Arquivo da tag: IPCC

How the IPCC is sharpening its language on climate change (The Carbon Brief)

01 Sep 2014, 17:40

Simon Evans

Barometer | Shutterstock

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is sharpening the language of its latest draft synthesis report, seen by Carbon Brief.

Not only is the wording around how the climate is changing more decisive, the evidence the report references is stronger too, when compared to the  previous version published in 2007.

The synthesis report, due to be published on 2 November, will wrap up the IPCC’s fifth assessment (AR5) of climate change. It will summarise and draw together the information in IPCC reports on the science of climate change, its  impacts and the  ways it can be addressed.

We’ve compared a draft of the synthesis report with that published in 2007 to find out how they compare. Here are the key areas of change.

Irreversible impacts are being felt already

The AR5 draft synthesis begins with a decisive statement that human influence on the climate is “clear”, that recent emissions are the highest in history and that “widespread and consequential impacts” are already being felt.

This opening line shows how much has changed in the way the authors present their findings. In contrast, the 2007 report opened with a discussion of scientific progress and an extended paragraph on definitions.

There are also a couple of clear thematic changes in the 2014 draft. The first, repeated frequently throughout, is the idea that climate change impacts are already being felt.

For instance it says that the height of coastal floods has already increased and that climate-change-related risks from weather extremes such as heatwaves and heavy rain are “already moderate”.

These observations are crystallised in a long section on Article 2 of the UN’s climate change convention, which has been signed by every country of the world. Article 2 says that the objective of the convention is to avoid dangerous climate change.

The AR5 draft implies the world may already have failed in this task:

“Depending on value judgements and specific circumstances, currently observed impacts might already be considered dangerous for some communities.”

The second theme is a stronger emphasis on irreversible impacts compared to the 2007 version. The 2014 draft says:

“Continued emission of greenhouse gases will cause further warming and long-lasting changes in all components of the climate system, increasing the likelihood of severe, pervasive and irreversible impacts for people and ecosystems.”

It says that a large fraction of warming will be irreversible for hundreds to thousands of years and that the Greenland ice sheet will be lost when warming reaches between one and four degrees above pre-industrial temperatures. Current warming since pre-industrial times is about 0.8 degrees celsius.

In effect the report has switched tense from future conditional (“could experience”) to present continuous (“are experiencing”).  For instance it says there are signs that some corals and Arctic ecosystems “are already experiencing irreversible regime shifts” because of warming.

Stronger evidence than before

As well as these thematic changes in the use of language, the AR5 synthesis comes to stronger conclusions in many other areas.

This is largely because the scientific evidence has solidified in the intervening seven years, the IPCC says.

We’ve drawn together a collection of side-by-side statements so you can see for yourself how the conclusions have changed. Some of the shifts in language are subtle – but they are significant all the same.

IPCC Table With Logo

Source: IPCC AR4 Synthesis Report, draft AR5 Synthesis Report

Climate alarmism or climate realism?

The authors of the latest synthesis report seem to have made an effort to boost the impact of their words. They’ve used clearer and more direct language along with what appears to be a stronger emphasis on the negative consequences of inaction.

The language around relying on adaptation to climate change has also shifted. It now more clearly emphasises the need for mitigation to cut emissions, if the worst impacts of warming are to be avoided.

Some are bound to read this as an unwelcome excursion into advocacy. But others will insist it is simply a case of better presenting the evidence that was already there, along with advances in scientific knowledge.

Government representatives have the chance to go over the draft AR5 synthesis report with a fine toothcomb when they meet during 27-31 October.

Will certain countries try to tone down the wording, as they have been accused of doing in the past? Or will the new, more incisive language make the final cut?

To find out, tune in on 2 November when the final synthesis report will be published.

Climate change: IPCC must consider alternate policy views, researchers say (Science Daily)

Date: July 7, 2014

Source: Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs

Summary: The Summary for Policymakers recently produced by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has triggered a public debate about excessive governmental intrusion in the IPCC process. The IPCC cannot avoid alternative political interpretations of data and must involve policy makers in finding out how to address these implications, according to a team of researchers.

 In addition to providing regular assessments of scientific literature, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Process (IPCC) also produces a “Summary for Policymakers” intended to highlight relevant policy issues through data.

While the summary presents powerful scientific evidence, it goes through an approval process in which governments can question wording and the selection of findings but not alter scientific facts or introduce statements at odds with the science. In particular, during this process, the most recent summary on mitigation policies was stripped of several important figures and paragraphs that were in the scientists’ draft, leading some IPCC scientists to express concerns about excessive political intrusion.

Delicate issues of political interpretation cannot be avoided, wrote three IPCC authors in the journalScience. In their analysis, the team — which includes Marc Fleurbaey from Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs — uses global emissions data to show how multiple political interpretations can be made from the same dataset. They argue that the IPCC should consider a writing process that better connects scientific findings with multiple political outcomes.

“The IPCC should consider opening up more channels for dialogue in which salient political discussions are connected to relevant scientific material,” said the article’s co-author Marc Fleurbaey, the Robert E. Kuenne Professor in Economics, Humanistic Studies and Public Affairs. “Such a collaboration or coproduction is what lends the IPCC its credibility as the voice of scientists — but with more weight for policy.”

While the IPCC undoubtedly produces the most up-to-date, comprehensive scientific reports on climate change, its approval process has become tediously extensive. As the panel embarks upon its sixth assessment, those involved have been working toward streamlining the process.

In their review, Fleurbaey and his co-authors — Navroz Dubash from the Centre for Policy Research in India and Sivan Kartha from the Stockholm Environment Institute — write that this approval process sets the IPCC apart from other technical reports. Instead of changing the approval process, they suggest an alternate vision for articulating science and policy at the IPCC.

To illustrate their vision, the researchers analyzed global emissions by reviewing income growth across countries, a key driver of emissions growth. When looking at income, countries are sometimes grouped into such categories as lower-income, lower-middle income, upper-middle income and high-income. The trouble, however, is that some countries are rapidly changing in terms of income, which elides relevant information. Likewise, a few big countries can dominate the statistics, and the time reference used for grouping them also can lead to large differences.

When global emissions are analyzed according to groupings based on current income figures, upper-middle income countries account for 75 percent of the rise in global emissions from 2000 to 2010. This presentation of data was deleted from the recent summary report. A political interpretation of this, Fleurbaey and his collaborators write, may be that country groupings should reflect the increasing role of upper-middle income countries and perhaps impose commensurate emission limits.

However, when grouping countries according to their income in the middle of the decade (2005), global emissions rose three quarters in lower-middle income countries, a change due in part to the fact that China joined the upper-middle income group in 2010 only. This presentation highlighting lower-middle income countries may suggest supporting these countries financially and technologically in developing lower carbon economies.

“As you can see, both representations would be equally faithful to the underlying data, but they are also equally synthetic and incomplete, and they differ markedly in their political extrapolations,” said Fleurbaey. “It’s hard to accurately group these countries without imposing political perceptions, and analysis by country groups is highly sensitive in the current context of the renegotiation of the groups defined in the Kyoto protocol.”

As an illustration that more positive outcomes can be obtained from governmental dealings, the authors report that some sections benefited from the approval process, as they were eventually expanded and clarified by additional explanations. For example, the framing section of the summary, which was taken up for discussion early in the approval process, achieved a smooth convergence between the authors and country delegates.

On the flip side, the international cooperation section was much shortened, simplified and seemingly stripped of controversy. This section had much less time allowed for discussion and was examined in a contentious atmosphere after the removal of several figures involving country groupings.

Fellow IPCC author Michael Oppenheimer, the Albert G. Milbank Professor of Geosciences and International Affairs in the Woodrow Wilson School and Department of Geosciences, who was not an author of the Science article, fully supported its position.

“IPCC, and attempts to solve the climate problem, would benefit immensely from a strengthening of the science-policy interface,” Oppenheimer said. “Proposals to completely separate the science and policy functions are simply wrong-headed and self-defeating. This collaboration is what makes IPCC unique and uniquely effective”

“Seemingly technical choices can crystallize into value-laden political conclusions, particularly given tight word and time limits,” said Fleurbaey. “It is more productive for authors to be aware of the varying political implications and factor these into their representations of data.”

Journal Reference:
  1. N. K. Dubash, M. Fleurbaey, S. Kartha. Political implications of data presentationScience, 2014; 345 (6192): 36 DOI: 10.1126/science.1255734

Relatório do IPCC sugere adaptação baseada em ecossistemas (Estado de S.Paulo)

JC e-mail 4923, de 31 de março de 2014

Modelo adotado no Brasil e região foi indicado como alternativa a infraestutura cara

Além das recomendações usuais para que os países invistam mais em infraestrutura para aumentar sua resiliência às mudanças climáticas, no novo relatório do Painel Intergovernamental sobre Mudanças Climáticas (IPCC), divulgado neste domingo, 30, ganhou espaço uma alternativa mais barata que pode, em alguns locais, conseguir efeitos parecidos: a adaptação baseada em ecossistemas.

O tema aparece em maior ou menor profundidade em cerca de metade dos capítulos e teve destaque especial no capítulo regional de América Central e do Sul, onde técnicas como criação de áreas protegidas, acordos para conservação e manejos comunitários de áreas naturais estão sendo testadas.

Mas o que isso tem a ver com adaptação? De acordo com o ecólogo Fabio Scarano, da Conservação Internacional, e um dos autores do capítulo, a ideia é fortalecer serviços ecossistêmicos que são fundamentais. Um ambiente bem preservado tem a capacidade de prover um clima estável, o fornecimento de água, a presença de polinizadores. “Como se fosse uma infraestrutura da própria natureza”, diz.

Como premissa, está a conservação da natureza aliada ao incentivo do seu uso sustentável – a fim também de evitar a pobreza, que é um dos principais motores da vulnerabilidade de populações.

“Normalmente quando se fala em adaptação se pensa na construção de grandes estruturas, como um dique, por exemplo, para evitar uma inundação. O que em geral é muito caro, mas em uma adaptação baseada em ecossistemas, conservar a natureza e usá-la bem é uma forma de diminuir a vulnerabilidade das pessoas às mudanças climáticas”, afirma.

Ele cita como exemplo uma região costeira em que o mangue tenha sido degradado. “Esse ecossistema funciona como uma barreira. Em um cenário de ressacas mais fortes, elevação do nível do mar, a costa vai ficar mais vulnerável, será necessário construir diques. Mas se mantém o mangue em pé e se oferece um auxílio para que as pessoas possam ter uma economia básica desse mangue, com técnicas mais sustentáveis, e elas recebam para mantê-lo assim, vai ser mais barato do que depois ter de fazer um dique.”

Segundo o pesquisador, para ser mais resiliente é importante acabar com a pobreza e preservar a natureza. “Se for possível ter os dois, a gente consegue o tão falado desenvolvimento sustentável”, opina.

(Giovana Girardi / Estado de S.Paulo)
http://www.estadao.com.br/noticias/vida,relatorio-do-ipcc-sugere-adaptacao-baseada-em-ecossistemas,1147134,0.htm

Outras matérias sobre o assunto:

O Globo
Painel da ONU apresenta medidas contra aquecimento global
http://oglobo.globo.com/ciencia/painel-da-onu-apresenta-medidas-contra-aquecimento-global-12038245#ixzz2xXy60bbZ

Valor Econômico
Mudança do clima afeta a todos e está acontecendo agora, alerta IPCC
http://www.valor.com.br/internacional/3500174/mudanca-do-clima-afeta-todos-e-esta-acontecendo-agora-alerta-ipcc#ixzz2xYAtWVsg

Influência humana é clara no aquecimento “inequívoco” do planeta, diz IPCC (Portal Terra)

JC e-mail 4885, de 31 de janeiro de 2014

Os cientistas do IPCC – que já foram premiados com o Nobel da Paz em 2007 – fizeram um apelo enfático para a redução de gases poluentes

Painel Intergovernamental de Mudanças Climáticas divulga primeira parte de estudo sobre aumento da temperatura no globo e afirma que últimas três décadas foram sucessivamente mais quentes que qualquer outra desde 1850.

O aquecimento do planeta é “inequívoco”, a influência humana no aumento da temperatura global é “clara”, e limitar os efeitos das mudanças climáticas vai requerer reduções “substanciais e sustentadas” das emissões de gases de efeito estufa. A conclusão é do Painel Intergovernamental de Mudanças Climáticas (IPCC), que divulgou nesta quinta-feira (30/01), em Genebra, a primeira parte do quinto relatório sobre o tema.

Os cientistas do IPCC – que já foram premiados com o Nobel da Paz em 2007 – fizeram um apelo enfático para a redução de gases poluentes. “A continuidade das emissões vai continuar causando mudanças e aquecimento em todos os componentes do sistema climático”, afirmou Thomas Stocker, coordenador e principal autor da Parte 1 do quinto Relatório sobre Mudanças Climáticas, cuja versão preliminar já foi apresentada em setembro de 2013.

