Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Special Briefing on UN Secretary General High-Level Advisory Group on Climate Change $

Tropical Forest Group notes on a Special Briefing about:

The UN Secretary-General's High-Level Advisory Group on Climate Change Financing – An Introduction to UNFCCC Parties
Bonn, Germany
11 April 2010.
The UN Secretary-General established a High-Level Advisory Group on Climate Change Financing to study the potential sources of revenue for financing mitigation and adaptation activities in developing countries, and to make progress on the key issue of finance in the course of 2010. The group, under the chairmanship of H.E. Mr. Meles Zenawi, Prime Minister (Ethiopia) and H.E. Mr. Gordon Brown, Prime Minister (United Kingdom), had its first meeting in London on 31 March. A special briefing was held April 11 in Bonn Germany to provide an update on the work of the group. Speakers:
• Mr. Mohammad Reza Salamat, Senior Programme Officer
• Secretary General's Climate Change Support Team
• Mr. Ato Newai, Chief Economic Advisor to the Prime Minister, Ethiopia
• Mr. Pete Betts, Director for International Climate Change, Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC), United Kingdom
Moderated by Mr. Mohammad Reza Salamat. (salamat@un.org or +1-914-450-8848)
You can view the webcast here: http://unfccc2.meta-fusion.com/kongresse/100409_AWG/templ/play.php?id_kongresssession=2618&theme=unfccc

Mr. Mohammad Reza Salamat speaking:
UN Secretary General established AGF. AGF is accountable to UN Secretary General.
Submit final report to secretary general and current and next president of COP.
This group is NOT the high-level panel called for by COP15.
Given need of finance needs quickly, particularly for most vulnerable nations.
Start work for potential new and existing revenues to reach $100 billion per year by 2020.
Various criteria for assessing: (could not hear that well)
Funds by donors to support mitigation, adaptation, technology transfer, capacity, etc.
Will focus on funds needed by most vulnerable.
Chaired by Gordon Brown and Prime Minister Zenawi.
Other heads of state, ministers of finance, experts on public finance, etc.
Intended output will contribute to UNFCCC.
Will hold briefings in coming months, will consult widely with constituencies
First meeting was 31 March in London.
Members set out priorities for future work.
Key issues:
Sources of new and additional public finance
Carbon markets
Multi-lateral agencies
3-4 more meetings. Then draft final report.
Groups for each thematic area.
May/June SBSTA meetings, there will be initial reports,
Secretary General will make sure UNFCCC parties receive reports before COP16.
Working methods: drafts, consultations, secretariat in NYC, reporting to UNG and UNFCCC
Accountable to Secretary General
Office in his NY climate change team.
Website: www.un.org/climatechange/agf

UK’s Pete Betts. Reminds audience that since an election has been called in the UK, he is only authorized to present factual information.
Focused on potential sources and principles to use.
They would meet 2nd July and 3rd in September
Two working groups
1. Climate finance
2. Public finance

Ethiopia’s Mr. Ato Newai
Representatives from many countries
Tasks as explained before
Factors include:
Practicality – whether a certain fund intended to be raised is feasible
Acceptability – whether it is politically acceptable
Reliability – whether secure source of funds can be relied on.
Three categories:
1. Public finance,
2. Private finance (including carbon market),
3. International financial institutions that can “liberate” funds through other sources
Can’t go into detail, the work has just begun.
There is an appreciation that the bulk of funds will probably come from public finance with different sources. And additional funds would come from private finance and liberation of funds that might be collected or mobilized elsewhere.

Questions and Answers:
Are funds from developed countries?
Clarity of role of multi-laterals?
Clarity on consultations?
If it isn’t the high-level, what is relationship?
Are you looking at fast-track?
Timeframe for report?
Just 2020 or ramp up?
Carbon markets – will that dilute public finance?
Will the panel get into governance and oversight issues?

This is not the CA high-level panel.
Political commitments were made on financing even though the CA was not adopted.
Outcome of this group, a report, will be given to COP and it will be COP’s decision.
Timeline: 1st initial outcomes prepared by June UNFCCC sessions.
Then they will listen to Parties and non-Parties and incorporate views
Finalize a report in October/November
Presented to Secretary General and current and next COP presidents.
With enough time to reflect on the report by Cancun. Then it is in the hands of COP.
Won’t be looking at institutional/governance issues so much, that is too political.
But to the extent that these issues come up, they will be examined.
We will be looking at funds from developed countries primarily, but we may touch on funds from developing countries, but that is not in the group’s remit.
RE: Fast track. We won’t be looking at this so much, but again a little as it comes up.
RE: 2020. We will just primarily look at the funding in 2020, not so much in the time before, but a bit. Clearly, we do not envision $30B from 2010 to 2012, then nothing, and then $100B/year in 2020.
RE: Carbon markets. We will be looking at carbon markets and all types of financing.

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