From Hyderabad, India: The annual meeting of the Conference of Parties (COP) to the Kyoto Protocol is beginning today in Durban, South Africa.
Kyoto, signed in 1997 except by the United States, will lapse in 2012. The legacy of Kyoto is a system of trading carbon allowances and their proxies for other noxious pollutants both within and between Kyoto’s signatories faltering and halting because of the linkage between caps on emissions and economic growth rates of both advanced and emerging market economies, notwithstanding the desire of the parties to transfer clean energy technologies between the signatories.
The substance of the issues on the negotiating table in Durban is predicated on the availability of finance for the development and deployment of clean energy technologies among the Kyoto members.
The Cancun pledge to set up a clean energy fund and the emissions trading system may not be viable.
The earth does not discriminate the sky above China and the United States, the largest emitters of Carbon Dioxide. Any fall in US emissions due to the economic slowdown and rise in Chinese emissions because of the rapid growth of China to become the world’s second largest economy still keeps the overall emissions at the status quo levels, ceteris paribus, with a bias toward their increase in the future.
Financing programs of the World Bank Group consisting of the International Finance Corporation (IFC), Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA) and the World Bank can effectively complement private capital flows to accelerate the clean energy agenda of the United Nations Framework Convention On Climate Change (UNFCCC) which has been steadily evolving since 1992.
International institutional infrastructure exists in the World Bank Group to provide public financing for both public and private clean energy initiatives without the need for a global accord to cap emissions in a manner that suits the pace of structural change among the COP.
The successor to the Kyoto Protocol is to just do it.