Wednesday, 15 December 2010

The Cancun agreement on "technology transfer" is short on detail

Gloria Dawson, our policy and research officer, assesses the future for technology transfer after Cancun

The United Nations Climate Change Summit in Cancun, Mexico ended with an agreement to limit average temperature rises by 2 degrees Centigrade and establish a forest protection scheme and a climate adaptation fund.

As I blogged last week, a formal international agreement on technology transfer was also one of the hoped-for outcomes. There is a new agreement to establish centres for technology transfer. But this agreement doesn't have any numbers attached to it. There is no indication how these centres will be funded, where the centres will be, or who will administer them. Without these details, it may be some time until this mechanism becomes a reality.

One of our winners, GERES, attended the Cancun summit and called for vulnerable communities in poorer countries to be able to access money from the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) for emissions-reducing projects. Although agreements at Cancun over the CDM only concerned larger mitigation projects (e.g Carbon Capture and Storage), GERES has said they are committed to remaining part of policy discussions on this issue at UN and international levels.

GERES is head of an expert panel on "suppressed demand" and that panel will publish a report on the subject in time for the Africa Carbon Forum in Morocco in April 2011.

Short summary of Cancun here.

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