COP 18 Held In Doha

The 18th edition of the annual UN climate conference, known also as the Conference of Parties (COP 18), concluded in Doha, Qatar on December 7, 2012. At the conference, the participating countries agreed to extend the Kyoto Protocol, the treaty that limits greenhouse gas output. The extension was adopted by nearly 200 countries after hard and long discussions and despite objections from Russia. The package of decisions also included vague promises of financing to help poor countries cope with the effects of climate change.

The 1997 Kyoto Protocol, which was to be expired in 2012, was extended until 2020 when a wider global treaty is expected to take effect. However, the extended phase will cover only about 15 percent of global emissions as Canada, Japan, New Zealand and Russia opted out of it. The US never joined Kyoto, partly because it did not include China and the other fast-growing developing countries.

The conference produced a number of documents collectively tided “The Doha Climate Gateway”. The documents included language on loss and damage, formalised for the first time in conference documents. Little progress was made towards the setting up of the Green Climate Fund.