COP21 Update – Friday, December 11

20151211_003732At the time of this writing (early Friday evening) it does not look good for the inclusion of Human Rights and Gender Equality in the body of the COP 21 document. A member of one of the civil society women’s groups wrote this morning at 7 a.m. (she was just getting back to the hotel after a long night of working), and said that the new draft that came out last night was missing the reference to those two issues in Article 2, pg.17. That is the Article which lists cross-cutting issues and principles as core areas for implementation (and on Human Rights Day, at that!)

Negotiations continued today, and we don’t know the outcome of what may have been done today or tonight. Many issues are at stake, like the temperature goal and the Means of Implementation—and there are no doubt many compromises being made. Some countries think it is adequate to have the human rights and gender issues mentioned in the preamble, but for those who have been working to have them mentioned in the core document, this is very discouraging.

The language they had hoped to see in Article 2 of the actual body of the agreement was

“2. This Agreement shall be implemented on the basis of equity and science, and in accordance with the principle of equity and common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities, in the light of different national circumstances, and on the basis of respect for human rights and the promotion of gender equality.”

Of course, we will not know when the document will be completed (you may see it before we get back to New York Saturday evening). The delegates will probably be working on it all night and into the weekend. (The rumor is among civil society groups that the UN actually has the place booked until the 15th).

We will let you know on Monday what happened. Thanks to everyone who prayed for the conference and for our safe travels. It has been a remarkable experience.