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Brazil and the Durban Platform: ambitions and expectations

[working paper]

Fraundorfer, Markus; Rabitz, Florian

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Corporate Editor GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies - Leibniz-Institut für Globale und Regionale Studien
Abstract Brazil, together with other emerging powers, has repeatedly made headlines over the last few years as a serious player in international climate change negotiations. In December 2015 states will convene at the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris to agree on a new international climate treaty. What can we expect from Brazil at the upcoming climate summit? What can we expect from the negotiations on a new climate treaty in the context of the Durban Platform? This issue of the GIGA Focus discusses Brazil's potential role at the upcoming UN Climate Change Conference, analysing if Brazil's expected contributions can keep up with its ambitious rhetoric. Brazil's presently low emissions trajectory is a result of reduced deforestation rates. With greenhouse gas emissions from all other sources increasing, an ambitious contribution to global post-2020 mitigation requires more stringent action. However, it is unlikely that Brazil will take ambitious measures in areas other than forestry. While Brazilian climate diplomacy puts a rhetorical premium on historical responsibility, its substantive contribution to the negotiation process is only moderately progressive. The proposal of "concentric Differentiation" offers a way to implement the principle of common but differentiated responsibility in line with current realities while allowing for the obligations of Annex I (mostly developed countries) and major non-Annex I parties (mostly developing countries) to converge in the long term. The present context of the international negotiations is generally favourable towards Brazilian participation. The main challenge will be to conclude a transparency regime which facilitates collective action by allowing for adequate international review of domestic policies. To that end, the principle of common but differentiated responsibility should be implemented under the Paris agreement in a manner which aligns with the convention's long-term objective.
Keywords climate policy; climate protection; greenhouse effect; international agreement; Brazil; newly industrializing countries; environmental policy; energy policy; transparency; developing country; South America
Classification Ecology, Environment; Special areas of Departmental Policy; International Relations, International Politics, Foreign Affairs, Development Policy
Free Keywords Durban Platform; UN Framework Convention on Climate Change
Document language English
Publication Year 2015
City Hamburg
Page/Pages 8 p.
Series GIGA Focus International Edition, 8
ISSN 2196-3940
Status Published Version; not reviewed
Licence Creative Commons - Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works