O documento serviu de base durante a Conferência das Partes (COP) das Nações Unidas sobre o Clima em Varsóvia, na Polônia, no final do ano passado. Em 1500 páginas, cientistas de todo o mundo se debruçaram sobre as bases físicas das mudanças climáticas, apoiados em mais de 9 mil publicações científicas.

“O relatório apresenta informações sobre o que muda no clima, os motivos para as mudanças e como ele vai mudar no futuro”, disse Stocker.

Correções
A versão final divulgada nesta quinta é um texto revisado e editado e não tem muitas mudanças em relação ao documento apresentado em setembro do ano passado, que elevou o alerta pelo aquecimento global e destacou a influência da ação humana no processo.

“A influência humana no clima é clara”, afirma o texto. “Ela foi detectada no aquecimento da atmosfera e dos oceanos, nas mudanças nos ciclos globais de precipitação, e nas mudanças de alguns extremos no clima.”

Segundo o IPCC, desde a década de 1950, muitas das mudanças observadas no clima não tiveram precedentes nas décadas de milênios anteriores. “A atmosfera e os oceanos estão mais quentes, o volume de neve e de gelo diminuíram, os níveis dos oceanos subiram e a concentração de gases poluentes aumentou”, diz um resumo do documento.

“Cada uma das últimas três décadas foi sucessivamente mais quente na superfície terrestre que qualquer década desde 1850. No hemisfério norte, o período entre 1983 e 2012 provavelmente foi o intervalo de 30 anos mais quente dos últimos 800 anos”, prossegue.

Aquecimento dos oceanos
O grupo de cientistas também lembra que o aquecimento dos oceanos domina o aumento de energia acumulada no sistema climático, e que os mares são responsáveis por mais de 90% da energia acumulada entre 1971 e 2010.

“É praticamente certo que o oceano superior (até 700m de profundidade) aqueceu neste período, enquanto é apenas provável que tenha acontecido o mesmo entre 1870 e 1970”, diz o relatório.

O nível dos mares também aumentou mais desde meados do século 20 que durante os dois milênios anteriores, segundo estima o IPCC. Entre 1901 e 2010, o nível médio dos oceanos teria aumentado cerca de 20 centímetros, diz o documento.

As concentrações atmosféricas de dióxido de carbono, metano e protóxido de nitrogênio (conhecido como gás hilariante) aumentaram, principalmente por causa da ação humana. Tais aumentos se devem especialmente às emissões oriundas de combustíveis fósseis. Os oceanos, por exemplo, sofrem acidificação por absorver uma parte do CO2 emitido.

Futuro sombrio
A temperatura global deverá ultrapassar 1,5ºC até o final deste século em comparação com níveis estimados entre 1850 e 1900. O aquecimento global também deverá continuar além de 2100, mas não será uniforme, dizem os cientistas do clima. As mudanças nos ciclos da água no mundo também não serão homogêneos neste século, e o contraste entre regiões secas e úmidas e regiões de seca e de chuvas deverá aumentar.

O resumo do texto ainda constata que a acumulação de emissões de CO2 deverá ser determinante para o aquecimento global no final do século 21 e adiante. “A maioria dos efeitos das mudanças climáticas deverão perdurar por vários séculos, mesmo com o fim das emissões.”

Até outubro, o IPCC ainda vai publicar mais duas partes do relatório e também um documento final. A segunda parte será divulgada em março, no Japão, e detalhará os impactos, a adaptação e a vulnerabilidade a mudanças climáticas. Em abril, Berlim será palco das conclusões do IPCC sobre mitigação.

(Portal Terra)

IPCC: próximos 15 anos serão vitais para frear aquecimento global (CarbonoBrasil)

20/1/2014 – 12h54

por Jéssica Lipinski , do CarbonoBrasil

secawiki 300x204 IPCC: próximos 15 anos serão vitais para frear aquecimento global

Foto: Wikimedia commons

Rascunho do novo relatório da entidade afirma que evitar as piores consequências das mudanças climáticas custará até 4% da produção econômica mundial, valor que aumentará se demorarmos para agir.

Diversos veículos da imprensa internacional divulgaram nos últimos dias dados do próximo relatório do Painel Intergovernamental sobre Mudanças Climáticas (IPCC), que será publicado oficialmente apenas em abril.

De acordo com essas informações, o que o IPCC destaca é que a menos que o mundo aja agora para frear as emissões de gases do efeito estufa (GEEs), os efeitos negativos do aquecimento global representarão enormes desafios para a humanidade ainda neste século, tornando-se cada vez mais caros e difíceis de serem resolvidos.

Segundo o documento, manter o aquecimento global dentro de limites considerados toleráveis, algo perto de dois graus Celsius, vai exigir investimentos bilionários, grandes reduções nas emissões de GEEs e soluções tecnológicas caras e complexas para retirar tais gases da atmosfera.

Tudo isso deve ser feito nos próximos 15 anos, caso contrário será ainda mais difícil lidar com a questão. “Adiar a mitigação até 2030 aumentará os desafios… e reduzirá as opções”, alerta o sumário do relatório.

O estudo aponta que uma das principais razões para o aumento das emissões é o crescimento econômico baseado na queima de fontes de energia fóssil, como o carvão e o petróleo, atividade que estima-se que deve crescer nas próximas décadas.

Por isso, a pesquisa indica que as emissões de dióxido de carbono devem ser reduzidas de 40% a 70% até 2050 para que a meta de dois graus Celsius de aquecimento estipulada pela ONU seja atendida.

Isso significa que os governos terão que apoiar e utilizar uma série de tecnologias para retirar o CO2 da atmosfera, como a captura e armazenamento de carbono (CCS) e o plantio de mais florestas.

O relatório também sugere que, para limitar o aquecimento global de forma significativa, serão necessários investimentos da ordem de US$ 147 bilhões por ano até 2029 em fontes de energia alternativa, como eólica, solar e nuclear.

Ao mesmo tempo, investimentos em energias fósseis teriam que cair em US$ 30 bilhões por ano, enquanto bilhões de dólares anuais teriam que ser gastos na melhoria da eficiência energética em setores importantes como transporte, construção e indústria.

O documento, contudo, afirma que o caminho para mitigar as mudanças climáticas não será nada fácil, visto que vai em direção contrária do que está acontecendo atualmente. De acordo com o estudo, as emissões globais subiram, em média, 2,2% ao ano entre 2000 e 2010, quase o dobro em relação ao ritmo do período de 1970 a 2000, que era de 1,3% ao ano.

“A crise econômica global em 2007-2008 reduziu as emissões temporariamente, mas não mudou a tendência”, diz o relatório.

Além disso, o combate ao aquecimento global custaria 4% da produção econômica mundial, e exigiria uma diminuição gradativa no consumo de bens e serviços: entre 1% e 4% até 2030, entre 2% e 6% até 2050 e entre 2% e 12% até 2100.

“Sem esforços explícitos para reduzir as emissões de gases do efeito estufa, os fatores fundamentais do crescimento das emissões devem persistir”, afirma o estudo.

Outro problema que a pesquisa aponta é que as emissões de países desenvolvidos estão sendo transferidas para nações emergentes, ou seja, a suposta redução de emissões de alguns países ricos é na verdade menor do que se imagina.

Desde 2000, as emissões de carbono para China e outras economias emergentes mais do que dobrou para quase 14 gigatoneladas por ano, mas destas, cerca de duas gigatoneladas foram da produção de bens para a exportação.

“Uma parcela crescente das emissões de CO2 da queima de combustíveis fósseis em países em desenvolvimento é liberada da produção de bens e serviços exportados, principalmente de países de renda média-alta para países de renda alta”, colocou o documento.

Esse estudo é o terceiro documento da quinta avaliação do IPCC sobre o que se sabe sobre as causas, efeitos e futuro das mudanças climáticas.

Em setembro de 2013, o painel divulgou a primeira parte da avaliação, que confirma com 95% de certeza a influência humana sobre o aquecimento global.

O segundo relatório, sobre os impactos das mudanças climáticas, será concluído e divulgado em março, no Japão. Este terceiro será finalizado e divulgado em abril, na Alemanha. Um documento final, sintetizando as três partes, deve ser lançado em outubro deste ano.

Os cientistas do painel concordaram em comentar o estudo assim que ele estiver finalizado. “É um trabalho em progresso, e estamos ansiosos para discuti-lo quando ele for finalizado, em abril”, observou Jonathan Lynn, porta-voz do IPCC, em uma entrevista por telefone à Bloomberg.

* Publicado originalmente no site CarbonoBrasil.

Um balanço da primeira semana da COP19 (Vitae Civilis)

Ambiente
18/11/2013 – 09h10

por Délcio Rodrigues e Silvia Dias*

cop19 ecod 300x183 Um balanço da primeira semana da COP19

Ao fim da primeira semana da CoP19, a sensação de dejá vú é inevitável. Mais uma vez, o negociador filipino foi o responsável pelo discurso mais emocionante. Mais uma vez, o Germanwatch divulga que os países pobres são os mais vulneráveis aos eventos climáticos extremos. Mais uma vez, aliás, temos um evento climático vitimando milhares de pessoas enquanto acontece a conferência. Mais uma vez, temos a divulgação de que estamos vivendo os anos mais quentes da história recente do planeta, de que a quantidade de gases causadores do efeito estufa na atmosfera já está em níveis alarmantes, de que o certo seria deixar as reservas de combustíveis fósseis intocadas…

Mesmo o novo relatório do IPCC chega com um certo gosto de notícia velha. Pois apesar da maior gama de detalhes e da maior certeza científica, basicamente o AR5 confirma que estamos seguindo em uma trajetória que esgotará já em 2030 todo o carbono que poderemos queimar neste século sem alterar perigosamente o clima do planeta. Da mesma forma, a Agência Internacional de Energia (IEA) confirma o exposto por uma forte campanha feita na CoP18 contra os subsídios aos combustíveis fósseis. Segundo a IEA, os governos gastaram US$ 523 bilhões em subsídios aos combustíveis fósseis em 2011 – uma completa inversão de prioridades, do ponto de vista da mudança climática: para cada US$ 1 em apoio às energias renováveis​​, outros US$ 6 estão promovendo combustíveis intensivos em carbono. Parte dos subsídios aos combustíveis fósseis estão acontecendo em países emergentes e em desenvolvimento, haja vista os subsídios à gasolina impostos pelo governo brasileiro à Petrobrás. Mas talvez sejam mais importantes nos países ricos. Pesquisa do Overseas Development Institute, do Reino Unido, mostrou que os subsídios ao consumo de combustíveis fósseis em 11 países da OCDE alcançam o total de US$ 72 bilhões dólares, ou cerca de US$ 112 por habitante adulto destes países.

Essa perversidade econômica estrangula, no nascimento, as inovações tecnológicas que podem contribuir para evitarmos a colisão iminente entre a economia global (e o seu sistema energético) e os limites ecológicos do nosso planeta. Os recentes desenvolvimentos em energia eólica, solar, bio-combustíveis , geotermia, marés, células de combustível e eficiência energética estão aumentando as possibilidades de construção de um cenário energético de baixo carbono. Além de poderem afastar a crise climática, estas tecnologias poderiam abrir novas oportunidades de investimento, fornecer energia a preços acessíveis e sustentar o crescimento. Mas este potencial somente será realizado se os governos perseguirem ativamente políticas industriais sustentáveis. É necessário alinhar o objetivo de mitigação da crise climática com desincentivos para as fontes de energia intensivas em carbono por meio de impostos e apoio a alternativas sustentáveis.

O fim dos subsídios aos combustíveis fósseis precisa ser acompanhado por políticas que favoreçam a transferência de tecnologias limpas. Não podemos deixar de lado o exemplo da China, da Índia e também do Brasil, para onde multinacionais historicamente enviam plataformas de produção sujas e energo-intensivas. Infelizmente, as negociações sobre tecnologia estão entre as mais emperradas – tanto no formato anterior, estabelecido pelo Caminho de Bali, como agora, na chamada Plataforma Durban. Simultaneamente, tomamos conhecimento, pelo WikiLeaks, da Parceria Trans-Pacífica (TPP) referente a patentes e proteção intelectual – acordo que vem sendo negociado secretamente entre líderes de 12 países que concentram 40% do PIB e um terço do comércio global e que visa impor medidas mais agressivas para coibir a quebra de propriedade intelectual.

A discrepância entre o que a ciência recomenda e o que os governos estão promovendo permanece, independente do formato das negociações climáticas. Saímos dos dois trilhos estabelecidos em Bali para a Plataforma Durban, mas os compromissos financeiros ou metas mais agressivas de mitigação não vieram. Na primeira semana da CoP19, os discursos dos negociadores reviveram posicionamentos arcaicos e obstrutivos ao processo. Sim, é certo que já sabíamos que esta não seria uma conferência de grandes resultados. Mas o fato é que os bad guys resolveram ser realmente bad sob a condução complacente de uma presidência que não se constrange em explicitar sua conduta em prol do carvão e demais combustíveis fósseis. Tanto que a Rússia abriu mão de atravancar o processo, guardando suas queixas sobre o processo da UNFCCC para outra ocasião.

