Dec 062011

Photos: Civil Society meeting (top), UNFCCC Executive Secretary, Christiana Figueres, showing off the CAN COP17 lanyard (bottom)

Civil society lanyards proudly touting this quote by Nelson Mandela was a good choice by CAN and the perfect fit for Durban.  Its timeliness resonates with many a delegate at the climate negotiations here at COP17.  Indeed the promise of optimism and hope it gives must surely permeate the negotiations and secure for our planet what Mandela proved is possible despite the trials and tribulations on the path to achievement.  Even though we despair at the slow pace of the negotiations, we will continue to persevere in the spirit of this silent reminder until the seemingly impossible is accomplished.

This week, more than 25,000 delegates from over 190 countries are gathered here in the beautiful city of Durban, South Africa to progress talks on finalizing the climate deal and to take us closer to a fair, ambitious, and binding global deal. Continue reading »

 Posted by on December 6, 2011 at 4:07 am
Oct 052011

One of my hobbies that I love is to use new and recently developed applications and technologies. On my last birthday, I was blessed with an ‘iphone’ from my colleague. I was very excited that day; I threw party on the same night when I got my iphone via DHL. Also credit goes to DHL for its service up to my far-flung apartment. And also I am grateful to my friend, that’s the nicest thing that anyone’s ever done for me. Otherwise, I would have never got chance to use such a wonderful thing, which would have cost almost six months of my personnel expenses in Nepal. As I remember now, I don’t know how that ‘full iphone-week’ passed; it felt like I was flying-up above Himalayas most of the time. My excitement continued when by the weekend, when my younger sister, studying civil engineering, asked me to find a map of our town on my iphone for her project work. Another hit was when my laureate brother asked me to find the meaning of some familiar Nepalese words, however, either my iphone does not support my language or not I could type on it. The next day I went to a local mobile service center on my town and discussed my problem with them. They tried all the possible solutions they could think of: they connected it with other devices, they installed and uninstalled software, but all of their efforts ruined root and branch.

UN Climate Change meeting @ PanamaNow, while having discussions with the friendly delegates here in Panamá, I realize that the Technology Executive Committee (TEC) has become like my friend (who gave me the iphone) and Climate Technology Centers and Network (CTCN) is like the service center in my town. Sometimes when the technology discussion is about service delivery, these institutions also seem like DHL, who did the hard job of delivering my iphone up to my apartment. Continue reading »

 Posted by on October 5, 2011 at 11:12 pm
Aug 172011

“Bhutan as Chair of SAARC, made an intervention at the COP plenary today to admit SAARC as an observer at UNFCCC. The intervention was promptly supported by series of interventions by India followed by Pakistan. In response, the COP President requested the secretariat to facilitate the process for the approval of the proposal.” This was a part of a live email update from opening plenary of COP16 sent to CANSA google group from the Moon Palace, Cancun on November 20, 2010. There was an overwhelming response from the colleagues with the positive aspiration that from now onwards along with the civil society network, our governments’ regional forum will also take part in UNFCCC negotiations.

South Asian journalist at Cancun and back in the country also had similar expectations,  I was asked several questions upon receiving my email: what actual status did SAARC get at UNFCCC and what actually the observer mean? Is it like EU, or is it like African Union or like ICIMOD and IUCN? These questions in fact encouraged me to scrutinize more about our regional forum. Then, I started inquiring my own people, what I found were, objectively there is no vast difference between SAARC with EU and African Union. One of the objectives of SAARC is to accelerate economic growth and social progress of this region. Similarly, African Union is to accelerate the political and socio-economic integration of the continent and the European Union (EU) is an economic and political union of 27 member states. But in reality what I knew was, objectives are not the only principal guidance of this forum. So, in conclusion, back to the topic, SAARC after Cancun has given similar status as other intergovernmental organization (IGOs). Now, onwards SAARC can also attend any UNFCCC meetings as an observer and can also make a submission on its behalf.  Continue reading »

Jul 172011

Regardless of whatever the outcome were Copenhagen was successful in making a historical gathering of a large number of participants among the UNFCCC COPs. In freezing Copenhagen streets, people from around the world demonstrated and urged world leaders to limit developed country emissions and to compensate their past actions. But a small group of powerful people inside the Bella Centre betrayed everyone by letting us down and to compromising our future. At that point, I remember a slogan hung up during climate negotiation “Don’t negotiate with our future”. Science has already proven that human activity is the cause of the climate change problem through increased emissions of greenhouse gases in recent decades. This situation is similar to the situation where I have to pay the debt of my grandfather and my grandchildren will be taking even more burdens in the future. So, I just wonder what kind of world we are really planning to build?

