Beyond Copenhagen organized a number of event/activities and interventions in the run up to Cop 18 and during the COP. The coalition has been participating in the Cop to highlight issues of climate justice, agriculture and food security and small farmers in climate change negotiations.
Pre COP Discussion
The Coalition has also been organizing a pre COP discussion along with Host country mission at New Delhi and during previous years pre COP consultations have been organized in collaboration with Danish Embassy (2009), Mexican Embassy (2010), and South African High Commission (2011). However, this year Consultation could not be organized as Qatar Embassy expressed its inability to participate in such a discussion as have nobody in their mission at New Delhi, which can discuss the issue appropriately.
Participation of Beyond Copenhagen in COP 18
A 23 member delegation headed by Mr. Sharad Joshi (CECOEDECON) and comprising of farmers, NGOs, experts, members from judicial community, media, policymakers participated in a number of events and represented Beyond Copenhagen.
Workshop on Agriculture and Climate Change
Beyond Copenhagen also participated and facilitated a workshop organized for partners of MISEREOR, CIDSE and CARITAS on 27th November at Hotel Gloria, Doha. More than 20 partners from India, Bangladesh, Philippines, Mongolia, South Africa, Kenya participated in this workshop.
Press Conference on Truth of CDM Projects and Soil Carbon Projects
Beyond Copenhagen organized a press briefing on 28th November at COP 18/CMP 8. Mr. Soumya Dutta from the Bharat Jan Vigyan Jathha and Ajay Kumar Jha from PAIRVI addressed the Press Conference. Speaking to the local and global media Soumya Dutta spoke about the CDM Projects in India and their performance and Ajay Jha spoke about the proposed work programme on agriculture, which is aimed at bringing soil carbon credits in the market. Mr. Dutta said India has the highest number of CDM projects in the country, while the China has maximum investment. He pointed out that India has more than 1200 CDM projects, however, none of these have been able to demonstrate that they reduce emission or help the communities, neither contribute to our country’s ‘sustainable development’ - which are the main premises of the CDM and other market based mechanisms. Ajay Jha said that undertaking a work programme on agriculture is on top priority for the COP and SBSTA in COP 18, however developing countries need to oppose that with all force. He said that work programme on agriculture will pave way for brining soil carbon credits in the markets. He added that mainly developed countries who have huge emissions from agriculture (US, NZ, Canada, and Australia), few developing countries (Venezuela) and agribusiness companies, who will have significant financial gains if the soil carbon is brought into CDM Markets, are promoting. He highlighted that mitigation focus in agriculture through soil carbon trading will wreak havoc on 2 billion small and marginal farmers in the world, who sustain the food production in the world. (Press Release attached for more information)
The press Conference can be accessed at the following link:
Side Event on Climate Refugees Organized by Equity BD, Bangladesh
The event titled Need of New UN Protocol, Climate Forced Migrants: On the Question of Rights and Common but Differentiated Responsibilities," organized in collaboration with Beyond Copenhagen. Mr. Soumya Dutta, represented the coalition and spoke on climate refugees, and why international community and developed countries own a responsibility towards that.
Meeting with European Delegation, 30th November
The meeting organized by European friends (CIDSE, MISEREOR) mainly discussed with EU officials and negotiator, issues related to agriculture and climate change. The EU delegation composed of members of Danish, Belgian, French, delegation members and NGO partners including BCPH, CANSA, CARITAS, CIDSE, MISEREOR, IATP etc. EU delegation clarified that they are not pushing mitigation in agri, rather they are trying to create an opportunity for the developing countries to chose from mitigation and adaptation based on their interest. However, it was raised that since there was almost no money in adaptation, most of them will be lured to choose mitigation in order to enhance financing in agriculture. The delegation agreed to address the issue in their internal meetings, SBSTA, and green climate Fund.
Meeting with India Delegation, 30th November
The meeting was addressed by lead negotiator Mr. R R Rashmi and Meera Mahershi, and included Indian NGOs. The discussion mainly centered around the western allegation of India trying to seek perverse incentives on the issue of HCFC 23, and "carbon stabilization fund” proposed by India. Questions related to mitigation in agriculture and their position on that was also asked and the delegation was briefed on the issue of latest developments and country/groups positions on the issue. The delegation, assured that they will not allow it to be made mandatory.
Beyond Copenhagen Side Event on Looking Beyond International Negotiations; National and Sub National Policies in South Asia
The side event was organized to emphasize that in view of the fact that international negotiations are not moving further fast enough to provide guidance or finance to the developing country parties, and in these circumstances, it is absolutely imperative that National, sub-national and regional processes against climate change be expedited. South Asia is extremely vulnerable to climate change due to a number of reasons, and faces similar threats on a different scale. Common concerns include Himalayan ecosystems, huge coastline in countries like India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and dependence of unduly large populations on climate sensitive sectors particularly rain fed agriculture. Therefore, it is also important that civil society organizations forge solidarity demanding action also at the national level and SAARC level. The discussion was chaired by Mr. Kailash Vijayvargiya, Hon’ble Minister Industries, IT and S&T, Govt of Madhya Pradesh. The speakers included Soumya Dutta and Ajay Jha, Rezaul Abdul Karim Choudhury (Equity BD, Bangladesh), Dinesh Chapgain (CEN, Nepal), and Tauqeer Ali (LEAD, Pakistan). For more information, please find the detailed report attached.
Beyond Copenhagen Side Event on Agricultural and Small Farmers in Climate Change Negotiations
The second side event sought to discuss the current state of play on agriculture in UNFCCC and COP negotiations and oppose mitigation in agriculture. The Coalition believes that mitigation in agriculture will not only shift focus from the main issue of emission reduction at source, but will also be dangerous to small farmers as they will encourage land grabbing, herding of farms, farmers and livestock, loss of farmer’s sovereignty and many others. The side event was chaired by Justice VS Dave and speakers included Ritu Tiwary (CECOEDECON, India), Anika Schroeder (MISEREOR, Germany), Michael Kuhn (Wlethungerhilfe, Germany), Paul Quintos (IBON International, Philippines), Mr. Tamparas (Fairtrade International, Ghana). Mr. Kailash Vijayvargiya, was special guest. Justice P C Jain, delivered the vote of thanks.
Side Event on State Responsibility on Climate Change and Advisory Opinion of The ICJ, 3rd December
The side event was organized by Yale University and discussed lack of legal, judicial mechanism on state responsibility in climate change, and the reference to the ICJ for its advisory opinion, by UNGA sponsored by Govt of Palao. Justice VS Dave, Justice P C Jain, Mr. Sudhir Gupta and Ajay Jha participated in the side event. The organizers were informed that BCPH has been talking on same issue at COP and National level, supported by the Association of the retired Judges of the Supreme Court and High Courts of India, and also of the latest development on the proposals of WEO, and International Environmental Court. The possibility of a joint side event with organizers and speakers (Yale University, FIELD, Mr. Michale, Advisor, US Env Policy) was also discussed.
Interview on Keeping Faith in Climate Talks
Ajay Jha appeared in brief interview with CIDSE on why its important to keep faith in climate negotiations and to talk about agriculture and small farmers in climate change negotiations. The interview can be accessed at following link:
Radio Talk Series on COP 18 Outcomes
Ajay Jha participated/moderated a series of discussions on COP 18 and outcomes on All India Radio. The discussions can be heard at the archives’ of All India Radio at www.newsonair.nic.in on Current affairs (dated 7th, December) and Samayiki (Hindi) and News Analysis (English) on 9th December.