Esta outra ocasião pode ser a CoP20, no Peru, para onde as esperanças de negociações mais produtivas se voltam. Antes, porém, haverá a cúpula de Ban Ki Moon, para a qual as lideranças dos países estão convidadas. O objetivo é gerar a sensibilidade política que faltou em Copenhague e tentar definir metas antes da reta derradeira do acordo, em Paris. Esse encontro deve ser precedido e seguido de várias reuniões interseccionais para que os delegados avancem na costura do acordo e para que os itens críticos, como metas de mitigação e financiamento, comecem a adquirir contornos mais concretos.

Em outras palavras, uma agenda consistente de reuniões e o compromisso para apresentar metas no ano que vem são o melhor resultado que podemos esperar de uma conferência que corre o risco de entrar para a História como a CoP do carvão.

Délcio Rodrigues é especialista em Mudanças Climáticas do Vitae Civilis. Silvia Dias, membro do Conselho Deliberativo do Vitae Civilis, acompanha as negociações climáticas desde 2009.

Eight examples of where the IPCC has missed the mark on its predictions and projections (The Daily Climate)

flooded-768

A “king tide” leaves parts of Sausalito, Calif., flooded in 2010. Disagreement over the impact of ice-sheet melting on sea-level rise has led the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change to omit their influence – and thus underestimate sea-level rise – in recent reports, a pattern the panel repeats with other key findings. Photo by Yanna B./flickr.

Dec. 6, 2012

Correction appended

By Glenn Scherer
The Daily Climate

Scientists will tell you: There are no perfect computer models. All are incomplete representations of nature, with uncertainty built into them. But one thing is certain: Several fundamental projections found in Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change reports have consistently underestimated real-world observations, potentially leaving world governments at doubt as to how to guide climate policy.

emissions

Emissions

At the heart of all IPCC projections are “emission scenarios:” low-, mid-, and high-range estimates for future carbon emissions. From these “what if” estimates flow projections for temperature, sea-rise, and more.

Projection: In 2001, the IPCC offered a range of fossil fuel and industrial emissions trends, from a best-case scenario of 7.7 billion tons of carbon released each year by 2010 to a worst-case scenario of 9.7 billion tons.

Reality: In 2010, global emissions from fossil fuels alone totaled 9.1 billion tons of carbon, according to federal government’s Earth Systems Research Laboratory.

Why the miss? While technically within the range, scientists never expected emissions to rise so high so quickly, said IPCC scientist Christopher Fields. The IPCC, for instance, failed to anticipate China’s economic growth, or resistance by the United States and other nations to curbing greenhouse gases.

“We really haven’t explored a world in which the emissions growth rate is as rapid as we have actually seen happen,” Fields said.

Temperature

IPCC models use the emission scenarios discussed above to estimate average global temperature increases by the year 2100.

warming-300

Projection: The IPCC 2007 assessment projected a worst-case temperature rise of 4.3° to 11.5° Fahrenheit, with a high probability of 7.2°F.

Reality: We are currently on track for a rise of between 6.3° and 13.3°F, with a high probability of an increase of 9.4°F by 2100, according to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Other modelers are getting similar results, including a study published earlier this month by the Global Carbon Project consortium confirming the likelihood of a 9ºF rise.

Why the miss? IPCC emission scenarios underestimated global CO2 emission rates, which means temperature rates were underestimated too. And it could get worse: IPCC projections haven’t included likely feedbacks such as large-scale melting of Arctic permafrost and subsequent release of large quantities of CO2 and methane, a greenhouse gas 20 times more potent, albeit shorter lived, in the atmosphere than carbon dioxide.

Arctic Meltdown

Five years ago, the summer retreat of Arctic ice wildly outdistanced all 18 IPCC computer models, amazing IPCC scientists. It did so again in 2012.

ice-600

Projection: The IPCC has always confidently projected that the Arctic ice pack was safe at least until 2050 or well beyond 2100.

Reality: Summer ice is thinning faster than every climate projection, and today scientists predict an ice-free Arctic in years, not decades. Last summer, Arctic sea ice extent plummeted to 1.32 million square miles, the lowest level ever recorded – 50 percent below the long-term 1979 to 2000 average.

Why the miss? For scientists, it is increasingly clear that the models are under-predicting the rate of sea ice retreat because they are missing key real-world interactions.

“Sea ice modelers have speculated that the 2007 minimum was an aberration… a matter of random variability, noise in the system, that sea ice would recover.… That no longer looks tenable,” says IPCC scientist Michael Mann. “It is a stunning reminder that uncertainty doesn’t always act in our favor.”

Ice Sheets

Greenland and Antarctica are melting, even though IPCC said in 1995 that they wouldn’t be.

Projection: In 1995, IPCC projected “little change in the extent of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets… over the next 50-100 years.” In 2007 IPCC embraced a drastic revision: “New data… show[s] that losses from the ice sheets of Greenland and Antarctica have very likely contributed to sea level rise over 1993 to 2003.”

Today, ice loss in Greenland and Antarctica is trending at least 100 years ahead of projections compared to IPCC’s first three reports.

Reality: Today, ice loss in Greenland and Antarctica is trending at least 100 years ahead of projections compared to IPCC’s first three reports.

Why the miss? “After 2001, we began to realize there were complex dynamics at work – ice cracks, lubrication and sliding of ice sheets,” that were melting ice sheets quicker, said IPCC scientist Kevin Trenberth. New feedbacks unknown to past IPCC authors have also been found. A 2012 study, for example, showed that the reflectivity of Greenland’s ice sheet is decreasing, causing ice to absorb more heat, likely escalating melting.

Sea-Level Rise

The fate of the world’s coastlines has become a classic example of how the IPCC, when confronted with conflicting science, tends to go silent.

Projection: In the 2001 report, the IPCC projected a sea rise of 2 millimeters per year. The worst-case scenario in the 2007 report, which looked mostly at thermal expansion of the oceans as temperatures warmed, called for up to 1.9 feet of sea-level-rise by century’s end.

Today: Observed sea-level-rise has averaged 3.3 millimeters per year since 1990. By 2009, various studies that included ice-melt offered drastically higher projections of between 2.4 and 6.2 feet sea level rise by 2100.

Why the miss? IPCC scientists couldn’t agree on a value for the contribution melting Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets would add to sea-level rise. So they simply left out the data to reach consensus. Science historian Naomi Oreskes calls this – one of IPCC’s biggest underestimates – “consensus by omission.”

Ocean Acidification

To its credit, the IPCC admits to vast climate change unknowns. Ocean acidification is one such impact.

Projection: Unmentioned as a threat in the 1990, 1995 and 2001 IPCC reports. First recognized in 2007, when IPCC projected acidification of between 0.14 and 0.35 pH units by 2100. “While the effects of observed ocean acidification on the marine biosphere are as yet undocumented,” said the report, “the progressive acidification of oceans is expected to have negative impacts on marine shell-forming organisms (e.g. corals) and their dependent species.”

Reality: The world’s oceans absorb about a quarter of the carbon dioxide humans release annually into the atmosphere. Since the start of the Industrial Revolution, the pH of surface ocean waters has fallen by 0.1 pH units. Since the pH scale is logarithmic, this change represents a stunning 30 percent increase in acidity.

Why the miss? Scientists didn’t have the data. They began studying acidification by the late 1990s, but there weren’t many papers on the topic until mid-2000, missing the submission deadline for IPCC’s 2001 report. Especially alarming are new findings that ocean temperatures and currents are causing parts of the seas to become acidic far faster than expected, threatening oysters and other shellfish.

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration chief Jane Lubchenco has called acidification the “equally evil twin” to global warming.

Thawing Tundra

Some carbon-cycle feedbacks that could vastly amplify climate change – especially a massive release of carbon and methane from thawing permafrost – are extremely hard to model.

Projection: In 2007, IPCC reported with “high confidence” that “methane emissions from tundra… and permafrost have accelerated in the past two decades, and are likely to accelerate further.” However, the IPCC offered no projections regarding permafrost melt.

Reality: Scientists estimate that the world’s permafrost holds 1.5 trillion tons of frozen carbon. That worries scientists: The Arctic is warming faster than anywhere else on earth, and researchers are seeing soil temperatures climb rapidly, too. Some permafrost degradation is already occurring.

Large-scale tundra wildfires in 2012 added to the concern.

Why the miss? This is controversial science, with some researchers saying the Arctic tundra is stable, others saying it will defrost only over long periods of time, and still more convinced we are on the verge of a tipping point, where the tundra thaws rapidly and catastrophically. A major 2005 study, for instance, warned that the entire top 11 feet of global permafrost could disappear by century’s end, with potentially cataclysmic climate impacts.

The U.N. Environmental Programme revealed this week that IPCC’s fifth assessment, due for release starting in September, 2013, will again “not include the potential effects of the permafrost carbon feedback on global climate.”

Tipping points

The IPCC has been silent on tipping points – non-linear “light switch” moments when the climate system abruptly shifts from one paradigm to another.

The trouble with tipping points is they’re hard to spot until you’ve passed one.

Projection: IPCC has made no projections regarding tipping-point thresholds.

Reality: The scientific jury is still out as to whether we have reached any climate thresholds – a point of no return for, say, an ice-free Arctic, a Greenland meltdown, the slowing of the North Atlantic Ocean circulation, or permanent changes in large-scale weather patterns like the jet stream, El Niño or monsoons. The trouble with tipping points is they’re hard to spot until you’ve passed one.

Why the miss? Blame the computers: These non-linear events are notoriously hard to model. But with scientists recognizing the sizeable threat tipping points represent, they will be including some projections in the 2013-14 assessment.

Correction (Dec. 6, 2012): Earlier editions incorrectly compared global carbon dioxide emissions against carbon emissions scenarios. Carbon dioxide is heavier, incorrectly skewing the comparison. Global use of fossil fuels in 2010 produced about 30 billion tons of carbon dioxide but only 9.1 tons of carbon, putting emissions within the extreme end of IPCC scenarios. The story has been changed to reflect that.

© Glenn Scherer, 2012. All rights reserved.

Graphic of emissions scenario courtesy U.S. Global Change Research Program. Photo of activist warning of 6ºC warming © Adela Nistora. Graphic showing Arctic summer ice projections vs. observations by the Vancouver Observer.

Glenn Scherer is senior editor of Blue Ridge Press, a news service that has been providing environmental commentary and news to U.S. newspapers since 2007.

DailyClimate.org is a foundation-funded news service covering climate change. Contact editor Douglas Fischer at dfischer [at] dailyclimate.org

Climate summit was a pathetic exercise in deceit (Globe and Mail)

Thomas Homer-Dixon
Last updated Monday, Dec. 12, 2011 10:01AM EST

It was an “emperor-has-no-clothes” moment. The 17-year-old youth delegate rose before the assembled participants at the Durban climate conference and looked them straight in the eye.

“I speak for more than half the world’s population,” declared Anjali Appadurai of Maine’s College of the Atlantic. “We are the silent majority. You’ve given us a seat in this hall, but our interests are not at the table. What does it take to get a stake in this game? Lobbyists? Corporate influence? Money?”

“You have been negotiating all of my life. In that time, you’ve failed to meet pledges, you’ve missed targets, and you’ve broken promises.”

Ms. Appadurai nailed it. There’s really only one label for the pathetic exercise we’ve just witnessed in South Africa: deceit. The whole climate-change negotiation process and the larger political discourse surrounding this horrible problem is a drawn-out and elaborate exercise in lying – to each other, to ourselves, and especially to our children. And the lies are starting to corrupt our civilization from inside out.

The climate negotiators lie to each other and the world when they claim the world can still limit the planet’s warming to two degrees Celsius above the pre-industrial average, the point at which many experts believe the risks from climate change rise sharply.

It’s a lie because we’ve already experienced 0.8 degrees warming, and we’ve got at least another 0.6 degrees on the way due to carbon already in the atmosphere. Given that global carbon dioxide emissions of about 35 billion tons each year are now growing at an average of 3 per cent a year – which means they’re doubling every 23 years – it’s virtually certain we’re going to use up the remaining 0.6 degrees of leeway. In fact, the emerging consensus among climate experts is that we’ll be lucky to limit warming to 4 degrees.

India, China, and Brazil lie to their own citizens when they claim that by blocking a climate deal they’re protecting the opportunity for their economies to develop. “Am I to write a blank cheque and sign away the livelihoods and sustainability of 1.2-billion Indians?” asked India’s environment minister, Jayanthi Natarajan.

