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Fourth Conference of the Parties 
to the Convention to 
Combat Desertification
Bonn, Germany; 11-22 December 2000


Highlights from Thursday, 14 December

The Committee on Science and Technology (CST) met throughout the day to hear reports from the groups working on scientific and technical information and consider priority issues for CST-5. The Plenary scheduled for the morning to consider the work programme of the ad hoc working group (AHWG) to review CCD implementation was cancelled because informal negotiations on issues relating to the AHWG were not completed. It convened briefly in the afternoon to adopt a draft decision on procedures to review CCD implementation. The Committee of the Whole (COW) met briefly in the morning and in the afternoon to consider: the draft declaration to enhance implementation of the Convention; procedures to review reports on CCD implementation; progress reports from regions other than Africa; an additional implementation annex to the Convention; and relationships with other relevant conventions and international organizations, institutions and agencies.

Above photo(L-R): CST Chair Olarewanju Smith (Canada) with Ndegwa Ndiang'ui of the Secretariat


COP convened briefly in the afternoon and adopted a draft COW decision on the AHWG's procedure to review CCD implementation. The COP also elected Mohammed Mahmoud El Ghaouth (Mauritania) and Willem van Cotthem (Belgium), nominated by the COW, to co-chair the AHWG.

Left photo: The dias during a brief afternoon plenary

Committee of Science and Technology:

Antoine Cornet (FRANCE),
speaking for the working group on this issue, emphasized indicators and the role of technical information in Party reporting. He stressed indicators as tools for follow-up and evaluation in accordance with national strategies and distinguished between status and impact indicators. He recommended keeping indicators a CST priority and highlighted the need for harmony with other processes.

Ben Souda (Morocco),
stressed Convention commitments related to indicators and building on existing initiatives, and with MALAWI, called for capacity building.


Gunn Paulsen (Norway), proposed that the Secretariat compose a report on best practices, drawing expertise from the roster of experts, the database on traditional knowledge, and NGOs.


Committee of the Whole: COW

ENIN presented a draft decision prepared by a contact group to resolve the issues relating to the work of the AHWG to review CCD implementation.

Mohammed Mahmoud El Ghaouth (Mauritania), welcomed the draft annex and said its implementation should not affect resources for implementation in other regions. An informal group to be chaired by the UK was convened to prepare a draft decision for COP consideration.

The G-77/CHINA suggested that the COP provide input into the Rio+10 process and should therefore consider what reports to submit. Noting the decreasing presence of developing country delegations in Bonn due to relocation to Berlin, he proposed a modestly resourced CCD liaison branch should be linked to UN Headquarters to benefit from the UN services.

Left photo: Osita Anaedu (Nigeria) giving an intervention on behalf of the G77/CHINA

Uriel Safriel (Israel) drew attention to a 1997 workshop they organized on synergies with the UNFCCC.

Around the Exhibition :

Left photo: CCD COP-4 participants can get a lot of information about Desertification from various organisations at the main lobby of the International Congress Center

Right photo:Jens Mählmann of STFI explaining the practical application of sand fences in agriculture, horticulture and coastal protection. For more information visit their web site at


ENB Summary of COP-3
ENB Coverage of COP-3
UNCCD Secretariat web site with COP-4 official documents and information for participants
Introduction to the CCD
Linkages desertification page
Other Internet Resources on Desertification

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