Report UNFCCC in Bonn

By Mariësse van Sluisveld

On behalf of YES-DC I got the opportunity to have a look at the ‘intermezzo’ UNFCCC negotiations that take place in Bonn every year.  Being granted the observer-status you have access to a wide selection of side-events which are held in small rooms close to the negotiation room.  So with my business cards in the one hand and the agenda in my other, I was well prepared to spend the day in Bonn.

However, things went quite different from what I expected. After passing through the security check as the lone visitor,  I walked into the main hall that was echoing one of the sessions on the screens of which I was the only spectator. Norway announced some ambitious policy, which raised questions of nearly every country present in the room – or so it seemed to me as an outside observer. During a never-ending question by Brazil I decided to move forward, or more accurately, down stairs, where the NGO-etc market was being held. Organisations like IEA, IRENA, etc were represented yet their stall was deserted at the time I passed by. This seemed to be the leading theme during my visit as the remaining time was filled up with formal business (which required me to sit in a huge empty room at the Fiji table for a couple of hours – perhaps the rare moment where I still can!). Only at the end I could join in on a session, but unfortunately I already had to leave again. Staying a bit longer is a well recommended advice for observers for the next meeting!