The UN Climate Change Conference in Marrakech, Morocco, opened on Monday morning, 7 November. Following an opening ceremony, delegates gathered for the opening plenaries of the COP, CMP, SBSTA, SBI and APA. In the afternoon, SBSTA and SBI contact groups and informal consultations convened.
COP 21/CMP 11 President Ségolène Royal, France, opened COP 22, reporting that 100 countries had ratified the Paris Agreement and appealing to remaining parties to the UNFCCC to ratify before the end of 2016. Describing COP 22 as an ‘African COP,’ she called for climate justice for the continent.
UNFCCC Executive Secretary Patricia Espinosa emphasized that achieving the aims of the Paris Agreement is not a given, noting the need for: adaptation support; progress on the loss and damage mechanism; and a level and predictability of finance that can catalyze low-emission development.
IPCC Chair Hoesung Lee relayed the IPCC’s “action-packed” work programme contributing to the implementation of the Paris Agreement on the basis of science, including the approval of the outline of the special report on Global Warming of 1.5°C, as requested by the UNFCCC COP.
Highlighting Marrakech’s famous gardens, Mohammed Larbi Belcadi, Mayor of Marrakech, relayed the city’s efforts to protect the environment, including through green areas and energy efficiency projects, as well as its commitment to a successful COP leading to concrete solutions.
ORGANIZATIONAL MATTERS: Election of officers: Salaheddine Mezouar, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Morocco, was elected as the COP 22/CMP 12 President by acclamation. Welcoming delegates to the ‘red city,’ he said the conference demonstrates a whole continent’s commitment to climate action. Commending countries on the rapid entry into force of the Paris Agreement, he called for building on this dynamic to give tangible meaning to the Agreement and to “finalize support mechanisms.”
Rules of procedure: Parties agreed to apply the draft rules of procedure (FCCC/CP/1996/2), with the exception of draft rule 42 on voting. The President informed that Morocco would hold informal consultations on this agenda item and would report back to plenary.
Adoption of the agenda: COP President Mezouar introduced both the provisional agenda and supplementary provisional agenda (FCCC/CP/2016/1 and Add.1), noting that the Secretariat received a request from Turkey to include an item or sub-item on access to support from the GCF and the CTCN under the Paris Agreement by parties whose special circumstances are recognized by the COP.
FRANCE reported on consultations held with all regional groups on the special circumstances facing Turkey, saying that many expressed a preference for bilateral consultations rather than a COP decision. Several groups supported consultations and opposed amending the agenda. TURKEY called for a clear COP decision.
After consultations, parties agreed to adopt the agenda with the agenda item on the second review of the adequacy of Convention Articles 4.2 (a) and (b) (developed countries’ mitigation) held in abeyance and Turkey’s request left pending under other matters.
Election of officers other than the President: As consultations on this item have not yet concluded and nominations are still pending, parties agreed to continue consultations, under the facilitation of COP/CMP Vice-President Walter Schuldt-Espinel, Ecuador, and postpone elections until all nominations are finalized. COP President Mezouar noted that, according to the draft rules of procedure being applied, the current officers will stay in office until their successors are elected and urged parties to submit their nominations.
Admission of observer organizations: Parties agreed to admit all observer organizations listed in FCCC/CP/2016/3.
ORGANIZATION OF WORK: Parties agreed to the organization of work. Parties requested the APA to undertake the preparatory work so that the Adaptation Fund may serve the Paris Agreement and forward a recommendation to the CMP for consideration no later than CMP 15.
Responding to COP President Mezouar’s suggestion that the SBI, SBSTA and APA complete their work by Monday, 14 November, Switzerland, for the ENVIRONMENTAL INTEGRITY GROUP (EIG), requested that there be a possibility for consultations to continue past that date on issues related to the Paris Agreement that do not require definitive decisions in Marrakech. UNFCCC Executive Secretary Espinosa said consultations on ways to continue the “dialogue” past 14 November are underway.
COP President Mezouar reported an emerging understanding on the provisional agenda for CMA 1 on Tuesday, 15 November and suggested CMA 1 could adopt as a procedural conclusion that it will continue its work either in 2017 or 2018. Open-ended informal consultations on the opening of CMA 1 will convene.
