On December 3, Deputy Special Envoy Jonathan Pershing stressed that balance is the key to making progress during his press briefing on December 3 at the 16th Session of the Conference of the Parties to UN Framework Convention on Climate Change in Cancun, Mexico.
He said, "I think that there are clearly a lot of challenges here, but also in my view, a lot that can be accomplished. What we need to do, and I think all understand that what we need to do is to produce a balanced package of decisions covering all Accord issues from the Copenhagen Accord, including mitigation, transparency, financing, technology, adaptation, and the REDD issue, forestry. And I believe we can do this. While differences still remain, a lot of useful work has already been done and I'm hopeful that we can work through our differences on all the various issues.
"We know, for example, how to anchor the mitigation pledges from the Copenhagen Accord, the listed targets that developed countries agree to implement and a list of actions that developing countries agreed to implement in the Copenhagen Accord. We know how to launch the Green Fund called for in the Copenhagen Accord, following the guidance provided in the Framework Convention itself. We know how to establish a technology mechanism as called for again by the Copenhagen Accord. We know, I think in broad strokes, where we should be going to carry out the adaptation and REDD agreements, also from Copenhagen, and we have already seen some very good ideas put up on the table on the specific content and concrete elements of the transparency system, including International Consultations and Analysis. A concept that was directly negotiated by our leaders last year, including President Obama, Premier Wen, Prime Minister Singh, and Presidents Lula and Zuma.
"In my view, anyone who says that any of these issues are too difficult or should be put off for another day, is not trying hard enough. None of these issues is actually too difficult for us, and none of them can be put off. Developing countries certainly would not have agreed to list and implement mitigation actions, they would not have agreed to the International Consultation and Analysis concept, if developed countries had not for their part agreed to landmark provisions for financial assistance, technology, adaptation, mitigation, REDD and so forth. And the reverse is also true, obviously, developed countries would not have agreed to all of those financial and technology provisions if developing countries had not agreed to implement mitigation pledges and to a transparency system that includes what is now being sometimes referred to as ICA. We have MRV and we have ICA in this business.
"In any event, we all know this, I think all of the countries and negotiators know this and anyone who was in Copenhagen last year knew it. So the key here in Cancun, I think, really the watchword is balance, genuine balance, comparable progress across all of the key issues. Balance is in our judgment, in my judgment, the key that can unlock the door to a strong set of decisions here in Cancun followed by a ramped up fast-track process in 2011 to elaborate all of the remaining details that will need to be elaborated on some of these issues, and then a final fully operational decision that could be done next year in South Africa. I think we can get there as long as countries do not seek to become stumbling blocks to halt or slow down progress. I also think, and it's often the case at this point in any of these negotiations, that the outcome hangs in the balance. We don't know which way it's going to go yet. But I think that we clearly can do it and we should do it, and the U.S. will certainly keep doing our best to try to make that happen."
You can read the complete remarks here.