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Posted on Sustainabilitank.info on February 9th, 2012
by Pincas Jawetz (pj@sustainabilitank.info)

cumbre ALBA con Chavez

Hugo Chávez, anfitrión de la cumbre del Alba en Caracas.

Los presidentes de Venezuela, Hugo Chávez; de Cuba, Raúl Castro; de Bolivia, Evo Morales; de Nicaragua, Daniel Ortega; de Haití, Michel Martelly; el primer ministro de Dominica, Roosevelt Skerrit; de San Vicente y las Granadinas, Ralph Gonsalves; el premier de Antigua y Barbuda, Winston Baldwin Spencer; y el canciller de Argentina, Héctor Timerman, acordaron celebrar dos reuniones al año, de carácter ordinario.

La Alternativa Bolivariana para las Américas, creada hace 7 años por Cuba y Venezuela para fomentar la integración en la región bajo los principios de solidaridad, comercio justo, respeto estricto a la soberanía y complementariedad económica.

Los países que integran el ALBA son: Cuba, Venezuela, Dominica, Bolivia, Nicaragua, Ecuador, Antigua y Barbuda, y San Vicente y las Granadinas.

===================================================================================

América Latina: Cumbre del Alba entre la economía y Las Malvinas.

Infolatam/Efe

Caracas, 5 enero 2012

www.infolatam.com/2012/02/05/america-latina-cumbre-del-alba-entre-la-economia-y-las-malvinas/

Las claves

  • El Consejo Económico de la Alternativa propuso la creación de fondos de reservas del Banco del Alba, al tiempo que el presidente Chávez, aprobó la incorporación del 1% de las reservas internacionales de Venezuela (300 millones de dólares), a la entidad financiera del bloque
  • El presidente de Bolivia, Evo Morales, propuso este domingo la creación de un Consejo de Defensa de los países miembros de la Alianza Bolivariana para los Pueblos de Nuestra América (Alba).
  • ALBA estudia sancionar a R.Unido y no asistir a Cumbre de las Américas si no asiste Cuba.

—————————————————

Integración desnuda

“Y aquí estamos entrando en la segunda década del milenio, sin visión estratégica de la integración, perdidos entre siglas que a nadie dicen nada ALBA, Unasur o CELAC por solo nombrar algunas. Mientras tanto, los países del continente disfrutan de una relativa bonanza económica, producto del aislamiento y la exportación de materias primas que finalizará en cuanto se cierre el ciclo económico”. (Tal Cual. Venezuela)

————————————————-

La Alianza Bolivariana  (Alba)  dedicó la jornada a las políticas económicas conjuntas y la posición de apoyo a Argentina, por el caso de las Islas Malvinas, y a Cuba, para presionar su presencia en la próxima Cumbre de las Américas, a la cual no ha sido invitada aún.  El Alba propuso la creación de fondos de reservas del Banco del Alba, al tiempo que el presidenteChávez, aprobó la incorporación del 1% de las reservas internacionales de Venezuela (300 millones de dólares), a la entidad financiera del bloque

Los gobernantes del ALBA acordaron en Caracas la creación de un “espacio económico” y de un fondo de reservas de su banco regional. También se comprometieron a redoblar su apoyo a Haití y a estudiar sanciones contra Londres por el conflicto por las Islas Malvinas que mantiene con Argentina.

Los presidentes de los países del ALBA debatirán esta jornada la entrada de nuevos miembros, con el fin de consolidar sus objetivos integracionistas. Haití, nación que desde 2007 participa en este mecanismo como observador, figura entre las solicitudes de ingreso pleno, interés que fue ratificado por su mandatario,Michel Martelly, para acceder a todos los beneficios que el bloque subregional ofrece.

El canciller de Cuba, Bruno Rodríguez, detalló que para los próximos 2 y 3 de marzo se celebrará una Cumbre extraordinaria del ALBA en Haití, a fin de revisar el trabajo planificado en esta cita.

Los jefes de Estado también analizaron la posible incorporación de Suriname y Santa Lucía. De igual manera, debatirán los documentos de trabajo que se desprendieron de las reuniones realizadas por partidos políticos y medios de comunicación de los países que integran la Alianza.

La Alternativa Bolivariana para las Américas, creada hace 7 años por Cuba y Venezuela para fomentar la integración en la región bajo los principios de solidaridad, comercio justo, respeto estricto a la soberanía y complementariedad económica.

Los países que integran el ALBA son: Cuba, Venezuela, Dominica, Bolivia, Nicaragua, Ecuador, Antigua y Barbuda, y San Vicente y las Granadinas.

###

Posted on Sustainabilitank.info on August 20th, 2010
by Pincas Jawetz (pj@sustainabilitank.info)

erom: CCRIF <pr@ccrif.org>
date Thu, Aug 19, 2010
subject Caribbean Economics of Climate Adaptation Study results released.

Please see attached press release regarding the publication of preliminary results of the study on the Economics of Climate Adaptation (ECA) in the Caribbean implemented by the Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility and regional partners.

The results for eight pilot countries (Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Bermuda, the Cayman Islands, Dominica, Jamaica, and St. Lucia) are presented in a short brochure entitled, Enhancing the climate risk and adaptation fact base for the Caribbean (Preliminary Results).

The brochure is available on the CCRIF website at www.ccrif.org/sites/default/files/publications/ECABrochureFinalAugust182010.pdf

Regards,
Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility (CCRIF)

###

Posted on Sustainabilitank.info on July 19th, 2010
by Pincas Jawetz (pj@sustainabilitank.info)

For one thing, see there is a good South African Restaurant in Fort Greene, Brooklyn, and we go there for inspiration and nourishment from time to time. www.madibarestaurant.com/ info@madibarestaurant.com.

 politic365.com/2010/07/19/happy-b…

Based on the above – we write: Two freedom fighters I most admire, writes Noel Anderson, Professor at Brooklyn College, in the struggle for South African democracy are Oliver Tambo and Nelson Mandela. Law partners and comrades, both men helped to shape the direction of the country, with Mandela leading the struggle from within, while Tambo raised international consciousness and money while exiled abroad. Tambo is no longer with us, but Mandela keeps the best of that struggle alive, becoming the first truly democratically elected President of South Africa after decades of imprisonment, and continuing to serve as a moral symbol for African and world affairs.

Born 92 years ago on July 18th, 1918, into a royal family in the Transkei, Mandela has been at the center of not just South African but global freedom struggles. He was the head of the ANC youth league and became a founding member of Umkhonto we Sizwe (“Spear of the Nation”) the armed wing of the ANC, before being imprisoned for 27 years.

President Obama, in tribute to Mandela’s work, has called on all to engage in community service. (In effect this past weekend everyone of us was called to put aside 82 minutes of his time and dedicate those 82 minutes to the community.  The United Nations has also recognized his birthday as Nelson Mandela International Day by calling on November 10, 2009 to make the !8th of July The International Mandela Day – and this year – the July 18th 2010, was supposed to be The First International Mandela Day. But it fell on a Sunday and that is a no-no for the UN Free Birds that must keep the weekend in New York for free enjoyment – really – what other reason for spending the time in this hot city? So, the UN moved to celebrate the day, this year, on  Thursday night and Friday Morning – 15th and 16th of 2010.

Strange as it sounds, its important to recognize that “Madiba” (his term of endearment), the 92 year old grandfather, still has a revolutionary spirit and still… very much alive. The press tends to talk about him the past tense, as if he is long gone and only his legacy survives. Yes, health concerns has led him to retreat from a once rigorous travel schedule, and his chronological age puts him in the twilight of his life. But Mandela is  mentally very lucid, weighs in on global politics and still advises in the affairs of his philanthropic foundation. Further, despite the controversial painting of Mandela, depicting him as dead and being used for an autopsy by political leaders, he still speaks with leaders on pressing concerns, and remains loyal to those countries that supported the freedom struggle.  Happy Birthday, Madiba!

{Dr. Noel S. Anderson is Associate Professor of Political Science and Education at the City University of New York – Brooklyn College. His work focuses on urban politics, human development and education and comparative issues in public policy – U.S. and South Africa}.

————————–

The celebration started on Thursday night 6:30 pm with a series of three talks and the screening of the documentary “MANDELA: Son of Africa, Father of a Nation, in the new ECOSOC Chamber in the UN temporary North Lawn building.

No one from the high flyers of the UN was there – their place taken by fill-ins, but luckily Jonathan Demme the director, and Peter Saraf, the co-producer of the film were there – so the aesthetics of their production could be brought up.

For the UN spoke Margaret Novicki and Nicholas Haysom.

Margaret Novicki was appointed by UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan  as the Director of the United Nations Information Centre in Pretoria, South Africa.  Ms. Novicki, a national of the United States, brings to this post extensive experience in communications, media relations and journalism, much of it acquired in Africa. Prior to Pretoria she worked for the UN in Accra. She chaired the evening. She spoke on behalf  of the UN USG for UNDPI – Mr. Kiyotaka Akasaka.
Why DPI? Why not the Secretary General himself?

Nicholas Haysom, as an attorney of the South African High Court, he litigated in high-profile human rights cases between 1981 and 1993.  He acted as a professional mediator in labour and community conflicts in South Africa between 1985 and 1993, and has advised on civil conflicts in Africa and Asia since 1998. Founding partner and senior lawyer at the human rights law firm of Cheadle Thompson and Haysom Attorneys, and an Associate Professor of Law and Deputy Director at the Centre for Applied Legal Studies at Wits University in South Africa until May 1994, when he was appointed Legal Adviser to President Mandela.

Mr. Haysom was closely involved in the constitutional negotiations leading up to the interim and final Constitutions in South Africa.  He served as Chief Legal Adviser throughout Mr. Mandela’s presidency, and continued to work with Mr. Mandela on his private peace initiatives up to 2002.

Since leaving the office of the President upon Nelson Mandela’s retirement in 1999, Mr. Haysom has been involved in the Burundi Peace Talks as the Chairman of the committee negotiating constitutional issues (1999–2002). He continued to serve on the implementation committee of the Burundi Peace Accord after 2002.

Incoming UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon appointed Professor Nicholas Haysom of South Africa as Director for Political Affairs in his Executive Office, May 16, 2007. Our friend Matthew Russell Lee complained that he is never seen at the UN – but in a careful reading of the article we find there the concept of preventive diplomacy – we wish had more credence at the UN.  “He said there is a resistance to preventive diplomacy among member states, leading to the blocking of reform and regional offices of the Department of Political Affairs — he ascribed the most strenuous opposition to Latin America — and to resistance to the Responsibility to Protect doctrine and Ed Luck’s appointment as special advisor on the topic.” In short – he actually seems to be well ahead of the UN but not really of the UN – where he finds it difficult to execute policy that is factually set by only the Permant Five of the Veto Power.

What we said above was that both speakers for the UN are somehow South Africa based and not UN based.

Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela (Xhosa pronunciation: [xo?li?a?a man?de?la]; born in a Xhosa home in Qunu, Transkei,where his father, the Town Counselor, had 4 wives and the boys lived in a separate home from the parents. Chief Jogintamba saw his potential and sent him to the Clakebury Boarding School. In 1933, at 15, he got involved in the Walter Sisulu led ANC and when he reached 30 years, that is when coincidentally Prime Minister Hendrik Verwoerd’s contribution to Afrikanerdom was to dress up apartheid and make it appear respectable to his followers, and the Mandela & Tambo law-firm took on the anti-apartheid legal defense.

In 1956 Mandela prepared the Freedom Charter and the people declared – “We Stand by Our Leader.” Then in 1960 happened the Sharpeville masacre and the call changed to: “Freedom in Our Time” and Wolfie Kadesh, a white man, was an activist. In 1962 Mandela went underground and George Bizios, also a white man, was his lawyer. Eventually, Mandela was apprehended and was in jail 1961 – 1988. Gowan Mbeki was imprisoned for 25 years. In August 1989 Botha resigns and De Klerk takes over and leeds the negotiations with Mandela. November 1993 both of them get the Nobel Prize. Friday, 10 Dec 1993 was Mandela’s speech in Oslo. www.africa.upenn.edu/Articles_Gen…

Fully representative Democratic elections took place on 27 April 1994, and Mandela served as President of South Africa from 1994 to 1999.

