CAN Briefing Paper: Post-2015 Reaction to the 26th July post-2015 draft, July 2015

~~The Climate Action Network welcomes the final draft outcome document dates 26th July. We are pleased with the increased focus on sustainable energy and resilience in the declaration. We particularly welcome the inclusion of a temperature reference in Paragraph 31 and strongly urge Member States to keep the following sentence: “holding the increase in global average temperature below 2 degrees or 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels”.

However, we think that a few more steps must be taken in order to ensure that the post-2015 agenda leads us to a truly sustainable future by 2030.

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Civil Society Statement on how to strenghten the Post-2015 declaration with respect to climate change, July 2015

POST-2015 INTERGOVERNMENTAL NEGOTIATIONS- INTERGOVERNMENTAL NEGOTIATIONS ON THE OUTCOME DOCUMENT

20th July, 2015

Speaker: Noelene Nabulivou, Fiji

 

My name is Noelene Nabulivou, I am from Fiji, in the Pacific. I am here to remind us all, that climate change is real and happening.

We welcome the opportunity to offer comments on today’s discussions, giving special attention to the issue of climate change. Several member states have already acknowledged that the new draft contains some welcome references to climate change, resilience, sustainable energy  and of course CBDR. It has been also mentioned and we agree, that climate change, gender equality, healthy ecosystems, human rights, poverty eradication, and respect for planetary boundaries are inextricably linked.

However occasional and inconsistent references are not enough. The text still falls short of a vision to embrace a future in which we completely phase out fossil fuel emissions, phase in renewable energy and remain within planetary boundaries.

We urge governments to give people hope by including a reference to limiting global warming to 1.5ºC and remaining within planetary boundaries; and to heighten trust by explaining how we will achieve this goal with specific references to phasing-out greenhouse gas emissions completely and by taking immediate urgent mitigation action.

We also need a clear reference to climate justice by acknowledging that the poorest are hit hardest and that support for adaptation, loss and damage will be available.

People need certainty that governments will act to protect their fundamental and universal human rights from the adverse effects of climate change, in a manner consistent with existing legal obligations and principles in line with best available science.

Further, the Post-2015 agenda must ensure private sector accountability, including for transnational corporations in their cross-border activities.

Finally, we urge governments to be explicit about both infrastructural and psychosocial resilience; to replace all reference to “modern energy” with “safe, ​clean, sustainable and renewable energy services”; and to have a clear reference to ocean acidification and phase-out emissions.

These proposals will strengthen the draft and people's understanding of the challenges ahead. The Post-2015 agenda must speak to everyone - No more must drown, no more must die of thirst and hunger, and no one need to leave their countries because of climate crises.

Endorsements:

Climate Action Network, PICAN, Pacific Partnerships on Gender, Climate Change and Sustainable Development, Pacific CSO COP21 Urgent Action Campaign (Fiji], DIVA for Equality; DAWN, International-Lawyers.Org, and Centre for Human Rights and Climate Change Research, and the Psychology Coalition of NGOs at the UN, Centre for Human Rights and Development Studies (CHRDS), Pathways to Peace (PTP), Institute for Planetary Synthesis (IPS), Women's Environment and Development Organization (WEDO), Christian Aid.

 

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CAN reacts as Finance for Development Conference closes in Addis Ababa

ADDIS ABABA, JULY 16, 2015:  Financing for Development Conference closed in Addis Ababa today with the release of an outcome document summing up governments’ thinking on how to generate and manage the funds necessary to allow countries to develop sustainably. The conference comes ahead of two big summits - the first in New York in September and the second in Paris in December - which seek to forge international agreements which eliminate poverty, reduce inequality and fight climate change.
 
Aïssatou Diouf, coordinator Climate Action Network West Africa, said from Addis: 
 
"With climate impacts hitting home around the world and the solutions to the crisis in our grasp, what’s missing from this outcome is a strong call to richer countries to stop using flatlining Overseas Development Aid to meet the climate finance commitments they made in 2009: $100 billion a year by 2020. 
 
