Tag: Scientific Review

CAN SBI Opening Intervention November 2015

Thank you, Mr./Madam Co-Chair,

I am Soumya Sudhakar speaking on behalf of Climate Action Network.

2015 was the first year we breached 1 degree of warming above pre-industrial levels, and already, calamitous climate impacts are leaving no region unaffected.

As affirmed by the"2013 – 2015 Review”, there is no question that the 2-degree limit is inadequate for preventing very serious harm to people and ecosystems.

CAN therefore urges SBSTA and SBI to conclude this Review here in Paris with a draft decision on strengthening the ultimate objective of the Convention; and to adopt the 1.5-degree limit as the world’s temperature goal and “defense line”.

Preventing further climate devastation also means addressing the world’s growing adaptation and loss and damage needs.

CAN expects SBSTA and SBI to clear the way for the next steps in the work of the WIM and Adaptation Committee, and to ensure that their work is sufficiently funded to deliver on an ambitious agenda in 2016 and beyond.

We also anticipate affirmation that the WIM will continue its work beyond 2016, on the basis of a new 5-year work plan that should promote new and additional finance and advance on legal and policy frameworks to address loss and damage.

Thank you. 


Le Tour du COP

Bonjour and welcome to the 21st edition of Le Tour du COP!
Participants in Paris have two weeks to show the world what they’re made of. ECO welcomes the ADP’s early start and expects governments to treat COP21 as a turning point, where they agree to a transformation that is much faster;  just; and has the needs of the most vulnerable at its core.
~ECO’s ultimate guide for winning the race~
Well-built Cycles: As any bike rider can tell you, increasingly ambitious cycles are essential for reaching the finish line.
ECO urges countries to adopt a Paris Ambition Mechanism that ensures that the overall ambition across all elements is assessed and scaled up in 5-year time frames. Contributions should be regularly updated to be in line with the 1.5-degree C limit, on the basis of regular science and equity reviews.
Current INDCs should be reviewed and ratcheted up as soon as possible, and well before countries begin implementation in 2020.
Long-term Goal: To maintain the right speed and direction, you need to know your final destination. ECO expects governments to agree to a 1.5°C temperature goal and operationalise it with a long-term goal of full global decarbonisation and 100% renewable energy access for all by 2050.
Finance: Securing the yellow (or should that be green?) jersey requires teamwork. This kind of collaboration can be fuelled by establishing collective targets for financial support to be set by the CMA every 5 years, with distinct targets for adaptation and mitigation.
Developed countries and other countries that are in a position to do so (because their levels of capability and responsibility are comparable to developed countries) would commit to contributing to meeting these targets.
Adaptation: To stay in the race for a climate-safe planet, we must be resilient by scaling up adaptation action urgently.
The Paris agreement must adopt a global goal that advances adaptation and builds resilience for all communities and ecosystems. It should recognise that higher temperatures will require greater adaptation efforts.  Achieving the adaptation goal is a common responsibility, and will require support to developing countries.
Loss and Damage Action: A durable climate regime must be able to respond to the impacts of climate change that can’t be prevented through mitigation or adaptation. The Paris agreement must be equipped with a separate provision on loss and damage, with  robust institutional arrangements and financial support to vulnerable developing countries to address these kinds of impacts.
Pre-2020 Action and Support: If you stay too far back in the pack, at some point you can’t make up the distance needed to win the race. The future of our planet is too important to risk waiting too long to make our move. Immediate action is needed to address the ambition gap. ECO urges developed countries to implement, accelerate and strengthen their pre-2020 commitments, while all countries cooperate to do more.
Through a strong Workstream 2 decision, governments must also agree to create a menu of workable policy options to scale up action. To maintain momentum, two high-level champion positions should be created and filled with leaders with a profile capable of incentivising high-level cooperation built around the good ideas coming out of the TEP. The champions should also coordinate the development and scaling up of mitigation and adaptation initiatives by matching good ideas with necessary means of implementation. These initiatives should be presented at annual high-level meetings, which can also review future progress.
Crucially, developed countries must present a plan on how they are going to meet their $100 billion promise, how to improve the imbalance between mitigation and adaptation, and specifically how support from public sources will increase until 2020.
Transparency and Integrity: The Tour has seen its fair share of unsportsmanlike conduct. To keep all Parties on their best behaviour, the Paris agreement should contain a strongtransparency framework, including MRV, to maintain trust and ensure transparency of action and support.
The new agreement must also ensure emissions reductions are real, additional, verifiable, and permanent; avoid double counting of effort; are supplemental to ambitious national mitigation; contribute to sustainable development and ensure net atmospheric benefits.
Respect for Human Rights: Good team leaders look after their people. For the Paris outcome to promote effective climate policies that benefit those affected by impacts of climate change, it must include an operative, overarching reference to human rights.
On this road through many negotiations, we have made it through some difficult stages and the finish line for an agreement is in sight. The pieces needed for a strong outcome in Paris are within reach. It is now up to our leaders to finish strong and deliver the result our world so desperately needs.
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CAN Articles and submissions published by Climate Action Network about the UNFCCC 2013-2015 Review, November 2015

In Paris, the mandate and the work of the 2013 – 2015 review will come to an end.

We have seen scientifically sound, relevant and highly interesting work of the Structured Expert Dialogue, we have learnt that the “guardrail” concept, where up to 2°C of warming is considered safe, is inadequate. Instead we need a long-term goal which makes the defence line as low as possible, ideally 1.5 degrees.

The science of the 2013 – 2015 review is clear, but the political conclusions drawn from its joint contact group (under SBI and SBSTA) were not.

Now in Paris the 2013 – 2015 review is again on the agenda of SBI and SBSTA, but also on the agenda of the COP.

