|Cabinet Secretary represents Bhutan at COP18|
A Bhutanese delegation is in Doha, Qatar, to take part in the United Nations Climate Change Conference, which began this week.
With calls for governments to focus on essential tasks ahead of them so that the meeting can deliver agreed outcomes and constitute another step forward in the global response to climate change, the meeting is the world’s largest conference on climate change.
The Bhutanese delegation is led by the Cabinet Secretary, Dasho Penden Wangchuk.
According to a press release from the foreign affairs ministry, for developing countries like Bhutan, financing is a priority issue for adaption to the adverse impacts of climate change and also to ensure that development follows a low emission pathway.
“With the institutional arrangements for the Green Climate Fund (GCF) which was established at COP16 due to be endorsed at COP18, the focus will now be on how to ensure that the goal of USD 100bn a year promised through the GCF by 2020 will actually be met,” stated the press release.
Bhutan along with other Least Developed Countries (LDC) expects an outcome from the conference for enhanced action on adaption from Doha that will be launched by 2013 the National Adaption Plan process with the necessary support for finance, technology and capacity building.
The Bhutanese delegation also includes officials from the National Environment Commission (NEC), agriculture ministry, economic affairs ministry, foreign affairs ministry and Bhutan Trust Fund for Environment Conservation.
Meanwhile, at the opening of the conference, the Chairman of Qatar’s Administrative Control and Transparency Authority, Mr. Abdullah bin Hamad Al-Attiyah, who is also the newly elected President of the Conference of the Parties (COP18/CMP 8), urged the conference to stick to agreed timetables and speedily implement already agreed decisions.
He said many delegates have stressed the importance of finalizing work on time and this requires that the participants show flexibility.
“Climate change is a common challenge for humanity. We must work in earnest for a better future for present and for future generations. We have a precious opportunity over the coming days and we must make full use of it,” he said.
Some of the key issues under the Protocol that need to be decided in Doha includes the length of the second commitment period and how to convert targets into quantified emission limitations and reduction objectives and the legal formulation of the amendment to the protocol, including how to carry over unused emissions credits of economies in transition into the second phase of the Protocol.
Other issues and expected results at Doha include adaption issues, support of developing country action, action on forests, carbon capture and storage, agriculture, and development and transfer of technology.
The key objectives that governments have set themselves for COP 18 in Doha is to ensure the seamless continuations of the Kyoto Protocol, to plan the work under Durban platform, to complete the Bali Action Plan, and to complete new infrastructure and chart the way forward on long-term climate finance.
The Kyoto Protocol is the only existing and binding agreement under which developed countries committed to cutting greenhouse gases. The treaty underwrites international political trust that developed nations remain responsible to lead emissions cuts, and it preserves the important accounting and legal systems inside the protocol as working models which may inform future agreements.
More than 100 ministers from all over the world will attend the high-level segment of the meeting, which begins on December 4 and ends with a decisions-making plenary on December 7. The opening of the high-level segment will also be attended by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.
Government delegates, representatives from business and industries, environmental organizations, research institutions and media from all around the world are also in attendance at the conference