ECO felt the sweet tinge of elation, like when you meet a good old friend, when several Parties made a strong case for common 5-year commitment periods in yesterday’s APA informal. It was probably no coincidence that it was some of the most climate vulnerable countries (AOSIS, CARICOM and the Africa Group) that led the charge.
As has been emphasised many times, the NDCs currently on the table will lead to 3°C of climate catastrophe. That would spell doom for many, and leaves us with little to no choice. We need to speed up the transition considerably, starting now. Including via new and stronger NDCs from Parties in the coming few years. Failing that will lock the world in to catastrophic warming before the ink on the Paris Agreement has even dried.
ECO is perplexed that many Parties still labour under the delusion that no increase in action is needed this side of 2030. So far, many parties have been reluctant to enhance their NDC. This is rather curious as Parties advocating for 10-year commitment periods last year kept assuring, and then reassuring, ECO that such lengthy commitment periods would not lock in low ambition. ECO had even, being such a helpful soul, suggested that maybe 5-year commitment periods would be a much more reasonable approach. That way we could ensure that there is no delay in implementation, maintain political accountability and, indeed, avoid locking in a level of ambition that doesn’t take into account the changing reality of climate change and the evolving economics of the solutions.
ECO expects those Parties to make good on their promises after the facilitative dialogue in 2018. This invariably concludes what we already know: we need enhanced NDCs. But to avoid unnecessary fuss in the future, ECO strongly encourages all Parties to support the intelligent and reasonable suggestion from those for whom strong ambition matters the most, and agree on common 5-year commitment periods from 2030 onwards.