Saturday, 30 January 2010

Ericsson and climate positive calculations

Here is a document from Ericsson (235 kb) that is another contribution to the climate positive work where companies measure the impact of the services they provide (instead of only looking at their internal footprint).

The document from Ericsson builds on the joint Ericsson-WWF project that I worked with last year and soon more numbers from other companies will become available. 2010 looks like a climate positive year.

Friday, 29 January 2010

Opening my Twitter account again after two years

In order to try the new app (that will be able to use twitter) I have opened my old Twitter account (that I created in November 2007 when I was in San Francisco)...

Will explore how relevant information that is provided can be filtered and presented in a way that make sense.

The 21st Century Office app is ready for internal tests

The first app that I know of that support a transformative change towards a low carbon economy is soon ready.

If you are interested please see below.


and check the webpage:

Monday, 18 January 2010

Positive business outcome from Copenhagen:Transformative solutions for a low carbon future

Here is a very positive outcome from Copenhagen that I hope more people will notice. Hopefully it will contribute to a solution outcome/track in/after Mexico.

Carbon Equity Calculator

Here is a link to the Carbon Equity Calculator (xls)

Here is with the xlcx format: Carbon Equity Calculator (xlsx).

Sunday, 17 January 2010

Article: Understanding the post-Copenhagen world

Download the PDF version of the article (with footnotes) HERE

Download the draft Carbon Equity Calculator in xls here (in xlsx here)


Understanding the post-Copenhagen world

Three questions that can help us move from China blaming to constructive and innovative climate action

By Dennis Pamlin

The question about the lessons learnt and how the outcome in Copenhagen should be interpreted lingers on. The role of Chins has become the focus for much of the discussion. This paper builds on an article in China Daily “It's dangerous to make China a climate scapegoat”.

After this article I have received a lot of questions regarding my opinions on statements made by western policy makers and opinion makers, including what is probably the most circulated China blaming article, written by the journalist Mark Lynas.

But he is not alone.

The fact that some policy makers (from the EU and US in particular) are trying to blame China should not come as any surprise. Policy makers have a tendency to blame failures on someone else. The dynamics between different countries and blocks of countries are important and will be discussed in another paper. In this article I would like to present three reasons for why China (and many other non-Annex 1 countries) had good reasons for not accepting some of the proposals that western countries wanted to see included in the draft text discussed in Copenhagen.

To understand these reasons, can help inform policies as we move forward. The three reasons are:

1. What was on the table was not as good as some western observers thought.

2. The way the commitment was presented was similar to how western countries have presented commitments that have not been kept and/or changed later.

3. In a global governance system that has been dominated by western countries for the last 60 years the presence of Asian and other countries has resulted in a mutual lack of understanding of what is a proper way of negotiating. This lack of understanding has in turn resulted in unfortunate situations where the different parties feel insulted and/or misinterpret each other.

As I think most of the people engaged in making China a scapegoat genuinely want to avoid dangerous climate change, it is important to explore the above issues and how misunderstandings can be sorted out before people develop strategies and opinions based on these.

Below I have tried to give a very short overview of the three issues.

  1. What was on the table in Copenhagen?

Short answer: A deal that most certainly would lock the world into uncertainty and inequity in a way that no poor country would accept unless the rich countries forced them to accept it.

The suggestion that was presented as a possible outcome of Copenhagen was 80% reductions of green house gasses (GHG) from the rich (Annex 1 countries) and a total global reduction of 50% by 2050. That China and others were not to keen on including this resulted in great frustration.

When analyzing the negotiations it is important take into consideration and to understand the whole document and dynamic of the situation. A country does not need to disagree with a specific number, such as an emission reduction number, in order to disagree to include it. The reason for this can for example be that this country wants to focus on another issue before emission reductions are discussed, or that there are other important aspects which need further clarifications.

It is interesting to take a closer look at the proposed targets. If western countries agreed to 80% reductions of green house gasses by 2050 and the goal is a total global reduction of 50%, we must ask ourselves what would then be left for the rest of the world to do to fulfill the global target, and how the reductions should be implemented.

