CAI-Asia in COP 15 (Copenhagen, Denmark)

COP 15 was a pivotal meeting in the climate change negotiations as governments struggled to seal a deal on a post-Kyoto agreement to stabilize CO2 emissions. While the resulting Copenhagen Accord left much to be desired, it only proves that there is a still a lot of work to do. CAI-Asia was represented by May Ajero and Bert Fabian (both from the CAI-Asia Center), and five country network coordinators: Yan Peng (China), Harjinder Parwana (India), Waty Suhadi (Indonesia), and Phan Quyn Nhu (Vietnam). Their aim at COP 15 was to work with other organizations in advancing the co-benefits of climate change mitigation to their respective country representatives so that issues like air quality management and sustainable transportation are not left out in the discussions.

Copenhagen saw the convergence of thousands of stakeholder representatives. CAI-Asia and other organizations, particularly those in the Partnership for Sustainable Low Carbon Transport and the Bridging the Gap Initiative (ADB, IADB, GTZ, UITP, Veolia, TRL, ITDP, IEA, ITPS and others) coordinated their activities to make certain that sustainable transportation is well represented in COP 15 and country delegations and other organizations are informed on how transportation can be better integrated into any future climate change agreements.

CAI-Asia participated in the ITPS meeting on the Study for Low Carbon Transport System on 4-5 December 2009. This meeting provided the first opportunity for ITPS to present the initial results of their global study to estimate how much CO2 emissions could be reduced in 2050 through different measures. Other institutions are conducting regional studies to estimate CO2 emissions by 2050 and ways to reduce these them. See link to a 7 minute video taken at the said meeting. Sophie Punte was interviewed about transport issues in Manila and several other partners of the ITPS project were also interviewed. See http://ecomobilite.tv/2009/12/15/emissions-impossibles-2-de-copenhague-aux-philippines/

The representatives also participated in the Bridging the Gap Initiative official side-event on “Shaping the Future of Urban Transport” at the Bella Center on 11 December 2009. The side-event attracted more than 100 participants. The panel discussion where climate change ambassadors from France, Korea and Costa Rica expressed the importance of including transportation in future agreements and possibly how NAMAs can be used for transport issues. The Korean ambassador eloquently highlighted the importance of re-thinking the over-all transport system, and the need to go beyond technological solutions focusing on vehicles if we want to fully address CO2 emissions from transport. Costa Rica, advocating carbon neutrality in 2020 said that the country can only achieve this if they can address emissions from transport. All highlighted the importance of urban and land-use planning, promoting public transportation, and non-motorized transportation.

CAI-Asia’s participation in COP 15 was supported by the Institute of Global Environmental Strategies (IGES).