Before his presidency, Mandela was an anti-apartheid activist. We saw how he got there from his village roots and we learned about the 27 years he spent as a FREE MAN behind bars – freer in his spirit then his captors that knew that they were the captives in the hands of the true Free World. Yes – those years – post World War II – when the UN was young and small – the World had hope for a future that will be very different from the way history evolved prior to those days. Today we can say that the hope tuned out to be pre-mature and Nelson Mandela who moved with his times forged an image for the World well ahead of his time. But no despair, his personal example moved at Least South Africa to ending its internal conflict even though many other conflicts in the World continue to rage on.

Mandela, son of Africa and Father of the New South Africa, depicted in advertisement as a barefoot young boy in what looks like a general’s coat, armed with a stick, said that his watchwords were TRUTH & FREEDOM.

———————-

From the screening event at the UN I hurried down to the Manhattan Village – to TEATROIATI at 64 East 4th Street (between Bowery and 2nd Av,) where Sabrina Lastman of Uruguay was having a showing of her CANDOMBE JAZZ PROJECT – mixture oral tradition AFRO-URUGUAYAN MUSIC with elements of Jazz. I bring this in here because in many ways it was befitting the Mandela event.

In the Mandela documentary we saw much of the peoples culture of the Indigenous Africans of the original South Africa, and somehow it must have been quite similar to what Africans, probably from the Congo region, brought with them to what are now Uruguay and Argentina. The fact that this music has survived, and in effect has now a revival, are signs of its resilience, but also of the influence Mandela’s achievements had world-wide.

The Candombe Jazz Project is a New York City-based ensemble playing Candombe, the Afro Uruguayan music tradition. CJP presents an exciting concert of original compositions by Sabrina Lastman & Beledo, arrangement of oral tradition songs, & songs by renown Uruguayan songwriters.

Candombe Jazz Project includes:
Sabrina Lastman – voice / compositions
Beledo – guitar / keyboard / compositions
Arturo Prendez – candombe drum / percussions
Special guests: Agrupación Lubola Macú

——————–

“PEACE IS NOT THE ABSENCE OF CONFLICT – IT IS THE CREATION OF AN ENVIRONMENT WHERE ALL CAN FLOURISH,” Mandela said. He also wanted to see the emancipation of women – not just the races. These are things the UN must write on its flag – does it?

——————

On Friday was the Official Commemorative Ceremony, in the big General Assembly Hall, that started with the usual UN delay at 10:20 am., with many Missions to the UN having one warm body sitting in their row – only South Africa, headed by a Minister, having all six seats, and some more, occupied. This was a Special Plenary, ahead of the regular daily Plenary.

The UN had the event open to outsiders, and that was nice. The problem that there were not many insiders present.

The President of the General Assembly, the former Libyan Foreign Minister Mr. Ali Abdussalam Treki, who is under a Schengen Travel Ban,  was not there, and that was good. Instead was one of his seconds, but the Press kit just goes ahead selling him to the innocents. We do not even know the name of the nice lady that chaired the meeting she defined as an “INFORMAL Meeting” of the GA.

“IT IS IN OUR HANDS TO CREATE A BETTER WORLD” said Mandela – God bless him and save the GA.

That was followed by a video message from the UN Secretary General Mr Ban Ki-moon, who said that Mandela’s greatness came from: “HE FOUGHT HIS OPRESSORS FOR YEARS AND THEN FORGAVE THEM. – HE CONSTANTLY REMINDS US HE IS AN ORDINARY MAN, BUT HE ACHIEVED UNORDINARY THINGS.”

—————–

This was followed by The Minister of International Relations and Commonwealth Relations of South Africa, Ms. Maite Nkoana-Mashbane, who said that in October 1994 he helped Free South Africa.

She continued saying that in the next two days – to July 18th, people of the globe will get together to hear the words that inspired us in South Africa. She thanks in the name of President Jacob Zuma for adopting in November 2009 this resolution to have the International Mandela Day started this year. South Africa and the World are fortunate to have had a man as Nelson Mandela. She added that the UN was all the way on “Our” side in our fight against Apartheid. We owe our freedom to the role of this august house. By celebrating Mandela Day we celebrate the best for what the UN was created. UBUNTU – we believ in ourselves for what we are.

Her words were followed by a video, and we saw February 19, 1994 people of all South Africa standing peacefully in line and giving their vote.

The Minister’s presentation was clearly the highlight of the informal ceremonial, that was then followed  {informally?} by one representative from each one of UN’s major group.

—————-

This was a sad succession of obligatory diplomatic bows with some sparks of freshness.

Egypt spoke on behalf of the Non-aligned Movement – the enigma of the UN,

The Republic of Congo on behalf of the African States, spoke of the recent World Cup,

Darussalam on behalf of the Asian States, this is the Brunei Darussalam State, that clearly needs still its own liberation,

Belarus on behalf of the East European States, spoke interestingly of a long walk to Freedom,

Saint Lucia on behalf of the Group of Latin & Caribbean States, who in our opinion was the best speech  we called the Mission and asked for the speech. We attach the full speech to the end of our posting. The Afro-Caribbean Ambassador, surely descendant of slaves, H.E. Donatus Keith St Aimee, in obvious heart felt fashion said that “Few persons whose name resonate with approval on all continents – All our efforts at the UN came to essence in his life.”

Belgium on behalf of the Western European and Other States, but was mis-introduced by the Chair as speaking for the EU as temporary President of the EU. The main point was that “Let us remind ourselves that our work is far from complete – our work is for freedom or all.”

The last speaker was for the host country – the USA. who said that Apartheid was twisted and grotesque in its effort to justify oppression. Mandela overthrew apartheid by force of example.

———————————-
STATEMENT BY H. E. DONATUS ST AIMEE.

PERMANENT REPRESENTAIVE OF SAINT LUCIA TO THE UNITED NATIONS
ON BEHALF OF THE GROUP OF LATIN AMERICAN AND CARIBBEAN STATES (GRULAC).

ON THE OCCASION OF THE OBSERVANCE OF NELSON MANDELA INTERNATIONAL DAY.

FRIDAY JULY 16TH, 2010

Mr. Chairman, I am honored to speak on behalf of Member states comprising the Group of Latin America and the Caribbean (GRULAC), as we show our respect and admiration for an icon of the ages.

In the annals of recorded history there are few individuals whose names resonate with esteem and are uttered with deference on all continents and in all societies.  There are few lives that are unequivocally admired or unreservedly revered by all races and ethnicities; and there are few persons who in a more emotional sense, are cherished and held dear by such a large segment of humanity. Like all celebrated and remarkable men or women, this person whom we come to honor today is identified internationally with one single name befitting his role in our global society and that name is – MANDELA.

We are here today to honor Nelson Mandela pursuant to the adoption of Resolution A/64/L.13. We are here today to commemorate a man who in a lifetime of dignity has come to represent the very ideal for which we struggle daily in the United Nations. All our words, all our actions, all our individual and collective efforts aim in their sum total to equal what is represented by the life of Nelson Mandela.

Nelson Mandela became an international symbol because of his struggle against oppression generally and apartheid in South Africa in particular. We know his history:

· From the early nineteen forties he was a leader of one of the most significant non-violent movements in history.
· For 27 years he was imprisoned under brutal conditions even as he heard of the death beyond his prison walls, of his brothers and sisters in the struggle against apartheid. How many times he must have wondered when his time would be coming to also face death at the hands of his captors.
· Finally he was released on 11th February, 1990.
· To understand the magnitude of his suffering and indignity of his incarceration, we must comprehend that he entered prison at the age of 45 and left at age 72.

These facts as we know them only scratch the surface of the beauty that is the life of Nelson Mandela. What was it that resulted in Nelson Mandela receiving more than 250 awards over four decades including the 1993 Nobel Peace Prize? It was not his physical incarceration that captured the imagination of people, it was not the brutality of apartheid nor the interest of so many supporters the world over to stop this aberration.

What captured our imagination was that Nelson Mandela’s indomitable spirit, his humanity, his humility and his vast love of his people could not be imprisoned in any way by iron, concrete or barbed wire. He went into prison in 1963 as an unbowed, proud, determined South African fighter and came out in 1990 as an unbowed, proud, determined 20th Century leader and icon.

As Mandela himself put in words:

“I cherish my own freedom dearly, but I care even more for your freedom… I cannot sell my birthright, nor am I am prepared to sell the birthright of the people to be free…”

Mandela turned down freedom at an earlier date because he insisted that it had to be unconditional and as President from 1994 to 1999, he frequently gave priority to reconciliation in order to harness all the resources of South Africa to lift the economic conditions of his people. His spirit of forgiveness, his turning of the other cheek has ensured that South Africa joined as an equal partner in the nations of this world, so that within the past month we have all had the great joy of watching South Africa host the World Cup in splendid and successful fashion.

How important it is that the Member States of the United Nations saw it fitting to adopt a Resolution to commemorate Nelson Mandela International Day, an annual event which the world would observe, now for the first time on the occasion of his 92nd Birthday, and for years to come.

We the Member States of GRULAC, have experienced in similar forms many of the travails experienced by South Africa and personified in the life of Nelson Mandela. Our region has had its own icons, and we remember their considerable contributions to the development of our nations when we pause here to honor the life of Mandela.  For this reason his life, his response to adversity, his humanity, resonates not just in our minds for the success of his mission but in our hearts for the beacon he has become for all peoples suffering repression.

What this man said was merely a punctuation for what he did, and what he did is being recognized today in this august forum so that present and future generations need not wonder as to the path to success in nation building, but merely need to follow the footsteps of this great man.

He truly is an ordinary man who has behaved in an extraordinary way!

###

Posted on Sustainabilitank.info on May 24th, 2010
by Pincas Jawetz (pj@sustainabilitank.info)

UNEP leads 27 countries of the Wider Caribbean on  “land-based pollution” at an International Maritime Organization (IMO) meeting in Panama City based on the ISTAC of Kingston, Jamaica (Interim Scientific, Technical and Advisory Committee to the Cartagena Convention. Will they touch nevertheless the menacing Deep-Water Oil-Well Blow-Out?

from: James Sniffen <sniffenj@un.org>

UNEP/CEP PRESS RELEASE: REGIONAL GOVERNMENT POLLUTION EXPERTS MEET IN PANAMA.

Panama City, 24th May, 2010:

Over 50 pollution control experts from 27 countries of the Wider Caribbean
gather today (Monday 24th May) in Panama City at the invitation of the
United Nations Environment Programme’s Caribbean Environment Programme
(UNEP CEP) and the International Maritime Organization (IMO).

The gathering of experts for the 5th Meeting of the Interim Scientific, Technical and Advisory Committee (ISTAC) to the Protocol concerning pollution from land-based sources, commonly known as the LBS Protocol, will last for five days.  The CEP is the Secretariat for this Protocol and is based in Kingston, Jamaica.

The LBS Protocol is one of three agreements under the Convention for the
Protection and Development of the Marine Environment in the Wider Caribbean
Region (the Cartagena Convention).  It establishes regional guidelines and
standards for reducing the impact of pollution on the coastal and marine
environment, and on human health.   Over 80% of the pollution of the marine
environment of the Wider Caribbean is estimated to originate from land
based sources and activities.

Panama, the host country, is one of only six countries to have ratified the LBS Protocol.  The others are Trinidad and Tobago, Belize, Saint Lucia, France and the United States.  Discussions during the meeting will focus on measures to increase the region’s commitment to ratify the Protocol, and have it enter into force and become international law as soon as possible.

In support of regional cooperation, UNEP CEP is partnering with the IMO and their joint Regional Activity Centre for Oil Spills (RAC REMPEITC) to bring together experts from environmental agencies, maritime authorities and port administrations for this 5th LBS ISTAC.

Delegates are expected to identify practical measures to improve the implementation of marine environmental agreements including the IMO London Convention on the control of pollution from dumping of wastes at sea and the MARPOL Convention on the prevention of pollution of the marine environment by ships.

According to Nelson Andrade, Coordinator of UNEP CEP”   “It is vital that
Governments adopt a more integrated approach to reducing pollution from
land and marine based sources”.  He noted that the continued partnership
between UNEP and IMO will help to effectively implement the Cartagena
Convention and its three Protocols and to reduce marine contamination.

Meeting Participants are also expected to review recent achievements of the
UNEP CEP to reduce and control marine pollution and to endorse a new work
plan and budget for 2010-2011.