In order for people to judge for themselves I have put together a simple excel document with a “Carbon Equity Calculator”.

This calculator allows you to see how much developing countries (non-Annex 1) would have to do depending on three factors:

A. The global target (50% is the default, but in order to stay below 2 degrees with reasonable certainty we need substantially deeper cuts, and for 1.5 degrees even deeper.)

B. Rich countries’, Annex 1, reductions (80% was discussed in Copenhagen, but some wanted to go further and some wanted weaker commitments)

C. How much of the 80% (or any other commitment) that the rich countries actually will do in their own countries, and how much they plan to reduce abroad. We have created an Orwellian language with the Kyoto Protocol, due to the flexible mechanisms, were “commitments” to reduce your emissions do not have to mean that you reduce the emissions in your own country.

In the EU context this has often been translated into two thirds being done domestically, but some member states, like Holland, have pushed for policies that allow them to meet even more of their “own” commitments by buying emission rights from abroad.

If we assume that the base year is 1990 for the 80% reductions, this would mean that Annex 1 countries should reduce their emissions from current 18.5 Gt CO2e to 3.7 Gt CO2e by 2050.

The non Annex 1 countries emitted about 13 Gt CO2e in 1990.

Many of them must be allowed to increase their emissions as the per capita emissions in many countries are low, and as they will need to make further investments in basic infrastructure which will, regardless if the best available low-carbon technology is used, result in substantial emission increases. (This is also a part of the historic emissions of Annex 1 countries, which they so far have not been willing to discuss). By 2006, the non-Annex 1 countries’ emissions had increased to approximately 22 Gt. It is hard to find any more recent data but we can assume that emissions are around 25 Gt today.

A 50% global reduction by 2050 with a 1990 base year would result in global emissions of around 15.7 Gt. The 80% reductions from the rich Annex 1, would result in a situation where they would emit 3.7 Gt by 2050. Removing these 3.7 Gt from the 15.7 Gt means that there would be12.0 Gt left for the rest of the world. Compared with the emissions from the non-Annex 1 countries today, it would require a 50% reduction. From a per capita perspective this would result in a situation where the rich countries have claimed 25% larger emissions that the poor countries, or an (in)equity index of 25 (the inequity index is explained in the Excel document).

For countries that have a fraction of the per capita emissions compared to the West it is difficult to understand why they should commit to reduce their current emissions by 50% and reach a per capita level that is lower than that of the rich countries, especially as the historic emissions are not including in the current calculation.

It is also important to remember that considering what Annex 1 countries have done so far, it is reasonable to assume that the Annex 1 countries based the 80% reduction on an assumption that they would try to buy “emission rights” from the developing countries. If we use a conservative estimate, presuming that 80% of the 80% reduction will be done domestically in Annex 1 countries, this would result in an even more challenging situation for the developing countries. Under these assumptions the Annex 1 countries would have to reduce their domestic emissions by 64%, not 80%. From a per capita emission perspective it is even more striking. This would give the rich countries three times the emissions per capita compared with developing countries (3.7 tonnes per capita compared with 1.25 tonnes per capita).

Furthermore, the above assumptions are excluding facts that should be included and that would make the situation even more unfair:

First, they do not include historic/accumulated emissions that are important in relation to equity.

Second, they do not pay any attention to the actual emissions that are needed to sustain the lifestyle in different countries. Kyoto focuses on emissions in countries, but over time the most important issue is not where the emissions take place, but how we can ensure that everyone on the planet are able to live “a good life”. In this context we should remember that up to 30% of China’s emissions are embedded in products that are exported for western consumption, i.e. the emissions that take place in China are not connected to he consumption of the Chinese population..

This export is already discussed, but often in a negative way where policymakers want to use this as an argument to block import from countries like China.

The question about embedded emissions will probably be one of the major challenges in years to come.

As important as the commitment to quantified GHG reductions by 2050 from rich counties, is to get a clear commitment, in numbers, from the rich countries on how they will support global emission reductions, i.e. domestic and in non Annex 1 countries, by 2020 as well as 2050. These numbers should include economic support for implementation of low carbon solutions, export/import of low carbon solutions, public procurement commitment, etc. Support and collaboration must be the focus, not a competition to avoid reductions. Global targets are needed, but it is also as important to agree on a path forward to get there, including to get clarity on the strategies that can deliver low carbon solutions.

