COP24: sprint final negotiations

COP24: sprint final de négociations

Photo: Peter Kneffel Agence France-Presse
“All I want for Christmas, it is the elimination of fossil fuels,” asks a girl on a poster in Berlin, responding to the call, the teenager’s Swedish Greta Thunberg, became famous for his weekly in front of parliament in Stockholm.

Catherine Hours – Agence France-Presse and

Amélie Bottollier-After – Agence France-Presse

in Katowice, Poland

December 15, 2018

  • Environment

The 24th conference of the UN climate (COP24) was committed Friday night in a long finish, hoping for an ambitious agreement for the application of the pact of Paris in spite of the divisions gaping to fill.

Expected to end Friday, the COP from Katowice should respect the tradition and extend to at least until Saturday, the negotiators still to decide several key points.

Their mission : find the mode of employment of the Paris Agreement, which aims to limit global warming to 2 °C or 1.5 °C, compared with pre-industrial levels.

The final sprint comes after two turbulent weeks, tensed by a geopolitical context unfavourable to the cause of climate, marked by an unanticipated controversy on the scientific report of the IPCC and the return of the divisions between the North and the South, a point of ongoing negotiations climate.

The footprint of the United States

The implications of the “mode of employment” are not anecdotal. Under the Paris Agreement, the commitments of countries to reduce the greenhouse gas emissions are voluntary. But their follow-up must be multilateral in nature, with rules of transparency, like so many of the “beams” to ensure the solidity of the building.

In Katowice, this discussion on how States will be required to render account of their actions was notably the case of the United States and China. The first push, with other countries, to the rules of strict monitoring, and the second for the flexibility granted to developing countries. But how to translate this flexibility ?

“The footprint of the United States is everywhere in this text […]. It is the elephant in the room, ” said Meena Raman, from the NGO Third World Network.

The question of the financing of climate policies is another concern of poor countries, in particular the way in which is going to organize the rise of the funds promised by the North from 2025 onwards. “We put pressure on the North so that he pays the price,” insisted the minister of the Environment of Costa Rica, Carlos Manuel Rodriguez.

Washington tries to dilute the “differentiation” between developed and developing countries, a founding principle of the negotiations climate, says one observer, a veteran of these negotiations. The idea is for the Americans, polluters historical, not based in the commitments of the countries on their past emissions, but on their current emissions.

The other point of fixation, the reference to ” loss and damage “, a recent principle included in the Paris Agreement to support developing countries already struggling with the impacts of global warming.

“We need to find a good way to deal with this issue “, supported Laurence Tubiana, architect of the Paris pact. In contrast, ” on the mechanism of transparency and ways to measure progress, I think it is “.

Disagree on the report

But the mode of employment is not the only object of controversy. The delegates must still resolve a problem that occurred around the mention of the last report of the group of experts of the UN (IPCC) in the final decision. Saudi Arabia, Russia, the United States rejected the term ” welcomes “, as the smaller islands in particular require absolutely.

Published Friday morning, the draft decision provides that the COP “invites parties to make use of the information contained in the report” of the IPCC. “The COP recognizes the role of the IPCC to provide the scientific data to inform the parties “, adds the text.

If ” we do not recognize the teachings of the IPCC, we do survive, we will die “, said the representative of the Maldives Mohamed Nasheed.

At the table talks, there is also “ambition” : how to push States, including the commitments made in 2015 to reduce greenhouse gas emissions are known to be inadequate, at present, by 2020, plans strengthened ?

In the draft decision, the COP “reiterates its request” to “update” their contribution by 2020, the same terms that the Paris Agreement, nothing more.

“This is a start, but the business is unfinished,” said Jennifer Morgan, to Greenpeace, calling for a “signal light,” to meet the ambitions.

The secretary-general of the united Nations, Antonio Guterres, income Friday in Katowice for the third time, tried to weigh in on the discussions by meeting with the various parties. On Wednesday, he called for intensified action in front of a warming ” galloping “.

An emergency action relayed by a few dozen children who demonstrated Friday in the precincts of the COP24, the call, the teenager’s Swedish Greta Thunberg became famous for his weekly in front of parliament in Stockholm.

The promises national made in 2015 lead to a world at +3 °C. The IPCC has drawn up the table of impacts already underway, to + 1 °C today, and showed the scale of those to come to +1.5, with more extreme weather events, summers without arctic ice, or a fall of the agricultural productivity.

The States meeting in Katowice have also decided that the COP25 would take place in late 2019, in Chile, after the withdrawal of Brazil, a country that has elected as its president the climatosceptique Jair Bolsonaro.

Share Button