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The African Pavilion at COP17/CMP7

By African Union Commission (AUC)
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ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, November 17, 2011/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- Invitation to representatives of the media

What: The United Nations Climate Change Conference that will bring together representatives of the world's governments, international organisations and civil society.

The conference is also commonly referred to technically as the 17th Conference of the Parties (COP17) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the 7th Session of the Meeting of the Parties (CMP7) to the Kyoto Protocol.

WHEN: 28 November – 9 December 2011

WHERE: Durban, Republic of South Africa

WHO: Republic of South Africa, African Union Commission (AUC), African Development Bank (AfDB) and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UN-ECA).

THEMES:

The roundtable discussions of COP17 and CMP7 in Durban will cover the following thematic areas:

- Climate finance for Arica

- Low carbon development and energy access for Africa

- Hydro metrological services and water resources for Africa

- Climate change and disaster risk management

- Adaptation to Climate Change and investments in climate resilient development

- Agriculture and food security across Africa

- Reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation across Africa

OBJECTIVES: The main objectives of COP17/CMP7 are:

• Discourse that sets the context for Africa-relevant climate change issues and themes in the larger framework of sustainable development in Africa

• Articulation by African policy makers, practitioners, researchers and community representatives of the gaps and demands for appropriate knowledge, policy directions and actions, and technical services including those for the wider public

• Knowledge-sharing among decision-makers, practitioners, the research community and negotiators on goals

• Identifying policies, practices and research recommendations for stakeholders; and, promoting quality scientific research, field experience and evidence-based policy more extensively

Expected Outputs and Outcomes of COP17/CMP7

The outputs of the conference will include:

• a series of African events that bring together policy, practice and research communities to discuss, debate and progress the African climate change and development agenda;

• social and networking opportunities around climate change and development in Africa

• African multimedia products that highlight the African climate change and development agenda

• worldwide media exposure for Africa at COP17/CMP7

• physical and virtual networking spaces

• a helpdesk to provide information on COP17/CMP7 and beyond

• a development marketplace for innovative ideas and proposals on climate change and development across Africa

The expected outcomes of the conference are:

• a recognition that climate change can be addressed in Africa only through development

• an understanding that Africa owns the African agenda on climate change and development

• a greater awareness of what countries, institutions, organisations and individuals are doing to address climate change and development across Africa

Participants will include the following:

• High level personalities

• The Regional Economic Communities

• Development partners;

• Members of the Diplomatic Corps;

• International development organizations;

• Climate change experts

• Non-governmental organisations

Partners

Partners will include the African Development Bank, the World Food Program, the World Bank, and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa.

Background:

The 17th Conference of the Parties (COP17) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the 7th Session of the Conference of the Parties serving as the meeting of the parties (CMP7) to the Kyoto Protocol, will be held in Durban, South Africa from 28 November to 9 December 2011.

Of particular relevance to Africa is the African Union Assembly Decision (Assembly/ Dec. 342(xvi) taken at the Sixteenth Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework. Convention on Climate Change and the 6th Session of the Conference of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol.

By that decision, African leaders called upon the African Union Commission to liaise with the Republic of South Africa and the African Development Bank to set up an African Pavilion at COP 17. The partners were also mandated to make adequate preparation to support the African Group of Negotiators in the preparatory Climate Change talks leading to COP 17; and to convene an African Conference of Ministers responsible for Climate Change to finalise the document as part of the preparation for COP 17.

The conference constitutes a milestone for climate change negotiations. It has now been nearly 20 years since the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development—also known as the Earth Summit—in Rio de Janeiro. At that summit, among others, climate change negotiations were kick-started. As a result, the UNFCCC was opened for signing by UN member states.

COP17/CMP7 has symbolic significance for climate negotiations because it is being held on a continent that is widely acknowledged to be bearing the brunt of climate change. There is much hope and optimism that the negotiations will move forward significantly on some of the important elements of the multilateral climate framework. They are expected to build on COP16-CMP6 agreements in Cancun, Mexico in 2010.

The negotiations return to Africa at a time when there is a higher level of awareness of the impact of climate change on Africa, supported by a growing body of research and adaptation and mitigation practices on the ground. Furthermore, the conference offers an opportunity to showcase some of the important initiatives and activities in Africa regarding climate change and development by a wide range of actors, and to ensure that development and climate change are at the forefront of discussions and negotiations.

Meeting on 29 June 2011 on the sidelines of the African Union Summit in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, the Committee of Heads of State and Government on Climate Change stressed the importance of adaptation as a priority agenda for Africa. It underscored the need for a mechanism for concrete implementation of adaptation actions and the associated financial and technological support. African Heads of State and Government also called for the creation of an Africa Green Fund to provide Africa with access to climate finance at a scale that can accomplish transformational impact using mechanisms that best respond to Africa's needs.

The Africa Green Fund will pool funds from various sources to support country-owned-and country-led initiatives and climate compatible development. It will help finance public and private sector programmes and projects that will contribute to poverty reduction and sustainable development on the continent. The Africa Pavilion will offer an opportunity to reflect on the design of the Green Climate Fund in a manner that results in a tailored financing platform for Africa at the scale needed for a climate resilient and low carbon development future. It will do this through practical programmatic approaches, with incentives for the private sector to leverage investments.

