactics to escape or at least delay actions stemming from their responsibility based on historical burden of emissions it. At the same time, developed countries started to ask developing countries to do more in terms of mitigation directly at the cost of national development and poverty alleviation programs. Emerging economies are among the prime target of all this debate and demands. Developing countries, including emerging economies, are more focused on adaptation due to their higher vulnerability to climate change. At the same time developing are offering to contribute in mitigation efforts but these commitments are conditional to the assistance from developed countries in the form of financial resources and technology.