The technology and finance aspects of fighting climate change need to be addressed as we approach the next climate agreement negotiations planned to be held in Copenhagen in 2009. Recently, prominent experts from various fields convened for a high-level discussion on June 5-6th in Sarpsborg, Norway to consider the issue of technology and finance in relation to the negotiations for the post-Kyoto Protocol climate agreement which will be replaced in 2012 when a new international climate agreement is established.
The main purpose of the CC8 conference was to shape the 2012 climate agreement on the finance and technology aspects, providing consensus on key issues such as the framework of carbon emissions trading, the role of private sector in research and development of clean technologies, and the importance of the information sector and spreading of public awareness.
“Climate Conference 08: Technology and Finance in Climate Cooperation (CC8)” was organized by the Bellona Foundation, the Club of Madrid and Hafslund, a green energy company based in Norway. Those who attended the conference included former heads of state and ministers, industry leaders in the renewable energy sector, UNFCCC negotiators, global financing institutions, the banking sector, academia and environmental NGOs. The participation of Masood Ul-Haq, President of Green Cross Pakistan in the discussions helped shape the formulation of the official statement of the CC8 conference. Green Cross emphasized that the legal and institutional framework of emission trading must be further rigidly set in the upcoming climate agreement.
Participants strongly recognized that progress in technological development and potential for accelerated private investment has been achieved since the Kyoto Protocol was drafted in 1997. The meeting provided the next steps for negotiation as well as consensus on the main strategies for cooperation in the finance and technology sectors. The spirit of international cooperation that was present in the Montreal Protocol during the ozone layer crisis was used as an example of efficient collaboration between different sectors for a common interest to protect the Earth. The CC8 participants argue that the same “spirit of Montreal” must be adopted albeit on a much larger scale in order to tackle climate change.
Among the points of agreement are that an international agreement to promote climate change technologies must be flexible and simple in order to reach the large emission reduction targets. Also, emphasis was made to boost longer-term research and development on clean technologies internationally using both public resources and accelerated private investment. Political leadership and communication to the general public were also identified as key priorities and the importance of engaging citizens for change around the world was also emphasized.
In order to reach the reduction targets set by Kyoto to cut global emission greenhouse gas emissions by at least half by 2050 and by at least 80 percent in developed countries, the participants of the CC8 conference stressed that strong collaborative alliances between sectors is needed to provide an international climate regime for the upcoming UNFCCC negotiations. The main points of the CC8 Conference can be found outline in an open letter outlining the important commitments planned leading up to the UNFCCC negotiations in Copenhagen in 2009.
Open letter to stakeholders committed to advancing climate change agenda