Objective of the group in terms of discussion and product

• Discuss and explore the proposals and contents that should contain a shared vision that is inclusive and representative to define the new climate change regime in the long term.

• Establish a limit on the increase temperature of the planet and the global concentration of greenhouse gases.

• Discuss the elements of the “Copenhagen Accord ” which not necessarily respond to the Bali Action Plan and the ultimate goal of the United Nations Convention on climate change.

Main issues to discuss with the group

• What should we understand as a “shared vision”?  

• What measures can help to achieve this shared vision?

 • What are the dangers of accepting an increase equal to or greater than 2 ° C ?

 • Considering the scientific studies presented to date. What should be the limit at the temperature increase that we should consider as suitable until 2100?

What global concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere represents the increase and when global emissions must reach their peak?

• Why Copenhagen understanding is not shared vision?

Background

In Section 2 of the UNFCCC United Nations provides that the ultimate goal “is to stabilize greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system. Such a level should be achieved within a time-frame sufficient to allow ecosystems to adapt naturally to climate change, to ensure that food production is not threatened and to enable economic development to proceed in a sustainable manner. “Http://unfccc.int/ resource / docs / convkp / convsp.pdf

In 2005, during the Conference of the Parties 11 developed in Montreal Canada, the parties resolved to “establish a dialogue (…) in order to exchange experiences and analyze strategic approaches for long-term cooperative actions to tackle climate change. ” “Further resolves that The dialogue is an open and non-binding exchange of views, information and ideas in support of enhanced implementation of the Convention and does not initiate any negotiations to result in new commitments.” http://unfccc.int/resource/docs/2005/cop11/spa/l04r01s.pdf. The dialogue should

In 2007, the 13th Conference of the Parties was held in Bali, the same since its inauguration held a Divisive Debate on whether there is need for comprehensive Negotiations to change the Kyoto Protocol or replace it with a “new” agreement. Many developed countries proposed that should extend from Bali Negotiations for a post-2012 agreement to include greater commitment, and more binding possibly, in developing countries or at least in some of them.

Proposals focused on the Possibility of “updating” the two years of informal dialogue on “the long-term cooperation to address climate change” towards a formal negotiation under a new Negotiating Group to Oversee discussions on various components of a new climate regime, “according to the newsletter produced by The Third World Network entitled “Beginning divided into the climate discussions in Bali, the North is pushing for a new agreement.  “Also in the newsletter entitled” South North criticizes the failure of the climate commitment, “stated that Portugal on behalf of the European Union proposed several elements such as pillars of future work, including:” Developing a Shared Vision to achieve the ultimate objective of the Convention, including long-term goals. http://www.twnside.org.sg/title2/climate/fullpdf/balifullinclcover.pdf • The Ad Hoc Working Group on Long Term Cooperation was created with the Decision 1 CP.13 Bali, a decision that is known as the ” Bali Action Plan. This plan aims To achieve full, effective and sustained implementation of the Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), For which has 5 pillars of work, one of which corresponds to the shared vision of long term cooperation. http:/ / unfccc.int/resource/docs/2007/cop13/spa/06s.pdf

“Also in the newsletter entitled” South criticizes the North for the failure on climate change commitments, “stated that Portugal on behalf of the European Union proposed several elements such as pillars of future work, including:” Developing a Shared Vision to achieve the ultimate objective of the Convention, including long-term goals.

http://www.twnside.org.sg/title2/climate/fullpdf/balifullinclcover.pdf

The Ad Hoc Working Group on Long Term Cooperation was created with the 1 CP.13 Bali decisions, a decision that is known as the “Bali Action Plan. This plan aims to achieve full, effective and sustained implementation of the Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), for which has 5 pillars of work, one of which corresponds to the shared vision of cooperation long term. http://unfccc.int/resource/docs/2007/cop13/spa/06s.pdf

            Development debate  

One of the main topics began when discussing what is meant by “shared vision”, but what is clear is that its creation was due to the interest of developed countries to exert pressure on countries least developed to commit on reducing their emissions as well, thus transferring their historic responsibility for emissions of those greenhouse gases and therefore climate change and its adverse effects.

 • In February 2007 the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the results of its Fourth Assessment Report of Climate Change on the planet, known as IPCC-AR4. The results alert for an increase in global average temperatures between 1.8 (optimistic scenario) and 4.0 º C (pessimistic scenario) to 2100. This increase may be even greater (6.4 º C) if the population and economy continue to grow rapidly and if heavy consumption of fossil fuels sustained. Observational evidence of the continents and oceans show that many natural systems have been affected by regional climate changes, primarily the temperature rise

There are preliminary indicators that some human systems have already been affected by droughts and floods. Biological systems are vulnerable to climate change and some will be irreversibly damaged. http://www.ipcc.ch/pdf/assessment-report/ar4/syr/ar4_syr_sp.pdf

  • However, recent scientific investigators show that even if “the IPCC’s  Fourth Assessment Report of Evaluation released in 2007 (AR4) still provides a solid scientific base-line for climate policies, there is evidence that climate change may happen faster, or could have more severe impacts than expected”. 