  1. “What is the track record of western countries in these kind of negotiations that might influence how other countries react”

Short answer: Western countries usually set a long-term target, fail on the short-term commitments and then blame the poor. It does not matter if you go back to 1972 and the Stockholm conference, 1992 in Rio, the pattern is the same.

Many of the assessments from Copenhagen have been written as if the climate negotiations began 24 hours before the end of the conference in Copenhagen. This gives a very unbalanced view of the situation and outcome. Much can be learned from these negotiations and over time it is not hard to see a pattern. A pattern that so far clearly shows that the burden of proof falls on the rich countries.

Let’s look at the process from the start. The US signed up to UNFCCC in 1992 and negotiated the Kyoto Protocol in 1997. In 1992, under the UNFCCC, they agreed to stabilize emissions on 1990 levels by 2000. They never kept this promise, instead they increased their GHG emissions from 6.1 Gt to 7Gt, an 15% increase, during this timeframe.

Five years later, 1997 in Kyoto, they told the world that they would reduce their emissions by 7% compared with 1990 by 2012.

In order to agree to this 7% reduction they made the protocol a lot worse and filled it with loopholes. They also had a fight with G77 (the developing countries) that wanted to bring in equity and per capita targets into the discussion. India did a fantastic job in bringing this issue up, but the US refused to discuss any issues related to equity or unsustainable lifestyles..

From a political perspective it is worth noting that it was the Democrats (with Al Gore flying in at the last minute) who were negotiating in Kyoto, so it is the same party that Obama and the current US team belongs to.

Besides deciding not to join Kyoto the US has increased its GHG emissions since 1990 from 6.0 Gt to 7.2 Gt in 2007, equivalent to approximately a 19% increase.

It is possible to go even further back in time to the first international conference on climate change. This often forgotten conference, “Our Changing Atmosphere: Implications for Global Security”, was held in Toronto in June, 1988. The target for a global reduction in the emission of greenhouse gases at this time was 20% below 1988 levels by 2005.Again a target that was not met.

On the other hand China ratified the Kyoto Protocol and has implemented many measures to curb domestics emissions, even if too much focus is still on coal expansion in China.

Before blaming China, or anyone else, it might be good to make a scientific assessment of what the different countries have done compared to historic commitments, and compared to the income per capita of different countries. Some who have been part of the negotiations also have a more sober view on the responsibility for the weak outcome.

Again China is not perfect and there are many things China can do better, especially when it comes to engaging different stakeholders and set more ambitious targets. For the international negotiations it is however not good if China begins to take on commitments before the rich countries, and especially the US, as this would undermine the “common but differentiated responsibility” principle. Of course China should implement low carbon measures, but action from the rich countries should not be on condition of action from developing countries. Common but differentiated responsibility was one of the pillars of Kyoto and it is important not to allow the US, or any other rich country, to remove this fundamental support for international equity, a pillar that is a very important part of the global governance system.

In sum, the fact that western countries have promised but not delivered cannot be ignored when the negotiations are analyzed, that some also try to undermine a fundamental principle, common but differentiated responsibility, is also something that must be discussed and taken into consideration when trying to understand the outcome of Copenhagen.

  1. “Are there differences in negotiation style?”

Short answer: Yes, for 60 years western countries have dominated the global governance system. With many new countries now claiming their place and some are re-emerging historic economic power houses (such as China and India) it is not obvious what standards that should be followed. This results in confusion and misunderstandings.

The current culture of negotiations has been shaped to a large degree by western countries and is something that many other countries feel uncomfortable with. For example, smaller countries have problems due to the fact that there are often a greater number of working groups than they can participate in due to the small size of their delegations.

For countries like China the structure with confrontational negotiations and a tendency to push things to the very last minute after late night negotiations is something that many feel uncomfortable with.

