Batilda Burian, Minister for Environment, United Republic of Tanzania, discusses the African walk-out during the COP Plenary on December 14, 2009, speaking at Climate and Development Days.

As part of our COP15 class this semester at FES, our Pod has been working with Ecuador. During the past months, we mostly focused on sectoral approaches to mitigation, and how certain schemes could translate for the country. At the COP, we have transitioned into being extra eyes and ears for the understaffed, overworked Ecuadorian delegation. An FES alumna – now the head of climate change for Ecuador – has been our main contact. Their delegation consists of about ten people – roughly one-seventh the number that Yale has sent as observers.

With the trend in open-turned-closed sessions and limited NGO access, I feel like I learn more about the negotiations from the Earth Negotiations Bulletin and through random contacts than from physically being here. Seeing how these international…

Copenhagen negotiations came near the brink of disaster this morning after the Africa Group, supported by the LDCs, walked out of the LCA process. They want the Kyoto Protocol track finished and a second commitment period agreed before continuing with the LCA negotiations and are concerned that developed countries will push to collapse the two talks into one, effectively killing the KP. Frantic high-level closed door meetings were happening this morning as Parties waited in the plenary for a briefing from the Danish Presidency, which finally began three hours late at 2:30pm.

I am writing from inside the plenary, where Connie Hedergard, Danish Environment Minister, seemed to put the nail in a coffin of a legally-binding agreement. In her words “The outcome of the Copenhagen Process will be a…

I happened to walk past the Denmark Climate Consortium “Global Platform – Multiple Solutions” in the main atrium directly after attending a session on indigenous people’s views on climate change and its solutions. On a screen in the area, video of industrial agriculture and solar panels on cookie-cutter houses  played to futuristic music. I noted the stark difference in these perceived  solutions to climate change – which were all developed in the industrialized nations – and those offered by the indigenous panelists, such as Patricia Cochran, an Inupiat Eskimo from Alaska, who mentioned that many of her people are switching back from snowmobiles to dogsleds, because dogs won’t try to cross thin ice, but snowmobiles will. That’s a great example of a low-carbon mitigation/adaptation project (“mitdaptation”? “adaptigation”?).

Why aren’t…

Last night Parties finished a first reading of the adaptation text, meaning a new text was available this morning for the beginning of a second reading. There are still a lot of brackets and points where countries seriously differ, so below are a couple of issues to watch for in the coming week:

- para 5.a (option 1) – this includes a proposal to earmark 70% of funding for SIDS and LDCs, as opposed to other options which specify only “all developing countries, particularly those that are vulnerable.” This question is particularly contentious between developing countries because it is about which of them will be eligible for adaptation funding – it is causing tensions in the G77 negotiating bloc.

– para 5.a – also to watch for…

Ambassador Antonio Lima of Cape Verde (Vice-President of AOSIS)

Yale Teaching Fellow for the COP15 Course, Kasey Jacobs, also provides updates such as this one for the Center for Environment and Population. See http://www.cepnet.org/

Ambassador Antonio Lima of Cape Verde (Vice-President of AOSIS)

Bill McKibben of 350.org, Ambassador Antonio Lima of Cape Verde (Vice-President of AOSIS), and Ricken Patel, Avaaz Executive Director

Friday, December 12, 2009               AOSIS Text Proposal Released Today

Plenary sessions were closed off to observers today and a Civil Society briefing with UNFCCC Executive Secretary Ivo de Boer was cancelled due to tough negotiation sessions. I acquired the new negotiating text proposal by the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) titled Proposal…

By Angel Hsu and Christopher Kieran, part of ‘Team China’ tracking the Chinese delegation a the Copenhagen climate negotiations. These posts are originally being featured on Green Leap Forward and also cross-posted on Climateprogress.org and the Yale Center for Environmental Law and Policy blog.

Plenary sessions were closed off to observers today, which means that we unfortunately cannot beat the Earth Negotiations Bulletin with insights as to what went down on the negotiating floor.  Nonetheless, we were able to get quotes from Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs He Yafei (seated center; on his left is Yu Qingtai, a leading negotiator in the Chinese delegation) – the highest level Chinese government official that has…

Attempting to following the REDD negotiations has been aggravating so far.  Yesterday a former negotiator (now NGO member) closely following the debate mirrored my frustration, saying that “no one seems to know anything about what’s going on.”  This mornings negotiations were switched from open to observers to closed, and apparently the SBSTA contact group meeting scheduled this afternoon was either canceled outright or moved to a different location.  The revised text that was supposed to be published at 4 has yet to come out.  Good to know all of this is happening in such an open/transparent manner.

While there are lots of side events, at this point they all fall into at least one of 3 categories:  country presenting on a REDD project case-study, the need for strong social…