But this choice is patently false, as senior officials of these countries surely know. It’s not a choice between a climate-change deal and economic development; it’s really a choice of both or neither. If we don’t reduce carbon emissions, the impacts of climate change will eventually devastate the economies of poor countries. Repeated failures of monsoons in India and China or the desiccation of the Amazon basin in Brazil will drive a stake through these countries’ economies. Dealing with climate change is a prerequisite for prosperity this century – for all people on this planet.

The Canadian federal government lies to Canadians when it says we can still meet the government’s stated target of a 17 per cent reduction of emissions below the country’s 2005 level by 2020. Given the projected growth in oil sands output and the Conservatives’ neglect of the climate change file, nobody in the know seriously believes such a target can be achieved.

And we lie to ourselves when we tell ourselves that fixing climate change is someone else’s responsibility, or that the science is too uncertain to justify action, or that we’ll find a technology to solve the problem when it gets serious enough, or that it simply costs too much to do anything.

But most of all we lie to our kids. We tell them we’ve got the climate problem under control, while we’ve actually lost control of it completely. Worse, we tell them that we’re protecting their options for the future, while we’re actually closing down those options to protect powerful political and economic vested interests in the present.

It took a 17-year-old to tell the truth. The rest of us, supposedly adults, should be ashamed.

Thomas Homer-Dixon is the director of the Waterloo Institute for Complexity and Innovation and is the CIGI Chair of Global Systems at the Balsillie School of International Affairs in Waterloo, Ont.

Avanço diplomático, atraso climático (O Globo)

JC e-mail 4403, de 12 de Dezembro de 2011.

A adesão de EUA, China e Índia é marco da COP-17. Mas cortes de CO2 ficam na promessa.

Quase dois dias depois do previsto, a reunião das Nações Unidas sobre mudanças climáticas de Durban, na África do Sul, terminou na madrugada de ontem (11) sem que nenhum novo acordo com valor de lei fosse firmado. Nas 36 horas de prorrogação da cúpula, representantes de 194 países concordaram em estender o Protocolo de Kioto até 2017 e a dar início a negociações para a elaboração de um novo tratado global que só entraria em vigor em 2020. Para analistas, o resultado é uma vitória da diplomacia – uma vez que, pela primeira vez, EUA, China e Índia aceitaram negociar metas compulsórias -, mas um fracasso do ponto de vista climático. A Plataforma de Durban é um plano de ação para negociações futuras, mas representa um atraso concreto nos cortes de gases do efeito estufa.

Cientistas são praticamente unânimes em afirmar que para que o aumento da temperatura da Terra se mantenha no patamar dos 2° Celsius até o fim do século – acima da qual considera-se que haveria mudanças climáticas perigosas – um novo acordo global com metas obrigatórias de cortes de emissões já teria que entrar em vigor até o fim do ano que vem, quando o Protocolo de Kioto expiraria. Quase dez anos de espera para se ter metas compulsórias – “a década perdida”, como já a apelidaram ambientalistas – pode levar o aumento da temperatura planetária para a casa dos 3° Celsius a 4° Celsius, com consequências climáticas dramáticas.

A prorrogação do Protocolo de Kioto até 2017, por sua vez, é apenas simbólica. Com a saída de Rússia, Japão e Canadá do acordo (que nunca teve a adesão dos EUA, nem obrigações dos países em desenvolvimento), o protocolo, atualmente, cobre apenas 15% das emissões do planeta. Como, na melhor das hipóteses, o novo acordo só será implementado em 2020, tampouco se sabe que tratado estará em vigor entre 2017 e 2020.

Negociações formais começam em 2012 – Ainda assim, os participantes da reunião consideraram o acordo uma grande vitória da diplomacia. De fato, foi a primeira vez que Estados Unidos, China e Índia (os maiores emissores de CO2) concordaram em negociar a elaboração de um documento com metas compulsórias de corte de emissões – as negociações começariam já no ano que vem e se estenderiam até 2015. O Brasil, que está entre os cinco maiores emissores por conta do desmatamento, já havia concordado com o plano de intenções e teve papel crucial nas negociações. Se tudo der certo, será a primeira vez que o mundo terá um acordo global, com valor legal e o envolvimento de todos os países.

Para a ministra do Meio Ambiente, Izabella Teixeira, foi um desfecho “histórico”. A presidente Dilma Rousseff, informada do resultado pela ministra, se disse satisfeita com o resultado do encontro e elogiou a participação do Brasil.

“O documento é extraordinário. Ele lança um futuro de cooperação internacional, com condições para que se venha a ter no mesmo instrumento jurídico todos os países, abrindo uma nova era na luta contra a mudança do clima”, resumiu o embaixador Luiz Alberto Figueiredo, negociador-chefe da delegação brasileira.

Especialista da Coppe/UFRJ e integrante do Painel Intergovernamental de Mudanças Climáticas (IPCC) da ONU, Suzana Kahn Ribeiro, tem uma visão diferente. “Se o objetivo dos negociadores era ter algum tipo de acordo, não deixar um vácuo, ok, então eu posso considerar que o encontro foi vitorioso. Agora, se a meta era ter uma solução para o aquecimento global, então a conferência foi um fracasso total. Temos um instrumento legal (Kioto) que não tem valor prático nenhum e um plano de intenções para 2020 puramente declaratório”, afirmou.

Assessor da prefeitura para a Rio+20, o economista Sérgio Besserman concorda com a colega. “Esta é uma negociação diplomática, como tantas outras, mas a diferença, neste caso, é que não temos controle sobre a agenda, que é ditada externamente, pelo clima. Quando o debate é sobre comércio, por exemplo, se atrasar, atrasou. Mas com o clima não é assim, ele tem seu próprio ritmo. É claro que é preferível que se tenha um plano de intenções, que a toalha não tenha sido jogada, mas estamos nos atrasando consideravelmente”, declarou.

Para Besserman, “é assustadora a incapacidade da governança mundial de dar uma resposta ao conhecimento científico que já se tem sobre o que vem pela frente”. “Vale lembrar que um aumento de 3° Celsius é 50% acima do que se considera o limite do perigo”, avaliou.

Duas das principais organizações ambientais do mundo, WWF e Greenpeace condenaram o resultado da conferência. “O mundo merece um pacto melhor que o débil compromisso de Durban”, afirmou Regine Günther, do WWF Alemanha, lembrando que o acordo não impedirá que a temperatura suba acima dos 2° Celsius.

Para o Greenpeace, “o compromisso não conduz a um tratado vinculante mundial para a proteção do clima, mas a um acordo vago”, lembrando que não há sequer sanções para quem não cumprir o plano de intenções.

Para o cientista político e professor de Relações Internacionais da Universidade de Brasília, Eduardo Viola, o resultado da conferência é “desastroso” do ponto de vista do clima. “Tudo foi protelado para 2020, uma vez que essa prorrogação de Kioto é irrelevante, é a prorrogação do nada”, resumiu. “O resultado não é histórico, como estão dizendo os que estavam envolvidos nas negociações. Ele lamenta a decisão de adiar as medidas até 2020, uma ideia de que se está fazendo algo pelo clima quando a ciência aponta que as medidas de redução das emissões já deveriam vigorar em 2013.”

Ainda assim, o especialista garante estar otimista. “A Humanidade aprende pela dor”, afirma, lembrando que as mudanças climáticas ainda são uma realidade distante para boa parte da população. “Ela aprende com mais dor do que precisaria e em muito mais tempo do que seria necessário, mas não está condenada ao suicídio.”

Os principais pontos acertados na COP-17
O que aconteceu em Durban? 194 países se reuniram na 17ª rodada de negociações da Convenção do Clima da ONU, cuja meta é deter o aquecimento global ao limitar as emissões de gases do efeito estufa. A conferência durou dois dias além do previsto, na mais longa reunião ambiental realizada.

O que foi obtido? Após duríssimas negociações, se chegou à “Plataforma de Durban”. No documento de duas páginas, pela primeira vez, todos os países prometem cortar emissões. Um plano guiará os países em negociações até 2015 para que cheguem a um acordo legal de cortes. Porém, ele só começará a vigorar em 2020.

Foi um avanço ou um retrocesso? Depende do ângulo que se olhe. Um sucesso em termos de se manter as negociações vivas, salvando o processo da ONU, após este quase ter colapsado em Copenhague e Cancún. A União Europeia chama seu plano de ação (a Plataforma de Durban) de “avanço histórico”. Para a UE, essa é a primeira vez que EUA, China e Índia se comprometem a assinar um tratado de legal para cortar emissões. Porém, é um atraso do ponto de vista de muitos países em desenvolvimento, de grupos ambientalistas e de cientistas. Eles argumentam que a linguagem usada precisa ser mais forte para forçar os países a agir e que deveria haver datas concretas de cortes.

E o Protocolo de Kioto? Ele será estendido até 2017, com metas de redução para a UE e poucos outros países desenvolvidos. Japão e Rússia já tinham anunciado que deixariam Kioto. Um novo acordo deve ser negociado para cobrir o período até 2020. Porém, Índia, China e EUA continuam de fora. Os dois primeiros porque não têm obrigação legal e os EUA por não serem signatários. Nesse período de intervalo países como o Brasil, que têm metas voluntárias, continuarão a fazer cortes de emissões.

O dinheiro prometido em 2010 para ajudar os países pobres? O Fundo Verde criado em Cancún deverá despender US$60 bilhões por ano a partir de 2020. Porém, os detalhes de como isso será feito são muito vagos. Não está definido de onde virá o dinheiro. Uma das possibilidades são taxas sobre a aviação.

E o desmatamento? O REDD, o plano para pagar países pobres a não cortar suas árvores, avançou pouco. Mais uma vez, não ficou definido de onde virá o dinheiro. Há temor de que os recursos sejam desviados em corrupção. O REDD deverá continuar na mesa de negociação.

O que o acontecerá agora? Rodadas sobre clima estão previstas para março, em Londres, em Bonn (Alemanha), e finalmente no Qatar, na COP-18, em dezembro de 2012. Embora a Rio+20 não tenha foco no clima, especialistas acreditam que ela será fundamental nesse sentido. Em 2012 começam as negociações para se chegar a um acordo em 2015. Isso incluirá as metas por países, que deverão ser diferenciadas. Espera-se que países sejam pressionados pela sociedade a assumir metas mais ousadas.

SUMMARY OF THE 34TH SESSION OF THE INTERGOVERNMENTAL PANEL ON CLIMATE CHANGE (Earth Negotiations Bulletin)

Volume 12 Number 522 – Monday, 21 November 2011

The 34th session of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) was held from 18-19 November 2011 in Kampala, Uganda. The session was attended by more than two hundred participants, including representatives from governments, the United Nations, and intergovernmental and observer organizations. Participants focused primarily on the workstreams resulting from the consideration of the InterAcademy Council (IAC) Review of the IPCC processes and procedures, namely those on: procedures, conflict of interest policy, and communications strategy.

The Panel adopted the revised Procedures for the Preparation, Review, Acceptance, Adoption, Approval and Publication of IPCC Reports, as well as the Implementation Procedures and Disclosure Form for the Conflict of Interest Policy. The Panel also formally accepted the Summary for Policy Makers (SPM) of the Special Report on Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Climate Change Adaptation (SREX), approved by WGs I and II at their joint meeting from 14-17 November 2011. Delegates also addressed issues such as the programme and budget, matters related to other international bodies, and progress reports.

A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE IPCC

The IPCC was established in 1988 by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and the UN Environment Programme (UNEP). Its purpose is to assess scientific, technical and socio-economic information relevant to understanding the risks associated with human-induced climate change, its potential impacts, and options for adaptation and mitigation. The IPCC does not undertake new research, nor does it monitor climate-related data, but it conducts assessments on the basis of published and peer-reviewed scientific and technical literature.

The IPCC has three Working Groups (WGs): WGI addresses the scientific aspects of the climate system and climate change; WGII addresses the vulnerability of socio-economic and natural systems to climate change, impacts of climate change and adaptation options; and WGIII addresses options for limiting greenhouse gas emissions and mitigating climate change. Each WG has two Co-Chairs and six Vice-Chairs, except WGIII, which for the Fifth Assessment cycle has three Co-Chairs. The Co-Chairs guide the WGs in fulfilling the mandates given to them by the Panel and are assisted in this task by Technical Support Units (TSUs).

The IPCC also has a Task Force on National Greenhouse Gas Inventories (TFI). TFI oversees the IPCC National Greenhouse Gas Inventories Programme, which aims to develop and refine an internationally agreed methodology and software for the calculation and reporting of national greenhouse gas emissions and removals, and to encourage the use of this methodology by parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The Task Group on Data and Scenario Support for Impact and Climate Analysis (TGICA) is an entity set up to address WG needs for data, especially WGII and WGIII. The TGICA facilitates distribution and application of climate change related data and scenarios, and oversees a Data Distribution Centre, which provides data sets, scenarios of climate change and other environmental and socio-economic conditions, and other materials.

