Ever been in a small crowded room when people put up an umbrella? Awkward, right? That’s how it’s feeling here in Katowice.
The Umbrella group is an interesting bunch, and, in many ways, they don’t have all that much in common. Canada is today’s crown jewel €“ a little ECO- round of applause for their plans to raise their emissions targets by 2020 – we look forward to hearing more when Minister McKenna is in Katowice next week. And at the G20, Australia, Canada, Russia and Japan all showed their unflinching commitment to Paris, whereas the US played the awkward child asking for its own special paragraph. And the likes of Iceland, Israel and Norway go back and forth but are always keen to embrace the latest clean tech. We are still waiting to see if New Zealand will step up and become a champion in climate leadership or simply waste all its potential.
This diverse bunch might be limping on but if they really want to remain true to the Paris Agreement that means doubling down on a strong transparency regime. We thought these guys were all about being at the cutting edge €” building on the present €” modernising for the future And yes, here we’re talking about doing MORE, NOT LESS on transparency at home and in supporting countries internationally.
These guys need international cooperation to help them trade and develop. This means that if they want to make multilateralism work here in Katowice, they need to make it work for all countries. This means keeping the funds and mechanisms in place to build the capacity and capability for countries to deliver on ambition and finance everywhere.
ECO is watching and be warned: backsliding is not cool.