Media FAQ

December 3, 2010

Climate Change: Japan's Basic Position at COP16 as well as on the Kyoto Protocol

Q1: What is Japan’s basic negotiating position at COP16?
A: Japan’s basic negotiating position is as follows:
  1. (1) The ultimate aim is early adoption of a new single legally-binding instrument that establishes a fair and effective international framework with the participation of all major emitters based on the Copenhagen Accord.
  2. (2) At COP16, Japan aims at adoption of balanced decisions in close coordination with Mexico, the President of COP16, and other countries.
  3. (3) Japan will continue to positively engage in cooperation to developing countries, especially those making efforts to reduce emission and/or being particularly vulnerable to adverse impacts of climate change, including:
    1. (a) Of the fast start financing [PDF] announced December 2009, for developing countries up to 2012 amounting to US$15 billion, Japan has already implemented US$7.23 billion as of 30 September, 2010.
    2. (b) On October 26, 2010, Japan hosted the Aichi-Nagoya Ministerial Meeting of the REDD+ Partnership, at which Ministers firmly appealed to the international community that REDD+ initiatives should be accelerated as a key pillar of climate change commitments, and created momentum to further advance negotiations just a month before COP16.
Q2: What is Japan’s position regarding the Kyoto Protocol? In particular, what is the position on setting up the 2nd Commitment Period of the Kyoto Protocol or so-called “extension of the Kyoto Protocol”?

A: The Kyoto Protocol has the historical significance in that it has obligated sovereign states to reduce emission of greenhouse gases, and Japan is proud of having the Protocol named after its ancient capital. However, the total emissions of energy-related CO2 from the countries undertaking obligations to reduce emissions under the Protocol account for only about 27% of the global emissions in 2008, which dropped down from 42% in 1990. Thus, it is not effective as regards to emission reduction obligation or the scale of emissions to be reduced.

It has, therefore, been Japan’s consistent position that it will not agree on setting a 2nd commitment period of the Protocol in a way that fixes the current framework under which only a part of developed countries are obligated to reduce emissions. The Japanese delegation at COP16 in Cancún, Mexico, has also repeated this position.

Needless to say, the Kyoto Protocol will continue to be in force regardless of its commitment period, and Japan positively participates in discussions regarding valuable mechanisms such as LULUCF.

At COP16, Japan will continue to exert its efforts to advance the negotiations, coordinating with Mexico, the President of COP16, and other countries, towards an outcome that will lead to the establishment of a fair and effective international framework with the participation of all major emitters.

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