The IPCC Bureau is elected by the Panel for the duration of the preparation of an IPCC assessment report (approximately six years). Its role is to assist the IPCC Chair in planning, coordinating and monitoring the work of the IPCC. The Bureau is composed of climate change experts representing all regions. Currently, the Bureau comprises 31 members: the Chair of the IPCC, the Co-Chairs of the three WGs and the Bureau of the TFI (TFB), the IPCC Vice-Chairs, and the Vice-Chairs of the three WGs. The IPCC Secretariat is located in Geneva, Switzerland, and is hosted by the WMO.

IPCC PRODUCTS: Since its inception, the IPCC has prepared a series of comprehensive assessments, special reports and technical papers that provide scientific information on climate change to the international community and are subject to extensive review by experts and governments.

The IPCC has so far undertaken four comprehensive assessments of climate change, each credited with playing a key role in advancing negotiations under the UNFCCC: the First Assessment Report was completed in 1990; the Second Assessment Report in 1995; the Third Assessment Report in 2001; and the Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) in 2007. At its 28th session in 2008, the IPCC decided to undertake a Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) to be completed in 2014.

The latest Assessment Reports are structured into three volumes, one for each WG. Each volume is comprised of a SPM, a Technical Summary and an underlying assessment report. All assessment sections of the reports undergo a thorough review process, which takes place in three stages: a first review by experts; a second review by experts and governments; and a third review by governments. Each SPM is approved line-by-line by each respective WG. The Assessment Report also includes a Synthesis Report (SYR), highlighting the most relevant aspects of the three WG reports, and a SPM of the SYR, which is approved line-by-line by the Panel. More than 450 lead authors, 800 contributing authors, 2500 expert reviewers and 130 governments participated in the elaboration of the AR4.

In addition to the comprehensive assessments, the IPCC produces special reports, methodology reports and technical papers, focusing on specific issues related to climate change. Special reports prepared by the IPCC include: Aviation and the Global Atmosphere (1999); Land Use, Land-use Change and Forestry (2000); Methodological and Technical Issues in Technology Transfer (2000); Safeguarding the Ozone Layer and the Global Climate System (2005); Carbon Dioxide Capture and Storage (2005); Renewable Energy Sources and Climate Change Mitigation (SRREN) (2011); and, most recently, the Special Report on Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Climate Change Adaptation (SREX) (2011). Technical papers have been prepared on Climate Change and Biodiversity (2002) and on Climate Change and Water (2008), among others.

The IPCC also produces methodology reports or guidelines to assist countries in reporting on greenhouse gases. The IPCC Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories were first released in 1994 and a revised set was completed in 1996. Additional Good Practice Guidance reports were approved by the Panel in 2000 and 2003. The latest version, the IPCC Guidelines on National Greenhouse Gas Inventories, was approved by the Panel in 2006.

For all this work and its efforts to “build up and disseminate greater knowledge about manmade climate change, and to lay the foundations that are needed to counteract such change,” the IPCC was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, jointly with former US Vice President Al Gore, in December 2007.

IPCC-28: This session was held from 9-10 April 2008, in Budapest, Hungary, with discussions centering on the future of the IPCC, including key aspects of its work programme such as WG structure, main type and timing of future reports, and the future structure of the IPCC Bureau and the TFB. At this session, the IPCC agreed to prepare the AR5 and to retain the current structure of its WGs. In order to enable significant use of new scenarios in the AR5, the Panel requested the Bureau to ensure delivery of the WGI report by early 2013 and completion of the other WG reports and the SYR at the earliest feasible date in 2014. The Panel also agreed to prepare the SRREN Report, to be completed by 2010. Earth Negotiations Bulletin coverage of IPCC 28 can be found at:http://www.iisd.ca/climate/ipcc28

IPCC-29: This session, which commemorated the IPCC’s 20th anniversary, was held from 31 August to 4 September 2008, in Geneva, Switzerland. At this time, the Panel elected the new IPCC Bureau and the TFB, and re-elected Rajendra Pachauri (India) as IPCC Chair. The Panel also continued its discussions on the future of the IPCC and agreed to create a scholarship fund for young climate change scientists from developing countries with the funds from the Nobel Peace Prize. It also asked the Bureau to consider a scoping meeting on the SREX, which took place from 23-26 March 2009 in Oslo, Norway. Earth Negotiations Bulletin coverage of IPCC-29 can be found at: http://www.iisd.ca/climate/ipcc29

IPCC-30: This session was held from 21-23 April 2009 in Antalya, Turkey. At the meeting, the Panel focused mainly on the near-term future of the IPCC and provided guidance for an AR5 scoping meeting, which was held in Venice, Italy, from 13-17 July 2009. The Panel also gathered climate change experts to propose the chapter outlines of WG contributions to the AR5. Earth Negotiations Bulletincoverage of IPCC 30 can be found at: http://www.iisd.ca/climate/ipcc30

IPCC-31: This session was held from 26-29 October 2009 in Bali, Indonesia. Discussions focused on approval of the proposed AR5 chapter outlines developed by participants at the Venice scoping meeting. The Panel also considered progress on the implementation of decisions taken at IPCC 30 regarding the involvement of scientists from developing countries and countries with economies in transition, use of electronic technologies, and the longer-term future of the IPCC. Earth Negotiations Bulletin coverage of IPCC 31 can be found at: http://www.iisd.ca/climate/ipcc31

INTERACADEMY COUNCIL REVIEW: In response to public criticism of the IPCC related to inaccuracies in the AR4 and the Panel’s response, as well as questions about the integrity of some of its members, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and IPCC Chair Rajendra Pachauri requested the IAC to conduct an independent review of the IPCC processes and procedures and to present recommendations to strengthen the IPCC and ensure the on-going quality of its reports. The IAC presented its results in a report in August 2010. The IAC Review makes recommendations regarding: management structure; a communications strategy, including a plan to respond to crises; transparency, including criteria for selecting participants and the type of scientific and technical information to be assessed; and consistency in how the WGs characterize uncertainty.

IPCC-32: This session, held from 11-14 October 2010 in Busan, Republic of Korea, addressed the recommendations of the IAC Review. The Panel adopted a number of decisions in response to the IAC Review, including on the treatment of grey literature and uncertainty, and on a process to address errors in previous reports. To address recommendations that required further examination, the Panel established task groups on processes and procedures, communications, conflict of interest policy, and management and governance. The Panel also accepted a revised outline for the AR5 SYR. Earth Negotiations Bulletin coverage of IPCC 32 can be found at:http://www.iisd.ca/climate/ipcc32

SRREN: The eleventh session of WGIII met from 5-8 May 2011 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, and approved the Special Report on Renewable Energy Sources and Climate Change Mitigation (SRREN) and its SPM. Discussions focused, among others, on chapters addressing sustainable development, biomass and policy. Key findings of the SRREN include that the technical potential for renewable energies is substantially higher than projected future energy demand, and that renewable energies play a crucial role in all mitigation scenarios.

IPCC-33: The session, held from 10-13 May 2011 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, focused primarily on follow-up actions to the IAC Review of the IPCC processes and procedures. The Panel decided to establish an Executive Committee, adopted a Conflict of Interest Policy, and introduced several changes to the rules of procedure. The Panel also endorsed the actions of WGIII in relation to SRREN and its SPM and considered progress on the preparation of the AR5. Earth Negotiations Bulletin coverage of IPCC 33 can be found at: http://www.iisd.ca/vol12/enb12500e.html

SREX: The First joint session of IPCC WGs I and II, which took place on 14-17 November in Kampala, Uganda, accepted the Special Report on Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Climate Change Adaptation (SREX) and approved its SPM. The SREX addressed the interaction of climatic, environmental and human factors leading to adverse impacts of climate extremes and disasters, options for managing the risks posed by impacts and disasters, and the important role that non-climatic factors play in determining impacts.

IPCC-34 REPORT

IPCC Chair Rajendra Pachauri opened the 34th session of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change on Friday, 18 November 2011, highlighting ongoing work related to the Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) and progress in the implementation of the InterAcademy Council (IAC) recommendations. He also referred to the communications strategy and the need to ensure policy relevance and reach out to policymakers. Pachauri said it was critically important that the results of the Special Report on Renewable Energy Sources and Climate Change Mitigation (SRREN) and the Special Report on Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Climate Change Adaptation (SREX) be presented to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Conference of the Parties (COP) in Durban, South Africa. He emphasized the significance of the meeting being held in Africa, given the findings related to climate change impacts and development challenges in the region, and thanked Uganda for hosting the meeting and Norway for its support.

Norwegian Ambassador Thorbjørn Gaustadsæther highlighted that the SREX is an important tool for understanding, taking actions, and making decisions on managing the risks of extreme events and disasters. He noted that extreme weather events and their negative impacts are apparent everywhere, including in Uganda, for fishermen on the Lake Victoria who experience reduced catch, as well as in his native Norway, which experiences dramatic flooding, shrinking Arctic ice and other events. He said the SREX would be presented to governments at the Durban UNFCCC meeting and would provide a good basis for them to take action. He thanked the Ugandan government for its hospitality and said Norway was pleased to have contributed to the organization of the meeting.

Peter Gilruth, on behalf of UNEP Executive Director Achim Steiner, stressed the potential of the SREX, including as a foundation on which the disaster risk reduction and the climate change communities can build stronger bridges, and as a basis for environment and development work. He noted various UNEP initiatives and assessment reports, including the Programme of Research on Climate Change Vulnerability, Impacts and Adaptation, the fifth Global Environmental Outlook and the Emissions Gap Assessment, and invited delegates to participate in the “Eye on Earth” summit in December to build partnerships on knowledge sharing.

Florin Vladu, on behalf of Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary of the UNFCCC, updated the plenary on developments in the negotiating process, highlighting the achievements of the Cancun Agreements in establishing an institutional infrastructure, but noting a failure to address the future of the Kyoto Protocol and a mitigation framework. Vladu said that in Durban countries face a challenge to find a viable way forward, but expressed hope that the conference will help build confidence in post-2012 climate finance through clarity on long-term finance and making the Green Climate Fund operational. Vladu highlighted that the UNFCCC process has benefited from an active research dialogue with the IPCC, most recently in the form of a presentation on the SRREN at the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA) session in June 2011. He also noted the special role of the IPCC in the UNFCCC review of the adequacy of the goal of limiting average global temperature below 2 degrees Celsius and the overall progress towards achieving this goal, which is scheduled to commence in 2013. On SREX, he said the report would contribute both to the work of SBSTA, and Adaptation Framework, and work programme on loss and damage, once those become operational.

Noting that this has been a transformative year for the IPCC, Jeremiah Lengoasa, on behalf of World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Secretary-General Michel Jarraud, reaffirmed support for the work of the Panel and emphasized the importance of the IPCC’s work and procedures remaining relevant and timely. He welcomed the AR5 preparations moving ahead as scheduled and stressed that the AR5 will provide a strong basis for decision-making, including in relation to water resources, agriculture and food security. He also highlighted the role of the WMO Global Framework for Climate Services, to be launched in the near future, to further assist in decision-making.

Maria Mutagamba, Minister for Water and Environment, Uganda, expressed warm greetings from the people of Uganda and welcomed delegates to the country traditionally known as the Pearl of Africa. She said that it is with great pride that Uganda continues to participate actively in the work of the IPCC and hosts this meeting, and thanked Norway, which co-funded the session. She said that Uganda has already started experiencing extreme weather events attributed to climate change such as severe droughts, floods and increased frequency of landslides. Highlighting the inevitability of climate change, she noted that her country has adaptation policies in place. On mitigation, she underlined Uganda’s early efforts under the Clean Development Mechanism. She further noted the need to strengthen national meteorological and hydrological services in developing countries and thus expressed support for the WMO Global Framework for Climate Services. She also suggested the IPCC continue to consider the role of indigenous knowledge in areas where peer-reviewed literature is unavailable or insufficient as well as issues of technology transfer to developing countries and dissemination of information.

The Panel then observed a minute of silence for the untimely and sad passing away of Mama Konate, UNFCCC SBSTA Chair and IPCC colleague.

APPROVAL OF THE DRAFT REPORT OF THE 33RD SESSION

The draft report of IPCC-33 (IPCC-XXXIV/Doc. 2, Rev.1) was adopted on Friday morning with a minor editorial amendment. Belgium noted the lack of reference in the meeting minutes to the Expert Meeting on Geoengineering and the participation of media representatives in at that meeting.

SPECIAL REPORT ON EXTREME EVENTS AND DISASTERS

This issue (IPCC-XXXIV/Doc. 21) was taken up by the plenary on Friday morning. The IPCC plenary formally accepted the actions taken at the Joint Session of Working Groups I and II on the SREX, including approving its Summary for Policy Makers (SPM). Underscoring the importance and usefulness of the SREX, Austria said that, among others, this landmark report introduces terminology to be understood both by the risk management and the climate change community, identifies a range of practices and options to reduce risk, and provides clarity on what the most vulnerable sectors, groups and areas are, making it of tremendous use for taking appropriate actions.