In order to reach decisions of quality this is not a good way according to Chinese standards. This is partly linked to the fact that many of the leaders in China are engineers that like a science based approach.

It is also common in China to let the experts do the negotiations and when they have agreed internally, the senior official enters and closes the deal. Having ministers without deep knowledge in the area negotiating details is not a very common way in China.

The science based approach that China has been promoting so far should be explored further, and China’s reluctance to last minute numbers without context might prove to be very wise, maybe even the start of a more sophisticated era in international climate negotiations?

Still China has a lot to improve. Before Mexico it would be great if China could involve more international stakeholders in its own preparations. What China needs to do, in order to improve international relations, is to review the preparation before the negotiations and the negotiation strategy, including communication with/inclusion of both developing and developed countries as well as civil society. More time needs to be spent with the least developed countries and those that are the most vulnerable. China, together with the rest of the BASIC bloc (Brazil, South Africa and India),

as well as other emerging countries such as Mexico and maybe also Korea, have a very important and difficult role to play.

What China, and the other BASIC countries could explore further is how to create a dialogue platform where all initiatives from this group will include both the rich OECD countries as well as the less influential G77 members. The China-India collaboration is particularly important, after all this year is the year of the tiger in China.

End comments

Let me just end by again noting that China in no way is perfect, and that China also needs to act and contribute to combat climate change.. However, as we discuss the responsibility to take the lead to invest in low carbon solutions and support those in need, it is important to focus on those who have most resources to do so, those who have polluted the most and done the least so far. That puts US in front with EU and Japan second.

The responsibility to lead does not mean that the above countries are the only ones that should act. Climate is a global challenge and everyone must do their part. No country can be left behind, we must ensure that those that can produce smart solutions are given support to accelerate this production, the need for new natural resources in a low carbon economy must be assessed with the countries that have them, the most vulnerable countries must be supported, countries that can use income from high oil prices to invest in low carbon solutions must be included, etc. More than anything, countries must begin to focus on collaboration instead of confrontation. We must focus on how the solutions we need can be delivered, not only the amount of reductions that each country should commit to or not.

As we move forward it is important to respect different perspectives and understand that no one has a full overview of all the aspects that must be solved on the way to a low carbon economy.

Friday, 15 January 2010

Illustrating the carbon war

Just found the illustration to the article I wrote about trade war or collaboration. Click on it to make it bigger, enjoy.

BASIC work post Copenhagen: Possible outcome from the India meeting

The way the BASIC countries move forward will have profound influence on the future climate negotiations and global climate work. While much can be done, three areas are key at this moment in time:

A. Agree on the path to a low carbon society (2020 and 2050). Clarify what are the actions that developed (Annex 1) and developing (non Annex 1) should do.
A1: If BASIC could agree that all commitments and agreements should be tested so that they will aim towards reductions that allow us to stay below a 1.5 C if that is needed (and be sure to stay below 2C regardless). In this way they can include the voice of the most vulnerable and keep the G77 together on a very important issue.
A2: That common but differentiated responsibility is a key principle. This means that the sequencing for action (any action) is that rich countries with historically high emissions always go first.
A3: Non Annex 1 countries will only start discussing commitments for reductions in relation to collaboration agreements when technology and smart trade is included. This would give the BASIC leadership in a very difficult area must be addressed, and it is better to be proactive than reactive for the BASIC.

B. Key areas where BASIC could take the lead:
B1: Solutions for low carbon urban development (emerging countries have cities that grow very fast, they will lock us into a high carbon society if not the right investments are made). Non-Annex 1 countries cannot pay for all the extra investments required themselves so two things are needed: First, Annex 1 countries invest in solutions that also can be used in non Annex 1 countries. Second, technology and resources need to be transferred into key solutions (public transport, net producing buildings etc).
B2: Transformative solutions that support leapfrogging (emerging countries don't have to invest in the same infrastructure as developed countries as new technology is available). Investment in mobile technology instead of fixed in an example of that kind of investment. But there are many others. The BASIC should initiate a process where they suggest a "accelerated technology development for transformative solutions). They would focus on buildings, transport/communication and food/agriculture and collect transformative solutions in these areas. The BASIC should also ask other countries to participate in this process.

