21 November 2017
Professor Benito Müller
Managing Director, Oxford Climate Policy
Director, European Capacity Building Initiative
As you are well aware, SBSTA 47 delivered a meaningful conclusion and a draft decision on agriculture, a feat that had eluded the SBSTA for six years. COP 23 adopted the decision which the COP Presidency named, the "Koronivia Joint Work on Agriculture", since it is now a joint SBI/SBSTA activity. SBSTA was finally able to fullfil this mandate from the COP.
Credit for this achievement must be given to many individuals and groups: the delegates who pursued this topic diligently for years, the facilitators and the UNFCCC support staff, including those who had already retired . However, initiatives outside the formal process also contributed to this achievement. These include the workshops on agriculture which you convened in Oxford and in Bonn in 2017.
You invited the right negotiators and experts to these workshops. More importantly, as an "outsider" to the agriculture negotiations you asked the right probing questions at the workshops: What do you want to achieve? What is your remit? How do you propose to achieve it? I believe the negotiators underwent some introspection and converged to a consensus which resulted in a decision that acknowledges the role of the SBSTA but also provides a path for the implementation of climate smart agriculture which will promote agricultural productivity to enhance food security and alleviate poverty. I wish to thank you, the sponsors of the workshops and the invited experts for this initiative and their support .
I believe similar initiatives can be employed to address other topics that are challenging the international climate change negotiation process.
SBSTA 47 Chair
International and Regional Liaison Officer
Caribbean Community Climate Change Center (CCCCC)