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UN Meetings

Global Witness attends the UNFCCC negotiating meetings because we believe climate change is one of the biggest threats facing humanity today. Our key focus is the negotiations on Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD) because the battle against climate change cannot be won unless global deforestation is halted.

Cancún, 29 November – 10 December 2010

•    A REDD+ agreement reached in Mexico created a framework for ongoing pilot projects and processes to protect forests.
•    The overall Cancún Agreement helped bring back a measure of confidence to the climate change negotiations process after parties failed to reach a deal in Copenhagen the previous year.
•    Global Witness focused on getting the best possible social and environmental safeguards into a deal on forests, and on monitoring them to ensure they are fulfilled.
•    Key forests progress included a stated goal to slow and reverse forest loss and carbon emissions, commitments to address the factors driving deforestation, and requirements to ensure and track social and environmental safeguards.
•    Questions of finance and legally binding status for the agreement will be addressed in Durban at the end of 2011.
•    Global Witness’s opening and closing press releases focused on transparency, accountability, anti-corruption safeguards and civil society participation.

Bonn, 31 May - 11 June 2010

•    REDD discussions mainly took place in the second week of the Bonn conference, with Parties indicating a strong desire to finalise an agreement on REDD at the next Conference of the Parties to be held in Mexico in December.
•    Global Witness’s opening press release looked at the importance of Bonn and the issues to be resolved on forests and REDD. Our closing press release is here.
•    The Kyoto Protocol allows developed countries to use carbon sequestration in their forest sector to offset against industrial emissions. A proposal to reform the accounting rules was put forward by developed countries which is full of loopholes and which would allow developed countries to increase logging in their forests without accounting for it.
•    During the first week of the Bonn meeting, Global Witness, as part of the Ecosystem Climate Alliance, lobbied Parties to reject this loophole. Opening press release. Closing press release.
•    Global Witness released a new report on the importance of independent monitoring of governance and corruption for reducing deforestation in developing countries.
•    We also called for a new definition of forests to distinguish between plantations and natural forests.


Copenhagen, 7-18 December 2009

•    The 15th Conference of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) concluded in Copenhagen without a deal being agreed on legally binding emissions reduction targets. The result was a bitter disappointment for campaigners who had been fighting hard for a deal to save the planet, its forests and people.
•    No firm agreement was reached on REDD in Copenhagen - the negotiations were suspended on Saturday and the draft text was not finalised.
•    On the upside, much of the language that Global Witness and our colleagues in the Ecosystems Climate Alliance had been lobbying for was still to be found in the final version of the draft text. This set a good basis for more work in 2010.

Bangkok, 28 September - 9 October, 2009

•    We released a report, which shows how the term 'sustainable forest management' is threatening to derail the negotiations
•    Read the press release and a blog on this report
•    Margaret Swink's blog on the Bangkok negotiations
•    Press release from Ecosystems Climate Alliance

Bonn, 1 - 12 June, 2009

•    Press release from Ecosystems Climate Alliance
•    We released a report, which shows how vested interests are threatening to derail the negotiations.

The Danish timber giant Dalhoff Larsen and Horneman (DLH), a company accused of buying conflict timber during Liberia’s civil war, has been stripped... more
Danish timber giant Dalhoff Larsen and Horneman (DLH) has been expelled from the world’s leading timber certifier, the Forest Stewardship Council,... more