C. Transparency and engagement
C1: It would be very good if the BASIC could take the lead and develop some joint research to explore things like index/reporting on"Low carbon urban development", "Smart transportation/communication" and "low carbon food systems" to ensure that the suggestions reflect a development perspective.
C2: Engagement with NGOs/Civil society. Today the Annex 1 is communicating better with the NGOs. This should be changed as most NGOs are on the side of the BASIC in most issues, but they need more information. These NGOs are influential voices in the developed world also and can help BASIC/non annex 1 countries get a much better deal.

Below article in China Daily today
China's climate official yesterday confirmed that climate ministers from four emerging economies will meet in India this month, to help chart a roadmap toward a legally binding global climate change agreement in Mexico City this year.
While the official downplayed the scheduled conference on Jan 24-25 as an "ordinary event" among China's international climate engagements, the government's top-ranking advisors said the BASIC countries (Brazil, South Africa, India and China) are likely to coordinate their follow-up actions required in the Copenhagen Accord achieved by 190 economies in December.
China will send a delegation headed by a minister to attend the meeting, which is aimed at a successful UN-scheduled Mexico climate change conference, said Li Gao, division director with the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC).
As an official in charge of international cooperation in the commission's department of combating climate change, Li said China has been playing an active role in seeking climate cooperation, without elaborating on the conference.
Li also did not name the head of the delegation. The government's climate change envoy, Xie Zhenhua, who is also the NDRC's vice-minister, is expected to attend the conference.

The next annual UN Climate Change Conference will take place toward the end of 2010 in Mexico's capital and is preceded by a major two-week negotiating session in Bonn, Germany, scheduled from May 31 to June 11.
He Jiankun, vice-president of the government-sponsored Expert Panel on Combating Climate Change, said the upcoming conference is expected to activate a new round of global climate change negotiations after Western countries blamed China for "hijacking" or "blocking" the process.
"The upcoming conference has shown that the emerging economies, such as my country, are determined to move the negotiation agenda forward, instead of blocking or hijacking the efforts to combat global warming," said He, who sat on the Chinese government's advisory body in Copenhagen last month.
He expected the ministers of the four countries to discuss approaches on submitting their carbon emission cut pledges before the end of the month, which was agreed upon by the majority of countries at the Copenhagen summit.
According to the Copenhagen Accord, the industrialized countries will commit to implement, individually or jointly, quantified economy-wide emissions targets from 2020, to be listed in the accord before Jan 31.
The developing countries agreed to communicate their efforts to limit greenhouse gas emissions every two years, also listing their voluntary pledges before the end of the month.
But the Copenhagen Accord did not specify how the pledges would be submitted and the four countries may do so in detail this time, He said.
China has agreed to cut intensity of carbon dioxide emissions per unit of GDP by 40-45 percent by 2020 from 2005 base and Premier Wen Jiabao promised that the country will uphold the commitment regardless of results from Copenhagen.
Reuters said China and India are taking the lead in organizing the upcoming gathering. To better prepare for the Copenhagen summit, China had invited climate change ministers of the other three countries shortly before December's highly expected UN gathering to meet in Beijing. They arrived in Copenhagen with a draft with a common understanding on combating global warming, while a number of developed countries were blocking the Copenhagen negotiations.
During the meeting with Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in Copenhagen, Wen said "the BASIC countries and other developing nations need to stay unified and step up coordination on stances at the climate negotiations".
Wen said Singh is a personal friend and that thei r friendship also helps strengthen ties between China and India.
"India attaches great importance to the strategic partnership between the two countries," said Singh, adding that the Sino-Indian partnership has been expanded during the G20 meetings, World Trade Organization meetings as well as other negotiations under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.
"If China has achieved common understanding with the other three (emerging economies), it can easily coordinate with other developing countries," He said.
Dennis Pamlin, a Sweden-based visiting scholar with the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said the BASIC countries mechanism should go beyond the meeting among the climate change and environmental ministers.
They should coordinate the basic understanding, which is that of common but differentiated responsibility.
They will only start discussing commitments for reductions in relation to collaboration agreements when technology and smart trade is included, Pamlin said.
Pamlin said there are other key areas where the BASIC countries could take the lead in solutions for low carbon urban development, because the emerging countries have cities that grow fast and will be locked into a high carbon society if the right investments are not made.
Engagement with nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and civil society are also essential. Pamlin said the West is communicating better with NGOs, which are influential voices in the developed world and can help developing countries get "a much better deal".

