DOHA, QATAR, 26 November 2012 - Today, the Like-Minded Developing Countries (LMDC) underlined that a successful closure to the work of two Ad hoc Working Groups namely the AWG on the Kyoto Protocol and the AWG on the Long-term Cooperation Agreement will be the first priority for the Doha COP. This would ensure that the new process set up in Durban namely the Ad hoc Working Group on the Durban Platform continues its work meaningfully.
The (LMDC) is a platform for like-minded developing countries to exchange views and coordinate positions on the climate negotiations in the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), with the view to contributing to achieving the combined goals of environmental sustainability, social and economic development, and equity. The LMDC met on 23rd November 2012 in Qatar prior to the meeting of the Conference of Parties of the UNFCCC.
At the climate change talks in Durban last year, several developed country Parties committed themselves to a second commitment period for the Kyoto Protocol following the expiry of the first commitment period at the end of this year. The key deliverable in Doha will be operationalising of this commitment. It is important that the second commitment period is ratifiable and legally binding. It should come into effect on 1 January 2013 and provisionally applied so that there is immediate implementation.
But even more importantly, LMDC would like to underline that it is important that those developed countries committing themselves to the second commitment period undertake ambitious targets so that there is meaningful ambition levels. Currently, the ambition levels pledged are very low. In order to be meaningful, the emission reduction targets must be sufficiently deep and in line with the requirements of actions to stabilise GHG concentrations in the atmosphere.
To address the ambition issue purposefully, LMDC emphasised that it was equally important that developed country Parties that do not commit to targets in the second commitment of the Kyoto Protocol should undertake quantified emission reduction commitments under the UNFCCC that are comparable. Those developed countries outside the Kyoto Protocol or opting out should not get away with low emission cut targets. It is this comparability that would ensure environmental integrity in accordance with the principles of the UNFCCC. It will also be in line with the historical responsibility of all developed countries to take the lead in combatting climate change.
LMDC have, instead, noted the distinct reluctance by the developed countries to make substantial emission reduction commitments. This should be viewed against the back drop where developing countries have made higher mitigation pledges than developed countries. Such mitigation pledges have been made by LMDC countries as well, though their over riding priorities have been on poverty eradication and development, thereby signifying the commitment of LMDC to the process of combatting climate change. It was reemphasised by LMDC that developing countries should not be called on to compensate for the low mitigation ambition of developed countries.
However, messages emanating from the developed countries are creating unease among developing countries, that developed countries do not intend to deliver a meaningful and legally effective second commitment period of the Protocol as promised. Talk of 'new and additional' conditionalities, is not helpful and runs contrary to the provisions and spirit of addressing climate change. The message of developing countries is simple and clear. No more conditions, no more delays.
Further, LMDC are convinced that ambition should not just be restricted to mitigation but also be reflected in higher ambitions in adaptation, finance, technology transfer and capacity building. As we know, Article 4.7 of the Convention states that the extent to which developing country Parties are able to meet their commitments under the Convention will depend on the extent to which developed country Parties fulfil their finance and technology obligations under the Convention. However, weak commitment and ambition levels on means of implementation by developed countries is a cause of concern for LMDC.
Finally, in order to have a successful and meaningful conclusion of its work, LMDC are convinced that the AWG-LCA must make appropriate and balanced decisions on all aspects of its mandate and that no issue should fall off the table. These include supporting developing countries to adapt to climate change; provision of adequate financing and transfer of technology to developing countries; adequate mitigation efforts by developed countries in aggregate terms and comparable efforts for emission reduction among them; nationally appropriate mitigation actions by developing countries, supported and enabled by financial resources and technology transfer; addressing issues of equity, IPRs and unilateral measures; review of adequacy of implementation of commitments under the Convention and shared vision within the framework of equity and common but differentiated responsibilities.
LMDC reiterate that successful outcomes in the Kyoto Protocol and the Bali Action plan (AWG-LCA) would contribute to progress on the Durban Platform. The time has indeed come for developed countries to fulfil their side of the agreements reached in Durban and earlier.
(The LMDC is comprised of several developing countries including the following: Bolivia, China, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ecuador, Egypt, India, Malaysia, Mali, Nicaragua, the Philippines, Saudi Arabia and Venezuela)
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