For Part 1 on the Kyoto Protocol negotiations click here

The Mandate for the AWG-LCA

As the Climate Change Convention only has principles and general objectives, and the Kyoto Protocol is limited to mitigation issues only, the  Bali Action Plan decided in 2007 that the Convention should be implemented in all the  relevant issues: mitigation, adaptation, finance, technology and capacity building. In order to bring all those aspects, as well as the Kyoto Protocol, in a general framework, the chapter of Shared Vision was introduced.

By this decision a working group on ‘Long Term Cooperative Action’ (AWG-LCA)  was installed, and mandated to find an outcome on all relevant implementation issues.

At the time of the decision to build out the AWG-LCA, the working group on the second commitment period for the Kyoto Protocol, had been working two years already, even though without any clear advance in their work. By creating two parallel working groups, a two-track process was created, under the name of the ‘Bali Road Map’. Both working groups were mandated to finish their work in 2009 in Copenhagen.

The way up to Copenhagen

During 2008 and 2009, numerous subgroups were created, and hundreds of pages of negotiating text were produced, mainly on the basis of submissions by parties.

Despite all the hard work, and the momentum created, it was very clear that the positions of developed and developing countries were very divergent, and no agreement could be reached. Even worse, because all the normal negotiation procedures were set aside, and a little group of countries tried to impose a text which came out of the blue, under the name “the Copenhagen Accord”.

But there was no agreement at all over the Accord, as several parties oposed it during the closing plenery of COP15, and several other refused to sign it later on. So the Accord was only ‘taken note of’, which is just a nice way of saying: “we know there is a document like this, but it has no legal status at all”.

From Copenhagen to Cancun

Bolivia, one of the main opponents of the Copenhagen Accord, decided that now it was time for the people to have their say on the climate, and organised the World People’s Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth, in Tiquipaya, April 2010. 35000 people, coming from all continents and representing a huge variety of social movements and organizations, made in a very constructive way the Peoples Agreement.

Bolivia introduced all the important elements of the Peoples Accord in the negotiation texts in the run-up to Cancun. Nevertheless, the proposals were hardly allowed to be in the text, but were actually never talked about, and at late hours in Cancun, all swiped of the table.

Bolivia rejected the ‘Cancun Agreements’ for many reasons more than just the absence of all of the Tiquipaya proposals: in the first place for being a non-agreement, as it didn’t agree at all on the main issue – sufficiently ambitious mitigation commitments to assure the stabilization of the climate. In the second place because it opened the doors to the end of the Kyoto Protocol, and its replacement with a voluntary pledge system. And in the third place because the filosofy of attending the climate problem is through the commodification of nature, and more precisely the enhancement of the carbon markets.

The agenda for 2011

In the first negotiation of 2011, developed countries pressed for an agenda that would only ‘implement Cancun’. Taking into account that Cancun didn´t reach an agreement on the most important issues – like commitments with a compliance regime – and many other important elements of the Bali Action Plan (BAP) were left out, the developing countries demanded an agenda that would implement the whole BAP. It took a week of negotiation time, but it was essential to direct work in the right direction.

Current negotiations

In the Bonn and Panama sessions parties worked on the texts for the outcome of the different points of the agenda. In most groups the facilitators proposed texts, which are grouped together here.
After Panama many parties made submissions, in order for the facilitators to prepare updated facilitators notes in the runup to Durban.

The Chair also presented a Scenario Note, in which he explains how he pretends the negotiations would develop.

After one week of negotiations, a new compiled negotiation text and its addendum have been published.

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