Wednesday, 13 January 2010

Google and China: One of the first major transformative events in the 21st Century

The role of global companies, the role of China, the role of new technology, the role of the global infrastructure of the 21st Century (the information highways), the role of different ethical systems and how these mega-trends converge in the 21st Century will be illustrated in real time as this process evolves.

Sometime you can see history being written in front of your eyes. Depending on the outcome of the process this will be either a very important event or the symbol for a paradigm shift that we will see the full implications of the coming decades, probably longer.

UPDATE (jan 13): "Hackers attack Baidu" was a headline in China Daily the day after.

See below for the communication from Google (permalink):
A new approach to China
1/12/2010 03:00:00 PM
Like many other well-known organizations, we face cyber attacks of varying degrees on a regular basis. In mid-December, we detected a highly sophisticated and targeted attack on our corporate infrastructure originating from China that resulted in the theft of intellectual property from Google. However, it soon became clear that what at first appeared to be solely a security incident--albeit a significant one--was something quite different.

First, this attack was not just on Google. As part of our investigation we have discovered that at least twenty other large companies from a wide range of businesses--including the Internet, finance, technology, media and chemical sectors--have been similarly targeted. We are currently in the process of notifying those companies, and we are also working with the relevant U.S. authorities.

Second, we have evidence to suggest that a primary goal of the attackers was accessing the Gmail accounts of Chinese human rights activists. Based on our investigation to date we believe their attack did not achieve that objective. Only two Gmail accounts appear to have been accessed, and that activity was limited to account information (such as the date the account was created) and subject line, rather than the content of emails themselves.

Third, as part of this investigation but independent of the attack on Google, we have discovered that the accounts of dozens of U.S.-, China- and Europe-based Gmail users who are advocates of human rights in China appear to have been routinely accessed by third parties. These accounts have not been accessed through any security breach at Google, but most likely via phishing scams or malware placed on the users' computers.

We have already used information gained from this attack to make infrastructure and architectural improvements that enhance security for Google and for our users. In terms of individual users, we would advise people to deploy reputable anti-virus and anti-spyware programs on their computers, to install patches for their operating systems and to update their web browsers. Always be cautious when clicking on links appearing in instant messages and emails, or when asked to share personal information like passwords online. You can read more here about our cyber-security recommendations. People wanting to learn more about these kinds of attacks can read this U.S. government report (PDF), Nart Villeneuve's blog and this presentation on the GhostNet spying incident.

We have taken the unusual step of sharing information about these attacks with a broad audience not just because of the security and human rights implications of what we have unearthed, but also because this information goes to the heart of a much bigger global debate about freedom of speech. In the last two decades, China's economic reform programs and its citizens' entrepreneurial flair have lifted hundreds of millions of Chinese people out of poverty. Indeed, this great nation is at the heart of much economic progress and development in the world today.

We launched in January 2006 in the belief that the benefits of increased access to information for people in China and a more open Internet outweighed our discomfort in agreeing to censor some results. At the time we made clear that "we will carefully monitor conditions in China, including new laws and other restrictions on our services. If we determine that we are unable to achieve the objectives outlined we will not hesitate to reconsider our approach to China."

These attacks and the surveillance they have uncovered--combined with the attempts over the past year to further limit free speech on the web--have led us to conclude that we should review the feasibility of our business operations in China. We have decided we are no longer willing to continue censoring our results on, and so over the next few weeks we will be discussing with the Chinese government the basis on which we could operate an unfiltered search engine within the law, if at all. We recognize that this may well mean having to shut down, and potentially our offices in China.

