Carbon Matters — spring 2013

At the end of last year, many expressed disappointment at the outcome of the Doha Conference, particularly representatives of the developing countries who have criticised the “lack of ambition” in decisions on mitigation and finance.

However, on the positive side, it should be said that the conference did agree a second Kyoto commitment period to run for eight years, rather than five, with reduction
commitments to be reviewed by 2014. This provides an essential underpinning of the international carbon market.

It should be pointed out that the Doha Conference was only envisaged as a transitional conference on the way to a future global agreement and it did also adopt a two-pronged strategy towards a new global climate treaty in 2015, the timeline envisaged in the Copenhagen Accord. The two-pronged strategy rests on action at national level as well as international negotiations. It is increasingly recognised that national legislation is a key confidence-building measure, as domestic legislation generally involves more tightly-binding commitments. Furthermore, treaty obligations entered into on this basis will more closely reflect what the parties are actually prepared to deliver on…

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