PREPARATION OF THE FIFTH ASSESSMENT REPORT (AR5)

The item (IPCC-XXXIV/Doc. 5) was presented to the plenary on Friday afternoon. Chair Pachauri recalled that the Panel had issued a clear mandate to start very early with the AR5 Synthesis Report (SYR), and Leo Meyer, Head of the SYR Technical Support Unit (TSU), reported on process and management issues related to the SYR (IPCC-XXXIV/Doc. 5). Meyer noted, inter alia: the inclusion of the IPCC Vice-Chairs on the SYR writing team since they have responsibilities related to cross-cutting issues; the possibility of a workshop on UNFCCC Article 2, which could feed into the UNFCCC review of the adequacy of the Convention’s ultimate goal; and the suggestion to reduce the time of eight weeks allowed for government comments on the final draft of the SPM to six weeks given the compressed timeline of the SYR.

On the time frame, the US suggested, and the Panel agreed, to seven weeks instead of the six weeks proposed for government comments.

With regard to a possible workshop on UNFCCC Article 2, Chair Pachauri suggested inviting general comments by governments. Emphasizing the importance of the IPCC retaining distance from the policy process, the US, supported by New Zealand, Canada, Saudi Arabia and others, opposed the suggestion. Saudi Arabia underscored that the issue of Article 2 is very sensitive. The Panel agreed to have the Bureau consider the matter at its next meeting.

REVIEW OF THE IPCC PROCESSES AND PROCEDURES

CONFLICT OF INTEREST POLICY: This issue (IPCC-XXXIV/Doc. 8, Rev. 1) was first addressed in the plenary on Friday and then in several meetings of a contact group co-chaired by Andrej Kranjc (Slovenia) and Jongikhaya Witi (South Africa), with Samuel Duffett (UK) as Rapporteur. The workstream on the Conflict of Interest (COI) Policy arose in response to the recommendations made in the IAC Review to develop and adopt a rigorous COI Policy. At IPCC-33 delegates adopted a COI Policy and extended the mandate of the Task Group on COI in order to develop proposals for annexes to the COI Policy covering Implementation Procedures and the Disclosure Form.

Contact group discussions focused on the draft Implementation Procedures prepared by the Task Group. During the group’s first meeting, Co-Chair Kranjc noted that the Task Group held four teleconferences in between sessions and that the WGs already have experience applying the COI Policy on an interim basis. Rapporteur Duffett then explained the proposed decision-making process on COI, noting there would be different procedures for Bureaux members and non-Bureaux members.

The discussions centered on several issues, including: which body determines whether an individual has a COI; the role of the COI Expert Advisory Group; which body is responsible for the final decision in cases of COI; cases of tolerance of COI for non-Bureaux members; and principles for considering COI issues.

On a body to determine whether an individual has a COI, the proposal of the Task Group was to form a special committee comprised of representatives from each of the six WMO regional groups. Some participants noted that implementation of COI policies is a relatively simple and technical procedure and in most cases there is no COI, so it would be an additional burden to establish a new committee and conduct elections for its members. In this regard, they suggested making use of existing bodies and assigning this function to the Executive Committee. They also suggested that the Executive Committee members would be the ones most interested in maintaining the integrity of the IPCC. Others expressed concern about Bureaux members who are part of the Executive Committee making decisions on their own COI. A compromise was reached on establishing a COI Committee composed of voting members of the Executive Committee and representatives of WMO and UNEP, with a recusal clause.

Delegates also developed principles for considering COI issues, introducing those in relation to exploring options for resolution of COI and an appeals procedure. The group added a provision requiring members of bodies involved in considering COI issues to recuse themselves from a discussion on their own COI.

The Task Group proposed that the Expert Advisory Group, which would be comprised of three representatives from WMO and UNEP, review COI forms of Bureaux nominees. However, some expressed a concern about this approach and a change was introduced that the COI Committee consults the Expert Advisory Group when it deems necessary.

Further discussion took place on which body would be responsible for a final decision on COI. An opinion was expressed that all final decisions should be made in plenary; however, others raised concerns about maintaining the confidentiality of personal information in that case. The contact group elaborated on an appeals procedure, assigning a function to the IPCC Bureau to review a COI determination on request by the individual in question.

On COI in relation to non-Bureaux members, several supported some flexibility in this regard as there are too few experts in some areas and those are often involved with industries or organizations. Delegates developed the relevant procedures on the tolerance of COI in such cases.

In the final plenary, the Panel adopted the Implementation Procedures and Disclosure Form for the COI Policy with minor editorial corrections. Chair Pachauri said COI was clearly one of the trickiest and most complex issues to address in relation to the IAC Review.

The US expressed its satisfaction with an “excellent” outcome on COI, in particular regarding the creation of a body that will implement the COI Policy effectively and very soon, composed of those with a strong interest in ensuring the integrity of its outcomes.

Canada noted that the contact group discussions were exceedingly positive and that the Implementation Procedures for the COI Policy will provide an effective process to promote transparency. The Netherlands underlined the enormous importance of the documents on COI for the transparency and integrity of the Panel, and its acceptance by the outside world. Thanking all members of the Task Group, Australia congratulated the plenary on a “groundbreaking” COI mechanism for many international organizations, both in substance and in the procedure of how it was developed.

Secretary Christ asked the plenary how the set of documents on COI should be integrated into IPCC regulations and suggested a paragraph be added that states these documents constitute an appendix to the Principles Governing the IPCC Work. To this, the US replied that more consideration is needed before the documents are elevated to the level of principles and suggested leaving them as standalone documents. The Panel agreed to the suggestion.

Final Decision: In its decision, the Panel, inter alia:

adopts the COI Implementation Procedures and decides that the Procedures will apply to individuals who are subject to the COI Policy;
decides to establish a COI Committee comprising all elected members of the Executive Committee and two additional members with appropriate legal expertise from UNEP and WMO, appointed by those organizations;
decides to establish an Expert Advisory Group on COI and invites the Secretary-General of WMO and the Executive Director of UNEP to select members of the COI Expert Advisory Group and to facilitate the establishment of the COI committee as soon as possible;
notes that the WG and Task Force Bureaux have adopted interim arrangements for dealing with COI issues and that those arrangements are broadly consistent with the COI Policy;
decides that, to ensure a smooth transition, the existing interim arrangements will continue to operate, with respect to individuals who are not Bureau members until the Executive Committee decides that the implementation procedures apply to those individuals;
requests IPCC and TFI Bureaux members to submit a COI Form to the Secretariat within three months;
decides to receive a report on the operation of the COI Expert Advisory Group and the COI Committee within twelve months of their establishment and to review their operations, as appropriate, within twelve months after the next Bureaux election(s); and
notes that the COI Committee will develop its own methods of working and will apply those on an interim basis pending approval by the Panel, and decides that the COI Committee should submit its methods of working to the Panel within twelve months of its establishment.
Implementation Procedures: The Procedures address the following:

The overall purpose of the Implementation Procedures is to ensure that COIs are identified, communicated to the relevant parties and manage to avoid any adverse impact of IPCC balance, products and processes, and also to protect the individual, the IPCC and the public interest.
In their scope, the Implementation Procedures apply to all COIs and all individuals defined in the COI Policy, and compliance with the COI Policy and the Procedures is mandatory.
The Implementation Procedures further set out the review process on COI for IPCC and Task Force Bureaux members prior to and after their appointment. According to this process, the COI Disclosure Forms for all nominees should be submitted to the Secretariat to be reviewed by a COI Committee. The COI Committee may request advice from the Expert Advisory Group on COI. If the COI Committee determines that a nominee has a COI that cannot be resolved, the individual will not be eligible for election to the Bureau.
The Implementation Procedures also outline the review process for Coordinating Lead Authors, Lead Authors, Review Editors and TSUs prior to and after their appointment. In this case, Disclosure Forms are submitted to relevant TSUs and reviewed by WG or Task Force Bureaux. The document defines exceptional circumstances in which a COI in relation to non-Bureaux members may be tolerated, that is when an individual can provide a unique contribution and when a COI can be managed. Such cases should be disclosed. The document also outlines the process to deal with a COI after the appointment of non-Bureaux members, including updating information, review and an appeal procedure.
The Implementation Procedures set out principles for considering COI issues that are applied to all bodies involved in advising on and deciding COI issues. In this regard, they require those bodies to consult the relevant individual regarding potential COIs and explore the resolution options as well as provide for an appeal procedure. The document also requires members of the bodies involved in consideration of COI issues to recuse themselves when being a subject of consideration.
The Implementation Procedures further contain provisions on processing and storage of information to ensure confidentiality of submitted information.
The document further sets out the composition and functions of the COI Committee and Expert Advisory Group on COI.
Annex B to the Implementation Procedures also contains a COI Disclosure Form.
PROCEDURES: This issue (IPCC-XXXIV/Doc. 9, Add. 1) was first introduced in the plenary on Friday and then taken up by a contact group co-chaired by Eduardo Calvo (Peru) and Øyvind Christophersen (Norway), with Arthur Petersen (Netherlands) as Rapporteur. Work centered on the finalization of revisions to the Appendix A to the Principles Governing IPCC Work: Procedures for the Preparation, Review, Acceptance, Adoption, Approval and Publication of IPCC Reports, which started at IPCC-32. The Panel adopted the revised Procedures Appendix in plenary on Saturday, completing the work of the Task Group on Procedures.

Discussions in the contact group centered on the production and treatment of guidance material, the selection of participants to IPCC workshops and expert meetings, matters related to the transparency, quality and efficiency of the review process, anonymous expert review, and SPM approval sessions.

On guidance material, Belgium and others called for stating that guidance material needs to be taken into account in the preparation of the reports in addition to stating what guidance material is, while others cautioned against excessively normative language. The group agreed leave the text as is.

On the selection of participants to IPCC workshops and expert meetings, the group addressed text related to the distinction between these two types of meetings.

On matters related to the transparency, quality and efficiency of the review process, the group considered the Revised Guidance Note on the Role of Review Editors (IPCC-XXXIV/Doc. 9, Add.1) prepared by the WG and TFI Bureaux. The group also addressed the current practice of expanding the number of Review Editors per chapter. After some discussion, the group agreed that there was a need to limit the number of Review Editors to four per chapter.

On text related to open invitations for expert reviewers, recommendations were made to circulate second in addition to First Order Draft Reports by WG/TFB Co-Chairs for review. In relation to inviting as wide a group of experts as possible, Review Editors were added to a list of potentially nominated experts. Text was also added on notifying Government Focal Points when this process starts.

On anonymous expert review, the group discussed the need to ensure the appropriate flexibility and agreed to add text that clarifies that the procedures do not prescribe WGs and the TFI to use either anonymous or named expert reviews. In order to document past experience with anonymous expert reviews by WGIII and the TFI during the AR4, the group agreed to include the Note by the Task Group on Procedures on IPCC Anonymous Expert Review: Past experiences and arguments in favor or against (Appendix 3 of IPCC-XXXIV/Doc. 9) in an annex to the Report of IPCC-34.

On the process for the SPM approval, the group addressed text on the process for sending government comments to the Second Order Draft prior to the plenary approval session of the SPM, bringing the procedures in line with current practice.

During the final plenary, Austria noted that, although important progress was made, there is a need to further strengthen the Procedures, in particular related to the calibrated uncertainty language of assessments, to increase transparency and traceability of the decisions of authors so these can be understood in the future. He also proposed further addressing the management and working rules for the writing teams so they are the same across WGs. With regard to calibrated language, New Zealand drew attention to the existing Guidance Paper on Uncertainties and cautioned against having the Panel decide on this, stressing that this should be the province of the WGs.

The European Union (EU) asked for clarification on whether participating organizations are also considered in the round of comments by governments for SPM approval. Co-Chair Christophersen responded that this was not brought up or considered by the group. The EU noted that it would be useful to introduce this in the future given the EU’s particular character. Australia proposed, and the Panel agreed, to record the EU’s concern in the minutes of the meeting along with Austria’s suggestion.

