Adaptation to climate change is a reality for all countries, and a comprehensive framework that allows all countries to adapt to has to be created, said a UN climate body executive in Bali on Monday.
"Leadership by industrialized countries must continue. It needs to be driven by the recognition that an entirely new energy future must underpin strong and sustainable growth," said Yvo de Boer, the executive secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) at the opening ceremony for the 13th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP13) to the UNFCCC.
"Bold action in the North can fuel clean growth in the South. Without cooperation, technology and incentives, developing countries have little choice but to make the same mistakes that were made in rich countries," de Boer told thousands of delegates to the UN climate change conference which is to last until Dec. 14.
It is a collective responsibility to use fossil fuels, which are in Bali to stay and will continue to be the drivers of growth, without destroying the environment, said de Boer.
He expressed hope the Bali conference will make a breakthrough in addressing climate change through the formal adoption of a negotiating agenda.
"An important focus of the Bali conference will be how to take a long-term climate change regime forward," de Boer said at a pre- conference press briefing held in Bali Sunday afternoon. He explained that the aim is threefold: to agree to formally launch negotiations on a long-term climate regime, to set an agenda for the negotiations and to agree on an end date for negotiations in order to avoid a gap between the Kyoto Protocol and whatever follows.
The agenda is expected to constitute four main building blocks: mitigation - action to limit or reduce emissions; adaptation - putting in place a strategy to help developing countries adapt to the impacts of climate change; technology helping countries limit or reduce emissions and adapt to the impacts of climate change through the supply of technology; and finance - generating investment and financial flows which will allow developing countries to act on mitigation and adaptation without harming their primary goals of economic growth and poverty eradication.
The conference, hosted by the Government of Indonesia, gathered on this resort island representatives of over 180 countries and regions along with observers from intergovernmental and nongovernmental organizations. The two-week period includes the sessions of the Conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC, its subsidiary bodies as well as the Meeting of the Parties of the Kyoto Protocol. A ministerial segment in the second week will conclude the event.
(Xinhua News Agency December 3, 2007)