It's time to start facing the hard truth: for Paris to deliver, donor countries need to come clean on existing commitments and provide increased public climate finance once the new agreement comes into effect in 2020. Ministers meetings in July should be looking into the solutions to scale up climate finance without diverting aid away from education and health: the upcoming EU-Financial Transaction Tax and EU-ETS reform provide us with two amazing opportunities."
 
To interview a CAN expert on the ground in Addis Ababa, please contact Ria Voorhaar - rvoorhaar@climatenetwork.org - +49 157 3173 5568
 
About CAN: The Climate Action Network (CAN) is a worldwide network of over 900 Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) from over 100 countries working to promote government and individual action to limit human-induced climate change to ecologically sustainable levels. www.climatenetwork.org   
 
 

CAN Briefing: Post-2015 Final Draft from Climate Change Perspective, July 2015

Climate Action Network welcomes the opportunity to offer further comments and recommendations to the final post-2015 draft text in order to progress towards securing a truly sustainable development agenda. CAN believes the post-2015 development framework must be a clear and unanimous call to the world that achieving sustainable development, eradicating poverty and tackling climate change are inextricably linked and at the same time give hope these challenges can be addressed simultaneously.

While some good references to climate change, resilience and sustainable energy were included in the new draft, the text still falls short of  incorporating the fundamental sustainable development challenge entailed in climate change and a vision to embrace a future in which we fully phase out fossil fuel emissions.

Key recommendations
The post-2015 final draft must be strengthened, inter alia by:
1. Incorporating clear reference to limiting global warming to 2 or 1.5°C in §27,
2. Incorporating the need to phase-out carbon emissions in §27;
3. Strengthening the role of and support for adaptation (§9, §27 & §28) to climate impacts and addressing loss and damage (§27); and
4. By recognizing climate change is not only an environmental issue, but also an economic, social and political challenge. A strong statement on this interlinkage must be included  in the Preamble
 

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CAN responds as China launches climate action plan towards Paris agreement

China has lodged its climate action commitment towards the new climate agreement which is due to be signed in Paris this December.

The pledge included a commitment to slash the carbon intensity of its economy between 60-65% by 2030 based on 2005 levels with the aim of peaking pollution levels by around 2030. China has also committed to increasing its national share of low carbon energy to 20% by 2030. 
 

CAN members made the following comments:

“China has only ever been on defence when it comes to climate change, but today’s announcement is the first step for a more active role. For success in Paris, however, all players – including China and the EU – need to up their game. Today’s pledge must be seen as only the starting point for much more ambitious action. It does not fully reflect the significant energy transition that is already taking place in China. Given the dramatic fall in coal consumption, robust renewable energy uptake, and the urgent need to address air pollution, we believe the country can go well beyond what it has proposed today.” Li Shuo, climate analyst Greenpeace China

“This is the first major developing country emitter to set a total emissions peak target. In doing so, China has committed to both global climate security and to a transformational energy transition at home. We emphasize the importance of the fact that China has made commitments beyond its responsibility as a developing country. But we hope that China will continue to find ways to reduce its emissions, which will in turn drive global markets for renewable energy and energy efficiency.” Samantha Smith, Global Climate and Energy Initiative leader, WWF.

"It is clear that the Intended Nationally Determined Contribution (INDC) which was lodged by China today is a serious step forward for the country's transformation to low carbon and climate resilient development. Already a world leader in renewable energy, the government has announced it will roll out as much low carbon energy as the entire US electricity system by 2030. While the plan is indeed a strong effort, it should be viewed as the floor upon which additional efforts will be built. There are early indications that the country could exceed the targets it has set for itself. Bold actions are required from all levels of governments as well as from the indispensable private sector and civil society. China's commitment towards the Paris agreement is an important milestone on the way to Paris and can catalyse stronger action from the rest of the world." Bi Xinxin, coordinator CAN China. 

About CAN: The Climate Action Network (CAN) is a worldwide network of over 900 Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) from over 100 countries working to promote government and individual action to limit human-induced climate change to ecologically sustainable levels. www.climatenetwork.org  

Contact: Ria Voorhaar, CAN International, email: rvoorhaar@climatenetwork.org, phone: +49 157 3173 5568

CAN Submission: Technology Executive Committee on the TNA and TAP Processes, June 2015

CAN thanks the Secretariat of the UNFCCC and the members of the Technology Executive Committee for the opportunity to comment on the Technology Needs Assessment and the Technology Action Plan processes. In response to the questions posed by the Secretariat on this topic, CAN submits the following responses, on which we would welcome a broader discussion with the TEC. 