Youth interventions at UNFCCC meeting always excite me. They often start it with, “My name is _ _ and I am XX years of age and I will be YY years old in 2050”. I have noticed timid expression with discomfort Continue reading »

Jul 072011

जलवायु परिवर्तन सम्बन्धी अन्तराष्ट्रिय सम्मेलनहरुको कुरा गर्दा सन् २००९ को अन्त्य तिर डेन्मार्ककोे कोपेनहेगनमा भएको जलवायु महासन्धिका पक्ष राष्ट्रहरुको १५ औ सम्मेलनको बिशेष चर्चा भएकोे पाइन्छ । सो सम्मेलनले संयुक्त राष्ट्र सघीय सम्मेलन मध्यमा, १२० भन्दा बढी संख्यामा राष्ट्र प्रमुुखहरुको उपस्थिति र बृहत जनसहभागिताको रेकर्ड नै बनाउन पुग्यो । यस सम्मेलनसम्म आईपुग्दा अन्तराष्ट्रिय जगतका साथसाथै राष्ट्रिय स्तरमा पनि जलवायु परिवर्तन सम्बन्धी विषयले चर्चाको शिखर चुम्न सफल भइसकेकोे थियो । कोपेनहोगन सम्मेलनको पूर्व सन्ध्यामा सगरमाथा आधार शिविरमा भएको मन्त्री परिषदको बैठकले त्यस बेला देखि आज सम्म पनि यहाँका छापाहरुमा सकरात्मक साथै खर्च व्यवस्थापन बारे आलोचनात्मक किसिमका चर्चाहरु पाईरहेका छन् ।

उता कोपेनहेगन सम्मेलनले आशातित सफलता प्राप्त गर्न नसके पछि यो समस्याको समधान खोज्ने बारे संयुक्त राष्ट्र संघिय प्रकृया माथि नै विश्वासको बादल छाउन थाल्यो । तर सन् २०१० मा मेक्सिकोको क्यान्कुनमा भएको पक्ष राष्ट्रहरुको १६ औ सम्मेलनले जलवायु परिवर्तनको यो अनन्त यात्रामा विश्वासको वातावरण बनाउन सफल भयो । तथापि यो सम्मेलनको निष्कर्ष स्वरुप प्राप्त “क्यान्कुन सहमति” आफैमा एउटा अपुर्ण दस्तावेज थियो । जसका कारण, क्यान्कुन पछिका छलफल र बैठकहरु अझ बढी महत्वपूर्ण हुन पुगेका छन् ।

तर बिडम्वना, सन् २०११ को अप्रिलमा थाईल्याण्डको राजधानी बैंककमा भएको बैठकमा अधिकांस समय तदर्थ कार्य समुहहरुका आगामी छलफलहरुका लागि एजेण्डा तय गर्नमा नै बित्यो । त्यसैले बैंकक सम्मेलनको मुख्य एजेण्डा नै ‘एजेण्डा’का लागि छलफल हुन गयो । त्यस पछि भर्खरै, संयुक्त राष्ट्र संघीय जलवायु परिवर्तन हेर्ने मुख्य कार्यलय रहेको जर्मनीको बोनमा सम्पन्न भएको अर्को बैठकलाई पनि बंैककको भूतले छाडेन । बोन बैठकको पहिलो साता पनि साहायक अङ्गहरुको एजेण्डाको छलफलमा नै बित्यो । तर यस बैठकर्ले एजेण्डाको भूतलाई भगाउने दरिलो निर्णय लिएको छ, अब आउने बैठकमा औपचारिक उद्घाटन समारोह र एजेण्डाको कुरा नगरी सिधै छलफलमा जाने खालको सहमति भएको छ, जुन निकै नै सकरात्मक पहल हो । यसका साथै बोनमा भएको बैठकको अन्त्य सम्म आईपुग्दा डिसेम्बरमा हुने १६ औ सम्मेलन अघिको अर्को बैठक कहाँ हुने भन्ने निर्णय हुन सकेको थिएन । तर बैठकको समापनका दैरानमा आगामी बैठक सेप्टेम्बरको अन्तिम साता हुने भन्ने सम्म जानकारी दिईएको थियो , पछि पानामाको पानामा शहरमा हुने जानकारी प्राप्त भएको छ ।

