The first day of negotiations for the Paris Agreement are almost at an end, just a few more hours to go. I am in Bonn, Germany. The sun is shining, its 30 degrees and the World Conference Centre is swanky. Things are going smoothly, apart from the fact that I am the only real New Zealander here from civil society.
We are extremely proud to announce the selection of our delegation to the UN Climate Change Conference in Lima, Peru.
The delegation of seven will be led by Institute alumna Saskia McCulloch, who attended last year's COP19 with us in Warsaw.
In the UN system each member state in the voting process counts as one. For example, China, Saudi Arabia, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Fiji and New Zealand all have one vote each.
This singular vote is given no matter how large or small the territory or population is, no matter how high or low GDP or poverty levels are, no matter how much each member state has a stake in the negotiations. This values sovereignty as the key identifier of power.
"No decisions about us, without us”
Contextualizing: National Gender day - the agreement about Climate Change is about women, more than men. The decisions should be made in conjunction with females.
"Loss and damage is the most fragile sensitive political issue”
Contextualizing: Loss and damage has been high on the ageda point this COP. However, its very contentious as many of the "rich" countries do not want to contribute financially and have issues with compensation in regards to the need to find blame before compensation can be given.
At COP speeches are key. There are so many speeches. There are so many different people, perspectives and idea's about how we should tackle this global challenge.
From the many speeches i've listened too, read or herd about I have choose the three most notable to me, the youth and to COP19 in general.
"This is a marathon. This is not a sprint."
Contextualizing: Negotiations have been ongoing for two decades. It has taken a long time, and it will take a long time.
“Countries on the ground are not waiting for the UNFCCC”
So in the outrageously busy schedules that a delegate of COP19 has the days turn into a blur. However, a short and snappy quote, tends to jog the memory and get straight to the point. Each day (hopefully) i'll gather the best of them. Contextualize them the best I can. =)