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Civil Society Reactions: Papal Encyclical for Climate Action

Vatican City, Italy - June 18, 2015 -  NGOs have today welcomed Pope Francis' strong moral case for people and leaders to tackle climate change delivered in today's historic Papal Encyclical.

In a rare open letter that will shape Catholic teaching, His Holiness Pope Francis laid out our moral imperative to “care for our common home” and end the inequalities which are driving interlinked problems of climate change and poverty. Pope Francis is the latest and most high profile voice to join a long list of people, from scientists, business leaders, economists, labour leaders and youth, who understand that taking action on climate change and empowering poorer countries to develop sustainably is both morally and economically right. The fossil fuel industry is increasingly the sole and isolated voice opposing the groundswell of momentum for action. 

Today's call is set to provide a massive boost to two big summits happening this year on sustainable development and climate change. Politicians have a chance to listen to their people and deliver plans to move towards a poverty-free world powered by 100% renewable energy at the UN General Assembly on the Sustainable Development Goals in September (the Pope will be speaking at the UNGA and to the US Congress) and COP21 in December.

NGOs and their allies in the faith community made the following comments:

“The coming months will be critical for decisions about development and care for the planet. We hope that politicians and decision makers will take the strong messages of the encyclical on board and that the outcomes of these international meetings will put the common interest first and be able to make the difference.”  Bernd Nilles, Secretary General, CIDSE. 

“The call by His Holy Father, His Holiness Pope Francis, reminds us that climate change is first and foremost about people. The gross and growing inequality between rich and poor has been made worse by the climate crisis. Moreover, the emissions of the rich are driving weather extremes that hit the poorest hardest. Only when world leaders heed the Pope's moral leadership on these two defining issues, inequality and climate change, will our societies become safer, more prosperous and more equal.” Winnie Byanyima, Executive Director, Oxfam International.

“From William Wilberforce and the abolition of slavery in Britain to Martin Luther King Jr.’s fight for equal rights in the US and Desmond Tutu’s victory over apartheid in South Africa, Christians acting on their sense of moral duty have a history of transforming society for the better. If Christians in Europe and all over the world heed its call as many are already doing, the Pope’s Encyclical could well spark another transformation on a global scale – and Europe and the world would be a better place for it.” Christine Allen, Director of Policy and Public Affairs at Christian Aid 

"This beautiful and urgent call to action from Pope Francis, besides challenging our lifestyles and behaviors, has perfect timing ahead of the COP21 summit. It was Pope Francis himself who said he wanted the encyclical to influence the international climate negotiations, so now it's time for Catholics and all people of good will to mobilize and remind world leaders of the moral imperative of climate action." Tomás Insua, Movement Coordinator of the Global Catholic Climate Movement.

“The World Council of Churches welcomes Pope Francis’ encyclical which catalyses what churches and ecumenical organizations have been doing for decades - caring for the earth and fighting for climate justice. By affirming human induced climate change and its impacts on the poorest and most vulnerable communities, the Encyclical is an important call to urgently act as individuals, citizens and also at the international level to effectively respond to the climate crisis.” Dr Guillermo Kerber, Programme Executive on Care for Creation and Climate Justice, World Council of Churches.

"As co-organizers of the June 28 March in Rome to St Peter's Square - Una Terra, Una Famiglia Umana - the Our Voices movement looks forward to showing that an incredibly diverse, rainbow coalition of Catholics, followers of all faiths, environmentalists and people of good will support the Pope's call for action by world leaders. The Encyclical shows that the global multifaith tide of demand for climate action is growing dramatically." Reverend Fletch Harper, Co-ordinator at Our Voices and Director at Greenfaith USA.

"Greenpeace welcomes the valuable intervention of Pope Francis in humanity's common struggle to prevent catastrophic climate change. This first encyclical on the environment brings the world a step closer to that tipping point where we abandon fossil fuels and fully embrace clean renewable energy for all, by the middle of the century. Everyone, whether religious or secular, can and must respond to this clarion call for bold urgent action." Kumi Naidoo, International Executive Director at Greenpeace.

