Earth Negotiations Bulletin (ENB)
Volume 12 Number 701 | Monday, 22 May 2017
Summary of the Bonn Climate Change Conference
8–18 May 2017 | Bonn, Germany
The Bonn Climate Change Conference convened from 8-18 May 2017 in Bonn, Germany. The conference included the 46th sessions of the Subsidiary Body for Implementation (SBI 46), and the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA 46), and the third session of the first meeting of the Ad Hoc Working Group on the Paris Agreement (APA 1-3). The conference brought together over 3900 participants, including over 2000 government officials, 1800 representatives from UN bodies and agencies, intergovernmental organizations and civil society organizations, and 70 members of the media.
The APA adopted conclusions outlining intersessional and pre-sessional work under each substantive agenda item.
The SBI adopted conclusions on: public registry/-ies referred to in Paris Agreement Articles 4.12 (Nationally determined contribution (NDC) registry) and 7.12 (adaptation communications); matters related to least developed countries (LDCs); national adaptation plans; scope and modalities for the periodic assessment of the Technology Mechanism in relation to supporting the Paris Agreement; review of the functions of the Standing Committee on Finance; third review of the Adaptation Fund; matters related to capacity building; arrangements for intergovernmental meetings; and various administrative and financial matters.
The SBSTA adopted conclusions on: the Nairobi work programme; the Technology Framework under the Paris Agreement; agriculture; research and systemic observation; various methodological issues under the Convention and the Kyoto Protocol; matters relating to Article 6 (cooperative approaches) under the Paris Agreement; modalities for accounting of financial resources provided and mobilized through public interventions under Paris Agreement Article 9.7; and cooperation with other international organizations.
The SBI and SBSTA adopted joint conclusions on response measures and scope of the next periodic review of the long-term goal under the Convention and progress toward achieving it, which also contained a Conference of the Parties (COP) decision.
Much work was devoted to advancing efforts to operationalize the Paris Agreement through technical discussions in a balanced manner under the three subsidiary bodies. This work proceeded in incremental steps, leaving considerable work for the 23rd session of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) COP in November 2017.
A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE UNFCCC, THE KYOTO PROTOCOL AND THE PARIS AGREEMENT
The international political response to climate change began with the 1992 adoption of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), which sets out a legal framework for stabilizing atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases (GHGs) to avoid “dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system.” The Convention, which entered into force on 21 March 1994, has 197 parties. In December 1997, delegates to COP 3 in Kyoto, Japan, agreed to a protocol to the UNFCCC that committed industrialized countries and countries in transition to a market economy to achieve emission reduction targets. These countries, known as Annex I parties under the UNFCCC, agreed to reduce their overall emissions of six GHGs by an average of 5% below 1990 levels in 2008-2012 (the first commitment period), with specific targets varying from country to country. The Kyoto Protocol entered into force on 16 February 2005 and now has 192 parties.
In December 2015, at COP 21 in Paris, France, parties adopted the Paris Agreement that specifies all countries will submit nationally determined contributions (NDCs) and aggregate progress on mitigation, adaptation and means of implementation will be reviewed every five years through a global stocktake. The Paris Agreement entered into force on 4 November 2016 and, as of 7 May 2017, had been ratified by 146 parties out of the 195 signatories.
LONG-TERM NEGOTIATIONS, 2005-2009: Convening in Montreal, Canada, in 2005, the first Conference of the Parties serving as the meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (CMP 1) established the Ad Hoc Working Group on Annex I Parties’ Further Commitments under the Kyoto Protocol (AWG-KP) in accordance with Protocol Article 3.9, which mandated consideration of Annex I parties’ further commitments at least seven years before the end of the first commitment period.
In December 2007, COP 13 and CMP 3 in Bali, Indonesia, resulted in agreement on the Bali Roadmap on long-term issues. COP 13 adopted the Bali Action Plan (BAP) and established the Ad Hoc Working Group on Long-term Cooperative Action under the Convention (AWG-LCA), with a mandate to focus on mitigation, adaptation, finance, technology, capacity building and a shared vision for long-term cooperative action. Negotiations on Annex I parties’ further commitments continued under the AWG-KP. The deadline for concluding the two-track negotiations was 2009 in Copenhagen, Denmark.
COPENHAGEN: The UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen met in December 2009. The event was marked by disputes over transparency and process. After lengthy debate, delegates ultimately agreed to “take note” of the Copenhagen Accord and to extend the mandates of the negotiating groups until COP 16 and CMP 6 in 2010. In 2010, over 140 countries indicated support for the Accord, and over 80 countries provided information on their national mitigation targets or actions.
CANCUN: The UN Climate Change Conference in Cancún, Mexico, convened in December 2010, where parties adopted the Cancún Agreements and agreed to consider the adequacy of the long-term global goal during a 2013-2015 review. The Cancun Agreements established several new institutions and processes, including the Green Climate Fund (GCF), the Cancun Adaptation Framework, the Adaptation Committee and the Technology Mechanism, which includes the Technology Executive Committee (TEC) and the Climate Technology Centre and Network (CTCN).
DURBAN: The UN Climate Change Conference in Durban, South Africa, occurred in November-December 2011. Among other outcomes, parties agreed to launch the Ad Hoc Working Group on the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action (ADP) with a mandate “to develop a protocol, another legal instrument or an agreed outcome with legal force under the Convention applicable to all Parties” no later than 2015, to enter into force in 2020. In addition, the ADP was mandated to explore actions to close the pre-2020 ambition gap in relation to the 2°C target.
