Letter of COP 19 FYEG Delegates to Youth – First update

Every day, during the Climate talks in Warsaw in which young Green activists are deeply involved, the Ecosprinter will publish the daily updates written by FYEG delegation at COP 19, Shenna, Anton, Max and Anna. They will give us a precious insight from the inside talks, the mood in the plenary, the demonstrations and directions taken for the Climate Summit, while showing that much more than for anyone else,  Climate matters to youth .

Hi all,

FYEG’s delegation for the first week of COP 19, the Climate Talks of the UN  are Shenna, Anna, Anton and Max.

  • Shenna is a climate and social justice activist from the Philippines/Belgium. She will track discussions on intergenerational equity and climate finance.
  • Anna is a 30 year-old climate activist and will focus on raising short-term mitigation ambition at the COP.
  • Anton is 19 years old and from Germany. He is deeply involved in climate negotiations since 2011 and prepared the delegation. He will focus on various topics, but especially on Carbon Markets, market mechanisms and basic principles of the Convention.
  • Max is a 23 year-old Anglo-French climate campaigner. He is on the FYEG election campaign team and will be focusing on loss & damage at the COP.

The last few days we have been at COY9/PS CEE actively participating, assisting the organizing team and  facilitating some workshops. To make this acronyms clear: COY stands for Conference of Youth and PS CEE Power Shift Central & Eastern Europe. During these skills share space, we strived to contribute in mobilizing the international youth climate movement and to connect with other youth for the COP  (COP is the acronym for Conference of the Parties, which is basically the Climate Summit).

There have been debates inside YOUNGO, the Youth Constituency of the UNFCCC regarding the invitation of Christiana Figueres to COY9, despite the fact that she would be giving a speech at the International Coal Summit. YOUNGO in the end sent a letter to say that Christiana should speak only at the Coal summit or at COY. In the end she chose the Coal Summit instead of Youth!

At COY/PSCEE, civil society groups and movements were brought together to prepare for COP21 in 2015 in Paris. FYEG is striving to be one of the bridges between various movements, young people and some decision-making bodies.

Movies were creatively produced to promote a shift to renewable energies or, in general, promote the reduction of emissions. Here is the link to the video : http://vimeo.com/79083291 . And guess who won the  race against dirty energies on behalf of youth? Spread like wild fire!

We also had several workshops and organized the YOUNGO Working-Groups.
But now it’s enough about the intro, here comes the content of the Conference of Parties 19.

As delegation we focused on topics, which might be important at COP. These topics are the following ones:

  • Carbon Markets (REDD, CDM): Anton will follow the talks about all market mechanisms and the global itself. It is expected, that there will a lot of discussions about this. The market itself is an instrument, not working anymore. The mechanisms are full of problems. But e.g. the EU is promoting the enhancement of carbon markets.
  • Mitigation: While the Climate Summit Anna will follow the happening of mitigation (emission reductions). Somehow, the market mechanisms fall under this topic but it also about  commitments of the Parties (which are the different countries) and how to account for mitigation.
  • Loss & Damage: Climate Change already causes damages. Not all of them can be covered by adaptation to Climate Change, but they need to be covered. The discussion about this is going on since 2010, and now the developing countries are expected to come up with a proposal for a mechanism. It is the only discussion, where this COP has the mandate to reach a decision. Max will be following this.
  • Climate Finance: Climate Change will also cause high costs. This will be adaptation, capacity building, mitigation, loss and damage and a lot of more things. But who pays? And for what? And should the private sector be included? Shenna is going to follow these intensives talks.

There are also points, which are highly critical and that we are following all together :

  • Intergenerational Equity: In the last few years a discussion has risen, aiming at the overall principle of the convention: Currently this is CBDR, “common but differentiated responsibility”. But India proposed “equity”, which basically means fairness, as new principle for the new agreement. But all those principles are failing to address the needs of future generations. Therefore YOUNGO proposed “Intergenerational Equity” as guiding principle. This discussion is important as it will define the basis of the new deal.
  • COPorate COP: This Climate Summit has been sponsored by BMW, Flying Emirates and other companies not known for their green image. In the fore field of the COP, there was a meeting in which civil society was excluded, because “If civil society is present, business cannot speak out freely”, as the incoming president of the COP, the polish minister of Environment, said.

It is also important to note that this COP is happening in between two non-COP meetings, the IPCC-Report and the leaders’ summit in the United Nations General Assembly in 2014, which means, that a lot of things are influenced by both events.

As many of you might know, there was a horrible typhoon striking the Philippines. Today, at the opening session of the COP, Yeb Sano took a powerful stand. You can read a transcript of the speech here: http://www.rtcc.org/2013/11/11/its-time-to-stop-this-madness-philippines-plea-at-un-climate-talks/

There were also worries, that one more body of the United Nations Framework convention on climate change would not even be able to adopt an agenda. At the first pre-COP meeting this year, Russia, Ukraine and Belarus have been blocking the body responsible for implementation issues. This happened because the “principle of consensus” was ignored at the last conference in Doha. Russia had objections to the adoption of the outcome document for 2012, but was ignored and the document adopted. So, at the meeting in Bonn they did not want to adopt a specific agenda item, which defines how votes shall be going on. The problem: Normally, the specific paragraph of the UNFCCCs Internal Rules of Procedure, which is responsible for votes and decision is never being adopted, is only SEEN as adopted. Russia objected to these items in agenda at the pre-COP and therefore blocked a whole body in its work. But the above mentioned worries had been solved out, as the proposed agenda had an item, where especially these issues will be discussed. More will follow tomorrow !


Anton, Shenna, Anna and Max =)

PS: We will publish some background articles on www.ecosprinter.eu and also all following updates. The updates with links to the specific articles from that day will also be send around.

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