 

“We affirm Pope Francis’ moral framing of the threats posed by climate change. We have too many brothers and sisters around the world living on the edge of poverty whose livelihoods are threatened—and too many little ones in our congregations set to inherit a dangerously broken world—to believe otherwise. For too long the church has been silent about the moral travesty of climate change. Today, the Pope has said, ‘Enough is enough,’ and the Christian Reformed Church welcomes his voice.” Dr. Steven Timmermans, Executive Director, Christian Reformed Church in North America 

“Pope Francis’s encyclical has added a moral imperative to the financial case for preventing catastrophic climate change. Carbon Tracker’s financial analysis has shown that plans to invest trillions of dollars in high-cost fossil fuel projects does not make economic sense. Pope Francis makes it clear it doesn’t make moral or ethical sense either. These fossil fuel assets that may never be burned anyway pose significant risks for investors and will impact the pension pots of millions of ordinary people,” Anthony Hobley, CEO of the Carbon Tracker Initiative

"The Pope’s moral call to protect the environment and humanity is backed by science. Pope Francis has hit the nail on the head by connecting the climate crisis with its root causes of huge consumption, massive inequality and destruction of ecosystems. As he says, real solutions need to be based on equity, justice and morality." Harjeet Singh, Climate Policy Manager for ActionAid International

“Climate change will be felt mainly through water – too much in times of flood, too little in times of drought, and in many places increasingly saline or polluted. Though the world’s poorest have done least to contribute to this global catastrophe, they are the most vulnerable to climate change and least able to cope. As the world’s temperature rises, basic needs for water – including drinking, cooking, washing, sanitation and hygiene – must be given priority, to ensure the health and well-being of those most vulnerable, and to make communities more resilient to climatic changes. Developed world support to help least-developed countries adapt to the new realities will be essential.” Louise Whiting, Senior Policy Analyst, Water Security and Climate Change, WaterAid UK

About CAN: The Climate Action Network (CAN) is a worldwide network of over 900 Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) from over 100 countries working to promote government and individual action to limit human-induced climate change to ecologically sustainable levels. www.climatenetwork.org  

Contact: Ria Voorhaar, CAN International, email: rvoorhaar@climatenetwork.org, phone: +49 157 3173 5568

CAN Briefing: Comments on the Post-2015 Zero Draft, June 2015

~Climate Action Network values the efforts by the Co-Chairs to put forward a zero draft text to move the discussions on the post-2015 agenda forward. We believe the proposal’s structure can facilitate further discussions on some of the key principles and elements to strengthen the declaration in order to guarantee the desired implementation and outcome of the goals and targets. However, the preamble and declaration in the zero draft fall short of adequately addressing the important issue of climate change and sustainable energy access. We note with great concern that the framing and inclusion of these issues have been weakened from the chapeau of the OWG report  and the Secretary General’s Synthesis Report .

Climate change impacts are unfolding rapidly, thereby undermining the livelihoods of the poor and vulnerable. The declaration must drive inspiration and help communicate what the new development agenda is about. It must ensure that climate change is treated as a development issue because it threatens poverty eradication and puts at risk the achievement of the sustainable development goals and targets. It must be clear about the causes of climate change and that it impacts the poorest and most vulnerable the hardest. But it must also recognize that solutions such as sustainable energy systems are emerging rapidly, which can inspire all members of society to act against climate change and end poverty in the next 15 years.

Climate Action Network would like to offer our immediate comments in order to further strengthen some of the key elements of the declaration to effectively reflect the severe threat emerging from climate change, and the opportunities of decisive action to achieve real sustainable development.

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CAN Closing ADP 2.9 Intervention for UNFCCC Website, 11 June 2015

Thank you, honourable Co-Chairs and distinguished delegates for the opportunity to submit a written statement for the website.

CAN believes that the end of the fossil fuel era is inevitable, and the dawning of the age of renewables is unstoppable. The recent G7 declaration points towards this. The world is watching to make sure their governments are part of the solution, and not part of the problem. 

This session has provided an opportunity for enhanced trust building and contributed to a sense of ownership by governments of the draft text for Paris.

