Tag: japan

EU: When 40 Is Only 33

Coming to Warsaw, ECO was feeling somewhat optimistic. Fresh statistics suggested that global CO2 emissions growth has slowed a bit, which could be the first sign of an approaching emissions peak. In September, China announced took a major positive step -- a direction change in its coal policy. Three key industrial provinces must peak and decline coal consumption by 2017 and ban new dirty coal plants.

But then came the damaging announcements by Australia and Japan, whose shifts are in the negative direction.
After a week like this, we certainly don’t need more bad news.  But according to rumours, the European Commission is preparing a proposal for a 2030 climate target of a meagre 40% reduction against 1990 levels.

The EU has long been seen as setting a global high water mark on ambition.  Yet now it is undermining its own objective to keep global temperature below 2°C.

Yes, 40% seems like a lot – so let’s explain what this means.  A 40% target for 2030 would in practice bring the EU on a pathway towards real emission cuts of merely 33% by 2030 due to the amount of surplus emission allowances in the system.  Indeed, in order to accommodate the huge oversupply of surplus pollution permits in the EU’s carbon market, any 2030 target would need to be 7% stricter.

Instead, the proposed level would be inadequate to steer the EU’s energy system away from coal, or to drive transformational investments into renewables and energy savings. Instead of investing in clean technologies, EU industries can largely escape meaningful pollution pricing and rely on the overhang of surplus emission allowances on the EU’s carbon market well into the next decade. Fortunately, 40% is not the only number in the mix. The UK has called for an EU target of 50% by 2030, while Finland’s environment minister stated the EU’s fair share is between 40% and 60% emissions cuts by 2030.

The EU “Green Growth” group, consisting of the UK, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, The Netherlands, Belgium, Portugal, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Slovenia, Slovakia, Romania and Estonia, have called for an ambitious EU emissions reduction offer to be put on the table before Ban Ki-moon’s leaders summit in 2014.

So when the European Commission publishes its policy proposal in January and EU leaders discuss it during the EU summit in March 2014, they must insure that the rumour of 40% (remember, that's effectively 33%) doesn’t turn into any kind of reality.

The spotlight is really on Germany, where coalition talks are also rumoured to be considering a minimum 40% climate target by 2030. Germany, of all countries, should know how important it is to get the incentives and infrastructure correct across Europe in order to deliver its own Energiewende – and a 40% target wouldn’t do that. Climate Action Network Europe is calling on the EU to commit to at least 55% domestic emission cuts by 2030, on top of which would come the EU’s international effort. Moreover, a binding EU renewable target of at least 45% and an energy savings target of 40% are needed to provide certainty for investors and drive  true transformation of the energy system.

Does the Commission have in mind any kind of equity indicators whatsoever when planning for a 40% target?  And how big a global emissions budget is assumed? It doesn’t sound like the EU is assuming anything that would give a reasonable chance of staying below 1.5/2°C.  

To be sure, the EU has a long-term emission reduction goal of 80 to 95% reductions from 1990 levels by 2050. Achieving this would be in the EU’s own economic interests as well as inspiring others to follow suit – a real ‘ambition driver’. But 40% by 2030, with all the loopholes in the system, would take the EU off track. We will hear reassuring voices next week as ministers arrive, but what will they be assuring us?  We need to see the EU we have until recently known – all about ambition, action and the clean energy future.

 

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Kyoto's Legacy Up In Smoke As Japan Slashes Climate Action

Fossil of the Day - Wedding Special 15/11/2013

      
Photo: David Tong, Adopt A Negotiator

Today, Japan slashed its 2020 emission reduction target - with the new pledge equating to a 3.1% INCREASE in pollution from 1990 levels. The UNFCCC is about  negotiating to raise the level of climate action, so this must be a bad joke! 

In 2009, Japan announced an emissions reduction of 25% below 1990 levels by 2020. We urge all Japanese delegates to read the IPCC report and do their math again and reconsider their commitment to this prehistoric target. The new target is a backwards step compared to Tokyo's pledge in the first commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol, which was -6% from 1990. 

How is Japan expecting to contribute to raising the international level of ambition if the third largest economy says it can only increase their emissions? To add insult to injury, it looks like Japan, who has contributed to the climate crisis  and has the means to contribute to solving it, is trying to hide weak ambition behind strong rhetoric. There are no excuses, we know you can do better. We don’t want nuclear power and don’t want climate change. Please reconsider and come back with target that is really ambitious!