For additional information, please contact:

Christopher Corbin,Programme Officer,
Assessment and Management of Environment Pollution (AMEP),
Regional Co-ordinating Unit, UNEP CEP
Kingston, Jamaica
Telephone: (876) 922-9267 — Fax: (876) 922-9292
www.cep.unep.org; cjc@cep.unep.org;

About UNEP’s Caribbean Environment Programme (CEP) –  The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) established the Caribbean Environment Programme (CEP) in 1976 under the framework of its Regional Seas Programme.   It was based on the importance and value of the Wider Caribbean Region’s fragile and vulnerable coastal and marine ecosystems including an abundant and mainly endemic flora and fauna,

A Caribbean Action Plan was adopted by the Caribbean countries and led to the adoption, in 1983, of the only current regional, legally-binding agreement for the protection of the marine environment, the Cartagena Convention.  The Convention and its first Protocol (Oil Spill) entered into force in 1986.

Two other protocols were developed by the region – the Protocols on Special Protected Areas and Wildlife (SPAW) and the Control of Pollution from Land Based Sources (LBS) in 1990 and 1999 respectively.

The SPAW Protocol entered into force in 2000, whereas three ratifying countries are still needed for the LBS Protocol.

The Caribbean Regional Coordinating Unit (UNEP-CAR/RCU) serves as the Secretariat to the Cartagena Convention and is based in Kingston, Jamaica.

Each Protocol is served by a Regional Activity Centre.  These Centres are
based in the Netherlands Antilles (Regional Marine Pollution Emergency
Information and Training Center for the Wider Caribbean, RAC/REMPEITC) for
the Oil Spills Protocol, Guadeloupe (RAC/SPAW) for the SPAW Protocol, Cuba
(Centre of Engineering and Environmental Management of Coasts and Bays) and
Trinidad & Tobago (Institute of Marine Affairs) for the LBS Protocol.

*****
Jim Sniffen
Programme Officer
UN Environment Programme
New York
tel: +1-212-963-8094/8210
info@nyo.unep.org
www.nyo.unep.org

###

Posted on Sustainabilitank.info on September 29th, 2009
by Pincas Jawetz (pj@sustainabilitank.info)

SAINT LUCIA WANTS URGENT CLIMATE CHANGE ACTION.

Saint Lucia’s Minister for External Affairs Rufus Bousquet addressed the United Nations General Assembly on Monday.

Photograph available here: docs.google.com/View?id=dgsbbfz_1…

Audio available at end of the release.

UNITED NATIONS, New York (September 29, 2009) – Saint Lucia, a Caribbean island and a founder of the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS), calls climate change the most serious challenge facing mankind today.

Addressing the United Nations General Assembly, Rufus George Bousquet, the island’s Minister for External Affairs, International Trade and Investment, called for an urgent collective response while detailing how his country was working on policies and legislation to develop renewable energy sources, including wind, solar and geothermal sources.

Small island developing states and least developed countries had joined together “to demand, appeal and even beg, if necessary, that the new Copenhagen climate agreement limit temperature increases to the attainable level of 1.5° C, as possibly anything above that will be devastating to our existence,” he told the august body, explaining that Saint Lucia was in “crisis-management mode,” which had to be part and parcel of sustainable development efforts.

Speaking later during a reception at Saint Lucia’s Mission to the United Nations and Consulate General, Minister Bousquet said climate change was already reducing the yield of food producers in Saint Lucia. “The little fisherman who goes out in a pirogue to do his daily fishing and who finds that the fishing stocks are depleted does not understand the reason why it is happening – it may be overfishing in some countries but certainly climate change is part of that,” he said, adding that the frequency and severity of hurricanes as well as rising sea levels have damaged small island states. “We did not create the problem (because) our (carbon) footprint is so small … and we don’t have the resources to cope with it at this stage,” he said, calling on the donor community to act urgently and meaningfully.

Minister Bousquet, the Parliamentary Representative for the constituency of Choiseul, said being categorized as middle income developing countries has disadvantaged Caribbean nations in attracting resources such as concessionary loans and grants. Other issues that he believes the international community must urgently address include debt relief so that resources can be redirected for the development of the people, the trafficking of illicit weapons through Caribbean waters to the developed world, and deporting criminals back to the Caribbean some of whom now have no connection with the region whence they came.

###

Posted on Sustainabilitank.info on March 12th, 2009
by Pincas Jawetz (pj@sustainabilitank.info)

10.jpg
For Immediate Release

Source: Saint Lucia Consulate General

Contacts:
Martha Claudie Smith, Vice Consul, Saint Lucia Consulate General
800 Second Avenue, 9th Floor
New York, NY 10017
+ 1 212 697-9360 –  martha246 at aol.com

Bevan Springer, Marketplace Excellence   + 1 201 861-2056 –  bevanspringer at nj.rr.com

ST. LUCIA PRIME MINISTER AND VETERAN MUSICAL MAESTRO TO CELEBRATE INDEPENDENCE IN NEW YORK

Photographs available at:
1) docs.google.com/Doc?id=dgsbbfz_95…
CAPTION: Brooklyn’s Borough President Marty Markowitz (center) congratulates the Government and People of St. Lucia for 30 years of Independence at a recent flag raising ceremony at Brooklyn Borough Hall. In the photograph is St. Lucia’s   Ambassador to the United Nations Dr. Donatus St. Aimee and St. Lucian Ann Marie Adamson, Policy Analyst, in the Office of Brooklyn’s Borough President.

2) docs.google.com/Doc?id=dgsbbfz_95…
Members of the St. Lucian community enjoyed a recent Poetry Night held at St. Lucia’s Consulate and Mission to the United Nations. Here, they cheer New York-based St. Lucian singer Michel Aubertin who delivered a stirring classical rendition.

NEW YORK (March 12, 2009) – St. Lucians across the Tri-State area around New York are eagerly awaiting both the arrival of Prime Minister Stephenson King as well as local musical genius Ronald “Boo” Hinkson, who along with friends and family of the Diaspora, will celebrate the island’s 30th anniversary of Independence this Saturday, March 14.

Prime Minister King will address gala patrons at Brooklyn, New York’s Grand Prospect Hall (263 Prospect Avenue) as St. Lucians gather with their Caribbean and American friends under the theme “A Journey to be proud of, A future to look forward to” at the popular banquet facility.

“We are excited about this weekend’s gala dinner and would like to encourage all St. Lucians and friends of St. Lucia to witness history as our island nation celebrates three decades of self-rule in grand style,” said Ambassador Dr. Donatus St. Aimee, St. Lucia’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations. He added the Prime Minister will have a special message to share with St. Lucians in the United States concerning the island’s development agenda, while Ronald “Boo” Hinkson, a celebrated St. Lucian jazz guitarist, will showcase the island’s “creative cultural genius” and give a sneak-preview of what to expect at the upcoming St. Lucia Jazz festival in May.

Last month, St. Lucians in the New York Tri-State area gathered in impressive numbers to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Independence with cultural presentations, poetry readings, a flag raising ceremony at Brooklyn’s Borough Hall, a church service, and a lively Ambassador’s reception.

Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz commented: “What a huge milestone 30 years of nation building represents. St. Lucia is truly the jewel of the Caribbean, a land of beautiful beaches and rolling blue skies, but also the intellectual nerve center of the Caribbean … with more Nobel Laureates per capita than anywhere in the world.”

Tickets for the gala are available at the St. Lucia Consulate and from the leadership of various St. Lucian organisations.
St. Lucia gained its Independence from Great Britain on February 22, 1979.

###

Posted on Sustainabilitank.info on February 8th, 2009
by Pincas Jawetz (pj@sustainabilitank.info)

The following shows that  Immigrants to the US could be loyal to the US and to their country of origin – they could also harbor some feelings for their previous colonial masters – in this century of business by private people – the small investor could be invited to be king.

* * *

From: Bevan Springer <bevanspringer@nj.rr.com>
Date: Sat, Feb 7, 2009

Saint Lucia Consulate General

Contacts:
Martha Claudie Smith,Vice Consul, Saint Lucia Consulate General
800 Second Avenue, 9th Floor
New York, NY 10017
+ 1 212 697-9360 –  martha246 at aol.com

Bevan Springer, Marketplace Excellence + 1 201 861-2056 –  bevanspringer at nj.rr.com

Photograph of Ambassador Dr. Donatus St. Aimee available at:
 docs.google.com/Doc?id=dgsbbfz_86…

ST. LUCIA EMBRACES DIASPORA OVER INDEPENDENCE

NEW YORK (February 7, 2009) – As St. Lucia, “The Helen of the West Indies,” registers its landmark thirtieth anniversary of Independence from Great Britain on February 22, its top diplomat at the United Nations wants more of its overseas-based nationals to participate in the nation’s development.

Speaking from his Manhattan office this week, Ambassador Dr. Donatus St. Aimee called for greater communication between the St. Lucian Diaspora and the country’s government representatives abroad. “We are making this a priority and our Independence activities will help galvanize the strengths of our talented pool of intellectual resources in the marketplace,” he said.

The ambassador said he wants to see the relationship between St. Lucians at home and abroad transcend remittances, and include greater investment in small enterprises at home, boosting trade between St. Lucia and the United States as well as the development of peer counseling and mentorship programs. “It requires a two way communication and I think we will be off to good start this month,” he assured.

Reflecting on the theme of this year’s activities “A Journey to be proud of, A future to look forward to,” St. Lucia’s Minister Counsellor Sarah Flood-Beaubrun hopes this year’s celebration will help unify St. Lucian links in the spirit of national socio-economic prosperity. “We have a diverse population of St. Lucians here in the New York Tri-State area and we look forward to sharing ideas and learning from each other in the weeks and months ahead,” stated the former Cabinet Minister and Speaker of the House, who currently lives in New York.

Ambassador St. Aimee expressed content with the development priorities of St. Lucia given the economic challenges facing the world economy. “We have had successive governments who understood what development is all about,” he stated, adding that tourism, agriculture and manufacturing each offer hope for the future. “We have seen a progression that is calculated and gives us an opportunity to make adjustments along the way.”

St. Lucia gained its Independence from Great Britain on February 22, 1979.

The 2009 Independence activities slated for February and March in New York follow:

Sunday, February 15, 2009
5 p.m. – 8 p.m. – Official opening of week of activities at Club Caribbean City (103 Empire Boulevard, Brooklyn, NY 11225).

Monday, February 16, 2009
10 a.m. – 4 p.m. – Manufacturing display of products and congratulatory book signing at St. Lucia Consulate and UN Mission, to run throughout week. (800 Second Avenue, 9th Floor, New York, NY 10017).

Tuesday, February 17, 2009
10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. – Flag Raising Ceremony at Brooklyn’s Borough Hall (209 Joralemon Street, Brooklyn, NY 11209).

Thursday, February 19, 2009
6 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. – Poetry Night: Helen and the Arts – A celebration of the literary and visual arts at St. Lucia Consulate and UN Mission.

Friday, February 20, 2009
6 p.m. – 8 p.m. – Ambassador’s Reception – Location to be confirmed.

Saturday, February 21, 2009
10 p.m. Р4 a.m. РCultural F̻te РVarious locations.

Sunday, February 22, 2009
4:30 p.m. – Anniversary Mass Service – St. Matthews Roman Catholic Church (1123 Eastern Parkway, Brooklyn, NY 11213).

Saturday, March 14, 2009
9 p.m. – 2 a.m. – Independence Gala – Grand Prospect Hall (263 Prospect Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11215).

For further information about the 2009 Independence activities, contact:

Martha Claudie Smith,Vice Consul, Saint Lucia Consulate General
800 Second Avenue, 9th Floor
New York, NY 10017
+ 1 212 697-9360 –  aol.com

###

Posted on Sustainabilitank.info on July 3rd, 2007
by Pincas Jawetz (pj@sustainabilitank.info)

PRESS RELEASE From UNFCCC.
read the press release on our website:
<unfccc.int/files/press/news_room/press_releases_and_advisories/application/pdf/20070702_art_6_wkshop_stlucia.pdf
>

Experts meeting in St. Lucia explore ways to educate populations about the
perils of climate change

(Rodney Bay, 3 July 2007) – Faced with sea level rise of up to one meter by
the end of the next century and the need to relocate entire populations
within the next 50 years, representatives of 30 small island developing
States (SIDS) are meeting in St. Lucia from 3 to 5 July to discuss how
their populations can be better educated about the effects of climate
change.

The three-day workshop, organised by United Nations Framework Convention on
Climate Change (UNFCCC), will seek to identify priorities for island States
over the next five years.

