G20 Working Group

The objective of the G20 Working Group is to influence the G20 countries and to work with relevant stakeholders to ensure that G20’s policies promote sustainable development, with a particular focus on increasing investments into energy efficiency and renewable energy, ensuring development planning in line with full decarbonization and to make finance available to poorer countries to ensure that these countries can adapt to climate change and put infrastructure and policies in place that are climate friendly.

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Enrique Maurtua Konstantinidis, enriquegmk@gmail.com

CAN Letter to G20 Sherpas, July 2017

In the final days before the G20 Leaders’ Summit, we urge G20 countries to demonstrate their commitment towards the strong implementation of the Paris Climate Agreement.

The United States Administration has now made its position on the Paris Agreement known, but this should by no means be a signal for other G20 countries to weaken their commitment. Indeed, a huge number of cities, businesses and other non-state actors within the US have committed “to ensure that the U.S. remains a global leader in reducing emissions.”

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Joint G20 Engagement Groups Statement on the Withdrawal of the United States from the Paris Climate Agreement

We call for responsible leadership and long-term frameworks 

Climate change represents one of the largest risks to sustainable development, gender equality, inclusiveness, equitable economic growth, and financial stability. To curtail climate change, we need fast and ambitious global action. Therefore, we, the Chairs of the Climate and Energy Taskforces of the G20 Engagement Groups Business 20, Civil 20, and Think 20 as well as the Engagement Groups Labor 20, Women 20 and Youth 20 – together with the Foundations 20 –, consider the decision of the U.S. Government to pull out of the Paris Climate Agreement as very short-sighted and irresponsible. This decision not only ignores the reality of climate change and the opportunities of an international framework for the necessary transformation but also undermines the standing of the United States as a reliable partner in solving global problems. Ignoring the threat posed by climate change endangers a sustainable future for today’s youth and coming generations. Today’s challenges are global in nature and require coordinated solutions and international cooperation. We need globally agreed upon targets and frameworks – like the Paris Agreement and the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) – to transform huge challenges into opportunities and to create a perspective for innovation, decent jobs, and a vivid civil society. 

While we welcome constructive suggestions on how to implement the Paris Agreement, the UNFCCC and many countries have made clear that the agreement cannot be renegotiated. We agree with this and strongly encourage the United States to stay in. 

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CAN Letter to G20 Sherpas, May 2017

As the Sherpas meet to prepare for the G20 Leaders’ Summit on 7-8 July, Climate Action Network calls on the G20 to deliver a strong commitment to the swift implementation of the Paris Climate Agreement.

Global economic and financial governance must be coherent with Agenda 2030’s sustainable development goals and the requirements of the Paris Agreement to safeguard development against climate risks and to provide a safe future for all citizens of the world.

We expect the G20 to signal their unfaltering commitment to the Paris Agreement. But reaffirming the Paris Agreement is not enough: The G20 must also deliver comprehensive measures for its implementation, including:

  • A strong and comprehensive G20 Action Plan on Climate and Energy for Growth, capitalizing on the impressive work of the Sustainability Working Group, the Green Finance Study Group and the Task Force for Climate Related Financial Disclosure.
  • Concrete steps towards zero-emission and climate-resilient economies as soon as possible, including through initial long-term low-carbon development strategies with concrete sectoral targets by 2018.
  • Aligning financial flows and markets with the goals of Paris Agreement, shifting investments away from fossil fuels towards renewable, clean energy provision for all. A key element of this is a commitment to phasing out fossil fuel subsidies by 2020 and phasing in an effective price on carbon.

Civil society is not alone in this: Businesses (B20), think tanks (T20) and civil society (C20) issued a joint statement for a sustainable energy transition, calling for the G20 to take the lead on implementing the Paris Agreement. Last week, 217 investors, representing more than USD 15 trillion in assets, called on the G20 to put in place measures to implement their NDCs with “the utmost urgency.” 93 of the world’s largest companies and the 48 nations most vulnerable to climate change have committed to 100% renewable energy. The world is moving in one direction.

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G20 Issue Brief: Sustainable Infrastructure, February 2017

The additional up-front investment required for a sustainable infrastructure pathway by 2030 is estimated at less than 5% above baseline levels, and is very likely to be more than “offset” by the resulting energy and fuel savings from modern clean energy and energy efficiency, with large additional benefits resulting from avoided climate impacts and air pollution related health costs, as well as reduced risk of stranded assets. Present externalities of and subsidies to burning fossil fuels amount to a staggering 6.5% of global GDP.

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G20 Issue Brief: Phasing Out Fossil Fuel Subsidies, February 2017

It is estimated that fossil fuel subsidies contributed up to 36% of global emissions between 1980 and 2010, while also exacerbating health problems, air and water local pollution. Limiting their use is a key step towards reducing inequality and achieving inclusive growth, since fossil fuel subsidies disproportionately benefit the middle and upper classes. Fossil fuel subsidies constitute an inefficient use of scarce public funds, and inhibit the market penetration of price-competitive renewables.

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G20 Issue Brief: Ratification of the Montreal Protocol Amendment on HFCs, February 2017

In the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol adopted in 2016, parties agreed to phase-down hydrofluorocarbons, the fastest growing climate pollutants. Once implemented, this phase-down could prevent emissions of 80 GtCO2e by 2050, reducing global warming by up to 0.5ºC by the end of the century compared to business as usual.

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