Info Service on Climate Change (Nov12/01)
22 November 2012
Third World Network
Ministers issue joint-statement on climate change
Published in SUNS #7484 dated 21 November 2012
20 Nov (Meena Raman) -- Ahead of the climate talks set to begin in
Doha next week, BASIC Ministers reaffirmed that the Kyoto Protocol
remains a key component of the international climate regime and that
its second commitment period (2CP) is the key deliverable.
Comprising Ministers and their representatives from Brazil, South
Africa, India and China, the Ministers stressed that the 2CP is the
essential basis for ambition within the international climate regime.
The BASIC Ministers, who met in Beijing, China, from 19-20 November,
also "underscored the importance of an effective and legally
binding 2CP through a ratifiable amendment (of the Kyoto Protocol's
Annex B which sets out the emission cuts for Annex 1 Parties for the
2CP) implemented from 1 January 2013."
(The first commitment period of the Protocol expires on 31 December
In a joint statement issued at the conclusion of the 13th BASIC Ministerial
meeting on Climate Change, the Ministers "called upon developed
country Parties to the Kyoto Protocol to raise their level of ambition
in their quantified emission limitation and reduction objectives (QELROs)
in Doha, consistent with what is required by science and their historical
They called for the continued discussion on higher QELROs by the meeting
of the Kyoto Parties.
According to the joint statement, the Ministers "reiterated that
developed country Parties that do not commit to QELROs in the second
commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol should undertake quantified
emission reduction commitments under the United Nations Framework
Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) that are comparable in terms
of form, magnitude and compliance."
The Ministers "confirmed their understanding that developed countries
that are not Parties to the Kyoto Protocol or do not participate in
its second commitment period would not benefit from the Clean Development
Mechanism of the Kyoto Protocol."
The participants at the Beijing Ministerial meeting were Mr. Xie Zhenhua,
Vice Chairman of the National Development and Reform Commission of
China; Ms. Edna Molewa, Minister of Water and Environmental Affairs
of South Africa; Ms. Mira Mehrishi, Additional Secretary of the Ministry
of Environment and Forests of India; and Ambassador Andre Correa do
Lago, Director of the Department of the Environment and Special Affairs,
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Brazil.
Also present at the meeting were Ambassador Mxakato-Diseko of South
Africa, as the representative of the President of the 17th meeting
of the Conference of Parties (COP17), Ambassador Mourad Benmehidi,
Permanent Representative of Algeria to the United Nations as Chair
of the G77 and China, as well as the representatives of Fiji, a member
of the Alliance of Small Island States and incoming Chair of the G77
and China, and Qatar, incoming President of COP18/CMP8.
Egypt, a member of the Arab Group, and Nepal, the incoming Chair of
the LDCs (Least Developed Countries) group, were also invited.
In their joint statement, the BASIC Ministers "welcomed the outcome
of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20)
and the adoption of the document The Future We Want."
They stressed that "the political consensus reached by the leaders
in Rio not only provided the highest political guidance to the Doha
Conference and the future climate negotiations, but also reaffirmed
that Parties to the UNFCCC and the Kyoto Protocol should protect the
climate system on the basis of equity and in accordance with the principle
of common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities."
They "underscored that the implementation of the balanced Durban
package is essential to the success of the Doha Conference" and
"reiterated that in the overall interest of raising global ambition,
the developed countries should take the lead and scale up ambition
not just in mitigation but also in adaptation, finance, technology
transfer and capacity building."
The Ministers "emphasized the urgency to make progress in the
work of the Ad Hoc Working Group on Long-term Cooperation (AWG-LCA)
and bring it to a meaningful conclusion pursuant to the Bali Action
Plan, addressing all elements including ambitious and comparable emission
reduction targets by the developed country Parties, adaptation, finance,
technology development and transfer and capacity building."
