Bonn, Germany – June 15, 2014: As the UN climate negotiations in Bonn come to a close today, Climate Action Network members have cautiously welcomed the slow drumbeat building towards the international agreement due to be signed in Paris at the end of next year.
Countries have agreed to further flesh out the content of 2015 agreement by the next session in October where negotiations must kick up a gear in order to stay on track. The co-chairs of the negotiations on the Paris agreement said they would issue a new informal text by July 15 and more than 60 countries announced their support for a phase out of carbon pollution in line with CAN's own long term vision,
This momentum around the international climate agreement was matched with good news from the capitals – going into the negotiations, leading emitters such as the US and China, among other countries, gave strong political signals on climate action, announced plans to reduce emissions and introduced new plans to scale up renewable energy.
Martin Kaiser, Head of International Climate Politics, Greenpeace said:
“It’s a real breakthrough that almost one third of the world’s governments acknowledge that we have to switch from fossil fuels to clean energy in the space of one human generation. Governments can and must now act at the national and international level to make the big transformation happen and to switch to clean energy from sun and wind."
Though the progress here in Bonn by negotiators was heartening, there’s not enough on the table. Heads of Government to get involved to make the tough choices negotiators can’t
At the UNSG's Climate Summit in September, Heads of Government can roll out new renewable energy plans and end subsidies for coal financing.
Key to further building momentum will be seeing leaders fulfill their promises to put more money on the table to help poorer countries take climate action and to commit to submit their so-called contributions to the Paris agreement by March.
Tasneem Essop, WWF’s Head of Delegation to the UNFCCC, said:
“Nelson Mandela once said, 'it always seems impossible, until it’s done.' So our message to governments here is that we have hard work ahead of us. We have to see the constructive spirit of these discussions translate into real political momentum. We have to keep our focus on the pre-2020 period, and close the growing gap between the actions countries have committed to and what the science tells us we need. We have to build on the momentum we saw here in Bonn if we are to have a successful outcome in Lima.”