A meaningful CDM Appeals Procedure (Newsletter #15)

At the UNFCCC intersession a few weeks ago, Parties continued negotiating the details of an appeals procedure, including who should have the right to appeal against decisions of the CDM Executive Board. This is a positive step towards creating a more accountable, democratic and fair system for populations affected by CDM projects.

CDM projects have repeatedly been criticised for violating the rights of indigenous peoples and local communities, for example, through displacement or loss of livelihood. Such populations often complain that they have not been properly consulted, even though there is a local stakeholder consultation process that is legally required by the CDM validation process. Currently if problems arise, there is no possibility to seek recourse. This is why a CDM appeal procedure is needed.

Last year in Cancun, Parties decided to establish an appeals procedure for “stakeholders directly involved“ with CDM activities. In Bonn, the Parties argued over defining which stakeholders should have the right to appeal against decisions of the CDM Executive Board and under which circumstances. Unfortunately, quite a few delegates in Bonn advocated for a definition that would exclude local stakeholders and only allow appeals to projects that have been rejected. CDM Watch believes that to help ensure that environmental and social impacts of CDM projects are addressed, it is essential to include project-affected civil society groups in the definition of ‘stakeholders’.

CDM Watch spent a lot of time in Bonn meeting with delegates to talk about the importance of creating an effective, fair appeals procedure. There is still time to convince parties of the urgency of this matter. Nothing final was decided in Bonn[1] and the issue will be taken up again in Durban.  CDM Watch will continue to work with local stakeholders, NGOs and policy makers to push for a legitimate process that provides a means of recourse in cases where rules related to environmental integrity and public participation were breached, or DOEs or project participants have violated the CDM rules.

[1] The final text that came out of the Bonn meeting: http://unfccc.int/resource/docs/2011/sbi/eng/l11.pdf


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