The Mayan Land holds a spirit of true promise, the 16th conference of parties here in Cancun began with the gong of Cancun Can !
The expectations from this conference have been very low, but it seems like the host country has done well to get us a step closer to a balanced Cancun Package. The Cacun package needs to deliver the Cement, Tar and all the other raw material to create a foundation for a comprehensive legally binding treaty in COP 17, Durban.
So far the theatre around us have been fairly positive other than two major hiccups. The first was a dramatic statement made by a Japanese delegate on its loss of interest in the Kyoto Protocol, in some of the American media, this is being seen as the death of the Kyoto Protocol. This is a major issue right now as Kyoto is the only legally binding instrument in the UNFCCC, and enshrines common but differentiated responsibility.
The second upset was a removal of 1.5 degree target from the SBSTA text by Saudi Arabia, sadly none of the small island states were present in the hall when this happened. This of course very critical for the small island states.
On the high note, a lot of progress seems to have been made on the Adaptation Fund, with a mechanism being put in place for the most vulnerable countries to access these funds. There appears to be a lot more unity in the G77 + China group, India is voicing its support for the AOSIS and the LDC’s.
On the whole, its still early days, we will need to wait and see what emerges in the next few days.