ORGANIZATIONAL MATTERS: Adoption of the agenda and organization of work: Parties adopted the agenda (FCCC/KP/CMP/2016/1) and agreed to the organization of work. CMP President Mezouar said consultations would continue on the election of replacement officers. CMP President Mezouar then suspended the session.
SBSTA Chair Carlos Fuller, Belize, opened the meeting.
ORGANIZATIONAL MATTERS: Parties agreed to adopt the provisional agenda (FCCC/SBSTA/2016/3) and organization of work. SBSTA Chair Fuller reminded parties to submit nominations for officers other than the Chair by 11 November.
OPENING STATEMENTS: Thailand, for the G-77/CHINA, underscored the need to deliver on pre-2020 action and support, including through the facilitative dialogue on action and support. She highlighted the importance of, inter alia, support for adaptation implementation and the review of the Warsaw International Mechanism for Loss and Damage associated with Climate Change Impacts (WIM), and called for balanced treatment of all issues under cooperative approaches.
Welcoming developments in the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), the EU said efforts under the aviation and shipping sectors should be taken into account during the global stocktake.
Australia, for the UMBRELLA GROUP, stated that the WIM review should ensure that the mechanism operates as effectively as possible. She said discussions on cooperative approaches should help parties increase ambition.
Maldives, for the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) highlighted, inter alia: that the IPCC Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C should be published as early as possible in 2018; the need to ensure environmental integrity regarding cooperative approaches; and the review of the WIM as priorities. Costa Rica, for the INDEPENDENT ASSOCIATION OF LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN (AILAC), called for regular IPCC special reports as inputs to the global stocktake.
To maximize effectiveness, Mexico, for EIG, called for taking advantage of synergies with other UN conventions to help to implement the Paris Agreement.
Saudi Arabia, for the ARAB GROUP, urged ensuring that intellectual property rights are not an impediment to technology transfer. Mali, for the AFRICAN GROUP, urged parties to increase financial contributions to implement adaptation work and to complete the review of the WIM.
Panama, for COALITION FOR RAINFOREST NATIONS (CfRN), stressed the need to improve the effectiveness of REDD+ finance and engaging the private sector. Nicaragua, for the CENTRAL AMERICAN INTEGRATION SYSTEM (SICA), underscored agriculture discussions should focus on adaptation and ensure food sovereignty and security.
The EU called for: substantive conclusions on how the IPCC can support the global stocktake; a clear understanding on how the technology framework can help address fragmentation around existing processes aimed at facilitating technology transfer; and, with the Democratic Republic of the Congo for LDCs, deliverables for the five-year work plan. LDCs also stressed the high priority of outcomes on matters related to agriculture and noted its submission in this regard.
DEVELOPMENT AND TRANSFER OF TECHNOLOGIES: Joint annual report of the Technology Executive Committee (TEC) and CTCN: TEC Chair Duduzile Nhlengethwa-Masina, Swaziland, noted that the TEC has identified several potential topics for future Technical Expert Meetings (TEMs). CTCN Advisory Board Chair Spencer Thomas, Grenada, reported that the CTCN is engaged in a series of pilot projects with the Global Environment Facility (GEF). This item will be discussed in informal consultations.
METHODOLOGICAL ISSUES UNDER THE CONVENTION: Bunker fuels: ICAO highlighted the agreement on the Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA). The IMO reported a new requirement for ships to record and report data on their fuel oil consumption.
India, on behalf of many developing countries and coalitions, stressed that mechanisms developed under ICAO and IMO should align with the principles of the Convention and COP decisions. JAPAN said IMO and ICAO are suitable forums to address emissions from international aviation and shipping. The US and SINGAPORE welcomed the adoption of the CORSIA and the IMO’s amendment of the MARPOL Convention on fuel consumption by ships, with SINGAPORE stressing the need to develop long-term measures. SBSTA Chair Fuller will conduct informal consultations.
REPORTS ON OTHER ACTIVITIES: The SBSTA took note of reports (FCCC/SBSTA/2016/INF.8, INF.11 and INF.12).
