International climate talks COP-16 started in Mexico

On November 29, 2010, international negotiations on climate change started in Cancun, Mexico. The negotiations will last until December 10. Expectations of the negotiations include, in particular, the agreement on creation of climate fund to help developing countries, its management and participation of countries in the filling of the fund. According to RSEU, Russia should actively participate in the formation of this fund. This fund should be subject to international procedures for monitoring, reporting and verification.

Official delegations from 190 countries, representatives of international and national environmental organizations and independent observers have arrived in Mexico to the negotiations. The purpose of the negotiations is to reach a new, post-Kyoto agreement, which will replace the Kyoto Protocol expiring in 2012. But the new agreement is unlikely to be reached, experts say.

One of the key issues of the talks is establishment and operation of the Green Climate Fund announced in the Copenhagen Accord. The “climate finance” promised in Copenhagen US$30 Billion between 2010 and 2012 and US$100 Billion yearly by 2020. Still, the Cancun faces a number of questions unanswered, for example, which sources does climate finance stem from. Who is governing those funds, the UN or a decentralized governance structure, is another important issue. What is counted as “climate finance”, and how and by whom are the flows monitored, reported and verified (MRV), through which channels is the money flowing; through a centralized UN fund or through various multilateral and bilateral channels, for which purposes and in which countries is climate finance to be used - these shall be other subjects of talks in Cancun. International negotiations are also influenced by fears of developing countries that promised climate funds are just “recycled” pledges or funds diverted from development assistance but not “new and additional” flows.

Russia is responsible for greenhouse gas emissions, being the third largest emitter of CO2, and it can not stay away from participation in the international climate fund. There is an urgent need to develop priorities and forms of Russia's participation in the formation and operation of the climate fund.

The Russian Socio-Ecological Union, together with other civil society organizations in Russia, Ukraine and Belarus has expressed the position on this issue back to Copenhagen Conference:

We support the option of the financial mechanism of the new agreement, where an international fund or funds operate under the UNFCCC, but outside its framework. In this case, the contributions are required from all countries, including Belarus, Russia and Ukraine, but the least developed, depending on the level of economic development (in particular, GDP per capita). These contributions from all countries should be subject to international procedures of monitoring, reporting and verification. As a result, the total assistance to developing countries for climate change mitigation, adaptation and capacity building by 2020 should reach $ 160 billion a year.

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