EU and Umbrella Group Win Fossil for Blocking Ambition Boost

Today’s first place Fossil of the Day Award goes to...the EU and Umbrella Group countries (Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Kazakhstan, Norway, the Russian Federation, Ukraine and the USA). They take the prize for standing in the way of increasing ambition before 2020. If they shifted on their position, LMDCs would have to deliver on their promise to allow an opportunity to revisit all INDCs (with support) before 2020. Together these actions could help get us on track to keep warming below 2C degrees, and ideally 1.5C.

Our second place fossil award goes to all 196 countries! Yesterday in the meeting of the Committee of Paris, it did not seem like this was a negotiation for the people or for the planet but more about highlighting different short-term self-interests that governments have. Governments from across the world need to realize that this COP is an opportunity to steer the world to a fossil free future with 100 % renewable energy for all and shape the long-term future for a prosperous and safe world for all citizens rather than just their own.

The third place fossil award goes to the EU (again!) for total hypocrisy and inconsistency. The EU has been speaking against decarbonisation while at the same time putting up statements on aiming for below 1.5 °C rather than 2°C. Being in any way serious about staying even below 2°C means there is no space for any more new coal, while phasing out existing plants. The EU needs to phase out coal and focus on a just transition to renewable energy. We have heard this story a few times here in Paris and we don’t like it, not one bit.

We have a Ray of the Day award for the Maldives and the Philippines. It was extremely encouraging to hear these countries - both prominent members of the Climate Vulnerable Forum - say very clear yesterday that the Paris agreement needs to ensure countries come back to the table in 2018, ready to table new and improved targets. Otherwise we are locking a supremely insufficient level of ambition for up to 15 years and thereby closing the door on 1.5 in practice. Maldives and the Philippines - we are behind you on this one!

Related Event: 

CAN COP 21/CMP 11 High-level Intervention, December 2015

Thank you Honorable Ministers and Distinguished Delegates,   

I am Mariam Allam from Climate Action Network.      

The pending elements of the Paris outcome are clear for all to see. Now is the time for ministers to find common ground.

But common ground should not undercut 1.5 degrees or ambition. A mention of 1.5 degrees is not enough; we need to operationalize it through a long-term goal of full decarbonization by 2050.

A fighting chance of closing the ambition gap that mostly rests with developed countries requires a revisiting of INDCs by 2018 at the latest.

In many countries, further ambition needs to be enabled. The Paris Agreement should stipulate that collective targets for the provision of finance should be set and updated in 5-year cycles, with separate mitigation and adaptation targets.  

Climate impacts and irreversible losses must be addressed by a global goal on adaptation linked with the 1.5-degree goal and means of implementation, and through a stand-alone article that ensures institutional anchoring and further work on loss and damage.

The Paris Agreement needs to transformative, and for that it needs to be both binding and dynamic. We must take stock of all elements every five years to get where we need to be.  

Thank you.        

Key Milestone Reached as Draft Climate Agreement Sent to Ministers

At the Paris Climate Summit,  a landmark achievement occurred today when technical negotiations officially closed, with the decision to send the draft climate agreement to ministers to use as the basis for negotiations. The French presidency now assumes the leadership of the 21st Conference of Parties which will get underway today. 
Over the past week, the draft agreement has been somewhat streamlined and features  bridging proposals which will help ministers work through the political issues underlying the deal, providing them with common-ground options from which they can begin their talks. 

