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For Developing Nation Advocates, Hope and Fear for a New UN Climate Chief

By Stacy Feldman

Feb 19, 2010

Yvo de Boer's as UN climate chief has left developing country advocates both hopeful and uneasy over the future of global warming negotiations that have been thrown into disarray by a rich-poor rift.

The world is losing a tireless advocate for a new UN climate treaty, advocacy groups say, but some also argue that fresh leadership could spur a reversal of the deterioration that has characterized talks lately.

"De Boer is only an executive, and the impact of changing him is similar to a change of an executive in any organization,” said Wael Hmaidan, executive director of Lebanon-based IndyACT who has been involved in the UN climate negotiations since 1999. "It depends on who replaces de Boer. Maybe it will have a positive impact."

The key is finding a person who is "trusted by all," Hmaidan told SolveClimate, adding that "trust is missing in the secretariat by developing countries."

Kim Carstensen, leader of the WWF Global Climate Initiative, suggested that the time for a new climate head has come.

"Yvo de Boer did all that was possible to achieve a fair and binding deal," Carstensen said. "It was the lack of agreement between governments that led to the unsatisfying outcome of the COP [Conference of Parties meeting at Copenhagen]."

Whether that gulf between nations can be bridged remains questionable.

After several years of negotiations led by de Boer, the December summit in Copenhagen produced a bare-minimum deal that was brokered in a backdoor manner by the U.S. and the four BASIC bloc nations: Brazil, South Africa, India and China. The 193 UN member nations only "noted" the three-page document, leaving its ultimate fate unclear.

So far, by rich countries associating with the accord total cuts of 13 to 19 percent below 1990 levels, far short of the 25 to 40 percent reduction called for by the UN climate science panel.

With the accord's legal status in limbo, poorer nations fear the weak deal is the first step toward killing the entire multilateral negotiating process. De Boer's exit is only deepening that concern.

"De Boer's resignation must not be seen as an opportunity to strike weak and dangerous climate deals outside of the UN process as we saw in Copenhagen," said Asad Rehman, a climate campaigner for Friends of the Earth International.

The leadership change is also triggering fears of a slowdown in talks this year, just as heightened negotiations are needed.

"De Boer's leaving may have adverse administrative implications," said Martin Khor, executive director of the South Centre, a Geneva-based organization with 51 developing nations as its members.

"The developing countries are asking for the UNFCCC talks to resume as soon as possible," Khor told SolveClimate. They want the "more inclusive multilateral process to get back on track after the confusing situation at the end of Copenhagen."

Kyoto Advocate Exits

The greatest long-term worry for developing nations is a climate leader who supports a new treaty based on the Copenhagen Accord. This could kill the , the 1997 agreement that forces rich nation signatories to cut their greenhouse gas emissions but assigns no obligations to poorer ones.

De Boer has repeatedly downplayed the Copenhagen Accord. He called it a "political letter of intent" and urged powerful nations to stay committed to the two tracks of negotiations under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) — the Kyoto track and the so-called "convention" track, for countries that didn't ratify the Kyoto Protocol, namely the United States.

What I want to know is why

What I want to know is why you didnt think to include the other side of this issue? There are so many things that youre missing here that I dont see how you could actually form an intelligent opinion on the subject. Its like you didnt even consider that there me be another side here. Im kind of disappointed.

it may

it may be that richer households are seeking out educational attainment as a symbol of status, rather than the relationship of education leading to wealth.


You will never find a person

You will never find a person who is trusted by all , that`s for sure !

There are some very great

There are some very great sources here and thank you for being so kind to post them here. So we can read them and give our opinion on subject.
Douglas Mallette
Author: Turning Point ( )
Available NOW @ the Blog

De Boer is only an executive

De Boer is only an executive, and the impact of changing him is similar to a change of an executive in any organization

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