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Earth Negotiations Bulletin (ENB)

Volume 12 Number 640 | Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Bonn Highlights

Monday, 31 August 2015 | Bonn, Germany

Visit our IISD/ENB Meeting Coverage from Bonn, Germany at:

ADP 2-10 opened on Monday, 31 August 2015, in Bonn, Germany. After a morning opening plenary, delegates gathered in ADP facilitated groups on: adaptation and loss and damage, and general/objective in the morning; mitigation, preamble, implementation and compliance, and technology development and transfer in the afternoon; and transparency of action and support, and workstream 2 (pre-2020 ambition) in the evening.


ADP Co-Chair Daniel Reifsnyder (US) stressed the urgency of beginning substantive negotiations. UNFCCC Executive Secretary Christiana Figueres reported a €1.2 million deficit in the Trust Fund for Participation in the Convention process.

Antonio García Revilla, COP 20/CMP 10 Presidency, stated that 2015 provides an opportunity to bring together climate and development goals. Laurence Tubiana, COP 21/CMP 11 Presidency, reported on the July 2015 informal ministerial consultations.

ADP CONTACT GROUP: South Africa, for the G-77/CHINA, voiced concern over the unbalanced placement of issues in the Co-Chairs’ Tool, and called for progress on pre-2020 ambition.

Australia, for the UMBRELLA GROUP, encouraged parties to suggest ideas for compromise and called for avoiding line-by-line discussions on sections without agreement. The EU expressed concern that technical negotiations are lagging behind high-level political discussions.

Highlighting the devastation caused by Hurricane Erika, Dominica, for the BOLIVARIAN ALLIANCE FOR THE PEOPLES OF OUR AMERICA (ALBA), urged enhanced action on adaptation and loss and damage, and alignment with the Convention’s principles.

Guatemala, for the INDEPENDENT ASSOCIATION OF LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN (AILAC), called for short-term commitment cycles, and linkages among mitigation, adaptation, loss and damage, and means of implementation (MOI). Sudan, for the AFRICAN GROUP, underscored the need to address loss and damage, and links between mitigation and adaptation.

El Salvador, for the CENTRAL AMERICAN INTEGRATION SYSTEM (SICA), urged recognition of the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities (CBDR-RC). He said a 1.5°C goal is in line with science. Other groups noted their statements would be on the UNFCCC website.


GENERAL/OBJECTIVE: This group was co-facilitated by Diann Black-Layne (Antigua and Barbuda). The US, NEW ZEALAND, AUSTRALIA and CANADA, opposed by many others, called for reference to the objective in the preamble rather than a separate section.

TURKEY, NORWAY, the EU, Sudan, for the AFRICAN GROUP, Angola, for the LEAST DEVELOPED COUNTRIES (LDCs), MALAYSIA and KUWAIT supported reference to Convention Article 2 (Objective). Guatemala, for AILAC, was encouraged by the references to long-term approaches.

BRAZIL, the EU, the LDCs, NORWAY, ARGENTINA, INDONESIA, MALAYSIA, ECUADOR and COLOMBIA called for the inclusion of a temperature goal. BOLIVIA and Singapore, for the ALLIANCE OF SMALL ISLAND STATES (AOSIS), supported reference to a 1.5°C goal.

AOSIS stressed recognition of the specific circumstances of particularly vulnerable countries, and inclusion of loss and damage. Saudi Arabia, for the LIKE-MINDED DEVELOPING COUNTRIES (LMDCs), with JORDAN, called for reflecting CBDR and equity.

The EU and MEXICO said gender equality and human rights should be added. BOLIVIA, ARGENTINA, CUBA, JORDAN, INDIA and KUWAIT opposed including issues that are not in the Convention, such as net-zero greenhouse gas emissions and climate-resilient economies. COLOMBIA said the Paris Agreement aims to build on the Convention.

BOLIVIA and ECUADOR supported adding protection of the integrity of Mother Earth and the right to development. Co-Facilitator Black-Layne indicated that this feedback would be brought to the ADP Co-Chairs.

ADAPTATION AND LOSS AND DAMAGE: The discussions were co-facilitated by Andrea Guerrero (Colombia).

On individual efforts, MEXICO cautioned against prescriptive obligations. Saudi Arabia, for the LMDCs, characterized adaptation efforts as actions or contributions, and underscored the links between intended nationally determined contributions (INDCs) and MOI. CHINA said the agreement should include developed countries’ commitments to support adaptation. The EU underlined that the commitment to act applies to all parties, building on existing commitments, and could include integration of adaptation into national development planning.

On institutions, Maldives, for AOSIS, called for recognizing the Adaptation Committee as the lead institution, and, with Chile, for AILAC, utilizing existing communication channels. CHINA supported reference to enhancing existing institutions in the agreement, while the EU expressed preference for COP decisions.

On monitoring and evaluation, AOSIS and Tuvalu, for the LDCs, underscored the need to avoid additional reporting burdens. The US called for a process to regularly report on lessons learned. The EU noted that monitoring and evaluation would not be part of the monitoring, reporting and verification (MRV) regime.

On loss and damage, the G-77/CHINA, with AOSIS and the LDCs, urged loss and damage be in the agreement. The US and EU underlined that the question is how, not whether, to include it. The LDCs highlighted: establishing a new mechanism and a climate change displacement coordination facility in the agreement; and encouraging early warning systems and establishing a financial technical panel in COP decisions.

Discussing the way forward, Co-Facilitator Guerrero proposed seven clarifying questions, and said the group will reconvene on Tuesday.

