May 16, Bonn, Germany - This UN climate negotiations, kicking off today in Bonn, represent the first time governments have formally met since the Paris Agreement was agreed last December, and with over 170 countries meeting in New York in April to sign the agreement political momentum on climate change continues on a high. Today countries are giving their opening statements in a plenary session as negotiators set out their stalls ahead of two weeks of negotiations, focused on rule-making for the new global climate regime and efforts to ramp up short-term ambition to tackle climate change. There is no time to lose.
“It was announced today that last month was the hottest April ever, which means we have now experienced seven months in a row of months breaking temperature records,” says Teresa Anderson from ActionAid. “As the hottest El Nino ever bites across the world, 60 million people are expected to face its impacts this year in the form of heatwaves, droughts and famine. In Paris, governments agreed to limit global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels. This number may prove to be the planet's lifeline, but only if we choose to pick up that lifeline, grab it with both hands, and follow it to its necessary conclusion. We need much greater ambition to radically and fairly cut emissions, delivered much faster than the national pledges currently on the table.”
“We are seeing some positive signs”, says Alden Meyer from the Union of Concerned Scientists. “177 parties have signed the Paris Agreement and 16 have already deposited instruments of ratification. Outside the UN process the renewable energy revolution is unfolding, and financial flows are shifting towards low carbon development - but the question is whether this is happening fast enough to keep pace with changes in the physical environment. Negotiators have an opportunity in Bonn to speed things up by developing the rulebook for the Paris Agreement, working to build capacity for a major increase in both pre- and post-2020 ambition, and putting the spotlight on efforts to ramp up support for adaptation and loss and damage ahead of the COP in Marrakesh.”
“Today the new Moroccan Presidency labelled COP 22 in Marrakesh the ‘COP for action’ which is good a start”, says Anoop Poonia from Climate Action Network South Asia. “This year we need action to develop a roadmap that delivers the long-promised $100 billion in climate finance. In the process negotiators must ensure this finance supports both adaptation and mitigation in order to boost the resilience of the most vulnerable countries already experiencing climate impacts. Right now less than $6 billion per year is available for adaptation - this is not enough. Another important task for governments here in Bonn is to get working on the rules for accounting and transparency so that we develop more accurate ways to measure the cost of complex climate impacts and exactly what support falls under the banner of ‘climate finance’ as we move forwards.”
Contact: Tierney Smith, GCCA, email: firstname.lastname@example.org, phone: +447545255955
About CAN: Climate Action Network (CAN) is a global network of over 950 NGOs working to promote government and individual action to limit human-induced climate change to ecologically sustainable levels. More at: www.climatenetwork.org