The decision to review our business operations in China has been incredibly hard, and we know that it will have potentially far-reaching consequences. We want to make clear that this move was driven by our executives in the United States, without the knowledge or involvement of our employees in China who have worked incredibly hard to make the success it is today. We are committed to working responsibly to resolve the very difficult issues raised.

Posted by David Drummond, SVP, Corporate Development and Chief Legal Officer

Monday, 11 January 2010

Op-ed China Daily: 中国应实施“绿色走出去”战略

This is the Chinese translation of my China Daily op-ed. "It's dangerous to make China a climate scapegoat". The Chinese version is here. The heading in Chinese, "Go Green", is actually closer to my message, but I understand that it was not used in the English as few foreigner know much about Chinas "Go Global" strategy.... For those of you that know and prefer Chinese, please read the article.

2010-01-06 08:58:33

中国日报网消息:英文《中国日报》1月6日评论版文章:前几周,哥本哈根气候变化大会产生的妥协性协议成为热点议题。一些西方政客试图把会议未达成富有成效的结果归罪于中国。 去年,西方媒体不断把中国描绘成全球气候变化工作无法取得建设性成果的主要障碍,如今的这些批评只是这一趋势的一部分罢了。















上面提到的这些内容在现有的中英文文件中其实都有,不过很有必要把它们整合成为一个报告,并且提供相关的英文版本。同样重要的是,最终的报告形成应该有一个中国以外的其他利益体的参与过程。为了确保全面的参与和最终报告的宣传,应该考虑一个两步走的世界巡回宣传计划。 第一步应该在报告写作阶段的参与过程中,第二部一应该在世界各地宣讲最终的报告中。


中国当前的处境或许令人沮丧,但同样也为世界人民获得有关中国的信息提供了机会。如果中国不提供这样的信息,外界可能会误以为当前国际社会对中国的指责以及中国是全球气候工作的主要障碍两者确有其事,或者认为中国不管世界其他各地的死活。由于这两点都不是真实,尽快向世界提供更多关于中国的真实信息对中国而言是十分有好处的。世界各地的许多专家都乐于为呈现一个真实的中国而尽一份力,并且他们已经准备好随时开始工作。(作者为世界自然基金会 全球政策顾问 Dennis Pamlin 编译 刘江波 编辑 裴培)

Wednesday, 6 January 2010

Op-ed China Daily: It's dangerous to make China a climate scapegoat

Below is my op-ed, "It's dangerous to make China a climate scapegoat", from today’s China Daily (link). I’m working on some calculations to assess the equity of the 50% by 2050 and 80% by annex 1 countries. The draft Excel document can be downloaded here (comments most welcome, especially the per capita emissions needs better data).

By Dennis Pamlin (China Daily)
Updated: 2010-01-06 07:49

The outcome of the climate negotiations in Copenhagen has been discussed intensively over the last couple of weeks. A number of Western politicians tried to blame China for the lack of progress as the meeting in Copenhagen failed to deliver the necessary outcome. This blame game in international media was part of a trend where China increasingly has been described as the main obstacle for constructive global climate work over last year.

After Copenhagen it is clear some people are making China as the global scapegoat for the lack of progress when it comes to international climate work. This is dangerous for China, Chinese companies and for the global climate work. The current situation is not good, but as so much good work exists in China it is now a window of opportunity to establish a more correct picture of China.

For everyone who is familiar with China's low carbon work it is easy to be frustrated that China should be made a scapegoat for the lack of action in the area of climate. Four things make this scapegoat role wrong, unfair and dangerous:

First, the fact that China has played a constructive role in trying to get a good deal in Copenhagen, especially the last three years. China's proactive engagement has been recognized by experts working with China, including academics, policymakers and NGO's. China have submitted many proposals and engaged in a way that supports a global, rather than only a short-term nationalistic, agenda. It is also important to remember that it is the Western countries that have filled the atmosphere with greenhouse gases, have the highest emissions per capita and that are building factories around the world to feed their overconsumption.

