UNFCCC Outlines Options on Meeting Frequency
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The UNFCCC Secretariat has published a report on the various options relating to the frequency and organization of the sessions of the Conference of the Parties (COP), the Conference of the Parties serving as the meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (CMP) and their subsidiary bodies.

The report (FCCC/SBI/2014/11) was mandated by the 40th session of the Subsidiary Body for Implementation (SBI 40).

UNFCCC19 September 2014: The UNFCCC Secretariat has published a note on the various options relating to the frequency and organization of the sessions of the Conference of the Parties (COP), the Conference of the Parties serving as the meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (CMP) and their subsidiary bodies. The preparation of the note (FCCC/SBI/2014/11) was mandated by the 40th session of the Subsidiary Body for Implementation (SBI 40).

The note presents information on the current arrangements for annual sessions, and proposes possible scenarios and related implications for: biennial sessions of the COP and CMP; annual sessions of the COP and CMP at venues alternating every year between a host country and the seat of the Secretariat; and the high-level segment. The note underlines that “the calendar of intergovernmental meetings has become increasingly complex and crowded over the past five years” alongside the sessions of the COP, CMP and the subsidiary bodies.

On biennial sessions, the note emphasizes that these may result in advancing more technical work under the subsidiary bodies, constituted bodies and other groups and processes. On annual sessions at alternating venues, it highlights, inter alia: that the draft rules of procedure state that the sessions of the COP shall take place at the seat of the Secretariat, unless the COP decides otherwise; additional budgetary implications for the core budget from sessions held at the seat of the Secretariat; and the continuation, as determined by the draft rules of procedure, of the rotation of the President of the COP.

On the high-level segment, the note, among other things: highlights that it requires considerable time and planning by parties and places extra pressure on many delegations; and proposes that parties consider increasing opportunities for more interactive discussion through, inter alia: ministerial round tables; multiple, smaller-scale events; and delivery of national and other statements in written or video format prior to the high-level segment through the UNFCCC website.

The note also provides: session schedules of other intergovernmental processes and bodies, grouped into meetings held annually, biennially, triennially and based on other schedules; and a list of meetings of constituted bodies of the Convention and the Kyoto Protocol in 2013. Over this period, the constituted bodies met during a total of 101 days.

SBI 41, scheduled to take place from 1-8 December 2014, in Lima, Peru, will be invited to consider the options outlined in the note and provide further guidance on the matter. [Publication on Frequency and Organization of Sessions]


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