Democracy: A Challenge for the New Executive Secretary
Outgoing United Nations Framework Convention on Clim ate Change (UNFCCC) Executive Secretary Yvo de Boer recently summarized his attachment to consensus-building by noting that “democracy is time-consuming and can be frustrating, but it builds a stronger future.”
Where will incoming Executive Secretary Christiana Figueres, who officially assumed de Boer’s post on 17 May, stand on this crucial issue of democracy? Will she countenance the sort of back-room, pre-emptive maneuvering that undermined the credibility of the Copenhagen Accord of last December and that de Boer characterized as a “disorganized and ill-directed sherpa process”? Or will she dedicate herself to helping ensure that the interests of all of the world’s inhabitants are represented in the UN climate negotiations?