“This workshop comes at a critical time in the intergovernmental process,
and will enable this most vulnerable group of countries, SIDS, to share
important lessons on how to best prepare the public to deal with the
serious and irreversible effects of climate change that have been
predicted,” said Paul Desanker, Team Leader of the Capacity Building and
Outreach Unit at the UN Climate Change Secretariat.

Some of these lessons have resulted in efforts like Community Multimedia
Centres which combine local broadcasting with internet and related
technologies.   Initial participants include radio stations in Barbados,
Cuba, Jamaica, and Trinidad and Tobago.   Another unique initiative to
increase public awareness has been the development of a handbook for
Caribbean journalists on covering climate change issues.

The workshop is the last in a series of activities which form part of a
work programme launched at the UN Climate Change Conference in New Delhi
(2002).   It will be led by Ambassador Bagher Asadi, who also chairs the
Convention’s Subsidiary Body for Implementation.   The Honourable Leonard
Montoute, Acting Prime Minister of Saint Lucia, will deliver a keynote
address at the opening ceremony. Participating organizations include UNEP,
UNESCO and IUCN Fiji.   Regional organizations such as OAS, SPREP and
CARICOM are also expected to attend.

The recent projections of the impact of climate change on SIDS by the
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has prompted island nations to
assess their needs in terms of resources, training and financial support.
One of the most dramatic effects of observed and projected climate change
is the physiological consequences of coral bleaching, which has already
caused long-term damage to many reefs worldwide.   It has been estimated
that the cost would reach as much as US$90 billion in tourism alone for
loss of 58% of the world’s coral reef. Key findings from this workshop will
feed into decisions to be made at the UN Climate Change Conference in Bali,
Indonesia in December this year.

“The impacts of climate change we are presently seeing in the Caribbean
underscore the urgency to act against the phenomenon by launching an agenda
for negotiations on a post-2012 agreement in Bali this year. The
negotiations need to conclude by 2009 so that the agreement can be ratified
by governments before the first commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol
ends in 2012,” said Yvo de Boer, UNFCCC Executive Secretary.

The post-2012 regime will present new opportunities for addressing climate
change, and the role of education and outreach will become increasingly
important to enable the greatest participation of all in designing and
implementing a sustainable future.

For complete conference information, including a schedule of events, please
visit the UNFCCC website:
<unfccc.int/cooperation_and_support/education_and_outreach/items/4001.php&gt;.

More information is available at:
<unfccc.int/ccinet&gt;
<unfccc.int/cooperation_and_support/education_and_outreach/items/2529.php&gt;
<unfccc.int/cooperation_and_support/education_and_outreach/items/4001.php&gt;

About the UNFCCC

With 191 Parties, the United Nations Climate Change Framework Convention
(UNFCCC) has near universal membership and is the parent treaty of the 1997
Kyoto Protocol. The Kyoto Protocol has to date 175 member Parties. At the
intergovernmental level, the Convention recognizes the important role of
education, training and public awareness, and has programmes dedicated to
supporting countries in their efforts.

For further information, please contact
Mr. Paul Desanker, Team Leader of the Capacity Building and Outreach Unit,
UNFCCC:  pdesanker at unfccc.int
Ms. Laurence Pollier, Programme Officer, UNFCCC:    lpollier at unfccc.int
Ms. Carrie Assheuer, Public Information and Media Assistant, UNFCCC:
(+49-228) 815-1005 or  press at unfccc.int
See also <unfccc.int&gt;

###

Posted on Sustainabilitank.info on April 8th, 2007
by Pincas Jawetz (pj@sustainabilitank.info)

Published by the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD)

{all highlights of text and underlining was done by Pincas Jawetz of SustainabiliTank.info with the intent to show were there was a clash between the scientists and the diplomatic bureaucrats who may have had ulterior motives in their effort to water down the suggestions made by the scientists that worked on the draft report. What we saw here was an unholy alliance between the major oil user and the major oil exporter – both sides seemingly afraid to be caught in the future by claims resulting from the harm caused to the world economy and to humanity, because of hunanity’s addiction to oil. There were many cases when the US and Saudi Arabia stood for similar changes in the text, many times supported by China, the new growing consumer of oil, and sometimes also by Russia and India. Interesting was the stand of Sudan, that did not stand always by the Saudis, switching on occasions to stand by the Africans.}  

Vol. 12 No. 320
Sunday, 8 April 2007
EIGHTH SESSION OF WORKING GROUP II OF THE INTERGOVERNMENTAL PANEL ON CLIMATE CHANGE:

2-6 APRIL 2007

The eighth session of Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Working Group II took place at the Charlemagne Building, Brussels, Belgium, from 2-6 April 2007. The meeting was attended by 366 participants, including scientists and representatives from governments, UN agencies and non-governmental organizations. The meeting resulted in the acceptance of Working Group II’s (WGII) contribution to the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report (AR4), titled “Climate Change 2007: Impacts, adaptation and vulnerability,” including approval of the Summary for Policy Makers (SPM) and acceptance of the underlying report and Technical Summary.

The key findings of the SPM emphasize the observed and projected impacts of climate change, including accumulating evidence that changes in many physical and biological systems are linked to anthropogenic warming. According to the SPM, observed and projected impacts of climate change include various changes in the natural environment, flooding, and food and water shortages. Among other things, the SPM states that 20-30% of plant and animal species are likely to face extinction with temperature rises exceeding 1.5-2.5 °C. It indicates that hundreds of millions of people will be exposed to increased water stress, many millions more people are projected to be exposed to flooding every year, and access to food in many African countries is projected to be severely compromised. The SPM also highlights other vulnerabilities and potential negative impacts of climate change on sustainable development. It states that adaptation will be necessary to the already unavoidable warming, but many impacts can be avoided, reduced or delayed by mitigation.

The process leading to the adoption of the SPM was generally viewed as laborious. At the meeting, delegates addressed the five sections of the SPM, however they did not even consider the last two sections until after 10:00 pm on the final day of negotiations. The meeting was scheduled to end on Thursday, 5 April, with a press conference on Friday morning. Nevertheless, discussions on the SPM continued throughout the night and the SPM was finalized at 10:00 am on Friday morning and formally adopted that afternoon.

A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE IPCC AND AR4

The IPCC was established in 1988 by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). The purpose of the IPCC is to assess the scientific, technical and socioeconomic information relevant to understanding the risks associated with human-induced climate change. The IPCC does not undertake new research, nor does it monitor climate-related data, but bases its assessments on published and peer-reviewed scientific and technical literature. The IPCC Secretariat is located in Geneva, Switzerland, and is staffed by the WMO and UNEP.

The IPCC has three working groups: Working Group I (WGI) addresses the scientific aspects of the climate system and climate change; Working Group II (WGII) addresses the vulnerability of socioeconomic and natural systems to climate change, negative and positive consequences of climate change, and adaptation options; and Working Group III (WGIII) addresses options for limiting greenhouse gas emissions and otherwise mitigating climate change.

The IPCC also has a Task Force on National Greenhouse Gas Inventories. The Task Force oversees the IPCC National Greenhouse Gas Inventories Programme, which aims to develop and refine an internationally-agreed methodology and software for the calculation and reporting of national greenhouse gas emissions and removals, and to encourage the use of this methodology by countries participating in the IPCC and by United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) signatories. The IPCC Bureau, comprised of 30 members elected by the Panel, assists the IPCC Chair in planning, coordinating and monitoring progress in the work of the IPCC.

Since its inception, the IPCC has prepared a series of comprehensive assessments, special reports and technical papers, which provide scientific information on climate change to the international community, including policymakers and the public. This information has played an important role in negotiations under the UNFCCC and in framing national and regional policies.

The IPCC completed its initial comprehensive assessments of climate change in the First Assessment Report in 1990 and the Second Assessment Report in 1995. The IPCC’s Third Assessment Report (TAR), completed in 2001, addresses policy-relevant scientific, technical, and socioeconomic dimensions of climate change, and concentrates on findings since 1995 at both regional and global levels. The TAR, which was subject to extensive review from experts and governments, is composed of a comprehensive assessment from the three IPCC working groups, a Summary for Policy Makers (SPM) and Technical Summary of each working group report, and a Synthesis Report. The IPCC’s Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) is due to be completed in November 2007, in Valencia, Spain.

Special reports prepared by the IPCC include the Special Report on Safeguarding the Ozone Layer and the Global Climate System, accepted at IPCC-23 (8 April 2005, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia) and the Special Report on Carbon Dioxide Capture and Storage, accepted at IPCC-24 (26-28 September 2005, Montreal, Canada).

The IPCC Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories were first released in 1994, and a revised set was completed in 1996. In 2000 and 2003 the Panel approved additional good practice guidance reports that complement the Revised 1996 Guidelines. In 2006 the IPCC approved the 2006 IPCC Guidelines.

AR4: The IPCC decided to continue preparing comprehensive assessment reports at IPCC-18 (24-29 September 2001, London, UK). Subsequent meetings discussed the timing and other details of the report, with participants agreeing to late 2007 as the completion date for the AR4. The overall outline of the working groups’ contributions to the AR4 was accepted at IPCC-21 (19-21 February 2003, Paris, France). That same year, the scope and outline of AR4 were developed during two scoping meetings (April, Marrakesh, Morocco, and September, Potsdam, Germany), and the author teams were assembled. Another scoping meeting was held in 2004 in Geneva, Switzerland, on the AR4 Synthesis Report (SYR). IPCC-22 (9-11 November 2004, New Delhi, India) decided the SYR outline of topics to be addressed. At its 35th session, the IPCC Bureau agreed on the composition of the Core Writing Team and Review Editors for the SYR, and the list was presented to the Panel at IPCC-25 (26-28 April 2006, Port Louis, Mauritius).

The AR4 is structured in three parts, one for each working group. The working groups’ contribution comprises the underlying assessment report, a Technical Summary, Executive Summary, and a Summary for Policymakers, which undergoes a thorough review process. The review process generally takes place in three stages: a first review by experts, a second review by experts and governments, and a third review by governments. In addition to the three working groups’ contributions, the AR4 also comprises a Synthesis Report, which, like the SPMs, will be approved line-by-line by the IPCC. More than 2500 expert reviewers, 800 authors, 450 lead authors, and 130 countries have participated in the elaboration of the AR4.

WGI met in from 29 January to 1 February 2007, in Paris, France, and approved its contribution to the AR4, including the SPM, the Technical Summary and underlying reports. WGIII will meet in Bangkok, Thailand, from 30 April to 3 May 2007 to approve its contribution the AR4. The final AR4 is scheduled to be accepted at IPCC-27 in November 2007, in Valencia, Spain.

EIGHTH IPCC WGII REPORT:

The eighth session of Working Group II of the IPCC opened in Brussels, Belgium, on Monday, 2 April 2007. It was scheduled to conclude on Thursday 5 April 2007, but went over its allotted time and was officially closed at 1:46 pm on Friday, 6 April. During the four-and-a-half day meeting, delegates met in plenary, informally and in contact groups to consider the WGII contribution to the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report. By the end of the meeting, WGII had approved the Summary for Policy Makers (SPM) and accepted the underlying report and Technical Summary.

This summary report of the meeting first addresses the opening ceremony and then the line-by-line approval of each section of the draft SPM, followed by the consideration and acceptance of the underlying report and Technical Summary, and the closing session.

OPENING CEREMONY

On Monday morning, WGII Co-Chair Osvaldo Canziani (Argentina) opened the session. Belgian Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt said Europe is leading the way in taking responsibility for global warming, and highlighted the European Council decisions on climate change. Stressing the role of the IPCC in shaping public opinion, and noting past public confusion due to mixed messages on climate change, Verhofstadt said that the IPCC has ended the climate change debate with WGI clearly stating that global warming is an incontestable fact and human activities are responsible for it. Noting that taxes are one of the governments most powerful tools, Verhofstadt urged a shift from property and labor taxation towards consumption and pollution taxation.

Stavros Dimas, European Commissioner for the Environment, highlighted the “historic” European Council decisions, which he said will have an impact not only climate change, but also on EU’s energy security and economic competitiveness. Dimas underscored the need for international cooperation and a new treaty after the Kyoto Protocol’s first commitment period. He called for differentiated emissions targets for developed and developing countries, noting that developing countries that reach economic development levels similar to developed countries should assume commitments. Stressing the need for the US and Australia to make commitments and collaborate, he said negotiations should be launched at the next UNFCCC meeting to be held in Bali in November 2007. Dimas stressed that deforestation must be halted within two decades and then reversed. He explained that emissions from aviation will be included in the European Union Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS) and noted interest from California to link its carbon trading initiative to the EU ETS.