About CAN: The Climate Action Network (CAN) is a worldwide network of over 850 Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) in more than 100 working to promote government and individual action to limit human0induced climate change to ecologically sustainable levels. www.climatenetwork.org 

About the fossils: The Fossil of the Day awards were first presented at the climate talks in 1999, in Bonn, initiated by the German NGO Forum. During United Nations climate change negotiations (www.unfccc.int), members of the Climate Action Network (CAN), vote for countries judged to have done their 'best' to block progress in the negotiations in the last days of talks. 

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Global Civil Society Responds to Japan’s New 2020 Target

Japan announced its new 2020 emissions reduction target today at the UN climate negotiations in Poland. While parties are negotiating to raise the level of ambition during this year’s meeting, Japan has now abandoned their 25% reduction target from 1990, and proposed 3.1% increase compared to 1990 levels.

Wael Hmaidan, Director of CAN International said in a statement, “Japan's new targets are outrageous. This will have a serious and negative impact on the negotiations. Withdrawing from climate action is like a slap in the face of those suffering from the impacts of climate change such as the Philippines.”
 
Civil society was expecting more from the world’s third largest economic country, but instead they are racing to the bottom.
 
According to Japanese Climate Action Network spokesperson, Kimiko Hirata “Stopping nuclear power is not a legitimate reason for lowering their target. There are countries putting ambitious targets shifting their energy source from nuclear to renewables.”
 
To abandon the 25% emission reduction target and put forward a target with increased emissions is a betrayal to the international community. One of the most important issues at this year’s negotiations is to address the gap between the mitigation pledges of Parties and the emission reduction needed to keep the average global surface temperature rise to 2℃ from pre-industrial levels.
 
Another problematic country at these negotiations has been Australia, which tabled legislation to repeal their price on carbon.

Australian civil society is taking to the streets on Sunday to oppose their government’s announcements.

ON DEMAND WEBCAST of  'COLOURFUL STUNT' DURING PRESS CONFERENCE AVAILABLE HERE:  http://unfccc4.meta-fusion.com/kongresse/cop19/templ/play.php?id_kongres...

Contact:  Ria Voorhaar, Email: rvoorhaar@climatenetwork.org, +49 157 317 355 68.

 

 

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Media Advisory -Civil Society Responds as Japan Slashes Climate Action

Warsaw, Poland - November 15, 2013: Japan will be handed a special "Fossil Of the Day" award at a colorful press conference today at which civil society will slam Japan's decision to slash its mitigation target. 

Japan is the second rich country this week to walk away from climate action, with Australia tabling legislation to repeal its carbon price earlier this week.  

At the press conference, activists will perform a powerful visual stunt highlighting the hurtful timing of Japan and Australia's announcements given the disaster in the Philippines which overshadowed the opening of the UN climate negotiations this week. 

Speakers will then provide a reaction and analysis to Japan's announcement. 

Who:

  • Kimiko Hirata, director, CAN Japan - will respond to Japan's announcement;
  • Wael Hmaidan, director, CAN International - who will reflect on the first week of the negotiations and the international context of Japan's announcement; 
  • Marion Vieweg, Climate Analytics - who will present an analysis on what Japan's announcement means in terms of overall climate action;
  • Heather Bruer, Australian Youth Climate Coalition - on the national day of action being held in Australia in response to Canberra's axing of their climate action plan. 

What:  A visual stunt, followed by reaction and analysis to Japan's decision to slash climate action.

When: 11am-12pmCET, today Friday November 15th.

Where: COP19 Venue, National Stadium Warsaw, Press Conference Room 2 located on Level -2/Zone E6, right next to Plenary 2.

The press conference will also be webcast live here: http://unfccc4.meta-fusion.com/kongresse/adp02/templ/ovw_live.php?id_kongressmain=241

Contact:

For more information or for one-on-one interviews with the NGO experts, please contact Climate Action Network International’s communications coordinator Ria Voorhaar on +49 (0) 157 317 35568 or rvoorhaar@climatenetwork.org

Climate Action Network (CAN) is the world’s largest network of civil society organizations working together to promote government action to address the climate crisis, with more than 850 members in over 100 countries. 

Japan: Cool Earth 50 or Scorched Earth?

Rumour has it that that Japan, the third largest economy in the world, is going to announce its new 2020 target here in Warsaw. This would be Japan’s contribution to closing the gigatonne gap, right?

But ECO is puzzled by the target number circulating in media reports. At first we thought Japan must have made a mistake on where to put the decimal point.  But it seems the number really will be one digit smaller than it should be.

