Ministers in Cancun must lay the ghost of Copenhagen to rest, Oxfam warns

Opportunity for real progress to tackle global climate change in Cancun

Ministers speaking for the first time this afternoon at the High Level segment at the UN climate talks in Cancun must show political leadership to ensure key agreements are made by the end of the week, said Oxfam today.

The international agency is calling for key decisions to set up a fair Climate Fund and give clarity on the legal framework of the UNFCCC negotiations. Current talks on the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol – the only existing legally binding regime to drive emissions reductions by developed countries - will help determine this.

Oxfam is also calling for the inclusive spirit seen so far at the COP16 talks to continue, so an agreement with a global mandate is secured at the end of the negotiations in Cancun.

Oxfam’s international climate change policy adviser Tim Gore said: “It is important that ministers build on signs of progress so far and use their political leadership so a repeat of the Copenhagen debacle is avoided and a deal is done on Friday, which the whole world can be proud of.”

Steady progress has been made to set up a Climate Fund but a lot more work is needed over the next crucial days.   Oxfam is calling on ministers and negotiators to ensure that climate funds are delivered where they are needed most. To help make this happen, it is calling for the fund to be equitable - where women are represented and where developing countries have a voice and access to sufficient adaptation funds that are desperately needed.

Gore said: “With four days to go, ministers must elevate the level of vision and ambition for these negotiations. They must give political direction so that key agreements are made, especially to set a new fair Climate Fund and to clarify the legally binding outcome of the UNFCCC negotiations.

“Success in securing agreement on these issues is essential to mark Cancun as a milestone that delivers for poor people suffering the impacts of climate change, and accelerates the pace of the negotiations towards an agreement in Durban next year.”

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