http://www.rivm.nl/bibliotheek/rapporten/500114013A.pdf

  • Developed countries proved a great interest in focusing the discussion around the goal of a long term global greenhouse gas emissions reduction, as in defining the year in which global emissions should reach their summit during negotiations, workshops and positions presented between 2008 and 2009. These elements are in fact fundamental due to the need of defining the maximum increase that average temperature should reach, so that Mother Earth is less affected. This limit should be set according to scientific advances. 
  • On the other hand, developing countries recognized that even if this long term emissions reductions objective is important, this is not the only one. A shared vision can be seen as the roof of a house, which essentially has (but not in a limited way) four pillars, established within the Bali Action Plan, which are: i) adaptation, ii) mitigation, iii) technology and iv) financing and investment. However, beyond these pillars, for a full, effective and sustained implementation of the Framework Convention on Climate Change, the discussion must include the causes of climate change, “development” models of this phenomenon, and alternatives to contribute for a harmonic coexistence and balance with Mother Earth.
  • “Copenhagen understanding” notes in its first paragraph that “To achieve the ultimate objective of the Convention (…) we shall, recognizing the scientific view that the increase in global temperature should be below 2 degrees Celsius, on the basis of equity and in the context of sustainable development, enhance our long-term cooperative action to combat climate change”. The second paragraph notes: “We agree that deep cuts in global emissions are required according to science, and as documented by the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report with a view to reduce global emissions so as to hold the increase in global temperature below 2 degrees Celsius, and take action to meet this objective consistent with science and on the basis of equity. We should cooperate in achieving the peaking of global and national emissions as soon as possible”. Finally, the twelfth paragraph notes:” We call for an assessment of the implementation of this Accord to be completed by 2015.(…) This would include consideration of strengthening the long-term goal referencing various matters presented by the science, including in relation to temperature rises of 1.5 degrees Celsius”.

http://unfccc.int/files/meetings/cop_15/application/pdf/cop15_cph_auv.pdf

LEADING POSITIONS 

  • The discussion about a “shared vision” is a central topic for negotiations, because the increase of average worldwide temperature of 2 degrees Celsius implies that several islands, glaciers and animal and vegetable species could disappear. The Alliance of Small Islands States (AOSIS), the African Group and Least Developed Countries, proposed the goal to be below an increase of 1.5 degrees Celsius. The Plurinational State of Bolivia declared that the goal should be near to 1 degree to save the humanity and minimize Mother Earth’s damage.
  • According to the Scientific and Technical Briefing presented for the AOSIS’ COP15: “the targets of 1.5 degrees Celsius rise and 350 ppm CO2 are a death sentence for coral reefs and a suicide pact for low lying islands and coasts.” (…) “Even a target of 350 ppm is UNACCEPTABLE if we are to avoid dangerous interference with the Earth climate system, causing inconceivable ecological, environmental, and economic disaster.” (…) “Greenhouse gas buildup MUST BE REVERSED, and CO2 reduced to levels of around 260 ppm, below Pre-Industrial levels”. http://www.globalcoral.org/AOSIS%20Briefing%202009.pdf
  • James Hansen of The National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the first scientist who gave a warned about climate change more than twenty years ago, wrote recently: “If humanity wants to preserve a planet resembling the one developed by civilizations and in which Earth is adapted, paleoclimate and climate change that’s having place suggest that CO2 must reduce the current 385 parts per million to a maximum of 350 parts per million”. http://www.350.org/es/acerca-de-350/ciencia
  • During the Group “G8[1],” Countries Summit, developed in L’Aquila, Italia between July 8th and 10th of 2009, a declaration was prepared in which countries raised “We recognize the broad scientific view that the increase in global average temperature above pre-industrial levels ought not to exceed 2°C. Because this global challenge can only be met by a global response, we reiterate our willingness to share with all countries the goal of achieving at least a 50% reduction of global emissions by 2050, recognizing that this implies that global emissions need to peak as soon as possible and decline thereafter. As part of this, we also support a goal of developed countries reducing emissions of greenhouse gas in aggregate by 80% or more by 2050 compared to 1990 or more recent years”. http://www.g8italia2009.it/static/G8_Allegato/G8_Declaration_08_07_09_final,0.pdf
  • The VIIth ALBA TCP[2] Summit declaration, developed in La Havana, Cuba, between December 13th and 14th of 2009, recognized that: “… in order to achieve the goal of stabilizing greenhouse gas concentrations (GHGs) in the atmosphere at a level that prevents dangerous interference with the climate system, Anex 1[3] countries should return to lower greenhouse gas concentrations, well below 300 ppm of GHGs, in order to return to temperatures as close as possible to preindustrial levels”.  http://www.alternativabolivariana.org/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=5726

During the negotiation session in Barcelona in November 2009, “Developing countries raised that the shared vision should reflect a set of goals,” according to the bulletin issued by the Third World Network.

 www.twnside.org.sg/title2/climate/news/…/TWN.barcelona.up06.doc,  position that was made official by the Plurinational State of Bolivia argued that the “shared vision” should include a set of objectives Overall containing specific objectives to: 1) adaptation, 2) mitigation, 3) provision of financial resources, 4) transfer of environmental technologies, 5) developing capacities and 6) emission reductions over time. Therefore, it could not only define a goal for increasing the temperature but should comprehensively discuss the measures which were to be shared to achieve the goal to be agreed. Additionally, states that “.. the shared vision should include a Declaration on the Rights of the Mother Earth and all beings that inhabit it.” “There is a real need to change the financial and economic system and consumption and production patterns” 

Reference documents
• Target atmospheric CO2: Where should Humanity Aim? James Hansen et al.
• Newsletter produced by Third World Network (TWN) entitled “Home divided into the climate discussions in Bali, the North is pushing for a new agreement” and “The North South criticizes the failure of the climate commitment”
• Science of the 350.

• Scientific-Technical Summary submitted to the Association of Small Island States for the COP15.

• Declaration of the Eighth Summit of ALBA-TCP.

• Summit Declaration of the Countries of the “G8” developed in L’Aquila, Italy
• Plurinational State of Bolivia position´s on shared vision.


[1] Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia, United Kingdom and the United States.

[2] The Bolivarian Alliance for the People Of Our America – People’s Trade Agreement

[3] Denominative used in climate change negotiations designating developed countries.