The African Pavilion at COP17/CMP7

INVITATION TO REPRESENTATIVES OF THE MEDIA

What: The United Nations Climate Change Conference that will bring together representatives of the world's governments, international organisations and civil society.

The conference is also commonly referred to technically as the 17th Conference of the Parties (COP17) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the 7th Session of the Meeting of the Parties (CMP7) to the Kyoto Protocol.

WHEN: 28 November – 9 December 2011

WHERE: Durban, Republic of South Africa

WHO: Republic of South Africa, African Union Commission (AUC), African Development Bank (AfDB) and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UN-ECA).

THEMES:

The roundtable discussions of COP17 and CMP7 in Durban will cover the following thematic areas:

- Climate finance for Arica

- Low carbon development and energy access for Africa

- Hydro metrological services and water resources for Africa

- Climate change and disaster risk management

- Adaptation to Climate Change and investments in climate resilient development

- Agriculture and food security across Africa

- Reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation across Africa

OBJECTIVES: The main objectives of COP17/CMP7 are:

• Discourse that sets the context for Africa-relevant climate change issues and themes in the larger framework of sustainable development in Africa

• Articulation by African policy makers, practitioners, researchers and community representatives of the gaps and demands for appropriate knowledge, policy directions and actions, and technical services including those for the wider public

• Knowledge-sharing among decision-makers, practitioners, the research community and negotiators on goals

• Identifying policies, practices and research recommendations for stakeholders; and, promoting quality scientific research, field experience and evidence-based policy more extensively

Expected Outputs and Outcomes of COP17/CMP7

The outputs of the conference will include:

• a series of African events that bring together policy, practice and research communities to discuss, debate and progress the African climate change and development agenda;

• social and networking opportunities around climate change and development in Africa

• African multimedia products that highlight the African climate change and development agenda

• worldwide media exposure for Africa at COP17/CMP7

• physical and virtual networking spaces

• a helpdesk to provide information on COP17/CMP7 and beyond

• a development marketplace for innovative ideas and proposals on climate change and development across Africa

The expected outcomes of the conference are:

• a recognition that climate change can be addressed in Africa only through development

• an understanding that Africa owns the African agenda on climate change and development

• a greater awareness of what countries, institutions, organisations and individuals are doing to address climate change and development across Africa

Participants will include the following:

• High level personalities

• The Regional Economic Communities

• Development partners;

• Members of the Diplomatic Corps;

• International development organizations;

• Climate change experts

• Non-governmental organisations

Partners

Partners will include the African Development Bank, the World Food Program, the World Bank, and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa.

Background:

The 17th Conference of the Parties (COP17) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the 7th Session of the Conference of the Parties serving as the meeting of the parties (CMP7) to the Kyoto Protocol, will be held in Durban, South Africa from 28 November to 9 December 2011.

Of particular relevance to Africa is the African Union Assembly Decision (Assembly/ Dec. 342(xvi) taken at the Sixteenth Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework. Convention on Climate Change and the 6th Session of the Conference of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol.

By that decision, African leaders called upon the African Union Commission to liaise with the Republic of South Africa and the African Development Bank to set up an African Pavilion at COP 17. The partners were also mandated to make adequate preparation to support the African Group of Negotiators in the preparatory Climate Change talks leading to COP 17; and to convene an African Conference of Ministers responsible for Climate Change to finalise the document as part of the preparation for COP 17.

The conference constitutes a milestone for climate change negotiations. It has now been nearly 20 years since the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development—also known as the Earth Summit—in Rio de Janeiro. At that summit, among others, climate change negotiations were kick-started. As a result, the UNFCCC was opened for signing by UN member states.

COP17/CMP7 has symbolic significance for climate negotiations because it is being held on a continent that is widely acknowledged to be bearing the brunt of climate change. There is much hope and optimism that the negotiations will move forward significantly on some of the important elements of the multilateral climate framework. They are expected to build on COP16-CMP6 agreements in Cancun, Mexico in 2010.

The negotiations return to Africa at a time when there is a higher level of awareness of the impact of climate change on Africa, supported by a growing body of research and adaptation and mitigation practices on the ground. Furthermore, the conference offers an opportunity to showcase some of the important initiatives and activities in Africa regarding climate change and development by a wide range of actors, and to ensure that development and climate change are at the forefront of discussions and negotiations.

Meeting on 29 June 2011 on the sidelines of the African Union Summit in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, the Committee of Heads of State and Government on Climate Change stressed the importance of adaptation as a priority agenda for Africa. It underscored the need for a mechanism for concrete implementation of adaptation actions and the associated financial and technological support. African Heads of State and Government also called for the creation of an Africa Green Fund to provide Africa with access to climate finance at a scale that can accomplish transformational impact using mechanisms that best respond to Africa's needs.

The Africa Green Fund will pool funds from various sources to support country-owned-and country-led initiatives and climate compatible development. It will help finance public and private sector programmes and projects that will contribute to poverty reduction and sustainable development on the continent. The Africa Pavilion will offer an opportunity to reflect on the design of the Green Climate Fund in a manner that results in a tailored financing platform for Africa at the scale needed for a climate resilient and low carbon development future. It will do this through practical programmatic approaches, with incentives for the private sector to leverage investments.