Second, that China has strong domestic policies and makes real investments in a low carbon economy. These policies and investments are much more advanced than what Western countries did when they went through the industrialization phase of development and in many cases even better than what Western countries are doing today. For example, during 2009 China installed more wind power than the US, China leads the world in making solar cells, China is a leading manufacturer of key energy efficient solutions like energy efficient light bulbs and maybe most importantly China is now supporting innovative solutions for low carbon city development that allow people to live a high quality life without large emissions.

Third, that China has been very active in bilateral collaboration in order to support a low carbon development with EU, US and Japan as well as in South-South cooperation. Just before Copenhagen, China had bilateral meetings with both EU and the US where many important collaborations in renewable energy, smart grids, smart buildings and electric cars were included

Fourth, the world must not forget that China is still a developing country and that China still has tens of millions of people in poverty. China is still investing in basic infrastructure and so far there is no developed country that is moving towards a low carbon infrastructure.

As the picture of China as the global climate villain is wrong and unfair it is important to understand that it will have real implications unless it is corrected very soon. An image as the global climate villain is dangerous for both China and the global climate work in many ways as foreign policymakers, companies and citizens make decisions based on what they think is true, not reality.

A high carbon image will, for example, discourage innovative companies to invest in China and encourage dirty and bad companies to invest. The image also will affect Chinese companies and their opportunity to export or to get established abroad. This will not only have a negative impact on China, but also on the global work to reduce emissions.

In order to support a more correct understanding of China it is important that policymakers in China consider a review of the current transparency, communication and engagement policies. During 2010 China could launch a "Go Global Green"-strategy, inspired by the current Go Global strategy. The new strategy should consider the following two issues:

First, there are no global institutions or global media. What is often referred to as global media, e.g. CNN, BBC, Reuters, AFP, Bloomberg are all Western media that still are dominated by Western perspectives. The same is true for many of the institutions, think tanks and NGOs that are called global. It is important that these institutions are given access to correct information, but also that they are invited to participate and discuss the information provided. A scientific approach where information is allowed to be criticized and discussed is important.

Second, there is a growing need for global transparency in areas where national policies have global impacts. Information about emissions of greenhouse gases is only one area where global transparency will be increasingly important. Two key areas that should be discussed and where China could play an important role is how national policies and measures affect global resource use, and poverty reduction should become transparent and reported to the global community.

Today the EU, Japan and especially the US have a very high natural resource use per capita. They also have many policies that make it difficult for poor countries to help their population out of poverty. The development of measurement and reporting in natural resource use and poverty reduction will be key in the 21st century and China could take the initiative, together with other interested countries, to develop reporting criteria for these areas.

In order to turn the current negative situation into an opportunity a twin track approach could be deployed. One should be short-term strategy to ensure that China is not seen as the global climate villain after the outcome in Copenhagen and the other, long-term strategy to support better understanding of China as a supporter of a global low carbon and sustainable development.

A credible short-term strategy for the Chinese government could include an official Chinese climate action report, an official engagement strategy and a world tour.

The report would explain the Chinese perspective on the preparations leading up to Copenhagen with China's submissions and proposals explained. It would also include a discussion on what China sees as the key lessons from negotiations so far. The work with the Copenhagen Accord should be presented, and how China sees future negotiations will ensure a role for different stakeholders.

It would also be good if the report included China's views regarding key issues such as Kyoto Protocol in relation to long-term cooperative action, a legally binding deal, commitment from different countries, transparency in reporting emissions and actions, technology exchange and collaboration. In the report China could also allow external voices to present their views regarding the weakness of China's positions.

Almost all of the above already exist in different documents in Chinese and in English, but it would be very valuable to have them collected in a report and make them available in English. As important as the final report would be to develop the report through an engagement process where stakeholders from China and abroad are involved. In order to ensure a thorough engagement and dissemination of the final report a two-step world tour should be considered. The first step would be during the engagement process when the report is written and the second would be seminars around the world to present the final report.

In parallel with the short-term strategy the work could also begin with a long-term strategy.
One key part of this long-term strategy could be to establish centers for a global circular economy around the world. These centers can be virtual or physical, the important thing is that they allow for a place where Chinese initiatives for a better planet can be presented and discussed.

The current situation might be frustrating, but it offers a unique opportunity to provide information to people around the world about China.