Final Decision: The decision on Procedures addresses the following:

On the IPCC guidance material, the Panel decides that guidance material is a category of IPCC supporting material aimed to guide and assist in the preparation of IPCC reports and Technical Papers. The Panel also clarifies who is responsible and who may commission guidance material.
On selection of participants to IPCC Workshops and Expert Meetings, the Panel elaborates on the distinction between these two types of meetings, including their composition, and establishes that the WG/TFI Bureaux or the IPCC Chair will report to the IPCC Bureau and Panel on the process of selection of participants, including a description of how the selection criteria have been applied.
On matters related to transparency, quality and efficiency of the review process, the IPCC welcomes the revised Guidance Note on Review Editors and finds that the recommendations of the IAC on the Review Editors have been taken adequately into account. The Panel also encourages the implementation of this revised Guidance Note in the AR5 and invites the WG Co-Chairs to monitor progress in their WG progress reports. In addition, the Panel decides that to provide a balanced and complete assessment of current information, each WG/TFI Bureau should normally select two to four Review Editors per chapter and per technical summary of each Report. Furthermore, it decides that the WG/TFI Bureaux shall seek the participation of reviewers encompassing the range of scientific, technical and socio-economic views, expertise, and geographical representation, and shall actively undertake to promote and invite as wide a range of experts as possible.
On anonymous expert review, the Panel decides: not to amend the IPCC Procedures; not to preclude a different approach in the future; and to include the Note by the Task Group on Procedures on IPCC Anonymous Expert Review: Past experiences and arguments in favor or against (Appendix 3 of IPCC-XXXIV/Doc. 9) in an annex to the Report of IPCC-34.
On the process for the SPM approval, the Panel specifies the process for governments submitting written comments prior to the plenary approval session.
GOVERNANCE AND MANAGEMENT: This item (IPCC-XXXIV/Doc. 19) was taken up in the opening plenary on Friday. IPCC Chair Pachauri explained that both Co-Chairs of the Task Group on Governance and Management, David Warrilow (UK) and Taha Zatari (Saudi Arabia) were unable to come to Kampala, and that Task Group Co-Chair Warrilow suggested postponing the consideration of the matter until IPCC-35 and proposed holding IPCC-35 in the middle of 2012 rather than in the second half of the year. The UK explained that this will provide for a prompt response to the IAC recommendations and will allow moving forward with the AR5. The UK also proposed that if holding an earlier session is not possible, two sessions could be held next year instead of one. Several countries highlighted that an earlier meeting should not coincide with preparatory meetings for the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) and the Conference itself.

Delegates agreed to postpone the consideration of the item until IPCC-35.

COMMUNICATIONS STRATEGY: This item (IPCC-XXXIV/Doc. 20) was addressed in plenary on Friday. Secretary Christ recalled that IPCC-33 agreed on guidance on a communications strategy and requested the Secretariat to elaborate on the strategy according to that guidance. She noted delays with hiring a senior communications specialist who will not be on board for several months and in this context explained that the Secretariat asked its long-term consultant, Charlie Methven, to help prepare the draft communications strategy in order to respond to the plenary’s request.

Methven then elaborated on the main points of the proposed strategy. Highlighting the unique challenges the IPCC faces, he underlined that the future communications system should be a resource rather than a typical corporate structure. At the same time, he said, it should provide a central communication function and a stronger link between various elements of the IPCC, including the WGs and their TSUs. Noting the already existing ad hoc support on communications across WGs, Methven said these practices should be incorporated to make for a more accountable and coherent structure. He also mentioned that the proposed strategy is achievable within the current level of funding.

Chair Pachauri then requested guidance from the plenary on major pillars of the draft strategy.

Many, including New Zealand, US, Austria and Japan, expressed a deep concern about the delay with hiring a senior communications specialist who should be involved in the development of the strategy. Chair Pachauri explained that the hiring process is conducted according to WMO procedures but an individual had been selected and the discussion is now on a compensation package. He noted that this person cannot start immediately after accepting the offer, and that the selected candidate is not aware of the IPCC process sufficiently to actively contribute to its communications strategy.

Referring to the unique nature of the IPCC, the US highlighted the important role of WG Co-Chairs in communication of relevant products and that the proposed communications structure should not be independent from the WGs. He highlighted in this regard that a senior communication specialist should be facilitative in nature and expressed concern that the Executive Committee had no interaction with candidates for this role. Pachauri explained it was difficult to engage all members of the Executive Committee and that some of them were involved in developing the draft communications strategy.

Austria suggested preparing a Panel’s letter to WMO highlighting the urgency of hiring a communications person for the IPCC. He also suggested there should be a role for governments in the communications strategy, especially when it comes to regional matters. Switzerland underlined the importance of scientific integrity in the communication of the IPCC’s work, which often means “sticking literally to what has been said.” Australia proposed that a strategy should be forward-looking and contain a clear set of communications objectives: what to communicate, to whom and how. Several delegates suggested the document be forwarded to the full Executive Committee and Bureau for discussion.

Pachauri concluded that the draft communications strategy would now be discussed by a small group comprising representatives of the WGs, TFI, Secretariat and consultant Methven before being forwarded to the Executive Committee, Bureau and eventually the plenary.

In the final plenary on Saturday, Belgium recalled its proposal to re-establish a Task Force on Outreach and Communications Strategy, noting that such a Task Force had existed but disappeared when Pachauri became Chair, and to collect written comments by governments to advance the issue. Chair Pachauri supported the proposal and suggested Belgium submit it in written form. On a request for clarification by IPCC Vice-Chair Jean-Pascal van Ypersele, Chair Pachauri confirmed agreement at the Executive Committee meeting to have one of the IPCC Vice-Chairs involved in the group in charge of formulating the communications strategy.

The UK proposed, and the Panel agreed, to circulate the new draft communications strategy for comments and revision before the next session. Chair Pachauri said the Executive Committee will come up with a timetable to do so.

MATTERS RELATED TO UNFCCC AND OTHER INTERNATIONAL BODIES

During the opening plenary session, Chair Pachauri informed the Panel that, in contrast to all previous occasions when the IPCC had addressed the UNFCCC COP in plenary, he had now been asked to only present at SBSTA in Durban. He emphasized that this was an issue of institutions, not of personalities. Many countries expressed their disappointment and underscored the importance of conveying the IPCC’s findings to the COP directly, possibly also at the high-level segment. South Africa noted the concerns expressed on the participation of the IPCC at Durban and assured that the matter would receive proper attention by the upcoming COP Presidency.

A drafting group prepared a letter to the UNFCCC, which was distributed to the Panel for approval. The letter, addressed to the UNFCCC Executive Secretary, expressed the Panel’s disappointment and noted the inappropriateness of the decision, underscoring the strategic importance of having the IPCC address the UNFCCC at the COP level as has been the case since the first COP. The letter called for conveying the message to the current and upcoming COP Presidencies. The US, Saudi Arabia and New Zealand called for reflecting on the wisdom of this mode of communication and proposed Chair Pachauri speak again informally to the UNFCCC Executive Secretary on this matter.

On Saturday morning, Chair Pachauri informed the Panel that, after further communication, the UNFCCC Executive Secretary had written to say that she had consulted with the South African delegation and that, although the opening session of UNFCCC COP 17 will be more of a ceremonial nature, the IPCC would be invited to address the COP on Wednesday, 30 November, when it takes up substantive matters.

RULES OF PROCEDURE FOR THE ELECTION OF THE IPCC BUREAU AND ANY TASK FORCE BUREAU

In plenary on Saturday, Secretary Christ invited the Panel to provide guidance on how provisions arising from the review of IPCC processes and procedures at IPCC-33 and 34 are to be reflected in the revision to Appendix C to the Principles Governing IPCC Work: Rules of Procedure for the Election of the IPCC Bureau and Any Task Force Bureau (IPCC-XXXIV/Doc. 7). New Zealand, with Malaysia and Australia, noted that there was no representative from Region V (South-West Pacific) on the WGIII Bureau, and that the revised text leaves open the possibility that someone from Region V is not on the WGIII Bureau. Australia also highlighted that Region V does not have representation on the Executive Committee and said that these issues should be a high priority for IPCC-36. Secretary Christ said that the Secretariat would distribute a text to governments taking into consideration suggestions from IPCC-33 and 34, and would make this a high priority agenda item for IPCC-36.

IPCC PROGRAMME AND BUDGET AND FINANCIAL PROCEDURES FOR THE IPCC

During Friday’s opening plenary session, Secretary Christ gave an overview of issues related to the IPCC Trust Fund Programme and Budget (IPCC-XXXIV/Doc. 3, Rev.1) and the adoption of the revised “Appendix B to the Principles Governing IPCC Work: Financial procedures for the IPCC” (IPCC-XXXIV/Doc. 4, Corr. 1). She noted the need to address the greater cost of the publication and translation of the SRREN and an additional expert meeting on wetlands by TGICA, and urged resolution on the revised Appendix B in order to allow auditing of IPCC accounts.

The Financial Task Team, co-chaired by IPCC Vice-Chair Ismail A.R. El Gizouli (Sudan) and Nicolas Beriot (France), met to address these issues, convening twice on Friday. On Saturday morning, Co-Chair Beriot presented the deliberations of the Task Team to plenary, noting that the meetings had been well attended. He highlighted changes made to Appendix B, including the addition of a paragraph on the Financial Task Team and the revision of a paragraph that grants authority to the Secretariat to adjust allocations in the event that the IPCC Trust Fund is less than the approved budget. On Appendix B, the WMO and EU queried the implication of the IPCC Trust Fund being administered under International Public Sector Accounting Standards. Secretary Christ clarified that the text was drafted with the WMO legal consul, and expressed hope that in negotiating future agreements with the EU the various financial requirements will be reconciled.

Co-Chair Beriot highlighted two other Financial Task Team recommendations to the Panel in relation to simplifying language on procedural matters in the revised Appendix B no later than IPCC-37 and greater flexibility in financing travel arrangements for experts or members of the Bureau from developing countries. The UK and Austria recommended adding a second plenary session next year in order to have enough time to respond to the IAC Review; however, after further discussion, the Panel agreed that a four-day plenary session would be preferable to two two-day plenary sessions because of both time and resource constraints. New Zealand also suggested that teleconferences can be used for preparation meetings prior the next IPCC session.

Final Decision: In its decision, the Panel, inter alia:

approves the modified 2011 budget with respect to cost-related increases in the translation and publication of the SRREN;
approves the modified 2012 budget, which includes cost-related increases in the preparation of the 2013 IPCC Guidelines on Wetlands;
approves the revised “Appendix B to the Principles Governing IPCC Work: Financial Procedures for the IPCC” (IPCC-XXXIV/Doc. 4, Corr.1) with modifications, which include adding the Financial Task Team and granting authority to the Secretariat to make adjustments to allocations if there is a budget shortfall;
requests the Secretariat simplify language in the revised Appendix B document to improve clarity and readability no later than IPCC-37;
notes the forecast budget for 2013 and the indicative budgets for 2014 and 2015;
urges governments from developed countries to continue providing financial support for travel of experts to IPCC meetings;
requests that countries maintain their contributions in 2011 and 2012 and invites governments, which may be able to do so, to increase their level of contributions to the IPCC Trust Fund or to contribute in case they have not done so; and
endorses the expression of concern regarding the imposition of travel plans and arrangements on some experts or members of the Bureau from developing countries, with little concern to the particular traveler constraints and commitments, and that this be relate to the WMO Secretary-General.
PROGRESS REPORTS

AR5, PROGRESS REPORTS OF WGs I, II AND III: The WG Co-Chairs presented on progress since IPCC-33. WGII Co-Chair Vicente Barros (Argentina) highlighted a range of on-going expert, regional expert and lead author meetings, and Head of WGII TSU Kristie Ebi discussed the draft chapter writing schedule (IPCC-XXXIV/Doc. 10).

Head of WGIII TSU Jan Minx highlighted a range of expert and lead author meetings, and noted changes to the WGIII AR5 schedule and the writing process, which include a review of cross-chapter consistency and a policy to remove inactive authors (IPCC-XXXIV/Doc. 18, Rev.1).

WGI Co-Chair Thomas Stocker discussed a variety of expert meetings, including a Joint Expert Meeting in Lima, Peru, on Geoengineering in June 2011; a second WGI Lead Author meeting held in Brest, France in July 2011, which engaged primarily with cross-chapter issues; and a third Lead Author WGI meeting to be held in Marrakech, Morocco in April 2012. Stocker noted that on 16 December 2011 the First Order Draft of the WGI contribution to the AR5 will become available for an eight-week expert review (IPCC-XXXIV/Doc. 14).

TASK GROUP ON DATA AND SCENARIO SUPPORT FOR IMPACT AND CLIMATE ANALYSIS (TGICA): Due to the absence of TGICA representatives at the meeting, Chair Pachauri referred the plenary to the report of the Task Group (IPCC-XXXIV/Doc. 13).

TASK FORCE ON NATIONAL GREENHOUSE GAS INVENTORIES: TFB Co-Chair Thelma Krug (Brazil) reviewed progress on the 2013 Supplement to the 2006 IPCC Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories: Wetlands (2013 Wetlands Supplement) work programme (IPCC-XXXIV/Doc. 12), and noted that a recent Lead Author meeting in Japan identified the scope and coverage of each chapter and addressed several cross-cutting and interacting issues. A Zero Order Draft is expected to be ready for the first science meeting next year. Co-Chair Krug also highlighted ongoing expert meetings and the success of an open symposium hosted in Japan on 22 August 2011, which aimed to explain the purpose and achievement of the TFI to the public.