MITIGATION: This session was co-facilitated by Franz Perrez (Switzerland). Supported wholly or in part by many parties, the Marshall Islands, for AOSIS, called for adding to the new agreement: operationalization of the long-term goal; parameters for mitigation commitments; metrics for commitments; a system to progressively increase ambition; accounting rules; and clarity on market mechanisms.

The EU called for stronger binding language on the obligation to implement and on unconditional commitments. With Tuvalu, for the LDCs, he suggested addressing international transport. ARGENTINA opposed language on sectoral mitigation. The US called for elements, inter alia, on a nationally determined contribution registry, joint implementation, and reporting and review.

Malaysia, for the LMDCs, called for including under institutional arrangements a cooperation mechanism on sustainable development and a joint mitigation and adaptation arrangement. He stressed provisions on economic and social issues, while noting that markets, land use and quantifiability are historically intractable and should be deleted. A number of parties stressed the need to address differentiation under individual efforts.

Algeria, for the AFRICAN GROUP, and BOLIVIA, stressed reference to non-market-based mechanisms. The AFRICAN GROUP, the LMDCs, and Saudi Arabia, for the ARAB GROUP, called for including response measures in the agreement.

Parties agreed to three spin-off groups: clarifying provisions on non-market-based mechanisms, led by Bolivia; addressing how differentiation could be formulated under individual efforts, led by South Africa; and narrowing the joint implementation concept, led by Brazil.

PREAMBLE: This group was co-facilitated by George Wamukoya (Kenya). Parties agreed on the importance of the agreement’s preamble, and the need for it to be concise. Parties expressed views on which concepts from part 3 of the Tool (provisions whose placement requires further clarity) to include in the agreement’s preamble.

Guatemala, for AILAC, Saudi Arabia, for the LMDCs, SWITZERLAND, Angola, for the LDCs, LIECHTENSTEIN, NORWAY, AUSTRALIA and TURKEY called for the inclusion of gender equality and intergenerational equity. The LMDCs supported referring to historical and current emissions, MOI, and sustainable social and economic development.

BOLIVIA, CUBA and VENEZUELA supported referring to the integrity of Mother Earth and the right to development. Sudan, for the AFRICAN GROUP, the LDCs and TURKEY called for mentioning how science guides the agreement.

The EU, the US, NORWAY, JAPAN, AUSTRALIA, CANADA and NEW ZEALAND, opposed by others, suggested discussing the preamble later, once substantive sections have taken shape. Co-Facilitator Wamukoya asked parties to work toward formulations of the themes they would like to include and announced an informal informal to be held on Wednesday.

IMPLEMENTATION AND COMPLIANCE: Sarah Baashan (Saudi Arabia) co-facilitated the session.

Colombia, for AILAC, Tuvalu, for the LDCs, the EU, NORWAY, Sudan, for the AFRICAN GROUP, and others underlined the need for the new agreement to establish a compliance mechanism. AILAC, the LDCs, NORWAY and TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO suggested some modalities for a compliance mechanism to be included in the agreement, while the LMDCs suggested a work plan for a body to develop the modalities.

On differentiation, the LDCs called for an enforcement branch for countries with national, economy-wide targets and a facilitative branch for those without. China, for the LMDCs, suggested the enforcement branch be for developed countries and the facilitative branch for developing countries, noting that only developed countries have an obligation to provide MOI.

The EU, AUSTRALIA, NEW ZEALAND, the US, NORWAY and JAPAN called for a mechanism that is applicable to all. The EU, AUSTRALIA, NEW ZEALAND and the US said the agreement should be primarily facilitative, while BOLIVIA suggested a tribunal.

Delegates agreed to hold an informal informal to discuss text for the establishment of the compliance mechanism, and that the Co-Facilitators develop questions on differentiation and scope.

TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT AND TRANSFER: Tosi Mpanu-Mpanu (Democratic Republic of the Congo) co-facilitated the session. Responding to concerns expressed by INDIA and CHINA about the “imbalance” of technology compared to other elements in the draft agreement, Co-Facilitator Mpanu-Mpanu said it maybe because the ADP Co-Chairs were “overly cautious.”

China, for the G-77/CHINA, supported by India, for the LMDCs, and opposed by the US, proposed moving all the paragraphs on technology transfer under part 3 of the Tool to the agreement. The G-77/CHINA also suggested moving paragraphs on institutional arrangements and their periodic assessments from COP decisions to the agreement. ARGENTINA, VENEZUELA, IRAN, Belize, for AOSIS, and SENEGAL called for establishing a link between the technology section and MOI.

Swaziland, for the AFRICAN GROUP, called for including funding for technology development and transfer in the agreement, and for creating a new mechanism.

JAPAN opposed a global goal for technology. The EU supported the concise length of the text in the agreement and highlighted the role of cooperative action. The US noted ongoing discussions under the COP on the linkage between the financial and technology mechanisms.


On Monday, delegates arrived in Bonn armed with a new “Tool” provided by the Co-Chairs to facilitate discussions. Many expressed appreciation for the Tool and quickly began to use it. One delegate noted this was “a positive sign, because we could’ve spent the morning in a procedural wrangle.”

However, the Tool was not without tarnish, as several developing country delegates were visibly upset that, as Hurricane Erika left a path of destruction in Dominica, loss and damage was not clearly placed in the Tool as being part of the agreement.

Commenting on the informal bilaterals that had preceded the meeting, a delegate welcomed efforts to win the confidence of parties, but said it was time to actually negotiate rather than “re-sort the Geneva negotiating text.” With nine negotiation days left before Paris, it remains to be seen if the Tool will help chisel the features of the 2015 agreement.