Friday, 18 January, 2019

New climate rules aim to keep nations committed to the Paris Agreement

The Paris Agreement aims to keep the global temperature from increasing above two degrees The Paris Agreement aims to keep the global temperature from increasing above two degrees
Theresa Hayes | 19 December, 2018, 19:16

Michal Kurtyka, a Polish official chairing the talks in Katowice, sealed the deal yesterday after diplomats and ministers from nearly 200 countries approved.

Tired negotiators completed an agreement late Saturday laying down the rule book for the 2015 Paris climate treaty, including how countries will monitor and verify one anothers' commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

A recent report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concluded that it is possible to cap global warming at 1.5C (2.7F) higher by the end of the century compared to pre-industrial times.

Below is a statement by Alden Meyer, director of strategy and policy at the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS), and one of the foremost experts on the United Nations climate change negotiations on the outcome of the talks.

At the COP24 talks, delegates clashed over financing, with poorer countries most affected by climate change demanding recognition of the damage that it causes and long-term financial support.

"Our children (will) look back at our legacy and recognise that we took the right decisions at important junctures like the one we are facing today", he said in a tweet.

The Paris deal will come into force in 2020. "But the fact countries had to be dragged kicking and screaming to the finish line shows that some nations have not woken up to the urgent call of the IPCC report" on the dire consequences of global warming.

Delivered by UN Framework Convention on Climate Change Executive Secretary Patricia Espinosa, he said the approval of the Paris Agreement Work Programme is the basis for a transformative process which will require strengthened ambition from the worldwide community.

Rich nations often reduce their emissions by paying for carbon-cutting projects in other countries.

Besides, levels of climate finance must meet the actual costs for our countries to adapt and address the impacts of climate change, to protect our people and our communities.

The package also includes guidelines that relate to the process for establishing new targets on finance from 2025 onwards to follow-on from the current target of mobilizing 100 billion USA dollars per year from 2020 to support developing countries.

Another notable achievement of these negotiations is that nations agreed on how to collectively assess the effectiveness of climate action in 2023, and how to monitor and report progress on the development and transfer of technology. In sharp contrast, we were inspired by the presence in Katowice of USA state officials, mayors, businesses, indigenous leaders, religious community members, youth activists and others who support bold climate action; they represent the true face of America on climate change.

"The guidelines that delegations have been working on day and night are balanced and clearly reflect how responsibilities are distributed amongst the world's nations", said Ms. Espinosa in a press statement.

"While some details will need to be finalised and improved over time, the system is to the largest part place", she added.

Chile will host the UN's next climate conference in December 2019 or January 2020, the country's Environment Ministry announced on Friday.

The Canadian government was dealt a major setback in its effort to establish rules under the Paris accord for the trading of market-based emissions credits, which would facilitate a global marketplace.

The world climate conference has agreed on an implementation agreement for the Paris climate Treaty. "Ambition in mitigation. Ambition in adaptation". Countries also agreed to consider the issue of raising ambitions at a United Nations summit in NY next September.