Hong Yan, WMO, commended the solid reputation of the IPCC and the importance of its previous reports for the negotiations on the UNFCCC and the Kyoto Protocol, and for national and regional climate policies. He hoped that this meeting would provide a useful forum for dialogue between the experts who have prepared the WGII report and its main users. Highlighting the importance of outreach activities, he urged participants to distribute information contained in AR4 to decision-makers at all levels.

IPCC Chair Rajendra Pachauri underscored the serious implications of the complex and wide set of changes in climate identified by WGI for natural and social systems around the globe. Stressing new information since the TAR, he highlighted the importance of the WGII report in identifying linkages between climate change and sustainable development around the world, and for the implementation of adaptation and mitigation measures.

Renate Christ, IPCC Secretary, read a welcome address from UNEP Executive Director Achim Steiner, noting that AR4 comes at a defining moment in the climate change debate and underscoring WGI’s contribution, which conclusively answered the question of whether humans are affecting the climate. In the message, Steiner highlighted the WGII draft contribution to the AR4 and overwhelming evidence on escalating negative impacts, and welcomed the focus on adaptation as complementary to mitigation.

Delegates approved the agenda (WG-II:8th/Doc.1).

Co-Chair Canziani, noted that the WGII report is based on the work of 174 Lead Authors, 222 contributing authors and the participation of 1183 experts. He presented an overview of changes in the WGII contributions since the First Assessment Report, highlighting the introduction of cross-cutting issues and sectors, information on sustainable development, cost-benefit analyses and methodologies. He drew attention to the integrated analysis in the AR4, which he said has improved but needs to be further developed.

WGII Co-Chair Martin Parry (UK) noted the TAR recommendations for AR4 that had been taken up insofar as possible, including incorporating: more quantified assessments; more complete regional coverage; more about context, multiple stresses and sustainable development; the role of adaptation and of mitigation; assessment of thresholds and non-linearities; and more on currently observed effects. He highlighted greater use of empirical studies rather than models, and the incorporation of information on impacts of inaction and how effects might vary under different development pathways. Co-Chair Parry also recalled IPCC decisions that had been implemented, such as making the WGII contribution more concise, establishing better connections with work done by WGI and WGIII, and making wider use of non-English and “grey” (government and NGO reports) literature.

Co-Chair Parry announced that Lead Author presentations, explaining the underlying text for each section, would be given as appropriate during discussions.

SUMMARY FOR POLICYMAKERS

Assisted by the nearly 50 Lead Authors, WGII discussed the SPM line-by-line in plenary, in small drafting groups and in contact groups for the rest of the week. Discussions were based on the draft SPM (WG-II:8th/Doc.2a) with a number of changes introduced to reflect comments by governments and organizations (WG-II:8th/INF.1). Discussions and key outcomes of the SPM are summarized below based on the structure of the approved SPM, which includes the following sections:

A – Introduction;

B – Current knowledge about observed impacts of climate

change on the natural and human environment;

C – Current knowledge about future impacts;

D – Current knowledge about responding to climate change; and

E – Systematic observing and research needs.

The final text of the WGII SPM can be downloaded from the IPCC website at www.ipcc.ch.

A – INTRODUCTION: The introductory section was approved on Monday afternoon with minor amendments.

Final Text: This short section explains that WGII’s contribution to the AR4 is to describe current scientific understanding of impacts of climate change on natural, managed and human systems, their capacity to adapt and their vulnerability. The introduction clarifies that the findings build on past IPCC assessments and incorporate new knowledge since the TAR.

B – CURRENT KNOWLEDGE ABOUT OBSERVED IMPACTS OF CLIMATE CHANGE ON THE NATURAL AND HUMAN ENVIRONMENT: This section was first addressed by plenary on Monday morning, and discussions continued in plenary, contact groups and informal discussion until Friday morning. Discussions focused, inter alia, on the title of the section, reference to WGI findings, reference to data gaps, and confidence levels.

In introducing the section, Co-Chair Parry highlighted inequitable spatial coverage and stressed focus on the effects of observed changes.

The title of Section B was considered on Monday morning. Criticizing the proposed title “current knowledge about observed impacts in natural, managed and human systems” as too academic, the UK suggested simplifying the language, and also removing the wording “current knowledge.” Co-Chair Parry said that reference to “current knowledge” in various sections of the SPM was meant to explain the nature of the IPCC’s work. After informal lunchtime consultations, WGII agreed to the new title referring to the “natural and human environment.”

On text referring to WGI findings, France expressed concerns over wording on “long-term” climate changes, and stressed that focus should be on recent and future changes. The UK proposed emphasizing that the recent warming is connected to human activities. Suggesting reference to “last 50 years,” the Russian Federation highlighted that changes between the 1910s and 1940s are more difficult to attribute to human activities than those between the 1970s and today. Having consulted informally, delegates agreed to indicate that a full consideration of observed climate change is provided in the WGI contribution to AR4.

On a sentence on the scope of the section, the US said the language should reflect the difference between changes in climate, and changes in the natural systems. After some clarification on when the terms “observed” and “recent” referred to changes in climate or natural systems, delegates agreed to modified text proposed by Co-Chair Parry..

Delegates discussed a paragraph on the increase in studies since the TAR, including how to refer to limitations in coverage. When first considering the question in plenary on Monday, the US suggested a general reference to the paucity of coverage in many regions, instead of singling out Africa and Southeast Asia. Saint Lucia, supported by New Zealand, proposed adding a reference to small islands. Switzerland, opposed by the UK, proposed referring to limitations and caveats only in a later section. Based on the discussion, Co-Chair Parry introduced new text on Tuesday morning, which also referred to improved data quality in developed countries. Pakistan stressed that data has not improved in all developed countries. Co-Chair Parry, opposed by Morocco, suggested reference to North America and Europe. Saint Lucia proposed to add the Caribbean to the list of regions with data gaps. The US opposed, saying that the list reflected the underlying chapters where the Caribbean is not listed. The UK proposed saying “some developing countries,” with Sudan, South Africa and others preferring maintaining reference to specific regions. The final text refers to lack of geographical balance and “marked scarcity in developing countries.”

A bold header, which stated with “very high confidence” that many natural systems, in all continents and some oceans, are being affected by regional climate changes, particularly temperature increases, was discussed in plenary and in a contact group co-chaired by Belgium and Sudan.

China, supported by Saudi Arabia, proposed changing the statement’s confidence level from “very high confidence” to “high confidence.” France, Austria, Belgium, UK, US, Germany, Canada and others opposed changing the confidence level from what had been assessed by the Lead Authors. The UK, opposed by China, proposed using a likelihood statement noting that the impacts are “very likely.”

The Lead Authors restated their “very high confidence” on the statement. They explained the rationale that when independent lines of evidence, each having a similar outcome and each carrying “high confidence” by themselves, are evaluated collectively, they imply a much higher confidence due to their consistent conclusion.

The question was returned to plenary early on Friday morning. The Lead Authors elaborated on the scientific basis for the statement. Saying that scientists in his delegation disagreed, China, supported by Saudi Arabia, continued to oppose the “very high” confidence level. The Lead Authors requested that if the “very” were removed, a footnote be inserted noting that the authors do not agree with the statement and that the authors have “very high” confidence that natural systems are being affected by regional climate change. They added that having a government questioning widely-employed and sound methodologies and then putting into question the work of Lead Authors was unprecedented in the IPCC, and asked to record a formal protest. When the matter was taken up again at the end of the meeting, the US suggested deleting the confidence level and leaving the rest of the statement. Japan, with the Lead Authors “strongly supporting,” called for inserting a footnote stating the Lead Authors’ views that the statement carried a very high confidence level. In the final text, the confidence level has been omitted and no footnote has been included.

A paragraph relating to snow, ice and frozen ground was considered on Monday and Tuesday, with delegates discussing glacier lake outbursts, reference to “physical systems,” and ground instability.

Germany asked about the basis for selecting glacial lakes, ground instability and polar regions as the examples. A Lead Author replied that the three selected cases are the most relevant ones. China questioned whether this was the right place to refer to other important potential impacts, such as increased risk of glacial lake outburst floods. France, Peru and Pakistan proposed their inclusion, but the Lead Authors indicated there is no evidence in the literature, and Co-Chair Parry elaborated that the problem is establishing the relationship with climate change. Tajikistan noted existing literature in Russian.

On ground instability in permafrost regions, the UK indicated that the crucial distinction was one between direct and indirect impacts, rather than physical and non-physical environments. Using bird nesting time as an example, Co-Chair Parry responded that there may not be enough of a knowledge-base to tease out second and third order impacts.

On the overall structure of the paragraph, Co-Chair Parry proposed first summarizing WGI conclusions on changes in physical systems, and then stating that WGII has high confidence that these changes in regions of snow, ice and frozen ground are affecting natural systems, for example, through the enlargement and increased numbers of glacial lakes, increasing ground instability of permafrost regions, and rock avalanches. Austria drew attention to the different spheres, with the US stating that this discussion only related to the cryosphere and proposing deleting reference to physical systems. Colombia proposed discussing direct and indirect impacts without explaining the physical systems. The paragraph was deferred to informal consultations. After informal consultations, WGII agreed to text introduced on Tuesday morning that omitted reference to “physical systems” and included some other small changes.

Concerning changes in hydrological systems, the issues discussed focused on the confidence level, how to best express the number and significance of systems involved, and what was meant by “systems.” On the level of confidence, the US proposed using “emerging evidence,” while Austria, Norway and others preferred retaining the proposed wording “high confidence.” WGII agreed to text combining both propositions. Discussions on whether “some” or “many” systems are affected were resolved after the Lead Authors explained that four of at least ten types of systems were affected, and Saudi Arabia proposed language on the “following” types of systems, followed by a list. Switzerland, opposed by Norway, proposed specific reference to the Alps and Andes, with WGII deciding not to include it. Germany and Egypt highlighted sea-level rise. Ireland proposed, and WGII agreed to, language saying “around the world” to refer to the range of the effects.

On changes in biological systems, Germany proposed, and WGII agreed, to reinsert language from the Technical Summary stating that recent warming is strongly affecting terrestrial and biological systems. WGII also agreed to a US proposal to delete reference to increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations, and to a proposal by Switzerland to refer instead to recent warming. Reference to “thermal” growing seasons was included after Zimbabwe underscored shorter growing seasons and decreased yield production in Africa.

On changes in marine and freshwater biological systems, WGII agreed to a US proposal to include reference to “substantial new evidence” on observed changes being associated with rising water temperatures. Noting that two out of three examples have “high confidence,” China asked about the basis for stating “very high confidence” in the chapeau. Australia highlighted the need to err on the conservative side to avoid the impression that the IPCC has overstated confidence levels, and WGII agreed to “high confidence” language.

On ocean acidification, delegates considered the link between acidity of ocean waters and increased absorption of atmospheric carbon dioxide. China questioned reference to modeled evidence. Opposed by Austria, Co-Chair Parry proposed and WGII agreed to delete mention of modeled evidence. Noting the WGI report, China, opposed by Norway, suggested removing the entire statement on ocean acidification. Delegates agreed to a new wording that indicates that since 1750 oceans have become more acidic.

On global assessment data, Co-Chair Parry explained that, in response to government comments, a box on using climate models and spatial pattern analysis in linking the causes of climate change to observed effects in natural systems was removed. A Lead Author presented the sets of evidence used on a global scale assessment of data since 1970 showing that it is likely that anthropogenic warming has had a discernible influence on many physical and biological systems.

On a statement on consistency between changes in physical and biological systems and warming, delegates discussed numbers and text in plenary and in three contact group meetings. Responding to questions from China, Australia, the US and others, the Lead Authors detailed the data-selection process and explained the statistical significance of the data sets. Delegates agreed to insert a footnote describing the selection process of the 29,000 data series, from about 80,000 data series from 577 studies. China questioned a statement noting that “more than 90%” of the 29,000 data series is consistent with warming. After further clarification from the Lead Authors, delegates agreed to refer to “more than 89%.”

On text noting agreement between observed system responses and anthropogenic warming in modeling studies, Belgium proposed and WGII agreed to insert language explaining natural and anthropogenic forcing. Several other suggestions were made to clarify the language and to make it consistent with that used by WGI.”

