The second preparatory meeting of the Major Economies Forum on Energy and Climate, representing 17 developed and developing economies, was convened in Paris, May 25-26, 2009, to inform and complement and make a contribution to success in the UN negotiations in Copenhagen, as well as implementation of the Bali Roadmap. Participants built on the initial discussions in Washington in April, reiterating that climate change demands immediate action by all major economies. They agreed on the importance of leadership by the major economies, including that their level of ambition should reflect science and that their robust national actions should contribute to credible long-term emissions reductions. They also shared the view that the transformation to a low-carbon economy can be an opportunity for growth and sustainable development.
Participants discussed a wide range of mitigation issues, including a peak year, the notion that countries will reflect their actions through various baselines, low-carbon strategies, aggregate goals, mid-term and long-term emission targets (including an ambitious 2050 goal for developed countries), and the readiness and capacity of economies to undertake mitigation actions and to raise the global level of ambition, in accordance with their common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities. They noted that developed countries should have ambitious mid-term targets as a way to define pathways towards long-term emissions goals. There was interest in assessing a mid-term aggregate goal for developed countries. Participants discussed the need for the major developing countries to build on the effective national actions they have already taken with enhanced national actions. Participants also discussed proposals for reflecting domestically binding low carbon actions, the character and reviewability of such actions, and promoting transparency. In addition, there was discussion of how offsets and the carbon market could contribute to the overall level of ambition.
On financing, participants articulated principles that could govern financing for climate change. Mexico presented its proposal for a Green Fund, which generated substantial interest. Participants observed that all major economies should continue to take action to mobilize financing to address climate change, and recognized the diversity among countries and national circumstances in terms of ability to finance national actions and international support. Participants shared the view that financing should derive from multiple sources, public and private, domestic and international, including carbon markets, and that existing institutions should be utilized. Many stressed the desirability of predictable funding in the context of developing country actions in the 2020 timeframe. They confirmed the importance of facilitating the matching of resources to needs and of accountability for the use of resources. There was a convergence of views that governance should be transparent, fair, effective and efficient, and involve balanced representation. Participants agreed on the importance of adaptation to climate change, and the need to provide support, especially for the most vulnerable countries.
Participants had a further discussion on the potential for the Leaders of the major economies to advance and support at a political level the development and deployment of transformational technologies. Participants also exchanged views on the transfer of technology. A number of countries outlined their proposals for specific areas of focus, including bioenergy, carbon capture and storage and power plant efficiencies, renewables, energy efficiency, and smart grids. Participants will have further discussions to define objectives in these areas. There was interest in adding further specificity to the proposals and for articulating the role of the Leaders in advancing the transformation of these key technologies.
Participants will continue these discussions at the next preparatory meeting in June in Mexico, with a view toward the Leaders’ Meeting in L’Aquila, Italy.