क्यान्कुन पछिको बाटो सहज तवरले अघि नबढ्नुको कारण क्यान्कुन सहमतिमा अस्पष्ट केहि मुद्घाहरु र यस सहमतिले समेट्न नसकेका विषयहरु पनि हुन् । ल्याटिन अमेरिकी राज्य बोलिभियाले यो सहमतिलाई कहिल्यै स्वीकार गरेन, उसका अनुसार यस सहमतिले पहिले नै निर्णय भएको विकसित राष्ट्रहरुको दायित्वलाई बेवास्ता गरेको र विकासोन्मुख राष्ट्रहरुलाई Continue reading »

Jun 152011

Blogging from Bonn Climate Talk

Cancun set an excellent example how the outstanding leadership of a host country could effectively shape the discourse. With the Cancun Agreement as an output on the table, many issues need further discussion and more political willingness. As a follow-up for next year, discussion started from Bangkok on last April. Agenda became main agenda for Bangkok Climate Talk. The week long discussing went around only discussing agendas of Ad-hoc Working Groups and finally succeeded. Now we are at Bonn, Germany climate capital, where world meets every year to talk about climate.

I feel really embarrass and discomfort to open up this story of Bonn Meeting. We discussed on agenda for Subsidiary Bodies (SBs) on first week and are now discussing on where the next meeting should be held. Now let’s go one my one: first on the agenda and on the next meeting issues. This would be best agenda to discuss.

One of the reasons to open-up the discussion on the agenda was because of some new proposals from some countries such as water resources, blue carbon, agriculture, and the rights of nature and ecosystems. Finally, parties agreed to work on the understanding that consultations would continue.

Papua New Guinea attempt to push Blue Carbon in an agenda by introducing it as an effective solution to reduce atmospheric CO2 by conserving water plants which dubbed carbon sequestration more effectively (up to 100 Continue reading »

Jun 122011

Brazil’s second largest city, Rio de Janeiro, witnessed the first ever gathering of environmental campaigners/caretakers and produced an international environmental treaty (UNFCCC) with an objective to stabilize greenhouse gas concentrations that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference in 1992. After one and half decades, the discourse took new dimensions in Bali, developing a new road map as a two-year process of finalizing a binding agreement in 2009 in Copenhagen. But brushing aside this huge expectation, Copenhagen only produced a weak political statement titled the ‘Copenhagen accord.’ The summit could not pave a way forward for this global issue.

The road from Copenhagen to Cancun, in 2010, was also not that easy.  Cancun set an excellent example how the outstanding leadership of a host country could effectively shape the discourse. It was a well known fact that many issues were still on the table that are still unresolved, need further discussion and more political willingness.

To my surprise, these climate discourses always opt for places/countries that start with an interesting first letter. Copenhagen was followed by three meetings in Bonn and semi-final at China’s beautiful city Tianjin. Cancun was another important milestone that was also able to keep up trust on UN process. It was then followed by Bangkok and now at Bonn, both the climate capitals of Asia and Europe, respectively. One of the issues that needs resolution here is where will the next intersessional will be held. My opinion is to follow the ritual so go for places that start with initials B, C or D! But of course not Copenhagen!

Now on the way to the match in Durban, termed the “African COP,” many issues Continue reading »