Fridayday, December 11, 2015, Agrahayan 27, 1422 BS, Safar 28, 1437 Hijri

Still hurdles to overcome for climate deal
New draft does not serve the interest of the least-developed and most-vulnerable countries
Published :Friday, 11 December, 2015,  Time : 12:00 AM  View Count : 51
BannaiMallick from Paris
A new draft text of the agreement came out yesterday, on key issues that are still either as options or in brackets (not yet decided); it could take another day or two to finalize the agreement which will be presented as outcomes of Paris Conference of Parties of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
 There is an outcry just after releasing the new draft, as so many important points are missing and deprioritized that are the soul-line to the least developed and most vulnerable countries, the worst victims of climate change.   
The experts and representatives of civil society said that the draft has not addressed many issues including preferential treatment and financial support for the least development and most vulnerable countries secured previously through the UNFCCC's core principle Common But Differentiated Respon-sibilities and Respective  Capabilities (CBDRRC).
They also stated that although the volume of text has been reduced but almost nothing has been agreed yet.
This draft also failed to give a clear road map for pre and post 2020 finance.
They have shared their concerns on the vagueness of the text considering the urgent and immediate needs and priorities for the least developed and most vulnerable countries as well as future of the next generation and planet earth.
Bangladesh has its position on various aspects of the negotiations at the COP 21 while the major issues were developed countries' high ambition in greenhouse gas emission reduction and support for adaptation both in terms of financial and technological. Neither emission reduction nor support for adaptation came up to the level of expectation.
In regards of financial support developed countries are supposed to do so in phases,  2015-2020 and post-2020.
Expressing opinions about the draft, Golam Rabbani, an expert from Bangladesh Centre for Advanced Studies (BCAS) said that in the new text there is no existence of preferential treatment for the least developed and most vulnerable countries.
"Preferential treatment or special treatment is the essence of the UNFCCC, but we do not see this reference in the new draft. So I do not see any special outcome from this conference," he said.
ZiaulHoqueMukta, Vice Chair of Campaign for Sustainable Rural Livelihoods (CSRL) of Bangladesh said that albeit it is important to keep temperature rise below1.5 degrees Celsius than pre-industrial level, the world-leaders have committed to keep temperature rise below two degrees Celsius, and unfortunately they have failed to deliver against the objective they agreed before.
However, when this correspondent talked with the Bangladesh delegates and negotiators like Dr Q K Ahmad,  he said that a new draft came out yesterday on key issues that are still either as option or in brackets (not yet decided), and we have to wait to get the final one.
"So we have to wait what will remain or what will not," he said.
However when asked Dr. AinunNishat about his reactions, he was unwilling to make any comment.
Dr. Rezaul Karim, technology negotiator of Bangladesh, said that Bangladesh has a strong position to have an independent and distinct article on loss and damage but the draft has not addressed this yet.
"The compensation and liability to address loss and damage is nowhere in the draft agreement," he said.
"It seems that the developed countries are not practically leading the negotiations process for the betterment of the people and to save the mother nature from the adverse impact of climate change," he said.
"Because they are reluctant to agree on the major issues like finance, adaptation and loss and damage," he said.
Expressing sadness about the new draft RajendraShende, Chairman of Tree Policy Centre from India, expressing his reactions with the Daily Observer said that the principles they set up for the negotiations for global environment agreement-the way back in 1992, are not being seriously followed .
And those principles were the precautionary approaches, common but differentiated approaches like responsibilies and polluters to pay.
"Because we followed all principles in Montreal Protocol. we are able to successfully implemented the same and protected the ozone layers," he added.
Having seen such success, it is painful to see, the failure here in Paris.
But he also expressed his optimism saying still we have another one and half days to go for end of negotiation. So probably, I do not want to be so pessimist, because we may have some success.
However, the situation, related to climate change, is so serious and particularly the developing countries like India, Bangladesh and Maldives would be seriously affected because of large number of poor people are living in those countries. And they do not have the means to fight the devastating impact of climate change.
Hence , we do not want some success, but a full success and a definite full success as making Paris agreement legally binding ambitions, so that temperature rise related to pre- industrial level is below 2 degrees Celsius.
Talking about the new draft, Kamal Uddin Ahmed, Secretary of the Ministry of Environment and Forest said that it is really tough to say at this moment of negotiation whether the LDCs demand will be resolved or not.
Echoing with SaleemulHuq, he also said that we have to wait till the next day (today) to get the final outcome of the negotiations.
However, he expressed his hope that the LDCs demand on long term carbon emission goal and finance flow will get a positive nod.
More news on page 4

Editor : Iqbal Sobhan Chowdhury
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