190. We reaffirm that climate change is one of the greatest challenges of our time, and we express profound alarm that emissions of greenhouse gases continue to rise globally. We are deeply concerned that all countries, particularly developing countries, are vulnerable to the adverse impacts of climate change, and are already experiencing increased impacts, including persistent drought and extreme weather events, sea-level rise, coastal erosion and ocean acidification, further threatening food security and efforts to eradicate poverty and achieve sustainable development. In this regard we emphasize that adaptation to climate change represents an immediate and urgent global priority.
191. We underscore that the global nature of climate change calls for the widest possible cooperation by all countries and their participation in an effective and appropriate international response, with a view to accelerating the reduction of global greenhouse gas emissions. We recall that the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change provides that parties should protect the climate system for the benefit of present and future generations of humankind on the basis of equity and in accordance with their common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities. We note with grave concern the significant gap between the aggregate effect of mitigation pledges by parties in terms of global annual emissions of greenhouse gases by 2020 and aggregate emission pathways consistent with having a likely chance of holding the increase in global average temperature below 2° C, or 1.5° C above pre-industrial levels. We recognize the importance of mobilizing funding from a variety of sources, public and private, bilateral and multilateral, including innovative sources of finance, to support nationally appropriate mitigation actions, adaptation measures, technology development and transfer and capacity-building in developing countries. In this regard, we welcome the launching of the Green Climate Fund and call for its prompt operationalization so as to have an early and adequate replenishment process.
192. We urge parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and parties to the Kyoto Protocol to fully implement their commitments, as well as decisions adopted under those agreements. In this regard, we will build upon the progress achieved, including at the seventeenth session of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention and the seventh session of the Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol, held in Durban, South Africa, from 28 November to 9 December 2011.
28. Climate change was recognized as a global sustainable development challenge with strong social, economic and environmental dimensions. The recent findings of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change regarding the impacts of climate change on sustainable development were seen by many as a cause for concern. Climate change impacts all countries but was noted to be particularly severe for developing countries, especially African countries, least developed countries, landlocked developing countries, and small island developing States, which were particularly vulnerable, given their exposure and inadequate means and limited capacities to adapt to its effects. Noting the contribution of human activities to climate change, countries highlighted the need for urgent attention and further action by the international community, in accordance with the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, recognizing that social and economic development and poverty eradication were the overriding priorities for developing countries. The Framework Convention was the key instrument for addressing climate change. Deliberations by the Commission on Sustainable Development were meant to complement and support, not duplicate, the work of the Framework Convention and its Kyoto Protocol.
29. A critical point of difference between countries concerned which issues were best left to discussion within the Framework Convention and which could be taken up by the Commission on Sustainable Development. Points where agreement could not be reached included calling particular attention to principle 7 of the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development concerning common but differentiated responsibilities, discussing possible commitments under the Framework Convention, making reference to arrangements after 2012, identifying new and additional financial resources for mitigating climate change, referencing the provision of technical and financial resources to developing countries in each policy bullet, developing insurance schemes by developed countries for minimizing impacts of climate change on developing countries, making reference to sustainable production and consumption patterns and enhancing dialogue between the Kyoto Protocol and Montreal Protocol on ozone-depleting substances that were also greenhouse gases.
30. The Chairperson?s proposed decision text includes actions on a number of issues on which delegations agreed ad referendum, such as continuing support to developing countries, including through provision of financial and technical assistance, particularly to African countries, least developed countries, landlocked developing countries and small island developing States, to address their climate change adaptation challenges and priorities; supporting early warning, risk management and disaster reduction and response measures for developing countries; integrating lessons learned and experiences derived from disaster risk reduction activities into adaptation measures; supporting the efforts of developing countries to reduce emissions from deforestation and forest degradation, and promoting the sustainable management, conservation and enhancement of carbon sinks and reservoirs.
31. The importance of meeting all the commitments and obligations under the Framework Convention, in accordance with Convention principles, including the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities, and achieving the ultimate objective of stabilizing greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system, was stressed by many countries, although as noted above, there was objection by some countries to making particular reference to common but differentiated responsibilities in that context.
