COP13—Bali Climate Conference
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The UN conference on climate change held in Bali, Indonesia in December 2007 led to a final agreement known as the
The conference, more officially known as COP-13, or Conference of the Parties, Thirteenth session, 3-14 December 2007, Bali, Indonesia1.
The meeting drew more than 10,000 participants, including representatives of over 180 countries and observers from intergovernmental and nongovernmental organizations, and the media.
The Bali Roadmap outlined a new negotiating process to be concluded by 2009 to feed into a post-Kyoto (i.e. a post-2012) international agreement on climate change. The Roadmap included a decision to launch an Adaptation Fund as well as further decisions on technology transfer and on reducing emissions from deforestation.
But the conference was also accompanied by controversy, including
- The US position being at odds with most of the rest of the world
- Talk of developing countries’ responsibilities (such as China and India) while rich countries (the source of the problem) have made little progress, themselves.
As Inter Press Service (IPS) summarized:
Campaign groups such as Friends of the Earth, many of whom were at the talks themselves, were disappointed3 with the outcome, saying targets were watered down to mere footnotes in the final text.
The mainstream British media, as well as other European outlets had been quite critical of the US stance and tactics. As IPS also noted,
What were the kind of objectives the developing world was trying to ensure? That they were not scapegoats for climate change. For many, many years now, it has been recognized that the rich nations have been mostly at fault for climate change, because their greenhouse emissions have lingered in the atmosphere for decades.
Some have called this a natural debt owed to the developing world (just as the developing world have a financial debt to the rich5).
For some rich countries to want to avoid action until countries like India and China are subject to similar targets has been seen by much of the world as actually being unfair, especially as the rich nations have not reduced their emissions much.
For example, the Delhi-based Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) is quoted here at length:
(The above article also notes the disparities within nations, including countries such as India, where the wealthy do consume far more than the rich, and that needs addressing too.)
CSE also points out that India and China are not that energy inefficient as often believed:
(The second myth they felt was
Efficiency, not sufficiency, will cut emissions. They argue that while efficiency is of course important, there are examples where say car emissions have become better but people have been driving more, thus overall driving up emissions.)
In addition to the various links above, also see the following:
- Climate Change Special10 from Down To Earth Magazine, by the Centre for Science and Environment, December 15, 2007 issue. This 17-part article looks at various issues on the politics of climate change, leading up to Bali.
- Business in Bali: The science is clear, it's high time to sort out the politics11, from the same Down To Earth, December 15, 2007 issue, is a shorter version.
- Climate Justice and Equity12 from this site goes into this developing country perspective in a bit more detail.
- Bali Updates from the Third World Network13 provides more detailed look at the negotiating politics from the developing country perspective.
- Climate Change and Global Warming Introduction
- UN Framework Convention on Climate Change
- Reactions to Climate Change Negotiations and Action
- Action on climate change is cheaper than inaction
- Global Warming, Spin and Media
- Climate Justice and Equity
- Climate Change Flexibility Mechanisms
- Carbon Sinks, Forests and Climate Change
- Climate Change Affects Biodiversity
- Global Warming and Population
(Note that listed here are only those hyperlinks to other articles from other web sites or elsewhere on this web site. Other sources such as journal, books and magazines, are mentioned above in the original text. Please also note that links to external sites are beyond my control. They might become unavailable temporarily or permanently since you read this, depending on the policies of those sites, which I cannot unfortunately do anything about.)
- Global Issues: “Third World Debt Undermines Development”, Last updated: Sunday, June 03, 2007, http://www.globalissues.org/issue/28/third-world-debt-undermines-development
- Global Issues: “Climate Justice and Equity”, Last updated: Sunday, January 08, 2012, http://www.globalissues.org/article/231/climate-justice-and-equity
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