COP26 inches to a detailed, for the primary time together with language on coal and fossil fuels part down

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Watching the UNFCCC livestream

UN Local weather Change conferences are reknowned for working extensively into extra time with final minute negotiations to attempt to salvage a manner ahead by way of the consensus course of. This one was no completely different with a Saturday afternoon ending.

Draft texts are issued, debated, watered down, reissued, debated and additional watered down till sufficient compromise has been achieved for consensus. Sometimes some new ambition could sneak in, however usually its a dilution of motion. It is a powerful course of, particularly when urgency and ambition is required, which empowers international locations with vested pursuits in sustaining fossil gasoline manufacturing. 

Australia has taken benefit of this course of previously, reminiscent of when the Australian delegation threatened to stroll out in 1997 at closing stage of negotiations except a particular clause on land use emissions was inserted. We acquired our manner and a particular clause was created particularly referred to as the Australia clause which allowed us to extend our emissions by 8 p.c whereas all different international locations had commitments to cut back emissions.

Through the closing days of this negotiation course of, Small island states and plenty of growing international locations gave up  within the spirt of compromise on the Glasgow Loss and Harm Facility to get replaced by a imprecise Dialogue throughout 2022 as a part of Draft texts model 3, however they weren’t comfortable about this. However the truth there have been different areas of ambition within the total deal and they’re struggling now from local weather impacts, made them decide to consensus.

However in the course of the dialogue India, Iran, Nigeria and China objected to the wording round coal and inefficient fossil gasoline sibsidies part out. The stocktaking plenary was adjourned and huddles reformed.

Australia really had accepted the deal that included a name for “accelerating efforts in the direction of the phase-out of unabated coal energy and inefficient fossil gasoline subsidies.” That they had already efficiently lobbied with others to melt the textual content with these two adjectives: unabated and inefficient.

When the plenary restarted India proposed asking to vary language to “part down” coal as a substitute of “part out”. Switzerland, Europe, Mexico, Marshall Islands and Fiji all expressed profound disappointment at this proposed change, and questioned this as a non-transparent course of. Switzerland obtained overwhelming applause. 

Essentially the most eloquent assertion got here from the Marshall Islands:

“On behalf of the Marshall Islands I want to learn into the report our profound disappointment with the change within the language on coal from part out to part down. I ask that this be mirrored within the report of this assembly. This dedication on coal had been a shiny spot on this bundle. It was one of many issues we have been hoping to hold out of right here, again house with delight, and it hurts deeply to see that shiny spot dim. We settle for this alteration with the best reluctance. We accomplish that solely, and I actually need to stress solely, as a result of there are essential parts of this bundle that individuals in my nation want, as a lifeline for his or her future. Thankyou.

Fiji mentioned “we have been informed 2 days in the past that we couldn’t add Loss and Harm language as a result of it was “final minute”, now new language on coal has been added 2 minutes earlier than adoption of the textual content. A “phase-down” has no demonstrable measures to observe the top of coal.”

The response really put COP President Alok Sharma into tears for a second, as he mentioned, “I’m actually sorry about how this course of has unfolded. It is usually important that we efficiently conclude this bundle”

That is going to result in a a lot larger push subsequent yr for Loss and Harm implementation and finance, at COP27, which has been lengthy delayed at these conferences. 

Antigua and Barbuda talking on behalf of AOSIS commented that they “want to take notice that we anticipate to see the event of a Loss and Harm facility by COP27.” Venezuela added that they “want to take up the problem of unilateral measures in subsequent COPs”.

There was cheering within the American delegation and round different sections of the Plenary corridor as the choice on Article 6 on carbon markets was gavelled, putting in this necessary a part of the Paris Settlement rulebook, though it appears there are already recognized problems with integrity with the principles handed.

Learn my weblog on the assessment of outcomes from the Glasgow Climate Pact.

You’ll be able to observe the movement of the diplomatic huddles and statements within the tweet thread beneath:

Negotiations on a positive wire in convention extra time

In line with Bevan Shields in SMH, “Disagreement focuses on three key areas: emissions discount pledges, compensation and monetary assist for weak growing nations, and the design of a voluntary worldwide carbon market.”

Some feedback gleaned from Richie Merzian (Australia Institute) and others on Draft texts Model 3:

  • Maintains phaseout of unabated coal and inefficient fossil gasoline subsidies recognizing the necessity for help in the direction of a simply transition;(+)
  • international locations could be “requested” to replace their pledges in 2022. CMA textual content nonetheless requests international locations come to the following spherical of talks with strengthened 2030 targets (with particular reference to these international locations that did not deliver up to date targets to Glasgow).(+)
  • Glasgow Loss and Harm facility eliminated, to a lot civil society anger (CAN) changed by a dialogue (extra blah, blah, blah). Richie Merzian thinks “unsure sufficient Events will maintain up Plenary and the entire bundle if it comes right down to it”(-)
  • Underneath the present textual content Events are requested to deliver again higher targets for 2030. Nevertheless it would not mandate that these targets align with 1.5 levels, as a substitute it makes use of previous language which is weaker.(-)
  • “Model 3 of the protecting textual content appears to be like like it’s firming up right into a closing – hope issues will wrap this afternoon. Much less prone to transfer on coal part out, ambition, finance. Nonetheless large calls wanted on markets” 
  • The true flashpoint is round markets, Whether or not the framework is tight sufficient to make sure integrity, keep away from double counting, keep away from the import of hotair and the creation of non-additional credit.
  • Article 6.4 market mechanism provides an independant grievance course of (+)
  • Finance has all the time been a key difficulty, developed international locations failed to fulfill $100bn goal by 2020, however prone to attain this in 2023. “UN committee to report subsequent yr on progress in the direction of delivering the $100 billion, and proposes authorities ministers meet in 2022, 2024 and 2026 to debate local weather finance.” ABC

Listed below are some doc change comparisons between model 2 and model 3:

Article 6.4 carbon market: Independant Grievance course of included

Draft CMA choice to replace NDC and 2030 targets

Draft CMA choice on phaseout of coal and fossil gasoline subsidies
(1st time coal, FF included in COP choice)

Draft CMA choice – drops help for Glasgow Lass and Harm facility

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