POLICY BRIEF SERIES | 2009-8
By Akihiro Sawa
The fifteenth session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change closed with broad agreement on the Copenhagen Accord.
What is its significance and what are its implications for the future?
COP 15 Agenda
The biggest agenda of COP15 was to decide on a post-Kyoto protocol Framework within which the world would address climate change beyond 2012. The world’s attention had been focused on whether or not the meeting would succeed in establishing a framework that would impose legally binding emission reductions, in particular, upon the US, the developing countries, China, India, and other newly emerging economies experiencing remarkably rapid growth. Earlier, however, the US explicitly announced that it had no intention to return to the Kyoto Protocol.
The worst scenario for Japan would have been a decision on both a new framework involving the US and China and the extension of the Kyoto Protocol, therefore, perpetuating the disparity of obligation levels between Japan and other countries including the US. We can give the governmen credit for its diplomatic efforts to successfully avoid pushing Japan into such dire straits.
Read more: Japan’s Agenda after COP15: Forget Numerical Targets, Give the World a Framework