The following items and sub-items were briefly considered and forwarded to contact groups:
The following items and sub-items were briefly considered and forwarded to informal consultations:
The SBSTA Chair will consult with interested parties and prepare draft conclusions on the sub-item on carbon capture and storage (CCS) in geological formations as a CDM project activity.
SBSTA Chair Fuller closed plenary.
MODALITIES FOR THE ACCOUNTING OF FINANCIAL RESOURCES PROVIDED AND MOBILIZED THROUGH PUBLIC INTERVENTIONS IN ACCORDANCE WITH PARIS AGREEMENT ARTICLE 9.7: This contact group was co-chaired by Rafael da Soler (Brazil) and Outi Honkatukia (Finland). Parties agreed to the mode of work, including holding an in-session workshop and informal consultations. Co-Chair da Soler explained the expectation that the group identify, by the end of the week, possible elements of the modalities to be adopted by CMA 1.
Parties discussed, inter alia, whether the mandate of the group is limited to modalities for resources from developed to developing countries only. The Philippines, for the G-77/CHINA, highlighted linkages with other issues, including transparency and the global stocktake, and called for examining definitions. Chile, for AILAC, called for defining public financing.
On session outcomes, several countries supported a draft decision. The EU and Switzerland, among others, stressed the need for clarity on the way forward to COP 24. The US enquired about other possible vehicles for capturing progress. Informal consultations will continue.
SBI Chair Tomasz Chruszczow, Poland, opened the meeting.
ORGANIZATIONAL MATTERS: Parties adopted the provisional agenda and organization of work (FCCC/SBI/2016/9), with the sub-item on information contained in national communications (NCs) from non-Annex I Parties held in abeyance. On election of officers, Chair Chruszczow recalled that the SBI is required to elect a new vice-chair and rapporteur.
OPENING STATEMENTS: Thailand, for the G-77/CHINA, stressed support to enhance NAPs and technology transfer implementation. Noting progress made by parties on gender, he identified the need to enhance gender balance and inclusiveness.
The Democratic Republic of the Congo, for the LDCs, highlighted the need to simplify procedures for financial support for NAP implementation. With the EU, he called for the operationalization of the Paris Committee on Capacity-building (PCCB) at COP 22.
Australia, for the UMBRELLA GROUP, drew attention to the need for all parties to participate in the existing transparency system and for extending the Lima work programme on gender.
Maldives, for AOSIS, expressed concern that several Annex I parties had reported 2014 emission levels that exceeded their 1990 levels and called for strengthening the WIM.
Saudi Arabia, for the ARAB GROUP, called for: balanced attention to adaptation and mitigation, including their linkages; no unilateral actions by developed countries; and provision of support.
Guatemala, for AILAC, stressed the need to adopt the PCCB terms of reference and prioritize the Committee’s work in 2017, and emphasized transparency as a critical pillar of the Paris Agreement’s implementation.
The Republic of Korea, for the EIG, encouraged more non-Annex I countries to submit their Biennial Update Reports (BURs) and said strengthening national institutions’ GHG inventories should be the PCCB’s priority in 2017.
Mali, for the AFRICAN GROUP, supported discussing modalities and procedures for (a) public registry/-ies for NDCs and adaptation communications in one contact group, and urged prioritizing the annual focus of the PCCB.
Ecuador, for the Like Minded Developing Countries (LMDCs), stressed that any outcomes should support developing countries to undertake climate actions in light of their national circumstances and sustainable development objectives.
The WORLD METEOROLOGICAL ORGANIZATION (WMO) highlighted the adaptation work of the Global Framework for Climate Services.
TRADE UNION NGOs (TUNGOs) said the work programme on the impact of the implementation of response measures should give sufficient consideration to the need for a just transition.
Noting that a third of parties addressed gender in their INDCs, WOMEN AND GENDER urged ambitious follow-up on the Lima work programme on gender.
Calling Action for Climate Empowerment (ACE) a priority in implementing the Paris Agreement, Youth NGOs (YOUNGOs) called on all parties to appoint ACE National Focal Points.
