The successes of Cancun are now widely reported and praised in the media: the establishment of a Green Climate Fund, positive text on REDD+, and the Kyoto Protocol’s second commitment period extended a lifeline until Durban next year. The parties agreed in spite of Bolivia’s objections that the texts did not do enough to counter climate change’s dangers.

The COP 16 in Cancun talks were a reversal of those at COP 15 in Copenhagen last year. Low expectations yielded surprising success here, whereas in Copenhagen high hopes were dashed. A tremendous amount of credit must be accorded the Mexican government. The facilities were well laid out and polished, access was not impeded, the shuttles ran on time, certainly Mexico’s efficient hosting and administering permeated every aspect of the working environment. As well, Pres. Calderón was deeply involved and troubleshooting intensely throughout.

I’ll post more about aspects of the experience later, for now I’m inserting pictures that I was able to capture of some of the memorable sights.

A group of young people count in whispers to the number of climate-change related deaths while individuals among them punctuate the chant with accounts of particular tragedies like flood and mudslide deaths

A protester jeers Japanese PM Naoto Kan's opposition to extending the Kyoto Protocol

Mexican First Lady Margarita Zavala de Calderón is center at this empowerment of women climate change side event that said in fact the Convention was empowering women

2 thoughts on “

  1. Very Exciting! Interesting that you were most interested in a climate fund and it happened! I can’t wait to go through the final text.

  2. Hey Prof. Garvey, I have been looking over the AWG-LCA “final outcome” (cue that rock anthem by Europe) text a bit this morning, as well I looked at the Land use etc. draft decision currently posted at (I guess we don’t get a “final outcome” there). It’s interesting on the forestry stuff that all the UNFCCC parties are “requested” and “encouraged” and “urged” on forestry matters, but there’s a “decision” at least in the Land use draft as to official review of these forest mgt. reference levels the Kyoto parties have assigned themselves. So REDD+ is another area where the Kyoto parties have obligated themselves, which I had not really thought about. I also wanted to point out that in my praise of Mexico’s running of the COP I neglected to mention the blemish you told me about where the police could have done more on that occasion to timely route buses around the protesters. I have not forgotten about that though.

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