EnvironmentSmith School of Enterprise and the Environment11Chapter 3Copenhagen and CancunChapter 3: Copenhagen and CancunThe Cancun Outcomes in ContextThe outcomes of the last COP at Cancun can only really be understood in the context of the Copenhagen negotiations. This is for two main reasons; first, the Cancun Agreement is largely based upon the key elements of the Copenhagen Accord. Second, the reaction to the Agreement is largely due to the differences in build-up between the Copenhagen and Cancun negotiations and the disappointment that resulted from the outcomes of Copenhagen. While the actual outcomes of the two conferences are not substantially different, the reaction to that of Copenhagen in most cases was one of extreme disappointment. The outcome from Cancun, on the other hand, has been heralded as a veritable success. There were notable differences in build up between the two COP meetings. Prior to the Copenhagen negotiations, expectations in the media were raised to an impossibly high level. Copenhagen was therefore perceived by many as a failure. Curiously, many people (outside the media) could see clearly in advance of the meeting that a fully-formed legal agreement would be unrealistic, the negotiations having failed to progress at the rate necessary to produce any decisive agreement . But the media built up false expectations not in any way dampened by the absence of a much-needed sense of realism from the UNFCCC, or from the Danish Government. With a record attendance of NGO representatives and researchers, the circus atmosphere did little to douse expectations. Despite this, the negotiators did make some productive advances; instead of a legally-binding agreement, the Copenhagen conference produced the Copenhagen Accord, a political agreement which was negotiated by 28 countries in the final days of the conference. But the failure of the Copenhagen conference to produce a legally-binding agreement led some to question the UNFCCC as a forum for decision making. Many negotiators left Copenhagen with a sense that the UNFCCC process was broken . All this did little to build expectations for Cancun and as such anticipation for the outcome was low. The Cancun Agreement that emerged from the COP meeting in comparison was therefore a pleasant surprise for those who had been following the negotiations.The Cancun AgreementsThe Cancun Agreement is based heavily upon the Copenhagen Accord and the pledges made to it following the Copenhagen negotiations. The Copenhagen Accord marked an unprecedented drafting exercise on climate change, but, at only around two and a half pages, contained only twelve operational paragraphs. As this would suggest, the Accord was not strong on detail but represented many delicate and hard-won compromises between competing interests . When the Accord was being negotiated however, other countries were not kept informed of the progress of the negotiating group and the Copenhagen Accord negotiations were conducted separately from the official UNFCCC negotiating groups. When the Accord was revealed to the COP for adoption a small number of states blocked consensus. As a result, the legal status and future of the Copenhagen Accord within the UNFCCC process was unclear .
12Smith School of Enterprise and the EnvironmentSmith The Cancun Agreement, by incorporating many of the key points of the Accord into the official UNFCCC process, has clarified this. The Cancun Agreement does more than just incorporate the key ideas of the Accord however; it also elaborates them and makes them operational. The two and a half pages have been upped to thirty. The Cancun Agreement integrates and elaborates on all of the main parts of the Copenhagen Accord, including:Agreed Limit to Temperature Increase - Shared VisionThe 2°C limit to temperature rise was recognised and the scientific reasoning for this. The Cancun Agreement also agrees that deep cuts in emissions are necessary to achieve this. Room was left for a change in this limit of 2 ?C to a lower limit of 1.5 ?C as part of a review of the Agreement's implementation to be completed by 2015. This is in a large part in deference to the Maldives and other small island states which had pushed for a 1.5 ?C limit on global temperature change. MitigationThe Copenhagen Accord established a bottom-up pledge-and-review process that allowed each country, both developed and developing, to define its own mitigation actions, including developed country emissions targets. These targets and actions were to be submitted to the UNFCCC Secretariat for compilation. 76 countries, including all Annex I and 39 non-Annex I countries, submitted targets or actions to the Secretariat. These countries together represented 85 per cent of global emissions. These submissions were included in the Cancun Agreement via their inclusion in two information documents; one for developed country targets and one for developing country actions. Whilst this does not make them legally binding it does integrate them into the UNFCCC process.A registry for developing countries to list nationally NAMAs for which international support is sought, proposed in the Copenhagen Accord, was set up by the Cancun Agreement. These supported NAMAs will then be subject to international consultation and analysis (ICA).FinanceIn the Copenhagen Accord it was established that developed countries would collectively commit to providing new and additional resources approaching US$30 billion in 'fast start' money for the 2010-12 period, to be balanced between adaptation and mitigation for least developed nations. This amount is set to increase towards US$100 billion per year by 2020. This has been incorporated into the Cancun Agreement. In addition, the Accord also called for the creation of a Green Climate Fund through which a significant part of the finance would be transferred, and a High Level Panel to identify potential sources of revenue to meet the US$100 billion per year target . These calls were answered in Cancun. As established in the Cancun Agreement, the fund will be managed by a board of 24 members, split between developed and developing countries, and will be administered for the first three years by the World Bank. The Cancun Agreement also notes the pledges of adaptation and mitigation finance pledged to the Copenhagen Accord. At the time of writing, this amounts to a total of US$27.9 billion.Forestry At the Cancun negotiations progress was made on forest carbon. Building on statements made in the Copenhagen Accord, a framework for reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation as well as halting and reversing forest loss (REDD+) was established. The Cancun Agreement provides countries with guidance on REDD+ readiness and recognises and sets out a phased approach for implementation. There are still several key questions left for clarification in further negotiations; definitions and reference emission levels need to be clarified in addition to questions regarding finance. AdaptationThe Cancun Agreement set forth detailed provisions on adaptation in the Cancun Adaptation Framework and creates an associated Adaptation Committee, taking further the declarations in the Copenhagen Accord which recognised the need for adaptation to both the adverse effects of climate change and the potential impacts of response measures. The Agreement also establishes a Technology Mechanism to facilitate technology development and Chapter 3Chapter