Yet the past two weeks in Bonn have left us with feeling that a sense of urgency and purpose has eluded the negotiations. 

Climate change is real, and happening now. As highlighted by the outcomes of the Structured Expert Dialogue 2013-2015, safeguarding human rights, security and well-being requires all efforts to be made to limit global temperature rise to below 1.5 degrees Celsius.

The first step towards realising this scientific and moral imperative is an urgent need for all countries to increase their mitigation ambition in the pre-2020 period. 

This increase of ambition in developing countries should be supported by ensuring adequate and predictable means of implementation. 

A roadmap towards achieving the $100 billion per year target and clear milestones towards this target by developed countries is essential for increasing ambition in developing countries for the pre-2020 period, along with developed countries increasing their own mitigation targets.

But our work is just beginning. A high level of ambition must carry over to the post-2020 period with all countries putting forward ambitious INDCs as early as possible.

Parties at COP 21 would need to decide on a mechanism with the intent to periodically upscale and enhance mitigation, adaptation and means of implementation to be provided. CAN would like the duration of this enhancement to be 5 years. This will ensure that we do not end up increasing the existing gigatonne gap, and that we continuously have a forward direction instead of a "one step forward, two steps back” approach to ambition.

Since no country can escape the realities of climate change, we support a global adaptation goal that links adaptation requirements to mitigation efforts. This goal should be predicated on the principles of appropriateness, gender equality, and a rights-based approach to adaptation.

However, we must also recognise that mitigation and adaptation efforts cannot always be sufficient. Loss and damage should therefore be anchored in the 2015 agreement on an equal footing with adaptation, and additional finance ensured.

Honourable delegates, the world is counting on you to rise to the challenge and demonstrate the necessary foresight, courage and leadership.

Thank you.

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CAN Intervention in the Bonn Climate Change Conference SBSTA & SBI Closing Plenary, 11 June, 2015

Fanny Petitbon (SBSTA):

Thank you Madam Co-Chair and distinguished delegates.

My name is Fanny Petitbon and I am speaking on behalf of Climate Action Network.

CAN welcomes the conclusion of the three issues that remained open after the adoption of the Warsaw Framework for REDD+. The focus should now switch to the implementation of all the provisions and guidance produced in the past years ensuring the highest standards of social and environmental integrity.

We encourage Parties to secure the links of REDD+ to the Paris climate agreement to guarantee long-term support and results.

Negotiations on the Framework for Various Approaches fell short of what was needed to assist the ADP negotiations in the avoidance of double-counting and the assurance of common standards for environmental integrity and net benefits in any ADP outcome.        

While it is clear that this technical work will take some time, we urge Parties to leverage their engagement in SBSTA to ensure that the conclusions of the COPs from Durban and Lima are reflected in any ADP recognition of market mechanisms.

Two valuable SBSTA workshops on agriculture showed that some workable solutions exist and are already being implemented to reduce the risks that farmers face.

We expect Parties to use the conversation from the workshop to inform negotiations going forward, and hope next year's workshops will provide for active civil society participation so that we can share our successful experiences with Parties.

Thank you.

 

Naomi Ages (SBI):

Thank you, Mr. Co-Chair and distinguished delegates.

I am Naomi Ages and I am speaking on behalf of Climate Action Network.

Last week’s Multilateral Assessments provided a valuable opportunity for mutual learning and enhanced transparency between Parties on their mitigation efforts. 

But they also highlighted yet again the collective international ambition gap in keeping global temperature rise limited to 1.5 degrees Celsius.  

The Structured Expert Dialogue that concluded in February confirmed this target as necessary if we are to avoid many of the disastrous impacts of climate change.

Climate Action Network strongly recommends that the SED’s findings inform the Paris outcome and was discouraged to see some Parties in Bonn attempt to skirt this scientific and moral imperative.

We would also like to underline the vital role that civil society plays in the UNFCCC process.

Having closely followed the budgetary discussions that took place during this session, CAN would like to highlight that it is not in favour of cutting funds for observer participation. 

Civil society has played an indispensable and unique role in the UN process since 1946, and the goals of the Convention cannot be achieved without broad and inclusive non-state actor involvement.

We thank you for your understanding.

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