" "A ZERO CARBONENERGY FUTUREIS THE WORLD'SINEVITABLE DESTINATIONancún is all about progress: governmentsneed to deliver an ambitious package of decisions that paves the way to acomprehensive legally-binding climateagreement post-2012 in South Africa. Governmentsneed to agree a timetable and a clear process to get thefinal agreement. Are any countries showing progress?Some are moving in the right direction but othersappear content to lag behind. Among those who have shown some climate action,Germany might have established a lead with a feed-intariff for renewable energy and a 40 per cent emissionsreduction target for 2020. Emerging economies suchas China, India and Brazil are becoming competitors inthe green technology race. The Philippines are movingon wind and geothermal energy. Others seem boggeddown in apathy: Canada and the US are stagnating andhave little to offer in terms of new technologies oreconomic instruments. Not having adopted theirnational climate bill, Japan looks like anotherprospective loser in the race to a new green economy.And Australia's climate policy seems characterised byfalse starts. THE PLAYING FIELDClimate change is transforming the very basis of life onthis planet. Time matters: a global legal framework thatseriously curbs greenhouse gases, establishes andmobilises substantial funding, drives innovationthrough private investors, and supports research,development, and emergency relief, is urgentlyneeded. This is the deal that governments inCopenhagen did not deliver. The only outcome, theCopenhagen Accord, may serve to measure howserious countries are with their commitments. FINANCE First and foremost, Parties need to agree on climatefinance. In Copenhagen, industrialised countriespromised US$100 billion annually for the period2013 to 2020. In Cancun, this promise must betranslated into real commitments of funding that arenew and additional to Oversees Development Aid.Governments should also start formal discussions oninnovative sources of public finance. Private sectorfinance will contribute much of the investmentsneeded in clean energy technologies but it needs to beleveraged by public funding of US$100 billionannually; those public funds are critical for R&D,adaptation and resilience building, new infrastructure,and for construction. Parties can agree on establishingthe "Green Climate Fund" to address the needs ofdeveloping countries and rapidly scale up funding tothe level promised by the Copenhagen Accord. AndCancun should also create a strong and transparentfinancial governance mechanism. RETURN ON INVESTMENTFinancial support could help India to implement itsNational Solar Plan, making it a global leader in solarenergy by installing solar generation capacity of 20 GWby 2020 and of 200 GW by 2050. Total expectedgovernmental funding over 30 years will run to US$21billion and will involve the promotion of commercial-scale solar utility plants, mandated installation of solarrooftop and photovoltaic applications in buildings, andinvestments in the government and public sector. Thisplan is meant to create tens of thousands of new jobsand channel billions of dollars into R&D, infrastructureand production facilities that will strengthen theCAN DO - MUST DO - WILL DO: CLIMATE CHANGE DOES NOT WAIT082GLOBAL VOICESGORDON SHEPHERD, LEADER, WWF GLOBAL CLIMATE INITIATIVECIllustration: © www.BiggerPicture.dk/WWF
GLOBAL VOICES083Below: WWF Climaterescue team come to theaid of an ill planet Earthas part of a WWFawareness stunt insideCOP15. The doctorsarrive to examine the ill,deflated planet andprescribe injections of,"Ambition", "Finance",and "Political Will"with an added transfusionof "Technology"... but itis not enough.The planethas to then be shockedback into recovery andwrapped in legallybinding deals to help itrecover. COP 15, Copenhagen, Denmark.Indian economy and help it on its path to a low carboneconomy. Rolling out climate finance would also helpadaptation: small island states and vulnerablecountries could undertake adaptation measurescombined with low-carbon development while beingable to advance their economic development.ADAPTATION, TECHNOLOGY ANDFORESTSGovernments can also agree on three other policy areas- adaptation, technology, and forests. High on the listis a UNFCCC adaptation framework to help coordinatethe efforts of countries in making their economiesmore climate change resilient. An internationalmechanism for insurance needs to be part of such aframework. There is broad agreement on the need forstrengthening international technology cooperation;emerging economies such as South Africa, Mexico,India and China see agreement on this point as crucialfor the overall negotiations. There is no reason whygovernments in Cancún should not make progress inthis field. A strong negotiation text on REDD (ReducingEmissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation)was proposed at Copenhagen and needs to beapproved at Cancun without further dilution; insteadgovernments should set a global goal for REDD ofsecuring net-zero emissions from deforestation anddegradation by 2020. The REDD+ partnership hasshown some initiative by establishing mechanisms tocoordinate the US$4.5 billion that have already beenpledged to stem tropical forest loss. This now needs tobe brought into the UNFCCC framework to give theestablishment of a REDD+ framework momentum.THE ROAD FROM CANCUN TO SOUTHAFRICAWhile a final climate agreement can earliest beexpected in December 2011, Cancun is a criticalmilestone. Parties need to make substantial progresson all key issues. Potential stumbling blocks such asthe intense discussions about openness and credibility("measurement, reporting and verification") and theconcrete targets for emission reductions need to beovercome. A zero carbon energy future is the world's inevitabledestination. If governments want to lead the way thenCOP17 in South Africa, a year on from now, needs tobe about wrapping up the legally-binding globalagreement. Such a deal would be pivotal in leading theworld towards a clean and sustainable economy.Cancún is the litmus test: we will see if governmentsare willing to protect their citizens throughinternational co-operation. nABOUT THE AUTHORGordon Sheperd joined WWF in 1986 as Director ofInformation and Education and has led WWF's workon International Environmental Treaties and globalpolicy since 1990. ABOUT WWF WWF is one of the world's largest and mostexperienced independent conservation organisations,with over five million supporters and a global Networkactive in more than 100 countries. WWF's mission isto stop the degradation of the planet's naturalenvironment and to build a future in which humanslive in harmony with nature, by: conserving the world'sbiological diversity, ensuring that the use of renewablenatural resources is sustainable, and promoting thereduction of pollution and wasteful consumption.