Pre-Conference Press Release

November 27, 2008

The following is excerpted from an official press release from the United Nations Climate Change Conference – Poznań, Poland Set to Begin Monday

(Bonn, 27 November 2008) – The United Nations Climate Change Conference – Poznań, Poland gets underway on Monday, 1 December. The two-week meeting… is the half-way mark in the negotiations on an ambitious and effective international climate change deal. The deal is to be clinched in Copenhagen at the end of 2009 and will enter into force in 2013, the year after the first phase of the Kyoto Protocol expires. Around 9,000 participants, including government delegates from 185 Parties to the UNFCCC and representatives from business and industry, environmental organizations and research institutions will attend the two-week gathering.

Parties to the conference will take stock of progress made in 2008 and map out in detail what needs to happen in 2009 to get to a strengthened agreement.  At the meeting delegates will discuss their vision for long-term cooperative action on climate changeincluding what kind of mechanisms need to be put in place to deliver on finance, on technology and on capacity building to curb emissions, spur green growth and to cope with the inevitable impacts of climate change.

Poznań is expected to produce concrete progress on several issues which are important in the short run,  particularly for developing countries, including adaptation, finance, technology and reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation.

In the context of adapting to the effects of climate change, Parties are expected to put the finishing touches to the Kyoto Protocol’s Adaptation Fund so that is it ready to roll out concrete projects in 2009. The UN Climate Change Conference in Poznań will also conduct a review of the Kyoto Protocol and assess to what extent the Protocol’s Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) can be streamlined and its geographical reach extended.

“The need for real progress on tackling climate change has never been more urgent,” said Yvo de Boer, UNFCCC Executive Secretary. “The effects of climate change that science has identified are already weighing upon those most vulnerable, and who await the financial and technological resources they need to deal with these impacts”.

Alluding to the fact that the Poznań conference is taking place in the broader context of the current global financial crisis and economic recession, the UN’s top climate change official warned against the danger of the world being detracted from the fight against climate change. “We must now focus on the opportunities for green growth that can put the global economy onto a stable and sustainable path,” he said.