Discussions on a paragraph on effects of temperature increases on managed and human systems focused on reference to coastal zones, present impacts and adaptation, and consideration of other variables than temperature change. Colombia, supported by France, the US, Spain, Niger and Argentina underscored the importance of emphasizing adaptation to present effects and which impacts can be addressed by adaptation. Austria said the language should clarify that it refers only to temperature changes. France said text was needed explaining why other variables had not been used. Co-Chair Parry noted that the assessment had only been done with respect to temperature. South Africa expressed concern about the lack of representation of Africa in the section. Germany and Spain proposed, and WGII agreed, to include the effects of sea-level rise.

Final Text: The final text explains that the focus of Section B is on the relationship between observed climate change and recent observed changes in the natural and human environment. It highlights new and improved data since the TAR, allowing a broader and more confident assessment.

The SPM states that many natural systems are affected by regional climate changes, based on observational evidence from all continents and most oceans. The text provided statements and examples concerning changes in: snow, ice and frozen ground; hydrological systems; terrestrial biological systems; marine and freshwater biological systems; and ocean acidification.

Section B also states, on the basis of global data since 1970, that anthropogenic warming has had a discernible influence on many physical and biological systems. It explains evidence underlying this finding, and identifies limitations and gaps preventing more complete assessment.

The text also indicates that other effects of regional climate changes on natural and human environments are emerging but they are difficult to discern due to adaptation and non-climatic drivers. It provides some detailed examples of such effects.

C – CURRENT KNOWLEDGE ABOUT FUTURE IMPACTS: The section on future impacts was first addressed by the plenary on Tuesday evening, and discussions continued in plenary, contact groups and informal discussion until Friday morning. Issues discussed included the structure of the section, which resulted in a decision to add text on adaptation.

In his presentation of the section, Co-Chair Parry highlighted the focus on vulnerability, exposure and adaptive capacity, with adaptation resulting from national and international decisions considered in Section D. He explained the approach of reviewing available new literature, scenario-based studies, sensitivity studies and vulnerability assessments, and inferring impacts from this knowledge.

The US, supported by Saudi Arabia, criticized the structure of the SPM separating impacts and adaptation, and lamented Section C’s focus on key selected impacts. Co-Chair Parry indicated that the structure was the same as in the earlier draft, and emphasized the rationale for disaggregating impacts from adaptation. Saudi Arabia stressed that separation is impossible as nature will adapt without human interference. Several other delegates supported the existing structure of the report. France indicated that the separation between impacts and adaptation was based on the literature. Austria and South Africa highlighted the structure’s relevance for policymakers, and Australia stressed the link between the structure and the risk management process, which involves identifying vulnerability and impacts, making a decision on adaptation response and re-assessment of vulnerability.

Reconvening the plenary on Wednesday morning, Co-Chair Parry explained that in response to the discussion, a final paragraph would be added at the end of each part concerning risks that discusses adaptation and adaptive capacity. Early on Friday morning, the US, noting all the new paragraphs on adaptation, proposed to include the word “adaptation” in Section C’s title, but WGII did not agree on this proposal.

Water: On Wednesday, delegates discussed freshwater resources and their management. Concerning water runoff and water availability, the main issues discussed included a draft map showing changes in runoff, and the inclusion of numerical figures.

Algeria, China, Ghana, Mali and others questioned a map that showed a high increase in water runoff in the Sahara. Co-Chair Parry explained that since the map showed percentage increases, the change appeared significant in a dry region although runoff remained low. The Lead Authors explained that models do not provide consistent projections for the Sahara, which is why the area could have been masked in the water run-off map. However, they had preferred to provide a projection by using the mean value of 19 studies. Co-Chair Parry said alternatives included a map showing millimeter per day changes or omitting the map. The Russian Federation, South Africa, Togo and others emphasized the importance of having a map. Consideration of the map continued informally. On Thursday afternoon, a new map was introduced showing changes in millimeters per day. Mali proposed deleting it, but was opposed by Austria, Australia, Switzerland, Spain, South Africa, Syria and others. Agreement was not reached and the final SPM contains no map on water runoff.

India and Saudi Arabia expressed concern over numbers projecting increases and decreases in water availability and runoff, and questioned their scientific basis. Benin, France, Sudan and others preferred keeping them. The agreed text retains the figures estimating 10-40% increases in some areas, and 10-30% decreases in others. Other questions discussed in this context included reference to East and Southeast Asia and other regions, differences between dry and monsoon seasons and inclusion of likelihood statements.

On a statement noting increase in drought-affected areas and flood risk and their negative consequences on sustainable development, WGII agreed to refer only to increased frequency of precipitation events and not to increased intensity. The US called for making clear links between the SPM and the underlying chapters, emphasizing the need for traceability of statements in the SPM.

WGII agreed to remove reference to the implications of increased floods and droughts for sustainable development. Delegates did not agree to proposals to include a new paragraph on sustainable development.

Argentina asked to have it on the record that this SPM section has shortcomings on water pollution.

Ecosystems:: On terrestrial carbon sinks, Norway proposed inclusion of nitrous oxide (N2O) and methane (CH4). France, supported by the UK and the Russian Federation, underscored that what amplifies climate change is the weakening of carbon sinks, not whether the system is a net source or sink. Text was agreed on weakening carbon uptake and without reference to N2O or CH4.

On extinction, the discussion focused on: whether extinction was global or regional, the number, types and representativeness of the species covered by the assessment, and the confidence levels. The Lead Authors indicated that extinction referred to global extinction of plants and animals, and that the studies represented half of the known species. Palau underscored coral reefs. The Russian Federation stressed that the statement would grasp media attention and misleading text must be avoided. Saudi Arabia expressed concern that the statement was not supported by the underlying assessment, and many delegates expressed concern with the confidence levels. On Thursday afternoon, after contact group discussions, text was agreed indicating approximately 20-30% of plant and animal species assessed so far are likely to be at increased risk of extinction if increases in global average temperature exceed 1.5-2.5 °C

Food, fibre and forest products: This sub-section was first addressed on Wednesday evening, and agreed early on Friday morning. Discussions focused on crop productivity and fisheries.

On crop productivity, China stressed that there is no productivity decrease in all regions if temperatures increase beyond 3 °C. After consulting with the Lead Authors, the text was changed to indicate that a decrease takes place “in some regions.”

Finland proposed adding text on forests and on Thursday afternoon WGII agreed to text prepared by the Lead Authors on modest increases in timber productivity in some regions.

Spain with the US, Saint Lucia and others, requested adding text on fisheries. After consideration of two new drafts prepared by the Lead Authors, WGII agreed to language reflecting the livelihood and food aspects of fisheries..

Coastal systems and low-lying areas: This sub-section was addressed on Wednesday evening and on Thursday. Discussions focused on corals, flooding due to sea-level rise, and adaptation.

On corals, China and Saudi Arabia, opposed by Germany, questioned the scientific basis of the statement on coral bleaching and mortality. The US proposed more generic language. New text on corals was agreed early on Friday morning, referring to more frequent bleaching and widespread mortality.

On flooding due to sea-level rise, delegates debated how to quantify the number of vulnerable people. The US, opposed by New Zealand, Germany, France and others, proposed deleting reference to “millions more people” being affected annually. On Thursday, new text was considered referring to “15 million more people,” with some delegates indicating the figure was too low. The final text was agreed early on Friday morning, making reference to “many millions more people.”

Concerning reference to the world’s mega-deltas, Benin, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and others proposed, and WGII agreed, to mention Africa in text in addition to Asia. Saint Lucia, Cuba and Bahamas opposed deleting reference to small islands, with WGII agreeing to change the language to indicate special vulnerability of small islands instead of their “highest relative increase in risk.”

On coasts, Norway proposed adding coastal erosion and WGII agreed. The US and Saudi Arabia proposed, and WGII agreed, to delete reference to the time-frame from a sentence indicating that “by mid-century” coasts will be exposed to increasing risks due to climate change and sea-level rise.

On the new paragraph on adaptation, Switzerland and India, opposed by Australia, criticized its introduction and said it should be in Section D. WGII agreed to text indicating that adaptation will be more challenging in developing countries.

Industry, settlement and society:: This sub-section was considered on Wednesday. Discussions revolved around likelihood statements and reference to poor communities.

On a statement noting that, in the aggregate, the net effects of climate change will tend to be more negative the larger the change in climate, Switzerland suggested that this is “likely” and proposed the inclusion of a likelihood statement instead of “tend to.” Belgium called for retaining reference to the speed of warming as in a previous version of the paragraph proposing “more strongly negative under larger or more rapid warming.” Neither of these proposals was included.

The UK, opposed by the US, suggested emphasizing the limited adaptation capacity of small holders and subsistence farmers, and the complex, localized impacts that poor communities suffer. The Lead Author explained that the reference could be better made elsewhere. Colombia proposed, and WGII agreed, to remove “relatively” before “high risk areas.”

On a statement on economic and social costs of extreme weather events, the US asked about the basis of the reference to social costs. A Lead Author referred the US to a box on Hurricane Katrina. Austria suggested, and WGII agreed, to insert words from the Technical Summary on how climate change impacts spread from directly impacted areas and sectors to other areas and sectors through complex linkages.

Health:: This sub-section was considered on Wednesday, with discussions focusing on reference to industrialized countries and the nature of the evidence.

At the request of New Zealand, bullet points were inserted in a paragraph listing impacts of climate change on health. On a sentence on increased frequency of cardio-respiratory diseases due to higher concentrations of ground-level ozone, China proposed, and WGII agreed, to add language clarifying that the sentence refers to the higher ozone concentrations related to climate change. Libya stressed life expectancy and Mali meningitis, with a Lead Author explaining that the evidence is either indirect or insufficient for inclusion in the report.

Regarding health benefits of climate change in some cold areas, the US, opposed by Germany, suggested referring to industrialized areas instead of temperate areas since the studies refer only to industrialized areas, or else adding some words in relation to limitations in the data. After informal consultations, parties agreed to a suggestion by Ireland to move reference to studies originating mainly in industrialized countries to a footnote. Invoking lack of statistical analysis, Saudi Arabia requested deleting the last part of the paragraph noting that benefits of climate change are expected to be outweighed by the negative effects of rising temperatures worldwide. WGII did not accept this proposal.

Africa: This sub-section was considered on Wednesday night and Thursday. Discussions focused on projections on water shortages, and agriculture and food insecurity.

On water shortages, Zimbabwe, supported by Sudan and Egypt, suggested removing language on “complex water governance.” The Gambia, supported by the UK, Belgium, US and others, called for quantifications. On Thursday, delegates agreed to new text drafted by the Lead Authors indicating that by 2020, between 75 and 250 million people are projected to be exposed to an increase of water stress.

On agriculture, yield and food insecurity, Egypt and Niger proposed, and WGII agreed, to add reference to semi-arid areas. Language proposed by Sudan and US on projections concerning agricultural and food production was included.

On local food supplies and fisheries, Egypt highlighted over-fishing in coastal zones, and not only in lakes. Libya requested changing language on “decreasing fish catches,” with the Lead Authors proposing, and WGII agreeing, “decreasing fisheries resources.”

On low-lying coastal areas, Ghana proposed and WGII agreed to add language on the cost of adaptation amounting to at least 5-10% of gross domestic product (GDP). On Thursday evening, a new paragraph was also agreed on adaptation, highlighting multiple stresses and low adaptive capacity. Early on Friday morning, text was introduced on new studies on Africa being one of the most vulnerable continents, with Sudan opposing it and China proposing new language. WGII agreed to include the text.

Asia: This sub-section was considered on Wednesday and Thursday. Discussions focused on glacier melt, coastal areas, flooding, impacts on development and food scarcity.

On glacier melt in the Himalayas, India opposed wording on glacier disappearance, proposing to use “recede.” The US pointed at a seeming inconsistency regarding disappearance of glaciers by 2030 in the underlying report. Saudi Arabia questioned the confidence level of glacier melting. India said the confidence level should be medium. After informal consultations, WGII agreed to language “recede” and removed mention of confidence levels.

On coastal areas India proposed, and WGII agreed to, language clarifying the distinction between sea-level rise related flooding and river flooding.

China proposed deletion of a paragraph on impacts of climate change on development. India said a paragraph on water scarcity would be more appropriate. A reworded paragraph was agreed in plenary on Thursday afternoon, noting that climate change is projected to “impinge on sustainable development.”

