COP 20 President Manuel Pulgar-Vidal sets out recipe for successful New York and Lima climate summits
Norway and Peru are set to sign a $300m deal to protect the Amazon from deforestation, during the United Nations climate change summit next week, Peru's environment minister Manuel Pulgar-Vidal has revealed.
BusinessGreen has also learned that the UK government is hoping to announce a forest finance deal, alongside a pledge from major corporates spearheaded by the Ford Foundation on Monday.
Speaking to reporters yesterday, Pulgar-Vidal, who is also president of the COP 20 climate change negotiations in Lima this year, said Peru would sign letter of intent with Norway to protect Peruvian forests.
"It's going to be one of the very good outcomes of the summit to have this forest finance based result," he said. "We're talking about around $300m to have the Peruvian forest ready for carbon markets."
However, he added that overall next week's summit is unlikely to have a formal outcome, but will instead be focused on "really catalysing action" amongst world leaders.
The agreement is likely to be announced early next week, either during the summit or, more likely, during a high level meeting on Monday between corporates, indigenous groups, and government leaders to discuss measures that will be required to slow deforestation, reduce forest conflict, and stem global climate change.
BusinessGreen understands the UK is also expected to announce a forest finance pledge; however the exact sum and finer details have yet to be confirmed by Whitehall officials.
As COP 20 president, Pulgar-Vidal will oversee the running of one of the most important climate change summits the world has ever seen, and will be tasked with ensuring all the building blocks are in place for leaders to sign a global deal to slash carbon emissions in Paris in 2015.
While next week's New York Summit will be mainly about demonstrating political support for an agreement, the COP 20 negotiations will see texts negotiated to the letter, with all countries fighting for a deal that best fits with their interests.
The upcoming New York Summit forms part of a concerted effort by the UN to avoid a repeat of the 2009 Copenhagen Climate Summit, where countries failed to agree a global deal. This time the plan is to give leaders one year to mull over the draft text and early next year they will be expected to announce post 2020 carbon reduction targets that are expected to form the basis of the final agreement.
Pulgar-Vidal set out the seven ingredients he believed were needed for a successful Lima Summit:
- A draft text on the table by the end of this year - This is likely to be the most important outcome of Lima, and if delivered it will put countries in a good position to sign the final deal in Paris 2015. "We are going to have difficulties in Paris if we cannot build this objective," admitted Pulgar-Vidal.
- A sense of urgency - "We should recognise that citizens around the world are waiting to have the decision makers taking decisions," he said.
- An acceptance of climate science - In the wake of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's AR5 report issued over the past 12 months, negotiators must realise the urgent need to reverse the warming trend, Pulgar-Vidal says. "We know that the 2 degree threshold is creating some kind of anguish but we must do something to reverse the current trend," he argued. "Everybody knows that if we continue with the same behaviour going to have catastrophic climate change.
- A recognition markets are moving - In contrast to five years ago in Copenhagen, the world's businesses are now responding significantly to the threats and opportunities posed by climate change, scaling up investments in low carbon technologies or divesting fossil fuel assets. A growing number of countries are also pledging domestic action to tackle climate change, which will be recognised as part of a global deal.
- Embrace every sector of the economy in a deal - Pulgar-Vidal warned that some parts of the economy are making their voices heard loud and clear, while others are being ignored, resulting in a polarised debate. The thematic discussions at the New York Summit aim to tackle this issue, by bringing all the actors from society together. It is progress he wishes to see built upon in Lima
- Optimism, based on realism - "The only way to move towards success is to be optimistic that we can do it," Pulgar-Vidal argued.
- The Lima Summit should be seen as a milestone towards success - "That's why we've made our slogan 'don't come to Peru if you don't want to change the world," he explained.
Meet those seven goals and it is fair to say Pulgar-Vidal will have helped deliver one of the most successful climate summits in recent years and will have gone a long way towards delivering an ambitious agreement in Paris. However, as with all previous climate negotiations it is unlikely to prove that simple.
Cosmetics company inks 22MW Virtual Power Purchase Agreement to supply more than half its electricity needs
Luxury fashion chief says businesses should pump more cash into conservation efforts
Innovation in battery technology and economies of scale will make Volkswagen's latest electric vehicle significantly cheaper to produce, company claims
AECOM's Robert Spencer urges business support for an innovative project aimed at curbing waste in the construction industry