3.4 Technology Transfer under the UNFCCC Agreements
As noted in the introduction to this chapter, the UNFCCC represents a global
accord in which developing countries accept their need to be involved in global
efforts to address climate change, and undertake the general provisions of Article
4.1, in return for assistance with finance and technology transfer that are
set out in later sections of this Article. Article 4.7, referred to earlier,
bares this point out in some detail (see Box 3.3).
|Box 3.3: Key provisions relating to technology
transfer -- UNFCCC
|Article 4.1.h (all Parties taking into account their common but
differentiated responsibilities ...shall): Promote and cooperate in the
full, open and prompt exchange of relevant scientific, technological, technical,
socio-economic and legal information related to the climate system and climate
change, and to the economic and social consequences of various response
Article 4.3 The developed country Parties .. in Annex II .. shall
also provide such financial resources, including for the transfer of technology,
needed by the developing country Parties to meet their agreed full incremental
costs of implementing measures that are covered by paragraphs 1 of this
Article and that are agreed ...
Article 4.4 (Annex II Parties) shall also assist the developing
country Parties that are particularly vulnerable to the adverse effects
of climate change in meeting the cost of adaptation to those adverse effects.
Article 4.5: The developed country Parties and other developed
Parties included in Annex II shall take all practicable steps to promote,
facilitate and finance, as appropriate, the transfer of, or access to,
environmentally sound technologies and know-how to other Parties, particularly
developing country Parties, to enable them to implement the provisions
of the Convention. In this process, the developed country Parties shall
support the development and enhancement of endogenous capacities and technologies
of developing country Parties. Other Parties and organizations in a position
to do so may also assist in facilitating the transfer of such technologies.
Article 4.7 The extent to which developing country Parties will
effectively implement their commitments under the Convention will depend
on the effective implementation by developed country Parties of their
commitments under the Convention related to financial resources and transfer
One important aspect of this was the financial mechanism. The GEF was entrusted
with its operation, initially on an interim basis. Operating experience with
the GEF and its role in financing the transfer of ESTs is discussed in Chapter
5 of this Report.
Until recently, the focus of the GEF has been primarily on mitigation of climate
change, but following CoP3 and CoP4, adaptation has received increasing attention.
However, major barriers to the international funding of adaptation activities
remain to be overcome. The GEF Operational Strategy prescribes that activities
need to have global benefits in order to be eligible for funding. Mitigation
activities, aimed at reducing atmospheric greenhouse-gas concentrations, clearly
have global benefits. For adaptation activities, on the other hand, it is difficult
to imagine how global benefits can be produced. Adaptation takes place at the
scale of an impacted system, which is regional at best, but mostly local.
At CoP4 in Buenos Aires, the decisions on the financial mechanism confirmed
the Global Environmental Facility as an "entity entrusted with operation
of the financial mechanism of the Convention" and broadened its scope.
The mandate was broadened, with reference to the need for "flexibility
to respond to changing circumstances". Its funding scope was formally expanded
to include more wide-ranging support for building up the capacity of developing
countries to address climate change issues, including support for adaptation
technologies and full funding of their Second National Communications. The decision
also established guidelines for the review of the financial mechanism every