Presentation on theme: "Yvo de Boer Executive Secretary United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Inventing a cleaner future: climate change and the opportunity for."— Presentation transcript:
Yvo de Boer Executive Secretary United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Inventing a cleaner future: climate change and the opportunity for intellectual property
Outline Overview of the key role of technology in the intergovernmental climate change process How should IPRs be handled in the international context of climate change?
Climate change science The IPCC’s findings told the world that there is no time left to waste. Climate change is unequivocal Unmitigated climate change will threaten our survival Impacts are “very likely” to increase Impacts will destroy economic gains Current climate change abatement will not suffice: 1970 – 2004: emissions increase of 70% Projection up to 2030: emissions increase of 25-90%
Global energy demand Environmentally sound technologies are central to addressing climate change IEA reference scenario: energy demand to grow by 60% by 2030 up to 2030: energy supply infrastructure needs investment of USD20 trillion, more than half in developing countries emissions increase or decline by 50% Mitigation technologies Adaptation technologies
The context: technology and climate change The world needs a global low-emissions economic development plan Technology needs to be at the plan’s heart. IPCC: stabilisation of green house gases can be achieved with current and up-and-coming technologies, if incentives are in place. Current barriers to the deployment and diffusion include: human behaviour absence of policies, legal and regulatory frameworks investments in infrastructure IPR, patent-related issues
Technology and international climate policy Technology features strongly in the inter-governmental process on climate change The UNFCCC and its Kyoto Protocol provide opportunities for cooperation on technology: development, deployment and diffusion both for mitigation and for adaptation
Technology and international climate policy The Bali Road Map Two-year process to enhance the international response to climate change, including enhanced action on mitigation Developing countries: “Nationally appropriate mitigation actions … supported and enabled by technology … in a measurable, reportable and verifiable manner.” Industrialised countries: “…measurable, reportable, verifiable mitigation actions, including quantified emission limitation and reduction objectives.”
Technology and international climate policy The Bali Road Map Measurable, reportable and verifiable mitigation action by developing countries depends on measurable, reportable and verifiable technological and financial support. Technology is one of the central elements that will enable action. The two-year process is an opportunity to strengthen technology approaches.
Technology and international climate policy Technology needs a revolutionary push Criticism that insufficient progress has been made on technology Need for an effective international mechanism: removal of barriers and provision of resources All stages of the technology cycle need to be addressed: from innovation to application consider funding and policy for each stage Parties have cited IPR and patent-related issues as barriers
IPRs and technology transfer Are IPRs barriers for technology transfer? Developing countries: IPRs are a barrier; further consideration is needed on: Regulating patent regimes to balance reward and access Removing barriers to accessing technologies in the public domain Increased costs could limit dissemination of ESTs Compulsory licenses
IPRs and technology transfer Are IPRs a barrier to technology transfer? Industrialised countries: IPRs are needed to stimulate and reward IPRs to promote competition Strong IPR protection helps deploy advanced technologies Many existing climate friendly technologies are not protected by patents. IPRs are a small part of the total capital requirements
IPRs and technology transfer Do we need a special patent regime for climate change? Public-private partnerships (PPPs), with options such as: Purchasing commitments Voluntary buy-out of IPRs Compulsory licensing
IPRs and technology transfer Public ownership of IPRs for technologies Less suitable for existing technologies For energy-generation technologies, IPRs represent a smaller component of cost Continued cooperation with the owners Possibly more suitable for new technologies Collaborative development of technologies; IPR as a free or low-cost public good. Adaptation technologies with a large element of public good
Input needed Technology in future climate change abatement Key role of technology development and transfer IPR-related issues have been discussed in a theoretical manner The process needs clarity on where IPRs are a barrier, where not If they are a barrier, how can that barrier be overcome? How can IPR-issues be handled in the international climate change context? Your views on what Governments should agree on for IPRs in view of 2009