BUSINESS AND INDUSTRY NGOs (BINGOs) said the “post-Paris world” requires new models of working together for successful implementation.
Climate Action Network (CAN) called for more resources for the WIM and mandating the SBI to develop an adequate and predictable CTCN financing model for adoption at COP 23. Climate Justice Now! (CJN!) called for strengthening the WIM mandate and tracking finance flows to developing countries to ensure the flows are adequate, public and free from commercial interest.
FARMERS noted that the Paris Agreement recognizes the priority of safeguarding food security and eradicating hunger. INDIGENOUS PEOPLES called for the establishment of an indigenous peoples’ expert forum and TEMs on indigenous peoples’ traditional knowledge.
The GLOBAL CLIMATE OBSERVING SYSTEM (GCOS) highlighted the new implementation plan submitted to SBSTA 45, which for the first time defines targets for the monitoring of the global water, carbon and energy cycles, as well as the biosphere.
REPORT OF THE ADAPTATION COMMITTEE: Adaptation Committee Co-Chair Minpeng Chen, China, noted the report contains organizational and procedural information, substantive recommendations for consideration of the COP and a revised work plan taking into account Decision 1/CP.21 (Paris outcome). Informal consultations will convene.
REPORT OF THE WIM EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE: WIM Executive Committee Co-Chair Shereen D’Souza, US, presented the report (FCCC/SB/2016/3) and stressed that the WIM has yet to complete its two year work programme, despite considerable recent work, including on non-economic losses. Informal consultations will convene.
REPORTING FROM ANNEX I PARTIES: Status of submission and review of second biennial reports from Annex I parties: The SBI took note of the status of submission and review of second biennial reports (BRs) from Annex I parties (FCCC/SBI/2016/INF.9).
Report on national GHG inventory data from Annex I Parties for the period 1990-2014: The SBI took note of the report (FCCC/SBI/2016/19).
Compilation and accounting reports for Annex B parties under the Kyoto Protocol: The SBI agreed to recommend the CMP take note of the annual compilation (FCCC/KP/CMP/2016/6 and Add.1).
REPORTING FROM NON-ANNEX I PARTIES: Provision of financial and technical support: Rawleston Moore, the GEF, reported on GEF activities relating to the preparation of NCs and BURs (FCCC/SBI/2016/INF.18), informing that the GEF will continue to provide resources as a priority for the preparation of NCs and BURs. The sub-item will be discussed in informal consultations.
Summary reports on the technical analysis of non-Annex I parties: The SBI took note of the reports.
MATTERS RELATING TO LDCs: Abias Huongo, Chair of the LDCs Expert Group (LEG), presented on the LEG’s activities, including the NAP Expo organized in July 2016. This item will be taken up in informal consultations.
MATTERS RELATING TO KYOTO PROTOCOL MECHANISMS: Report of the administrator of the international transaction log: The SBI took note of the report (FCCC/SBI/2016/INF.20)
ADMINISTRATIVE, FINANCIAL AND INSTITUTIONAL MATTERS: UNFCCC Executive Secretary Espinosa highlighted concerns about the sustainability of the Secretariat’s workload given a decline in voluntary contributions and encouraged parties to pay their contributions for 2017 as soon as possible. The SBI took note of the: financial report and audited financial statements for the year 2015 and report of the UN Board of Auditors (FCCC/SBI/2016/INF.12 and Add.1); evolving functions and operations of the Secretariat in the light of Decision 1/CP.21 (FCCC/SBI/2016/INF.13); and elaboration of possible structures and bodies within the UN system that may inform parties in making the budget process more efficient and transparent (FCCC/SBI/2016/INF.14). Informal consultations will convene.
ARTICLE 6 OF THE CONVENTION (ACE): The SBI took note of the information of the reports on the: Fourth Dialogue on ACE (FCCC/SBI/2016/11) and workshop to support the implementation of the Doha work programme on Article 6 of the Convention (FCCC/SBI/2016/12).
OTHER MATTERS: PALESTINE highlighted difficulties accessing GEF resources and requested that a message be transferred to the COP on not excluding any non-Annex I parties from accessing resources.