SRREN: Head of WGIII TSU Jan Minx introduced this issue (IPCC-XXXIV/Doc. 17), noting the outreach activities and publication process timeline.

CROSS-CUTTING THEMES: IPCC Vice-Chair Hoesung Lee (Republic of Korea) discussed the coordination of cross-cutting themes for the AR5 SYR, highlighting that a questionnaire has been prepared and will be sent to the WGs to gain input into how the IPCC Vice-Chairs should best facilitate this process.

IPCC SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAMME: Secretary Christ updated the plenary on progress with the IPCC Scholarship Programme (IPCC-XXXIV/Doc. 16), noting that a total of nine students and researchers from developing countries had been awarded scholarships for the period 2011-2012. She said these included a postgraduate student from Uganda, Jamiat Nanteza, who would be working on climate-related disaster management issues. Secretary Christ stressed that the Secretariat does not have sufficient capacity to continue fundraising activities as there are no specific funds allocated for that work. She said they have been in contact with the UN Foundation that can conduct fundraising in the US but there would be charges involved.

Chair Pachauri underlined that the Programme had been launched with great success, highlighting many applications from the least developed countries, and said guidance is needed from the plenary on how to keep the Programme going. He said given the number of applications, it would be desirable to award at least 40 to 50 scholarships. The US expressed caution regarding this suggestion as it might require a big commitment from the IPCC leadership and Secretariat. He noted that this might also influence how the IPCC is perceived as an assessment body and recalled that when the Programme was launched there was no expectation this would become a major workstream. Belgium expressed interest in the opinion of the Board of Trustees to the Programme.

Chair Pachauri suggested this matter would be discussed at the Bureau meeting, which would provide a paper with a set of options on further direction for the Programme and ways to reduce the workload burden on the Secretariat, to be presented at the next IPCC session.

TIME AND PLACE OF THE NEXT SESSION

Croatia presented its offer to host the next session in Dubrovnik or elsewhere on the Adriatic Coast at a time to be determined.

Recalling the untimely death of SBSTA Chair Mama Konate, IPCC Vice-Chair van Ypersele called for always scheduling a break between any WG or approval session and a plenary session scheduled back-to-back in a way that, insofar as possible, respects participants’ health and wellbeing.

OTHER BUSINESS AND CLOSING OF THE SESSION

Secretary Christ presented on the outcome of the 16th WMO Congress related to the IPCC. She also noted that WMO had not yet decided on the request by IPCC-32 to WMO to not convert their in-cash contribution into in-kind contribution.

Also, Secretary Christ drew attention to a notification from UN Headquarters that the Republic of South Sudan was admitted as a new Member State by the UN General Assembly on 14 July 2011, and that the official name of the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya had been changed to Libya (IPCC-XXXIV/INF.2). The Panel agreed to reflect these changes in the necessary amendments. South Sudan has therefore become a new member of the IPCC, bringing the total of its members to 195 countries.

In his final remarks, Chair Pachauri thanked the government and people of Uganda for their hospitality and excellent organization of the meeting. The session closed at 4:45 pm with a dance performance celebrating Africa by Francis Hayes, conference officer, and local organizers.

A BRIEF ANALYSIS OF IPCC-34

THE CHALLENGE OF CHANGE

It was just a little over a year ago, in October 2010 in Busan, Republic of Korea, when Sir Peter Williams, Vice-President of The Royal Society, UK, presented the major findings and recommendations of the InterAcademy Council (IAC) review of the IPCC processes and procedures. The review was called for by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and IPCC Chair Rajendra Pachauri to address major criticisms of the IPCC’s work as a result of the discovery of a small number of serious factual errors in the Fourth Assessment Report, allegations of conflicts of interest among those involved in the assessment, and failure to respond adequately to these charges. The IAC report contained recommendations on reforming IPCC’s management and governance, communications strategy, and processes and procedures.

Since then, the IPCC has been busy addressing these recommendations, enacting changes that it hopes will make it more solid and able to weather the intense public scrutiny and attacks by climate change skeptics. At the same time, the IPCC has had to focus on its work on the Fifth Assessment Report (AR5), the cornerstone of its activities. With the IPCC midway through the AR5 cycle, these changes stand to have an impact on the AR5. It is a useful moment in time to begin to assess how much the decisions taken so far have led to substantive changes in the IPCC. This brief analysis will address these questions.

IMPLEMENTING CHANGE

IPCC-34 came at a time when the most difficult decisions in response to the IAC review have already been taken or are well advanced. A variety of organizational, procedural, governance and policy changes were made prior to the Kampala meeting. These include the establishment of an Executive Committee to provide management oversight and address emerging issues on behalf of the Panel between sessions; limiting the terms of office for key Bureau positions; the development of a conflict of interest policy; and increasing transparency in its procedures, including clarifying the selection of participants at expert meetings, authors and others. Other critical issues that have been tackled include a clear policy for correcting errors, strengthening of the review process, and improved guidance for authors, including on evaluation of evidence and consistent treatment of uncertainty.

This session in Kampala concentrated on completing revisions to the Procedures for the IPCC reports. As a result, the Panel finalized its work on the production and treatment of guidance material, the selection of participants to IPCC workshops and expert meetings, matters related to the transparency, quality and efficiency of the review process, anonymous expert review, and approval sessions for Summaries for Policy Makers.

Perhaps most notably, at this session the IPCC agreed on the Implementation Procedures for the Conflict of Interest Policy, which had been developed at IPCC-33. The agreement represented a source of much satisfaction among participants, who feel that the decision taken here allows for prompt implementation and adequate oversight by those who are most interested in maintaining the integrity of the IPCC—that is, the Panel’s Executive Committee. Importantly, implementation of the new comprehensive Conflict of Interest Policy will contribute to increased transparency of the IPCC process—just what the Panel needs to ensure the credibility of its findings.

To the dismay of many, however, the development and implementation of a comprehensive communications strategy is still incomplete. The IPCC has long acknowledged that its outreach and communication is critically deficient and attempts had been initiated to address it in the past, such as the first IPCC communications strategy in 2005-2006, which included the recruitment of a communications officer. The IAC review reinforced this criticism, finding that communication was a major weakness, and recommended the development of a communications strategy, including guidelines on who should speak on behalf of the IPCC. More than a year later, however, the IPCC still has no strategy in place and has not appointed a senior communications officer. In Kampala, the draft communications strategy was met with wide discontent. Many felt a senior communications professional should have been involved in the preparation of the strategy. In addition, others were concerned that the draft strategy had not been discussed by the Executive Committee prior to its presentation before the IPCC. With both the strategy and the appointment delayed, lack of progress on communications elicited much frustration among participants in Kampala and many others in the climate change community alike, and remains a critical gap in the response of the IPCC to the IAC review.

ASSESSING THE QUALITY OF CHANGE

Although it is too early to judge the transformational extent of the changes introduced in the IPCC as a result of the IAC review, it is useful to note some signs of the effects of these changes.

The most evident and welcome changes relate to increased transparency in the IPCC processes and procedures. There is more transparency and consistency over different stages of the assessment process, including the preparation, review, and endorsement of IPCC reports. There is a policy in place to address real or potential conflict of interest among all participants. There is even a better understanding of how the Panel is run, including its management structure, and roles and responsibilities. All these are critically important.

Changes affecting the quality of management and governance are, however, more difficult to see and assess. Having good rules is the start, but adherence and practice is what makes a difference. The fact that the Executive Committee was not consulted or involved in the recruitment of the senior communications professional came as a surprise to many.

One question was how the changes resulting from the IAC review would affect progress on the AR5. In many ways, the IAC review came at a convenient time for the IPCC—having just completed the Fourth Assessment Report and with the bulk of work concentrated on the Working Groups (WGs) as they initiated the AR5. In fact, many of the changes implemented had already been initiated by the WGs, including on a conflict of interest policy, guidance on the treatment of uncertainties and other guidance on procedures. Even the Executive Committee is a formalization of the previous Executive Team. As to the deliverables, the approval in the space of six months of two timely Special Reports –on Renewable Energy Sources and Climate Change Mitigation and on Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Adaptation (SREX) —comes as evidence that the IAC review has not distracted the IPCC from its core business.

As one participant noted, the IAC review was not meant to illicit a revolution but an evolution. The significance of the IPCC reforms will only become apparent as new challenges arise. Assessing the quality of change, that is whether the reforms that the IPCC has already undertaken will actually lead to making the Panel stronger in front of the increased public scrutiny, remains to be seen.

Unfortunately, the lack of a comprehensive communications strategy stands in the way of making the Panel’s reforms and its work evident to the outside world. Communicating the complex science of climate extremes and impacts as presented in the SREX could have already benefited from it. That is why most participants see rapid progress on a communications strategy as vital to ensure success in the implementation of the IPCC changes. While progress on the AR5 is going well, the impact of the IPCC’s findings, and consequently its relevance, will be significantly influenced by how it is communication to the outside world.

UPCOMING MEETINGS

Joint 9th Meeting of the Vienna Convention COP and 23rd Montreal Protocol MOP: The 23rd session of the Meeting of the Parties to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer (MOP 23) and ninth meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer (COP 9) are taking place in Bali. dates: 21-25 November 2011 location:Bali, Indonesia contact: Ozone Secretariat phone: +254-20-762-3851 fax: +254-20-762-4691 email: ozoneinfo@unep.org www:http://ozone.unep.org

UNFCCC COP 17 and COP/MOP 7: The 17th session of the UNFCCC Conference of the Parties (COP 17) and the 7th session of the Meeting of the Parties (MOP 7) to the Kyoto Protocol will take place in Durban, South Africa. The 35th session of the Subsidiary Body for Implementation (SBI), the 35th session of the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA), the Ad Hoc Working Group on Further Commitments for Annex I Parties under the Kyoto Protocol (AWG-KP), and the Ad Hoc Working Group on Long-term Cooperative Action under the Convention (AWG-LCA) will also meet. dates: 28 November – 9 December 2011 location: Durban, South Africa contact: UNFCCC Secretariat phone: +49-228-815-1000 fax: +49-228-815-1999 email: secretariat@unfccc.int www:http://unfccc.int/ and http://www.cop17durban.com

Eye on Earth Summit: The Eye on Earth Summit: Pursuing a Vision is being organized under the theme “Dynamic system to keep the world environmental situation under review.” This event will launch the global environmental information network (EIN) strengthening initiative and address major policy and technical issues. dates: 12-15 December 2011 location: Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates contact: Marije Heurter, Eye on Earth Event Coordinator phone: +971-2-693-4516 email: Marije.heurter@ead.ae orEoecommunity@ead.ae www: http://www.eyeonearthsummit.org/

Fifth World Future Energy Summit: The fifth World Future Energy Summit will take place from 16-19 January 2012, in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. The Summit will concentrate on energy innovation in policy implementation, technology development, finance and investment approaches, and existing and upcoming projects. The Summit will seek to set the scene for future energy discussions in 2012 with leading international speakers from government, industry, academia and finance, to share insights, expertise and cutting edge advances in technology. dates: 16-19 January 2012 location: Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates contact: Naji El Haddad phone: +971-2-409-0499 email:naji.haddad@reedexpo.ae www: http://www.worldfutureenergysummit.com/

IPCC WGIII AR5 Second Expert meeting on Scenarios: Scenarios have a key role in the WGIII contribution to the AR5 as an integrative element. Authors from all relevant chapters will meet to coordinate and integrate the scenario activities across chapters.dates: 17-18 March 2012 location: Wellington, New Zealand contact: IPCC Secretariat phone: +41-22-730-8208 fax: +41-22-730-8025 email:IPCC-Sec@wmo.int www: http://www.ipcc.ch/

UN Conference on Sustainable Development: The UNCSD (or Rio+20) will mark the 20th anniversary of the UN Conference on Environment and Development, which convened in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil dates: 20-22 June 2012 location: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil contact: UNCSD Secretariat email:uncsd2012@un.org www: http://www.uncsd2012.org/

IPCC WGIII AR5 Expert Meeting for Businesses and NGOs: Based on the good experiences made during the SRREN, WGIII will organize and execute an Expert Meeting for Businesses and NGOs. The meeting aims to gather structured input for consideration by the AR5 authors from these communities. The meeting will take place during the Expert Review Period (22 June – 20 August 2012). date: to be determined location: to be determined contact: IPCC Secretariat phone: +41-22-730-8208 fax: +41-22-730-8025 email:IPCC-Sec@wmo.int www: http://www.ipcc.ch/

IPCC 35th Session: The 35th session of the IPCC will consider pending issues arising from the consideration of the IAC Review of the IPCC processes and procedures, namely those on: governance and management, and communications strategy. dates: to be determined location: Croatia contact: IPCC Secretariat phone: +41-22-730-8208 fax: +41-22-730-8025 email:IPCC-Sec@wmo.intwww: http://www.ipcc.ch/