To have prompt access to convincing arguments for a good final result of the 2013 – 2015 review in the attached document you find articles in CANs newsletter eco on the 2013 – 2015 review and CAN submissions on it.


A Climate Symphony

Symphonies are works of genius. Composing them requires foresight, precision and consideration of the role of every individual within the orchestra. In the context of ambition and climate change, ECO has been thinking about how we can all play from the same music sheet. Ideas like a global review strike the right chord, but Parties remain out of tune. Bonn’s slow staccato of progress is not moving toward the great symphony where the world moves to close the gap in ambition that the Parties have put forward for up until 2020. But that’s not all—the INDCs don’t sound any better. By Paris, Parties need to be in harmony.

A Paris Ambition Mechanism (PAM) must conduct all of the right sounds in this global orchestra. Here’s a three point plan:

1. A strong process agreed, in COP decisions, to review the implementation and sufficiency of the Kyoto targets and Cancun pledges, as well as the level of support. Parties, particularly developed countries, must check their efforts and ensure that they scale these up to close the pre-2020 ambition gap. The WS2 decision must also build a process that can unlock additional mitigation and adaptation action through continuous collaboration between Parties.

2. The COP21 decisions on INDCs must require that Parties assess their proposed efforts and come back with greatly increased NDCs before 2020 to get on at least a 2°C pathway, or better, 1.5°C. One way to unlock additional emission reductions is through offering developing countries the support that they have indicated they need.

3. The Paris agreement itself will establish the framework for future commitment periods. It must set clear guidance for Parties to communicate their INDCs for future periods early enough to allow for the intended efforts to be assessed against the long-term goal, the remaining carbon budget and equity, and then scaled up before they are inscribed and implemented. There should also be a clear review within each five-year commitment period to reflect on the implementation of promised efforts. The results of the review have to then inform the next round of target setting.

Of course, this entire plan depends on a clear transparency system that would enable robust assessments based on science and equity. The final concert will play out in Paris. Without this three point plan, ECO cannot see how anyone would find that performance listenable.

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ECO: Your Wingperson

Setting up a first date is a nerve-racking process. ECO has been there: spending hours overanalysing the details of what your crush did or didn’t say, writing vague texts that don’t express what you really mean, trying to play it cool by acting non-committal…

Always keen to give out relationship advice, ECO couldn’t help noticing that Parties’ discussions on the first date of the global assessment (still called a “stocktake” for  the moment) are in dire need of a helping hand—not to mention their caginess around further developments for the ambition mechanism. Here are ECO’s top tips for Parties on setting a date with destiny for a long-lasting relationship based on mutual understanding and trust:

Dont delay! It might seem scary, but someone has to initiate and suggest a clear date for your first get together. Why wait? You’re only delaying making your dreams of a fossil fuel-free future a reality! Don’t let all the intensity that’s been building up before Paris go to waste. ECO reckons the first date for an assessment to raise ambition should happen well ahead of 2020. Who’s going to seize the day and suggest 2018? Don’t forget, you need agreement on this in Paris to avoid being stood up!

Be clear about your intentions. If you want things to progress, don’t be shy about these ambitions! Put it down, in writing, that you’re keen to take things to the next level with each successive date. Having the confidence to say how quickly you’ll kick your dirty habits (like that fossil fuel addiction) is a true sign of commitment.

Make a good impression. Don’t be shy in showing your wide range of interests in adaptation and finance at these assessments, too. This will show you can make informed decisions and plan for all eventualities. What a keeper!

Regular communication. Make time for regular check-ins to communicate how you’re feeling about your current level of commitment. Be forthcoming about your expectations for robust transparency and MRV, but don’t be afraid to ask for support. Global assessments to review and raise ambition should take place every 5 years. It’s important to put this in your diaries now. Could there be a more romantic location than Paris to seal the deal?!

Look for your match. Learn about each others’ needs. Are you a developed country looking to support greater decarbonisation? Are you a developing country with a conditional INDC just needing some support? Try establishing a match-box where Parties with reciprocal needs can achieve common goals.

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The Cure

ECO is eager for the discussions on Workstream 2 to start. Without a strong outcome on pre-2020 ambition, we are likely to lose any chance of keeping global warming to below 2°C, let alone 1.5°C. ECO would like to suggest a few surgical insertions for our patient to grow into a strong and healthy workstream:

  • Recognise the ambition gap and the need to close it: The efforts under Workstream 2 have to be informed by a clear purpose: the urgency of closing the pre-2020 gap.
  • Acknowledge the need for finance and the role of the Financial Mechanism: Like the Technology Mechanism, the Financial Mechanism should be given a role. Those environmentally, economically and socially sound opportunities identified under Workstream 2, particularly in renewable energy and energy efficiency, should receive priority support.
  • Task high-level champions with matching potential and support: Appointing champions can move Workstream 2 from discussion to implementation. They need a clearer mandate to enable coalitions and to match mitigation opportunities with the necessary support.
  • Criteria for initiatives: The champions and high-level dialogues will catalyse efforts, initiatives and coalitions. Criteria are needed so we can recognise those efforts that respect human rights, social safeguards, and environmental integrity.
  • Review of implementation of initiatives: Once initiatives are launched, we need to ensure they deliver. Assessing the impact of initiatives should be added as a task for the high-level dialogue.
  • Adaptation: The status of the the paragraphs in italics regarding a technical examination process for adaptation is not clear, but ECO knows that adaptation efforts and support are insufficient and must be enhanced from now until 2020.

ECO doesn’t hold a medical degree, but we are sure that to restore the health of the text the brackets must be removed, namely those around the paragraphs on accelerated implementation and high-level co-champions.

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