From Bonn to Berlin: Ministers At the Petersberg Dialogue Take Over

3 May 2013

When the climate policy train leaves the ADP2 station in Bonn today, it moves on to Berlin at the Petersberg Dialogue. Germany and the next COP host, Poland, will serve as the conductors for this next stop. Three dozen ministers from around the world have been invited to this informal exchange of views to complement the UNFCCC process. ECO is happy to hear that ministers are finally getting together to work on the next steps after Doha. We encourage ministers to put more details to key challenges identified in the past week here in Bonn. 

ECO identifies the following tasks for ministers to work on during the Petersberg Dialogue:
1. Make further progress on developing a shared understanding of how to assess individual countries’ contributions to an equitable sharing of the global mitigation effort. This should include discussions on the provision of climate finance to developing countries. A 2015 deal cannot be agreed unless the concerns around equity are resolved.
2. If you are truly serious about the 2°C commitment, you’ll need to re-double your efforts to increase ambition before 2020. Ministers at the Petersberg Dialogue should explicitly recognize that developed countries must increase their woefully inadequate mitigation pledges during 2014. Opportunities such as the KP review cannot be missed.
3. Ministers should engage in discussions on how developed and developing countries can create an upward spiral of increasing climate finance and increasing ambition in developing countries.
4. Ministers should engage in discussions on complementary measures. Warsaw could make significant progress in closing the gigatonne gap by seeing various types of complementary measures launched – such as phasing out HFCs under the Montreal Protocol or a dedicated agenda item within Workstream 2 to develop options to phase out fossil fuel subsidies.
5. Ministers should identify milestones to achieve major progress on climate finance at Warsaw. Demonstrable progress on climate finance will be an essential pre-condition for the 2015 outcome. Developed country ministers need to ensure that they can present a track record of year-by-year climate finance increases in 2015. This would lend much needed credibility to further plans for scaling up finance towards the 2020 commitment. Ministers also need to ensure that public climate finance is allocated equitably between adaptation and mitigation.
ECO has learned that German chancellor Angela Merkel will open the Petersberg Dialogue. Attending Ministers may wish to use this opportunity to ask her about Germany’s psychological state. ECO finds it difficult to understand how Germany can claim the limelight through the proclaimed Energiewende (energy transformation) to renewable energies while at the same time failing to support recent attempts to reform the EU Emission Trading System. Does the German government realise that it is starting to look schizophrenic? Strengthening the ETS is crucial for the Energiewende and more.

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