Out of the many big announcements coming out of the Paris Climate Change Summit, one points to a small Central American country: Honduras.
This 8 million strong republic announced it was joining the negotiating group AILAC (Spanish acronym for the Independent Association of Latin America and the Caribbean), a collective of countries formed in 2012 during the Doha Climate Talks with six Latin American countries. They negotiate in block during the United Nations Framework Convention of Climate Change conferences.
— AILAC (@AilacCC) December 1, 2015
Following Honduras announcement and the inclusion of Paraguay in June of this year, the group reaches eight members and increases its influence in the region.
AILAC broke apart from the broader G77 + China, the larger negotiating group that includes almost all developing countries, after differences on some issues, notably the level of commitments for developing countries. In the past, they have defined themselves as a “Third Option”, bridging the gap between the developed nations and the rest of the world. They still negotiate on the G77.
This announcement will likely further polarize the Central American region. Four countries now belong to AILAC (Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras and Panama), one to AOSIS (Belice) and another one to the Like Minded Developing Countries (Nicaragua), many of them with opposing positions. Nicaragua recently declared it will not submit an INDC, “because voluntary responsibility is a path to failure,” as Lead Envoy Paul Oquist told Climate Home.