The Mandate

Yesterday, ECO noted that there are three groups of countries in the legal form negotiations that each need to bring proposals to the table at Durban: the KP developed countries, the non-KP Annex I Parties and the developing countries.

ALL the developed countries that have ratified their Annex B targets for the first commitment period should have their targets ready to plug and play for CP2. The non-KP Annex I Party[s] need to increase their ambition, be part of a common accounting system and MRV to bring forward the established KP systems - how else would the Bali Action Plan’s agreed ‘comparability’ be achieved?

Many are suggesting that we are facing a transitional period, where the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol keeps alive an architecture that, through Article 3.1 and other elements, keeps a science-based approach at the core of the global response to the climate threat. Through this post-2012 period, the elements of a new comprehensive legally-binding agreement[s] needs to be developed. In ECO’s view, this agreement needs to be in the form of a Protocol[s], or other such appropriate legal instrument, that respects the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities.

However, we will not attain comprehensive legally-binding agreement[s] equal to the challenge we face unless Parties find common cause that such an agreement is needed. In ECO’s view, in addition to KP Parties agreeing a second commitment period in Durban, all Parties must agree on a mandate to negotiate a legally binding instrument covering all Bali building blocks under the LCA. This mandate needs, at a minimum, to agree:

-   what the result of the negotiations will be, specifying that Parties are working towards a legally binding instrument with legally binding commitments

-   the end date (ECO would suggest 2015 would allow time for institution building and for experience of MRV to bze enhanced)

-     the scope

-     the process, including forum

-     principles to guide the negotiations

Without a mandate for the third period of the climate regime, we will again face a gap – between commitments, but also in ambition, and the resulting sense of the world moving forward together to avoid the worst that an human-altered atmosphere can throw at us.