From the Archives – Looking Back At the LCA


ECO was feeling a bit nostalgic, what with all this talk about the LCA and what comes next. So, it dug through the ECO archives and came across this article from Bonn 2008 on what the LCA could deliver. ECO hopes it brings out the same mixed feelings for you as it did for ECO:

Bonn, Poznan and Beyond

Let’s not forget what’s at stake: if current emissions trends continue, global average temperatures will rise by around 3-7°C above preindustrial levels, with catastrophic consequences for all. 

Sometimes these negotiations are like listening to a group of people on a badly-leaking lifeboat arguing over who should actually start bailing as the water rises inexorably, when the obvious answer is that all should be doing what they can to avoid the boat sinking completely. Those with the greatest capacity should be bailing the hardest, sufficiently motivated by their historical responsibility to be doing their best to help keep the others afloat, and making sure everyone has access to the lifejackets.

 So what should you be doing? What can Bonn deliver to keep us from sinking? 

Parties need to reach a common understanding of what their shared vision is – how far up towards the rim of the boat they will allow the water to rise, as it were.

 The LCA needs to break out into contact groups on developed country mitigation, developing country mitigation, REDD, adaptation, technology and finance. What Parties want to see reflected in the Copenhagen agreement should be brought to the table here and now as concrete proposals, to allow sufficient time for their exploration and analysis by other Parties and Civil Society.

 ECO recognizes that the negotiations are complicated, with issues spread throughout the agenda and similar items appearing under both AWG and LCA. Parties need to trust each other and consolidate these building blocks. Remember, there will be a reevaluation exercise in Poznan. The most important thing is not where an issue is discussed, but that it is discussed, in a coherent and constructive way. 

ECO expects outcomes from the LCA far beyond Chair’s draft conclusions: but for contact groups to begin to produce actual draft negotiating texts that will define the real negotiating issues to be ready for negotiation in Poznan, to allow the work done in the Dialogue and in more recent discussions to be realized.

 The AWG should also be producing negotiating texts and beginning their refinement, so that there are bracketed texts on the table by Poznan.

 Delegates, to stop the boat sinking ever lower, don’t bail out of your (common but differentiated) responsibilities.