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Doha Summit: LDCs side with developed countries over equity

Last Updated: Wednesday, December 5, 2012 - 20:57

Doha: Negotiators from the world`s poorer nations today appeared to side with the developed countries in demanding that the debate on equity must not be used to "derail" the climate talks, a stance that would not be liked by countries like India and China who have been fighting for their right to grow.

As the US and the EU pushed for a regime that brings all major polluters including from the developing countries under obligations for reducing greenhouse gases, the representative of the group of 48 Least Developed Countries (LDCs) said while equity was an important element, it was equally important to look at the future of things.

US negotiator Jonathan Pershing said in an interaction with the media that the issue of equity was a "complicated" one and the emission targets are best announced in a unilateral way.

"One aspect of this is that whether or not something is being demanded of a country that it cannot do and whether this too is inequitable. We want it to be a country-driven and country-led approach where focus is on national determination. We are not in a position to tell any country what to do," he said.

The US, which has never been part of the Kyoto Protocol, has never agreed to the regime, while the EU which was party to the first commitment period has been refusing to increase its reduction targets for a second commitment period.

"It is a collective goal but not that one set of countries could dictate others. What we see is a model where all countries pledge their own (emission reduction targets) including India and China," he said.

Countries like India and China, meanwhile have been pushing for greater equity in the climate talks and taking into account historical emissions even when they have signed up to being part of a post 2020 deal to cut emissions.

EU negotiator Pete Bette said while historical agreements were important, future missions were more important given the present circumstances.

"Inequity is when some islands disappear, another discomforting idea is that some countries can increase their emissions to a certain ceiling even if they can reduce emissions in a cost effective way," he said on the developing countries` insistence to be allowed their right to emit carbon to achieve their growth.

Pa Ousman Jarju, the Chair for the LDCs said while their group was looking for finances to be brought on the table, they were also hoping for a forward movement on ambition announcements.

"We think the equity debate is important, we are not equal, but we should not use the equity debate to derail the whole regime of talks. What you agree to will not be uniform, we will all agree to our own capacities but in a multilateral context where countries are accounted for their commitments," he said.

"We are also expecting to have figures on the table (for finance). What we agreed to in Copenhagen was fast track finance and a USD 100 billion fund every year from 2013 till 2020. It should start now, it was for every year," he said.


First Published: Wednesday, December 5, 2012 - 20:57

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