“If you ask a fish to fly you will be frustrated with the result, because it will not be able. In the same way if we expect the UNFCCC negotiations to match our expectations and ambitions it will frustrate us, as it is part of a slow process and with few ambitions because its structure.”
It was with these words that Dr. Hermann Ott emphasized the importance of creating country clubs to work in climate issues. In order to promote alliances of cooperation between countries and organizations, the institutions Germanwatch, FES and Wuppurtal Institute held a side event to present and strengthen the idea of country club in parallel to the UN process to make transformative action in the field of climate change.
The idea was to contradict the theory that cooperation is difficult because people are individualistic, since research shows that through cooperation mechanisms based on trust, communication, reputation, we identification, equity and reciprocity we can form effective collaborative links.
These alliances are not to replace the UNFCCC but strengthen and speed up the process. The clubs are based on groups of countries and institutions that want to take more effective, immediate and ambitious actions in the areas of climate change, where you can join in without necessarily needing to be an expert or put the same on the table as all other parties.
This need arose from structural difficulties within the UN process like the decision by consensus and not by majority, which allows some countries to prevent effective action. In addition voluntary contributions do not reach the goals, in example the Green Climate Fund where countries such as Australia have stated that they will not make any deposit.
All this reflects a slow and poorly ambitious process that results in weak agreements and dissatisfaction of civil society.
In this perspective the clubs see to fill this gap, providing opportunities for countries and institutions to act in an ambitious way on issues that they already have possibility to act without the need to wait for the bureaucratic process of the UNFCCC.