Keeping global warming below 1.5 °C compared to pre-industrial levels is critical for the survival of all Parties negotiating in Lima. That goes for the food and water security of all nations, as well as all our livelihoods. There can be no other conclusion from the new IPCC report.
To have a chance to stay under the 1.5 °C limit, we simply cannot delay action until 2020. Instead, we need to start the transition to a different and better energy future now. And that means stopping the lock-in of high-carbon infrastructure so we can phase out all fossil fuel emissions and phase in 100% renewable energy by 2050 at the latest.
Parties established ADP Workstream 2 because they know that the pre-2020 mitigation gap needs to be closed. Now we need a strong decision in Lima that will enable and ramp up this work rapidly to deliver really significant additional emissions reductions.
In this pre-2020 period, developed countries must not only deliver on their past commitments but further increase them. They also need to provide the support needed for more ambitious mitigation action in developing countries.
But we seem to be slowly losing sight of these crucial parts of WS2. There used to be a reminder in the draft text that urged Parties not to forget about those elements. But that disappeared, so developing country concerns about “shifting the burden” are increasing. ECO worries too that this could further undermine trust and make a meaningful outcome on enhancing the technical expert process much more difficult to achieve.
The technical process under WS2 is quite innovative, making it possible for Parties to work together in ways which are common in the “real world” but less common within the COP walls. Let’s consider how much we all enjoy working together to achieve common objectives, and remember that both here and when we return home.
There is so much “awesome stuff” on energy efficiency and renewable energy going on out there! We can highlight the best of those initiatives – informed by clear criteria that allow us to select out the most ambitious action.
Well crafted criteria can also help avoid
serious unintended consequences by building on solid technology assessment. With the proposed annual high-level meetings, we can move from merely enumerating new technical developments to tracking and promoting them. The ADP’s technical process can provide
input to political decisions, which will then help boost up the best initiatives, policies and measures. The urgency of reaching scale and maintaining integrity in our climate efforts
requires no less.