After the difficulties in Copenhagen with access to the venue, the admissions to COP16 have been severely restricted. Unlike a year ago, we didn’t witness hours-long queues at registrations or security. In fact, the admin operation is run extremely smoothly here in Cancun. For example, not only have we all enjoyed an incredibly speedy registration process, in fact many of the registration officers put on a big smile in the effort to win the fight over who’s going to get to register the next person.
In fact, we’re met with many of the friendly faces of our Mexican hosts on every steps throughout the venues, always ready to help, direct, and answer questions. Nevertheless, logistics was the main topic of conversation (and source of a headache) on Monday for those not staying at the main venue, the Moon Palace, as many delegates were stuck in traffic for up to three hours on Monday morning due to severe security checks on the road surrounding the presence of the Mexican president. Whilst most hotels are located about 20-minute drive from the Moon Palace, all of us are forced to drive pass for another 10km to the second venue, the Cancun Messe (newly christened as the Cancun “mess”) to go through the security checks, and then to get on another buss to get back to the Moon Palace….. Since Tuesday, busses are running smoothly and take about 20 minutes to get us to the Cancun Messe, but many people feel that all this additional travel is making the climate change meetings increasingly onerous and very tiring. At least we can all feel good as the Government of Mexico is running green busses between the venues.
Maaike & Eva in Cancun (REEEP Southeast Asia and Pacific)