32. There was broad agreement on the development and dissemination of advanced energy technologies, including cleaner fossil fuels, energy efficiency and renewable energies, such as hydro, geothermal, wind, bioenergy, such as biofuels, solar, hydrogen and other new and renewable energy sources, and technologies that contributed to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, including through private sector involvement, market-oriented approaches and supportive public policies and international cooperation.
33. There was a widely shared acceptance of the continuing need to explore the technical and economic feasibility and environmental soundness of new and emerging technologies, such as carbon capture and storage and other emission reduction technologies for fossil fuel sources, although some countries expressed continuing concern about the maturity and feasibility of such technologies.
34. There was also broad agreement on moving towards a longer-term strategy and a comprehensive response to climate change by promoting sustainable economic growth, accelerating the transition to a lower greenhouse-gas-emitting economy, and enhancing adaptive capacities and response measures to cope with the impacts of climate change.
35. There was general agreement on the importance of increasing community resilience to climate-change-related disasters by protecting natural resources and the conservation of ecosystems and the services they provided, through activities such as conservation and restoration of mangroves and coral reefs, reforestation and rangeland rehabilitation, and protection of coastal areas and marine resources, including fish stocks, and integrated water resources management, and the need to enhance and support efforts in that regard, in particular in developing countries.
36. Discussions of regional, subregional and international cooperation on climate change included references to enhancing international support to establish and/or strengthen regional climate observation systems and networks; strengthening international support to enhance national institutional capacities in developing countries and in countries with economies in transition for their effective participation in the Clean Development Mechanism and Joint Implementation processes; strengthening existing funding mechanisms for adaptation activities; strengthening North-South, South-South and triangular cooperation in research, development and demonstration initiatives and enhancing dialogue on ozone-depleting substances that were also greenhouse gases.
37. Many countries stressed the importance of taking an integrated approach to the four thematic issues, addressing in a balanced way the economic, social and environmental pillars of sustainable development to enhance effectiveness, influence lifestyle changes and assist in the realization of complementary and mutually reinforcing policy options and actions. Cross-cutting issues needed to be mainstreamed into policy approaches, programmes and development cooperation activities, including through public participation and in particular a strong role of women in decision-making. The means of implementation were critical to turning commitments into actions.
38. The Chairperson?s proposed decision text includes actions on a number of issues on which delegations agreed ad referendum, such as ensuring that energy, industry, air pollution/atmosphere and climate change plans and policies are integrated into national sustainable development strategies, and other policy frameworks; strengthening good governance at all levels, in both the public and private sectors; implementing the global partnership for development and enhancing the momentum generated by the 2005 World Summit; promoting North-South, South-South and triangular cooperation; building partnerships and voluntary initiatives with all relevant stakeholders and major groups; creating an enabling environment for investment; encouraging private international financial flows and public-private partnerships; facilitating greater flows of foreign direct investment; ensuring that investment and trade policies are non-discriminatory; working towards an early conclusion and development-oriented outcome of the Doha Round of trade negotiations; advancing and fully implementing the Bali Strategic Plan for Technology Support and Capacity Building; reaffirming the importance of achieving the goal of universal primary education by 2015; enhancing gender mainstreaming in all areas of sustainable development; integrating health concerns including those of the most vulnerable populations into strategies, policies and programmes and recognizing and utilizing as appropriate the knowledge and experience of the nine major groups identified in Agenda 21.
39. While the meeting was unable to reach a full consensus on all the means of implementation, critical elements in all four thematic areas included the need to mobilize financial resources, from both the public and private sectors, increase official development assistance (ODA), microcredit and innovative funding for renewable energy, energy efficiency, cleaner fossil fuels and other energy; create a positive investment climate at all levels to attract private capital; encourage transfer and dissemination of cleaner energy technologies, including advanced, cleaner fossil fuel technologies; increase investments and strengthen public/private partnerships in research and development (R and D); promote foreign direct investment (FDI) for the development of the resource base; encourage international financial institutions to increase their funding in developing countries; encourage investment in new and more efficient production facilities and products; strengthen investment in capacity-building; enhance access to credit, including microfinancing, by small-scale entrepreneurs; build capacity for monitoring, construction and updating of emissions inventories; promote the development, demonstration and deployment of technologies for adaptation and mitigation, and build capacity for research on climate change impacts and training for technical capabilities, particularly in developing countries.