Technology Transfer for Climate Change


Climate Action Network – New Submission on Technology Framework at UNFCCC

The Climate Action Network just put out a submission on the development of the new technology framework at the UNFCCC.  It’s available here: http://climatenetwork.org/sites/default/files/can_technology_framework_submission_march_2017.pdf

In the Paris Agreement parties agreed that a new Technology Framework was needed to consolidate the current work and provide further guidance to the technology institutions and parties of the UNFCCC.  Specifically, the Decision adopting the Paris Agreement (1/CP.21) states:

  1. Requests the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice to initiate, at its forty-fourth session (May 2016), the elaboration of the technology framework established under Article 10, paragraph 4, of the Agreement and to report on its findings to the Conference of the Parties, with a view to the Conference of the Parties making a recommendation […] for consideration and adoption at its first session, taking into consideration that the framework should facilitate, inter alia: (a) The undertaking and updating of technology needs assessments, as well as the enhanced implementation of their results, particularly technology action plans and project ideas, through the preparation of bankable projects; (b) The provision of enhanced financial and technical support for the implementation of the results of the technology needs assessments; (c) The assessment of technologies that are ready for transfer; (d) The enhancement of enabling environments for and the addressing of barriers to the development and transfer of socially and environmentally sound technologies;

as always, the work of the SBSTA has been delayed, and nothing was adopted at the 2016 Marrakesh COP.  I hope and believe that it will be adopted at the 2017 COP and parties have made submissions (available at: http://bit.ly/2ef7DCL) on what they think should be involved, as have NGO observers.  Setting aside my real worry that by failing to put forward a proposal text themselves, the African group that first proposed this has left themselves at the mercy of the secretariat and the snowballing of input gathering, I think CAN has put forward a really strong contribution to the thinking about technology at the UNFCCC.

Some key points that the submission brings forward:

  1. That there should be an R&D target at the core of the framework i.e. Adopt a doubling target (double by 2020-2025) on R&D that ensures funded and supported participation in collaborative/joint R&D of firms/universities and research institutions from developing countries. It is especially focuses on ensuring funding and support for R&D to enable adaptation and demonstration of currently existing technologies in domestic markets in developing countries.
  2. The CTCN should focus on implementation rather than just policy assistance as it does now .
  3. It emphasizes that access to technologies and their benefits are not fairly shared, and the needs, issues, and innovative capacities of poor communities are rarely considered or sufficiently addressed. The technology framework should address the pricing, maintenance and transaction cost barriers to access, some of which are due to not “fit-for-purpose” IP protection and licensing practices. The framework should support alternative approaches, including the open source development of climate technologies.

If there is an outcome beyond the Nationally Determined Contributions is the reframing of technology support and implementation that may come out of this process. precisely because of that, it is really important that the process moves more quickly and concretely into an outcome that can be adopted and which can be appropriately financed.

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