The item on the impact of the implementation of response measures was briefly discussed and referred to a contact group.
The following items and sub-items were briefly discussed and referred to informal consultations:
APA Co-Chair Sarah Baashan, Saudi Arabia, opened the plenary, noting that the early entry into force of the Paris Agreement increases pressure on the APA to complete its work expeditiously.
ORGANIZATIONAL MATTERS: Adoption of the Agenda and Organization of Work: Co-Chair Baashan indicated that the agenda and organization of work (FCCC/APA/2016/3 and 2) adopted for APA 1 still applies for APA 1-2. Regarding the request from the COP to conduct the preparatory work so that the Adaptation Fund may serve the Paris Agreement, parties agreed to consider this at APA 1-2 under the agenda item on preparing for the convening of CMA 1.
Election of Officers: Co-Chair Baashan noted this had been completed at APA 1-1.
OPENING STATEMENTS: Thailand, for G-77/CHINA, stressed: adaptation communications as an input to the global stocktake and guidance aimed at enhancing adaptive capacity; and increasing resilience without creating additional burdens.
The EU stressed the need to design a global stocktake process fit for assessing collective progress while driving domestic action and global ambition, and characterized the 2018 facilitative dialogue as a precedent for the global stocktake.
Australia, for the UMBRELLA GROUP, supported, inter alia: work under the APA until 2018, at which time CMA 1 could reconvene; and capturing progress through co-chairs’ notes rather than formal conclusions or decisions. Switzerland, for the EIG, suggested that: co-facilitators use different approaches given the differences in the substantive issues; and co-chairs ensure a comparable treatment and progress in all areas, and capture progress in a reflection note with summaries by co-facilitators attached.
Bolivia, for ALBA, reminded that work under APA should reflect the comprehensive vision of sustainable development and poverty eradication. Panama, for CfRN, called for enabling rapid scaling-up and implementation of REDD+.
Saudi Arabia, for the ARAB GROUP, called for parallel progress on all tracks of work and stressed that developed countries should not transfer their responsibilities to developing countries. Iran, for the LMDCs, said the work of the APA on all its agenda items must respect the integrity the Paris Agreement and not renegotiate it.
Costa Rica, for AILAC, called for common understandings on specific information to be provided by “type of NDC.” Maldives, for AOSIS, stressed the need for clarity on how the 2018 facilitative dialogue will be taken forward.
The Democratic Republic of the Congo, for the LDCs, called for a clear set of modalities, procedures and guidelines for the transparency framework, with built-in flexibility to enable LDCs to build their reporting capacity. Mali, for the AFRICAN GROUP, suggested the APA should discuss the modalities, procedures and guidelines on the biennial communications of indicative support by developed countries.
TUNGOs called for further attention to the link between jobs and climate change.
WOMEN AND GENDER called for NDCs to address trade rules as barriers to implementation and to include gender equality. INDIGENOUS PEOPLES called for a working group on climate change and human rights.
YOUNGOs urged parties to enhance pre-2020 action and raise the ambition of NDCs.
BINGOs looked forward to public-private dialogues.
CAN called for identifying the capacity needs of vulnerable countries to communicate adaptation progress for different reporting purposes.
FARMERS highlighted innovation, technology transfer and investment in education as crucial to empower farmers and ensure food security.
IN THE CORRIDORS
On a rainy Monday morning, delegates dodged puddles and ducked under umbrellas on their way to the opening of the Marrakech Climate Change Conference. Possibly a good omen for this COP held in Africa, a continent facing increasing droughts as the climate changes, the precipitation seemed to nurture good grounds for an active, “working COP,” as expressed by one delegate. Participants heard the call to work, with the numerous items quickly convening in afternoon contact groups and informal consultations.
During a sunny lunch, delegates discussed the need for adequate time for work under the APA. Another raised concerns that “if Marrakech was to become an implementation COP, focus should not just be on post-2020 action but also on a clear roadmap for support and on implementing existing commitments pre-2020.” Leaving the venue in the evening, many expressed a positive outlook on the upcoming week, with the rain set to clear and sunny days ahead.