On increase of risk of food scarcity, the US noted that some areas will experience an increase in crop productivity, while in others it will decrease. The US also said text was needed noting the socioeconomic effects in the relationships between food productivity and hunger. WGII agreed to add language on the influence of “rapid population growth and urbanization” on the risk of hunger.

Australia and New Zealand: This section was considered late on Wednesday night without much discussion.

On loss of biodiversity, delegates agreed to state loss was “significant” and specified the timeframe.

On production from agriculture and forestry, WGII agreed to proposals by Australia on more specific timeframes and by New Zealand on changing “benefits” to “initial benefits.”

Europe: The section on Europe was discussed late on Wednesday night and on Thursday. Discussions focused on documentation of impacts and regional questions.

On the documentation of wide ranging impacts of climate changes “for the first time,” the US, China and Saudi Arabia questioned the basis of this statement. The Lead Authors, the UK, Germany, Italy, Chile, Norway and others stressed the underlying science and the importance of conveying the information on documented impacts to policy-makers. The US, opposed by the UK, requested removing reference to “anthropogenic” climate change, which was replaced by Co-Chair Parry’s proposed language on “future” climate change.

On Thursday morning and afternoon, WGII agreed to statements concerning impacts in different European regions, modified based on comments mostly from the relevant countries. On Southern Europe, language was added including on impacts on summer tourism, and on Central and Eastern Europe, modifications were made concerning the decrease of forest productivity and increase in peatland fires.

Latin America: This section was considered on Thursday morning. Discussions focused on early warning systems, inclusion of specific examples and a reference to El Niño.

WGII agreed to Ghana and Colombia’s proposal to delete reference to El Niño, and to add a paragraph on water availability.

On a paragraph on adaptation, discussions focused, inter alia, on including reference to early warning systems. The agreed text has language noting that some countries have made efforts to adapt, including early warning systems.

The rest of the text was agreed with minor changes to remove specific examples, such as country names and specific crops including maize, wheat and sugar.

North America: This section was considered on Thursday, with discussions focusing on its overall structure and specific questions about coastal areas, agriculture and extremes.

France, opposed by the US, proposed restructuring the entire section and adding detail from the Executive Summary, including on hurricanes. The Lead Authors suggested, and France endorsed, a new sentence on North America “experiencing locally severe economic damage, plus substantial ecosystem, social and cultural disruption,” with the US opposing and requesting to examine its basis. Agreement on inclusion of this text was not reached.

The US proposed adding a statement on the benefits of moderate climate change for agriculture. After informal consultations, a sentence was added on an increase in crop-yields in the early decades as a consequence of moderate climate change.

On coastal communities, Canada identified the need to be more specific than the US proposal and France emphasized hurricanes. The text was bracketed on Thursday morning. In the afternoon, the Lead Authors provided and the WGII approved new text, mentioning, inter alia, the impacts of tropical storm increases.

Polar Regions: This section was considered on Thursday morning. Discussions focused on language concerning “negative and positive impacts” of climate change on Arctic human communities, with Norway proposing finding an alternative expression. Saudi Arabia highlighted benefits and opposed Belgium’s proposal on “mixed impacts.” The final text was agreed on Friday with language that impacts are “projected to be mixed” and incorporated Canada’s proposed reference to Arctic communities.

On beneficial impacts, Canada also proposed, and WGII agreed, to delete reference to increasing agricultural and forestry yields as it relates to the distant future.

On biophysical effects, WGII agreed to Norway’s proposal to add reference to increased coastal erosion.

Small Islands: The section on small islands was discussed on Thursday afternoon and was adopted without major debate.

Mauritius proposed inserting reference to tropical cyclones and health impacts, with delegates agreeing to add a sentence identifying special vulnerability to climate change, sea-level rise and extreme events.

On sea-level rise, Cuba underscored its importance and delegates agreed to Saint Lucia’s proposal to mention threats to settlements and facilities in addition to vital infrastructure.

On water resources, data gaps were identified concerning islands of the Indian Ocean.

After the sub-sections on sectors, systems and regions, there are a number of paragraphs.

On more systematic understanding of magnitudes of impact, the US, supported by Saudi Arabia, and opposed by the Russian Federation, Belgium, Austria, the UK and others, called for deleting a sentence explaining that assessment of potential key vulnerabilities is meant “to provide guidance to decision makers, for example, for identifying levels and rates of climate change that, in the terminology of the UNFCCC Article 2, could result from ‘dangerous anthropogenic interference’ with the climate system.” Several formulations were proposed by the US and Co-Chair Parry trying to avoid the reference to anthropogenic interference and to UNFCCC Article 2. A Lead Author, supported by the Russian Federation and others, and opposed by the US and Saudi Arabia, quoted the mandate of WGII to specifically address UNFCCC Article 2. Given lack of consensus on the reference, delegates agreed to a proposal by the UK stating “to help decision makers make appropriate responses to the risks of climate change.” Reference to the UNFCCC was removed.

On systems, sectors and regions especially affected by climate change, the US, supported by Saudi Arabia, and opposed by Austria, Argentina, South Africa, Switzerland and others, proposed to remove the entire section listing systems, sectors and regions likely to be specially affected by climate change saying that they are all included elsewhere. Argentina called for adding reference to wetlands, and South Africa proposed adding semi-arid ecosystems. The US said that she had no problem with the substance but that given that it is captured in other sections and the lack of time for discussion, called for deleting the whole section. Germany, France, Canada, Sudan, Austria, South Africa, Japan, Switzerland and others opposed deletion, with France expressing concern with the proceedings and the removal of text at the request of a single delegation or two. The section was nonetheless removed.

On large-scale climate events, on a paragraph on the Meridional Overturning Circulation (MOC), France noted that the inclusion of impacts on terrestrial vegetation in the 21st century as a result of large scale and persistent changes in the MOC could be confusing and proposed deleting it. Belgium, with the UK, questioned the need to refer to the possibility of net cooling occurring after the 21st century in some locations given that WGI did not mention it, and, opposed by Saudi Arabia and the Russian Federation, proposed removing the reference. WGII agreed.

Final Text: The final text explains that Section C focuses on key findings concerning projected impacts in each system, sector and region “for the range of (unmitigated) climate change projected by the IPCC over this century.” The section also contains some findings on vulnerability and adaptation.

The final text points to the availability of more specific information, including on fields not covered in previous assessments. It contains statements and examples on: freshwater resources and their management; ecosystems; food, fibre and forest products; coastal systems and low-lying areas; industry, settlement and society; and health.

The text also explains that more specific information is now available across the regions of the world, including places not covered in previous assessments. It contains statements and examples on Africa, Asia, Australia and New Zealand, Europe, Latin America, North America, Polar Regions and Small Islands.

The SPM indicates that magnitudes of impact can now be estimated more systematically for a range of possible increases in global average temperature, highlighting progress since the TAR. It states that some large-scale climate events have the potential to cause very large impacts, especially after the 21st century.

D – CURRENT KNOWLEDGE ABOUT RESPONDING TO CLIMATE CHANGE: Consideration of Section D did not begin until 10:00 pm on Thursday evening. For approximately two hours delegates focused on global mean losses of GDP and whether reference should be made to the Stern Review on the Economics of Climate Change (Stern Review). Close to midnight, IPCC Chair Pachauri stressed the importance of making progress, with WGII Co-Chair Parry indicating that the SPM might not be finalized.

Discussions on Section D were initiated starting from the last paragraphs rather than from the beginning. They focused on global mean GDP losses, social cost of carbon, benefits and costs, sustainable development and mitigation.

On GDP losses, the US requested to specify the range by replacing “up to 5%” for 4 °C of warming with “1-5%”. Austria, Germany, France and others supported adding reference to the Stern Review, which estimates GDP losses “at or above 10%.” The US, Saudi Arabia and China opposed. The US questioned why a non-peer reviewed study should be included, while UK, France, Germany, the European Community (EC) and others stressed that the high-profile Stern Review had already been presented at UNFCCC COP12, and ignoring it would seem “weird.” With the US and Saudi Arabia contesting Co-Chair Parry ´s proposed information from the Stern Review, the section was bracketed with opposition from Austria, the EC and others. Austria, opposed by Saudi Arabia, proposed discussing the text in a small group. The text on GDP was bracketed without small-group discussion. The final SPM refers to GDP losses between 1-5% without mentioning the numbers from the Stern Review.

Concerning social cost of carbon, ranges were added at the request of China. The UK proposed also addressing figures from the Stern Review estimating the social cost of carbon at US$85 per tonne, while Saudi Arabia indicated they would not discuss the text or the Stern Review in the plenary or a small group. Brazil opposed reference to the Stern Review as it would be a precedent on the use of non-peer reviewed material by the IPCC. Argentina urged moving to issues important for developing countries.

On benefits and costs of climate change, the US suggested changing the range of temperature increase from “less than 2 °C” to 1-3 °C. Austria asked where benefits would occur above 3 °C, and text on costs and benefits was modified to reflect US and Austria’s concerns.

On the relationship between sustainable development and climate change, the US questioned a likelihood statement on climate change impeding achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). A Lead Author noted the existence of some projections. Co-Chair Parry proposed, and WGII agreed to, wording noting that climate change “could impede achievement of the MDGs.”

Saudi Arabia questioned the basis for the statement that climate change can slow the pace of sustainable development. Co-Chair Parry, opposed by the UK, Germany and Japan, proposed deleting the statement since it appears elsewhere. WGII agreed to language stating that climate change “could impede nations’ abilities to achieve sustainable development pathways.”

On a chapeau paragraph stating that many impacts can be reduced or delayed with mitigation, the UK suggested replacing mitigation “particularly over the mid- and long-term” with “timely and appropriate mitigation.” The US preferred dropping the reference to time and noting that “many impacts can be reduced by mitigation.” Parties agreed to note that “many impacts can be avoided, reduced, or delayed by mitigation.”

Citing uncertainties and lack of value added, China, with Brazil and Saudi Arabia, and opposed by Germany, the UK and others, called for removing a paragraph noting an increase of information allowing calculation of the amount of mitigation needed to avoid impacts. Germany expressed concern about the deletion of references to mitigation throughout the text, and Co-Chair Parry suggested alternative wording to avoid the word “mitigation.” Stressing the scientific nature of the SPM, Japan, UK and others opposed alternative formulations. Australia noted similar text elsewhere. WGII agreed to remove the paragraph.

On adaptation and mitigation being complementary, the UK also suggested changing text to avoid the impression that there would not be benefits from mitigation for 60 years. WGII agreed, inter alia, to indicate that even the most stringent mitigation efforts cannot avoid further impacts of climate change in the next few decades.

On increasing adaptive capacity through climate impact assessment, South Africa, proposed omitting the words “mainstreaming” and “integrating.” Supported by Brazil, she highlighted “mainstreaming” as a particular policy approach. Switzerland opposed the deletion, referring to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development’s (OECD) approach to official development assistance that emphasizes “integration” and “mainstreaming”. Austria stressed that this was an IPCC session rather than a UNFCCC negotiation. Delegates agreed to modify the text and omit “integration” and “mainstreaming.” On the list of related examples, Argentina proposed replacing “droughts” with “hydrometeorological” and Switzerland suggested reference to the framework agreed to at the World Conference on Disaster Reduction in 2005. These proposals were not incorporated, but the examples on increasing adaptive capacity were simplified based on suggestions from the US.

Text on past emissions was considered early on Friday morning. China proposed language referring to past emissions since 1750, but WGII approved language on unavoidable warming even if greenhouse gas concentrations remain at 2000 levels.

Co-Chair Parry indicated that a table on examples of current and potential options for adaptation had originally been included at the request of the US. Citing lack of time, Germany proposed addressing the table later. Co-Chair Parry, opposed by Chile, proposed removing the table and WGII agreed.

On text noting the importance of availability of resources for developing countries, Argentina underscored capacity building.

On a paragraph noting that adaptation alone is not projected to cope with projected climate change effects and mitigation will be required, China and Saudi Arabia, opposed by Germany, Austria, Tuvalu, and others, proposed deleting the paragraph. Japan, the UK and others stressed the importance of keeping the mitigation sentence. The US said it could agree to the mitigation sentence, but expressed concern on the combination of the two sentences. WGII agreed to maintain the paragraph but remove the sentence on mitigation.

