Samoa to remain in seat on COP Bureau

Samoa has been renominated to represent the Alliance of Small Islands Sates on the Bureau of the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the UN’s Framework Convention on Climate Change.

The Bureau is responsible for advising the President of the COP and taking decision with the general management of the intergovernmental process as it has overall responsibility for questions of process.

Ms Anne Rasmussen of Samoa first undertook this role in 2020, she was renominated by Small Islands Developing States to continue through to 2022.

“I am grateful that our fellow Pacific Small Islands Developing States as well as all SIDS, have supported my role on this Bureau,” said Ms Rasmussen.

“I look forward to being able to serve our small islands, so our voice is reflected when COP processes are considered.”

The Bureau is elected from representatives nominated by each of the five UN regional groups and SIDS with the UN Groupings having two members and the SIDS have one member.

It supports the COP as well as the Conference of the Parties serving as the meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (CMP), and the Conference of the Parties serving as the meeting of the Parties to the Paris Agreement (CMA).

Some of the work of the Bureau includes examining the credentials of Parties, reviewing the list of Intergovernmental Organisations and Non-Governmental Organisations seeking accreditation as well as provide advice on the ongoing work under the Convention, Kyoto Protocol and the Paris Agreement.

“We meet to discuss key issues on the organisation of the COP’s, as you can imagine in the lead up to COP26 there was much to plan through with the restrictions of COVID-19 and the pandemic postponing the COP by a year,” said Ms Rasmussen.

“We can only hope for swift sailing ahead.  Climate change is the greatest single threat to the security of our Pacific islands with SIDS being on the frontlines and amongst the most vulnerable to its impacts, we strive to provide a smooth process around which we can progress the solutions to the effects of climate change.”

Over its 2020 tenure on the COP Bureau, Samoa has received support from the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) at the Bureau Meetings.  SPREP would like to congratulate Samoa on its renomination and also hopes for swift sailing ahead.

“Samoa has been an excellent representative for the Pacific and all Small Islands Developing States on the COP Bureau, we are pleased to be able to support where we can for our Pacific islands,” said Mr Kosi Latu, Director General of SPREP.

While the Bureau is mainly responsible for process management of the COPs it also assists the President in performance of his or her duties by providing advice and helping with various tasks such as undertake consultations on behalf of the President.

Ms Rasmussen entered negotiations for Samoa in 2009 and has had the responsibility of playing key roles in the UNFCCC process.  Ms Rasmussen started co-chairing on agenda items under the Subsidiary Body of Implementation since 2012 at COP18.  She was also a co-chair on national communications and finance and technical support for national communications up to COP23 in 2017.  Ms Rasmussen was also the lead negotiator for AOSIS on climate finance, Green Climate Fund and Global Environment Facility at COP24 in 2018

Samoa also holds the role as Chair of the Pacific Small Island Developing States. The Twenty-Sixth Conference of the Parties to the UN’s Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP26) is held in Glasgow from 31 October to 12 November.

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