On the ground in Paris, CAN members made the following comments: 

“What we saw yesterday was the spirit of the leaders come through. Over the past few days, we saw movement in the negotiating blocs, as different priorities emerged and the North-South dynamic has become more nuanced around most issues, except for finance, where that still is in play. Saudi Arabia is acting as a roadblock, while India is being a more constructive player in the talks. No doubt there will be drama over the next week or so, but there are landing zones visible. On the ratchet mechanism, as Facebook would say, it’s complicated. This is the least mature area of the negotiations, since we’re trying to do something fresh and new to create ambition in Paris. We know that the renewables revolution will proceed faster than we can imagine. We know extreme weather will become worse than we ever imagined. That’s why we need to make sure review our pledges before 2020, and keep from locking ourselves out of ambitious action.” 
-Liz Gallagher, E3G
"Countries agree that there should be a global goal for adaptation included in any new climate deal. What we want is that the goal should be linked to science - by ensuring that actions do not allow global temperatures to increase beyond 1.5 degrees Celsius. Already - at one degree global temperature increase - we are seeing devastating impacts on vulnerable communities and ecosystems which is why countries are calling for strong decision on loss and damage. For many, this is a matter of survival."
-Sandeep Chamling Rai, WWF
“Finance is a core part of the UN climate framework and a key driver of the outcome. Without finance, there’s no support for the poorest and most vulnerable. There’s no just transition. There’s no motivation for developing countries to make ambitious commitments. Outside of a few pledges, developed countries aren’t coming forward to deliver plans, but we simply can’t expect ambition without some assurance that there will be assistance. On differentiation, developed countries have made it very clear that the old two-tiered system will not work. Developing countries have made it very clear that a system in which every country is the same is inequitable and unacceptable. We need a third way, a middle ground, which would need to be developed with a clear set of language, and could be based around indicators on responsibility and capacity.” 
-Brandon Wu, ActionAid
Webcast: The press conference was webcast live and is available on demand here: http://unfccc6.meta-fusion.com/cop21/events/2015-12-05-11-00-climate-action-network-latest-developments-at-cop21

CAN will be holding a press briefing Monday, December 7, at 11:00 CEST. For a one-to-one interview with our spokespeople, please contact Ria Voorhaar, CAN International on +49 157 3173 5568 or email: rvoorhaar@climatenetwork.org.

Climate Action Network (CAN) is a global network of over 900 NGOs working to promote government and individual action to limit human-induced climate change to ecologically sustainable levels. More at: www.climatenetwork.org 

Related Event: 

CAN ADP 2-12 Closing Intervention, December 2015

Thank you for the opportunity to provide a written intervention at the close of ADP 2-12.

With a new draft text in hand, it now falls on ministers to bring four years of intense diplomatic efforts to a meaningful conclusion.

Paris must be a pivot point that catalyses ambition and assures an equitable outcome that places the needs of the most vulnerable at its core.

The Paris Agreement should anchor the 1.5-degree target and commit Parties to full global decarbonisation and a complete transition to renewable energy by 2050. All countries should develop decarbonisation strategies for 2050, to be submitted no later than 2020, with developing countries being provided with the MOI to develop and fulfill these plans.

Current INDCs do not put us on an adequate pathway for meeting the demands of science. To generate sustained ambition, Climate Action Network calls for the establishment of a “Paris Ambition Mechanism”: a robust ambition acceleration mechanism that synchronises, assesses, and ratchets up Parties’ commitments in 5- year cycles, including by matching conditional INDCs with finance. Its implementation must be tied to an enhanced Workstream 2 process, with the first review of INDCs taking place as early as possible, and before 2020.

Enhanced financial support will be critical to unlock the necessary global action. The Paris Agreement should stipulate that collective targets for the provision of financial support should be set and updated in 5-year cycles, with separate targets for mitigation and adaptation support. Developed countries should continue to be the primary contributors of climate finance, responsible for ensuring scaling up from the 100 billion floor after 2020. Yet, countries with comparable levels of capacity and responsibility would be in the position to complement these efforts.

Adaptation and loss and damage – in particular their distinct institutional anchoring as standalone issues in the Paris Agreement, and assurance of adequate support arrangements for both – remain defining issues for Paris. An early move on loss and damage will be crucial to inject positive momentum into the process and ensure the voices of the most vulnerable are heard.

Climate Action Network urges ministers in Paris to provide early signals on the issues outlined above in order to deliver the fair, ambitious, and transformative climate action package the world urgently requires. 



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