In fact, if the reported number is true, Japan would be increasing its emissions above 1990 levels.  Surely it cannot be true, Japan! ECO doesn’t want to believe wild rumors and instead expects Japan will present a target that honors the name of "Cool Earth 50" -- a plan the current Prime Minister originally released to reduce CO2 emissions by 50% by 2050.

The devastating catastrophe in Fukushima taught us that nuclear is not the solution for climate change. It is good to hear that nuclear is not included in the target the government is considering, but that cannot be the reason for a low target.
ECO hopes that two and a half years after the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami, Japan finally shifts its energy development fully to renewables and takes the lead in raising the level of climate ambition.

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Which Way, Japan?

ECO is concerned to hear that Japan may not keep up its 25% reduction target by 2020 compared to 1990, and instead is considering reducing it to around 5 to 9% (domestic reduction target). 

Of course, Japan has already undermined the momentum of the negotiations by rejecting the Kyoto CP2. If Japan now lowers its voluntary pledge under the Cancun agreement, that reduces ambition and credibility.
 
ECO worries that perhaps Japan’s voice might be not taken seriously anymore. 
 
To some extent, the country has already lost its credibility in the last two years. Now is the time for the Japanese Minister to step up and announce that Japan aims to do everything possible to keep the 25% target intact. It should also pledge appropriate funding for the period 2013 to 2015. This is the only way to regain its positive and constructive role for the global effort to tackle climate change.
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Civil Society Awards Fossil To Rich Countries Who Shun Kyoto Commitment

Fossil of the Day - Day 1 at COP18

 

The First Place Fossil is awarded to USA, Canada, Russia, Japan and New Zealand for running away from a legally binding, multilateral rules based regime.  To the USA – seriously, get over your exceptionalism and agree to common accounting rules already.  Canada you are exceptional in ways we cannot communicate diplomatically during a fossil presentation, but it is not good - withdrawing from the Kyoto Protocol is completely unacceptable and your target is an insult to the most vulnerable.  As for Japan, Russia and New Zealand - you still have a chance to support the only legally binding regime and commit to ambitious targets for the second commitment period (and that means no AAU carry over, Russia).  We are looking to hearing from you by the end of the week, because really, do we want to be lumped into this low-ambition group?

The Second Place Fossil is awarded to New Zealand. Unlike its neighbor to the west, New Zealand decided not to put its target into the second commitment period, citing spurious grounds when the reality is that it is just a massive display of irresponsibility.  It's island partners in the Pacific should think again before ever trusting NZ again.

The Ray of the Day goes to the EU for having already reached their pledged 2020 target almost 10 years ahead of time!(1). They really are the fastest under-achievers in the KP! But wait!? The EU has told us that they are not planning to increase their 2020 emissions pledge from the already achieved 20%. How outrageous! Is the EU really planning to go for the next 10 years without doing ANY further emissions reductions? EU you will need to quickly increase your target or the clouds will appear and it will start raining fossils on your negotiating table.

    

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Civil Society Awards Fossil To Rich Countries Who Shun Kyoto Commitment

The First Place Fossil is awarded to USA, Canada, Russia, Japan and New Zealand for running away from a legally binding, multilateral rules based regime.  To the USA – seriously, get over your exceptionalism and agree to common accounting rules already.  Canada you are exceptional in ways we cannot communicate diplomatically during a fossil presentation, but it is not good - withdrawing from the Kyoto Protocol is completely unacceptable and your target is an insult to the most vulnerable.  As for Japan, Russia and New Zealand - you still have a chance to support the only legally binding regime and commit to ambitious targets for the second commitment period (and that means no AAU carry over, Russia).  We are looking to hearing from you by the end of the week, because really, do we want to be lumped into this low-ambition group?

The Second Place Fossil is awarded to New Zealand. Unlike its neighbor to the west, New Zealand decided not to put its target into the second commitment period, citing spurious grounds when the reality is that it is just a massive display of irresponsibility.  It's island partners in the Pacific should think again before ever trusting NZ again.

The Ray of the Day goes to the EU for having already reached their pledged 2020 target almost 10 years ahead of time!(1). They really are the fastest under-achievers in the KP! But wait!? The EU has told us that they are not planning to increase their 2020 emissions pledge from the already achieved 20%. How outrageous! Is the EU really planning to go for the next 10 years without doing ANY further emissions reductions? EU you will need to quickly increase your target or the clouds will appear and it will start raining fossils on your negotiating table.

  

 

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