In the joint statement, they "underlined the need to further
define the scope of the ‘Review' prior to its launch, with a view
to facilitating a comprehensive assessment of the implementation of
(At COP16 in Cancun, Parties decided "to periodically review
the adequacy of the long-term global goal [limiting temperature rise
to below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels]... and overall
progress towards achieving it, in accordance with the relevant principles
and provisions of the Convention" and also requested the AWG-LCA
"to further define the scope of this review and develop its modalities...".
The first review is to start in 2013 and conclude before 2015.)
The BASIC Ministers "further reaffirmed the centrality of equity
in the UNFCCC process and called for progress on all key issues including
equitable access to sustainable development, technology related intellectual
property rights (IPR) and unilateral measures and the continued discussion
of such issues by the appropriate bodies of the Convention after the
conclusion of the AWG-LCA."
According to the statement, the Ministers "underlined the importance
of means of implementation for developing countries and stressed that
developed country Parties should honour their commitment to provide
financial, technology transfer and capacity building support to developing
country Parties, and to finance the effective operationalisation of
the institutional mechanisms. Ministers reiterated the importance
of achieving the goal of providing 100 billion dollars per year by
2020 as committed by developed country Parties and underscored the
need for a roadmap to scale up financial resources in order to avoid
the funding gap for the period from 2013 to 2020."
They "stressed that public finance from developed country should
be the main source of funding to support developing countries' actions
on climate change, in particular for their adaptation and capacity
building. Ministers also called for concrete information on the implementation
of the Fast Start Finance to ensure transparency."
The Ministers "reiterated that the objective of the Durban Platform
negotiations is to further strengthen the current multilateral rule-based
climate regime, ensuring the full, effective and sustained implementation
of the Convention after 2020. The Durban Platform is by no means a
process to negotiate a new regime, nor to renegotiate, rewrite or
reinterpret the Convention and its principles and provisions. As agreed
by all Parties, both the process and the outcome of the Durban Platform
are under the Convention, governed by all its principles and provisions,
in particular the principles of equity and common but differentiated
responsibilities and respective capabilities."
They "welcomed the timely launch of the work of the Ad Hoc Working
Group on the Durban Platform (AWG-DP) and progress made at the meetings
in Bonn and Bangkok. Ministers recognised the usefulness of roundtable
format of discussions in Bangkok. They expressed the desirability
for further discussions in the current analytical and conceptual phase,
with a view to planning its work in accordance with Decision 1/CP17
and the agenda adopted."
The Ministers "noted with grave concern the ambition gap between
what developed country Parties have pledged and what is required by
science and their historical responsibility. Ministers stressed that
the pre-2020 ambition should primarily be addressed in the context
of discussions under the Ad Hoc Working Group under the Kyoto Protocol
(AWG-KP) and AWG-LCA and any supplementary and complementary actions
shall be in accordance with the principles and provisions of the Convention."
In the joint statement, "Ministers noted with consternation that
the mitigation contribution by developing country Parties is much
greater than that by developed country Parties who should take the
lead in combating climate change. They object to any attempt to transfer
to developing countries the commitments and obligations of developed
They also "noted the intention of the EU to ‘stop the clock'
on the implementation of the international aspects of the European
Union-Emissions Trading Scheme (EU-ETS) legislation by one year. They
reaffirmed the importance of multilateralism in addressing climate
change in accordance with the principles and provisions of the Convention
and reiterated their strong opposition to any unilateral measures
on international aviation and shipping as well as similar intentions
regarding other sectors."
The Ministers "stressed the utmost importance of the unity of
G77 and China, and reaffirmed the commitment of BASIC countries to
continue working together to strengthen it. Ministers stressed that
BASIC countries share deep concerns about the urgency of tackling
climate change, particularly with SIDS [Small Island Developing States],
LDCs and Africa, and reiterated their continued efforts to enhance
The Ministers also welcomed the offer by India to host the next BASIC
Ministerial Meeting in the first quarter of 2013.