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Conservation International Statement on COP25 Outcomes

December 15, 2019

“Conservation International appreciates governments around the world for the advances made over the past weeks in Madrid. As of early this morning, negotiators were largely agreed on decision text that would have established a path forward on how countries can work together in achieving the critical objectives of the Paris Agreement. There was consensus on several fundamental elements for operationalizing bilateral carbon trading under the Agreement. Built on a foundation of rigid and transparent accounting rules, the resulting carbon market would have been open to all sectors, including nature, creating financial incentives to preserve standing tropical forests, mangroves, peat swamps, coastal wetlands and other valuable natural carbon stocks.

Unfortunately, at the eleventh-hour Parties failed to reach agreement on rules for how countries can cooperate on simultaneously achieving climate mitigation and sustainable development. Talks broke down at the political level because a very small number of countries insisted on allowing the use of old carbon credits that were designed under flawed accounting rules. The vast majority of countries rightfully pushed back on this request, pointing out that the environment would experience little benefit if “double counting” of carbon credits and other inaccuracies were permitted.

“This development is disappointing. There are already discussions outside of the negotiations about how groups of countries may commit to even higher standards than what is required. Conservation International urges that those discussions to continue.

“Over the past few years, Conservation International has played an important role in the negotiations process, from our deep bench of policy experts and scientists providing policy recommendations and the latest research, to serving as an invaluable resource for many countries.”

About Conservation International

Conservation International uses science, policy and partnerships to protect the nature that people rely on for food, fresh water and livelihoods. Founded in 1987, Conservation International works in more than 30 countries on six continents to ensure a healthy, prosperous planet that supports us all. Learn more about Conservation International, the groundbreaking “Nature Is Speaking” campaign and its series of virtual reality projects: “Drop in the Ocean”, “My Africa,” “Under the Canopy” and “Valen’s Reef.” Follow Conservation International’s work on Conservation News, our blog, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

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