December 11, 2010 / 4:12 AM / 9 years ago

FACTBOX-Climate talks deal makes modest advances

Dec 11 (Reuters) - Following are details of a climate deal at U.N.-led climate talks in Mexico, which delayed tough decisions on greenhouse gas emissions but eased disputes between rich and poor nations about slowing global warming.

KYOTO PROTOCOL

The 1997 Protocol binds almost 40 industrialised nations to cut greenhouse gas emissions by an average of 5.2 percent below 1990 levels during the five-year period 2008-2012.

Japan has said it will not sign up for a new commitment period under Kyoto because it wants developing countries to also face binding limits.

The Cancun agreement says that countries will “aim to complete” work about extending the Kyoto Protocol “as early as possible and in time to ensure that there is no gap between the first and second commitment periods.” It refers to findings by a U.N. panel of climate scientists that greenhouse gas emissions by developed nations would have to fall by between 25 and 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2020 to avoid the worst damage.

It also urges developed nations to “raise the level of ambition of the emission reductions to be achieved.”

LONG-TERM ACTION ON EMISSIONS

The accord “recognises that deep cuts in global greenhouse gas emissions are required according to science ... with a view to reducing global greenhouse gas emissions so as to hold the increase in global average temperatures below 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 F) above pre-industrial levels.”

The agreement also recognises a need to review a tougher goal of 1.5 Celsius (2.7 F), and sets a target of working out a “global goal for substantially reducing global emissions by 2050.”

Last year’s Copenhagen Accord had set a goal of limiting warming to below 2 degrees Celsius. Many developing nations favour a 1.5 Celsius ceiling. Developing nations led by China and India have resisted calls for a global goal of halving world emissions by 2050.

The accord calls on developed nations take the lead in curbing greenhouse gases since historically they have emitted most. They have to develop low-carbon development strategies.

It also says developing countries will take “nationally appropriate actions” to curb their emissions by 2020 with the support of technology financing and capacity building.

FINANCE, TECHNOLOGY

The agreement will set up a Green Climate Fund to help channel aid. The fund will have a 24-member board, with 12 each from rich and poor nations. It invites the World Bank to be the interim trustee of the fund. A 40-strong committee will work to design the fund, with 15 members from developed nations and 25 from developing countries.

The accord takes note of a promise by developed nations for $30 billion in “fast start” aid for 2010-2012. Developed nations are to report in May 2011, 2012, 2013 on the resources provided.

Developed countries commit to a goal of providing $100 billion a year in aid from 2020, agreed last year in Copenhagen. The text dropped a previous demand by some developing nations that the rich give far more, or 1.5 percent of their collective GDP a year.

CARBON MARKETS

Countries meeting at next year’s climate talks in Durban, South Africa, will consider “one or more market-based mechanisms” to help cut emissions. A working group on action by all parties in the convention would recommend draft decisions that would be considered at the talks.

Non-market based mechanisms would also be considered.

The agreement ask parties to submit new ideas by Feb. 21, 2011.

It also undertakes to “maintain and build on existing mechanisms, including those set up under the U.N.’s Kyoto Protocol.” That is a reference to Kyoto mechanisms such as the Clean Development Mechanism, which promotes green investments in developing nations.

REDUCING DEFORESTATION

The accord says governments should “collectively aim to slow, halt and reverse forest cover and carbon loss, according to national circumstances” and in line with avoiding climate change.

It encourages all to find effective ways to reduce the human pressure on forests and encourages developing countries to reduce emissions and conserve forests.

It asks developed nations to help developing countries with financial resources and technological support to work out national plans, measure forest emissions and ways to monitor forest losses.

HELPING DEVELOPING NATIONS ADAPT

The accord establishes the so-called Cancun Adaptation Framework to help developing nations adapt to climate change such as droughts, floods and rising sea levels.

Such measures would include better planning, weather forecasting and risk management, and perhaps a climate insurance risk facility. Countries would submit ideas by Feb. 21, 2011, about an Adaptation Committee to help the work.

MEASUREMENT, REPORTING, VERIFICATION

Internationally supported greenhouse gas emissions curbs by developing countries will be subject to domestic and international measurement, reporting and verification.

International consultation and analysis of biennial reports will be done in a manner that is “non-intrusive, non-punitive and respectful of national sovereignty.”

Domestic actions by developing countries to curb emissions would be verified “domestically” in accordance with guidelines to be developed under the U.N. Climate Convention.

TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT AND TRANSFER

Decides to set up a Technology Mechanism to help share new ways of curbing greenhouse gases. It would set up a Technology Executive Committee and Climate Technology Centre and Network.

EXTENSION OF WORK

A group looking at long-term cooperative action would continue its work for one year and present its results at the end of 2011. It does not set a 2011 deadline for coming up with a legally binding outcome, as urged by some countries. (Compiled by Alister Doyle and Timothy Gardner)

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