On a sentence on integration of adaptation and other measures, WGII agreed to Switzerland’s suggestion to change “disaster planning” to “risk reduction strategies.”

Final Text: The final text on Section D on responding to climate change finds that some adaptation to observed and projected future climate change is occurring now, but on a limited basis. It indicates that adaptation will be necessary to address impacts of already unavoidable warming, identifies the availability of a wide array of adaptation options and stresses that more extensive adaptation is required than is currently occurring. It states that barriers, limits and costs exist but are not fully understood.

The text indicates that vulnerability to climate change can be exacerbated by the presence of other stresses, and that future vulnerability depends not only on climate change but also on development pathways. It explains that sustainable development can reduce vulnerability to climate change, and that climate change could impede nations’ abilities to achieve sustainable development pathways.

The text states that many impacts can be avoided, reduced or delayed by mitigation and that a portfolio of adaptation and mitigation measures can diminish the risks associated with climate change. It clarifies that impacts of climate change will vary regionally but are very likely to impose net annual costs, increasing over time with temperature rise.

E – SYSTEMATIC OBSERVING AND RESEARCH NEEDS: This section was briefly considered after 1:00 am on Friday. WGII agreed to a new text proposed by IPCC Chair Pachauri, which underscored the importance of research and recommendations proposed in the underlying report. This text replaced a previous text that identified needs in bullet points. Sudan requested to include its disagreement in a footnote.

Final Text: The final text of this short section on systematic observing and research needs indicates that although information has improved, WGII advice for further observation and research should be considered seriously.

FIGURES AND TABLES: Figures and tables were discussed throughout the meeting, in plenary, in contact groups and informally.

Table on key impacts on sectors and systems (Table SPM-1): A table containing information on key impacts, on sectors and systems was initially discussed in plenary on Monday evening, and subsequently in a contact group, co-chaired by Australia and Ghana. The contact group met five times and at least eight different drafts and revisions of the sectors table were circulated during discussions. The table was agreed on Friday morning,

The table expressed impacts as a function of increasing global average temperature, and contained three boxes: 1) key impacts expressed by sectors and systems; 2) best estimates and likely ranges of global average temperature increases for years 2020, 2050 and 2080 under the IPCC Special Report on Emission Scenarios (SRES) scenarios; and 3) the average and a range of global temperature increases for years 2020, 2050 and 2080 under stabilization scenarios from the TAR Synthesis Report. The three boxes shared the same horizontal axis, showing temperature increases from 1-5 °C relative to 1980-1999. The sectors and systems box included sub-boxes on the following sectors and systems: water, ecosystems, food, coasts, health and singular events.

The discussion on the sectors table focused on, inter alia: confidence levels; the use of quantitative vs. qualitative information; traceability; whether to include SRES and stabilization scenarios; presentation issues; and particular entries.

On Monday in plenary, Co-Chair Parry and a Lead Author presented the table, noting changes from the previous version that had been circulated among governments, including: addition of color; removal from the table of sources and confidence levels to increase clarity; and addition and removal of a few entries. They said that the number of globally relevant estimates is very small. They also explained why SRES scenarios and TAR stabilization scenarios had been used and the advantages and disadvantages of such an approach. Responding to the presentation, the Russian Federation said this was not a scientific seminar.

On the temperature scale, New Zealand, Switzerland and others voiced concern about the top range of the table at 5 °C, with Co-Chair Parry explaining that there are not many estimations above 5 °C. Germany said temperature scale should be relative to pre-industrial levels, rather than the proposed 1980-1999 period.

On SRES and stabilization scenarios, France, Germany, Austria, Spain, Norway and others called for taking into account the speed of warming and adding information on pre-industrial levels. Germany, the UK, Belgium and others also supported including information of where stabilization actually occurs. Ghana noted that readers could infer a non-intended relationship between SRES projections and stabilization levels. Saudi Arabia opposed inclusion of scenarios. China said inclusion of stabilization scenarios did not reflect the underlying text. New Zealand, the US, Brazil expressed concern about including the stabilization scenarios.

On content of sub-boxes, Switzerland proposed introduction of impacts on fisheries, forestry and glaciers. China called for including adaptation to impacts whenever possible. The UK, Spain and Germany supported including information on sea-level rise. Austria, the UK, Germany, South Africa, New Zealand and others, opposed by India and Saudi Arabia, called for incorporating quantitative information. Italy and Spain said the items should be consistent with the text. Switzerland proposed using the same indicators for most regions, and a Lead Author explained that each regional group had been left to decide which indicators were more important to each region. Switzerland, Germany, Italy and Sweden expressed concern on specific entries. Following a question by Canada, a Lead Author explained that the table expresses only the net impacts of climate change. India questioned the mention of specific country names.

In a subsequent draft presented on Thursday, some quantitative information was removed. Germany, UK and Norway underscored the importance of quantification. Austria noted that quantitative information had been withheld from the SPM text because it was included in the table, but if removed from the table, it would be found nowhere in the SPM. The US said the issue is not the robustness of the information, but the way the information is conveyed, which has to stand up to broad scrutiny from all angles. The US highlighted adaptive capacity. China expressed concern about forceful modification of figures in the table.

On visual aspects, delegates asked for, inter alia: removing colors, adding colors, changing colors, removing arrows, adding arrows, extending arrows, using solid boxes for the text, moving the stabilization scenarios box under the sectors box, using transparent paper, and different font sizes and colors.

On traceability, many delegates noted the need for traceability of the information included in the table. The issue was resolved introducing a column to the left of entries with references to the assessment chapters.

On the confidence levels, the US, Saudi Arabia, China and India proposed including only high confidence terms. South Africa stressed the importance of also having statements of medium confidence given their relation to risk. Germany, Finland, New Zealand, Spain and others defended keeping medium-confidence events. A Lead Author said that high-impact medium-confidence events were included because the guidelines included risk management, and risk, he noted, is probability times impact. The US said the table language should stand the test of time.

Early Friday morning, the plenary considered the tables again. WGII agreed to the Russian Federation’s proposal to change “major” to “significant” when referring to species extinctions at temperature increases above 4 ºC. A footnote in the table defines significant as over 40%. The US said he would like the singular events sub-box in the AR4 Synthesis Report instead of the SPM. WGII agreed to France’s proposal to remove the singular events box and move a statement on ecosystem changes due to weakening of the Meridional Overturning Circulation to the ecosystems box. WGII agreed to the box on sector and system impacts with those changes.

Saudi Arabia, China, the Russian Federation and Libya opposed inclusion of SRES scenarios, but many others supported their inclusion. A Lead Author said that not including SRES and stabilization scenarios was violating IPCC decisions after TAR to have greater interaction between working groups. Co-Chair Parry referred to the rules of procedure and the SRES box was removed from the table. The box on stabilization scenarios was also removed.

Final Table: The final table highlights key impacts on the water, ecosystem, food, coast and health sectors/systems, including: hundred of millions of people being exposed to increased water stress; increased coral bleaching, increased damage from floods and storms, and increased mortality from heat waves.

Table on key impacts on regions: A table containing information on key impacts on regions was initially discussed in plenary on Monday evening, together with draft table SPM-1. The draft table expressed impacts as a function of increasing global average temperature, and its structure was parallel to that of Table SPM-1, with three boxes: one on impacts including sub-boxes for regions; and the other two identical to the proposed SRES and stabilization scenarios boxes in draft table SPM-1.

In plenary, Saudi Arabia noted the existence of many caveats to the table.

The discussion began in the contact group on Thursday after 8:00 pm, and focused on Africa for two hours. Saudi Arabia, US, Brazil and others, opposed by Italy and France, noted lack of time to continue consideration of the regional table. In plenary on Friday morning, WGII agreed to remove the table from the SPM.

“Burning embers” diagram: A diagram on causes of concern, similar to the one included in the TAR Synthesis Report was first introduced during the Wednesday morning contact group on impact tables, following requests in plenary by Germany, Austria and Spain. Switzerland said the diagram was too vague. Italy supported its inclusion noting that it is a TAR figure familiar to policymaker. The US requested time to consider the diagram and proposed its inclusion in the AR4 Synthesis Report instead. Spain noted the different audiences of the Synthesis Report and SPM and advocated keeping the diagram in the SPM. On Thursday WGII agreed not to include the diagram.

Extreme weather events impact table (Table SPM-2): Delegates made editorial and other minor changes to a table noting possible impacts of climate change due to extreme weather events, including amendments to ensure consistency with WGI and clarifications of language used. France, with Libya, and opposed by Saudi Arabia, called for removing a reference suggesting increased use of air conditioning as a possible adaptive measure for heat waves and warm spells. Early on Friday morning WGII agreed to change “without air conditioning” to “without appropriate housing and/or cooling.”

Final Table: The final table includes two columns from figure SPM-2 of WGI’s contribution to AR4, and four columns with the examples of major projected impacts in: agriculture, forestry and ecosystems; water resources; human health; and industry/settlement/society.

Figure on observed changes (Figure SPM-1): A figure on changes in physical and biological systems and surface temperature was first addressed in plenary on Monday. Several delegates commented on the lack of clarity regarding whether areas colored in white represented lack of data or lack of temperature changes. Many stressed the need to increase readability and a contact group, co-chaired by Belgium and Sudan, was established. In contact group discussions, the Lead Authors explained the figures in the SPM-1, and presented a revised map, which showed improved data coverage for the Russian Federation. Corrections were made to data on Europe, and an explanation of the data-selection process was inserted in a caption. Delegates agreed to the revised figure.

Final Figure: The final figure depicts a world map noting significant observed changes in physical and biological systems, as well as observed temperature changes for the 1970-2004 period. The figure also contains boxes showing the regional distribution of the significant observed changes, as well as the percentage of those changes consistent with a warming trend.

CLOSING PLENARY

On Friday afternoon, IPCC Secretary Christ introduced the revised SPM and a document listing changes in the Technical Summary and underlying chapters. Co-Chair Parry assured delegates that the document would be thoroughly proofread. WGII approved the SPM (WG-II:8th/Doc. 2a Rev.1).

On Friday afternoon, WGII also accepted the Technical Summary and underlying scientific/technical assessment with a list of changes to be made (WG-II:8th/Doc. 2b and WG-II:8th/Doc. 3).

Noting the WGII finding on big gaps of data on small islands, Tuvalu appealed for assistance on enhancing systematic observation and data collection on small islands to allow for an improved Fifth Assessment Report.

Co-Chair Parry stressed the importance of “buy-in” by governments and said that, although the process might be difficult, the payoff is high. He drew the meeting to a close at 1:46 pm on Friday, 19 hours after originally scheduled.

UPCOMING MEETINGS

UNFCCC ASIAN REGIONAL WORKSHOP ON ADAPTATION: Organized by the UNFCCC secretariat in accordance with UNFCCC COP Decision 1/CP.10 (Buenos Aires Programme of Work on Adaptation and Response Measures), this meeting will take place in Beijing, China, from 11-13 April 2007. For more information, contact: Youssef Nassef, UNFCCC Secretariat; tel: +49-228 815-1000; fax: +49-228 815-1999; e-mail:  ynassef at unfccc.int; internet: unfccc.int/adaptation/adverse_eff…

NINTH SESSION OF IPCC WORKING GROUP III AND TWENTY-SIXTH SESSION OF IPCC-26: IPCC-26 is scheduled for 4 May 2007, in Bangkok, Thailand, immediately following the ninth session of IPCC Working Group III, to be held from 30 April – 3 May 2007.

For more information, contact: IPCC Secretariat; tel: +41-22-730-8208; fax: +41-22-7 30-8025; e-mail:  IPCC-Sec at wmo.int; internet: www.ipcc.ch/

GLOSSARY

AR4 IPCC   – Fourth Assessment Report
COP                       – Conference of the Parties
EU ETS                 European Union Emissions Trading Scheme
IPCC                         Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
MOC                         Meridional Overturning Circulation
MDGs                     Millennium Development Goals
OECD                     Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development
SPM                         Summary for Policymakers
SRES                       IPCC Special Report on Emission Scenarios
Stern             Review Stern Review on the Economics of Climate Change
SYR                             AR4 Synthesis Report
TAR IPCC       Third Assessment Report
UNFCCC           United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change

UNEP                   United Nations Environment Programme
WMO           World Meteorological Organization
WGI         IPCC Working Group I
WGII                 IPCC Working Group II
WGIII       IPCC Working Group III

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