DOHA: The UN Climate Change Conference in Doha, Qatar, took place in November-December 2012. The conference resulted in a package of decisions referred to as the “Doha Climate Gateway.” These included amendments to the Kyoto Protocol to establish its second commitment period (2013-2020), and agreement to terminate the AWG-KP’s and AWG-LCA’s work and negotiations under the BAP.
WARSAW: The UN Climate Change Conference in Warsaw, Poland, took place in November 2013. The meeting adopted an ADP decision that, inter alia, invites parties to initiate or intensify domestic preparations for their intended nationally determined contributions (INDCs). Parties also adopted decisions establishing the Warsaw International Mechanism on Loss and Damage associated with Climate Change Impacts (WIM), and the Warsaw Framework for Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation in developing countries; plus the role of conservation, sustainable forest management and enhancement of forest carbon stocks (REDD+.)
LIMA: The UN Climate Change Conference in Lima, Peru, took place in December 2014. COP 20 adopted the “Lima Call for Climate Action,” which furthered progress on the negotiations towards the 2015 agreement by elaborating the elements of a draft negotiating text and the process for submitting and synthesizing INDCs, while also addressing pre-2020 ambition. Parties also adopted 19 decisions that, inter alia, help operationalize the WIM, establish the Lima work programme on gender, and adopt the Lima Ministerial Declaration on Education and Awareness-raising.
PARIS: The UN Climate Change Conference convened in Paris, France, in November-December 2015 and culminated in the Paris Agreement on climate change. The Agreement specifies that each party shall communicate successive NDCs that it intends to achieve. By 2020, parties whose NDCs contain a timeframe up to 2025 are requested to communicate a new NDC and parties with a NDC timeframe up to 2030 are requested to communicate or update these contributions. Starting in 2023, aggregate progress on mitigation, adaptation and means of implementation will be reviewed every five years in a global stocktake.
MARRAKECH: The UN Climate Change Conference in Marrakech, Morocco, convened in November 2016, and included the first Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Paris Agreement (CMA 1). Parties adopted 35 decisions, several related to the work programme under the Paris Agreement, including agreement: that such work should conclude by 2018; that the Adaptation Fund should serve the Paris Agreement; the terms of reference for the Paris Committee on Capacity-building; and to initiate a process to identify the information to be provided in accordance with Agreement Article 9.5 (biennial finance communications by developed countries). COP 22 also adopted decisions related to: the Convention’s implementation, including approving the five-year workplan of the WIM; enhancing the Technology Mechanism; and continuing and enhancing the Lima work programme on gender.
REPORT OF THE MEETINGS
The opening plenaries of the APA, SBI and SBSTA occurred on Monday, 8 May. This report summarizes the discussions by the three bodies based on their respective agendas.
Several events mandated by the COP convened in conjunction with the subsidiary bodies.
MULTI-STAKEHOLDER DIALOGUE ON THE OPERATIONALIZATION OF THE LOCAL COMMUNITIES AND INDIGENOUS PEOPLES PLATFORM: This event took place 16-17 May, and SBSTA Chair Carlos Fuller (Belize) reported on next steps in the SBSTA closing plenary on Thursday, 18 May.
Discussions on Tuesday, 16 May, are summarized at http://enb.iisd.org/climate/sb46/enbots/16may.html and discussions on Wednesday, 17 May, are summarized at: http://enb.iisd.org/vol12/enb12700e.html .
PROCESS TO IDENTIFY THE INFORMATION TO BE PROVIDED BY PARTIES IN ACCORDANCE WITH AGREEMENT ARTICLE 9.5: This mandated event occurred Tuesday, 16 May, and is summarized at http://enb.iisd.org/vol12/enb12699e.html
PARIS COMMITTEE ON CAPACITY-BUILDING: The Paris Committee on Capacity-building (PCCB) met Thursday through Saturday, 11-13 May. Its discussions on Thursday are summarized at: http://enb.iisd.org/vol12/enb12695e.html and discussions on Saturday are summarized here: http://enb.iisd.org/vol12/enb12697e.html . On Saturday, the PCCB adopted outcomes from its first meeting.
PCCB Outcomes: During its first meeting, held from 11-13 May (http://unfccc.int/cooperation_and_support/capacity_building/items/10260.php ), the PCCB agreed on, inter alia:
- working modalities and procedures of the PCCB: to adopt its rules of procedure and working modalities (PCCB/2017/1/3) and to request the Secretariat to explore technical solutions to ensure all members’ full participation in the PCCB’s activities;
- implementation of the 2016-2020 capacity-building workplan: to adopt the PCCB rolling workplan for 2017-2019, to request the Secretariat to develop proposals and interested stakeholders to make submissions on developing the capacity-building web portal, and to nominate PCCB members to liaise with other constituted bodies;
- the 2017 PCCB focus area/theme: to undertake assessments of capacity-building needs as identified in relevant sources and of work related to the annual theme conducted by other constituted bodies, to create working groups and to call for submissions around the annual theme;
- the 2018 PCCB focus area/theme: to continue with the 2017 focus area or theme on capacity-building activities for the implementation of NDCs in the context of the Paris Agreement, and on representatives to be invited to PCCB meetings); and
- the PCCB annual technical progress report to the COP: on the report outline and to finalize the report by August 2017.
AD HOC WORKING GROUP ON THE PARIS AGREEMENT
The APA opening plenary convened on Monday, 8 May, followed by a contact group that met on Tuesday, 9 May, to set out its organization of work, including that discussions for each agenda item would take place in informal consultations. The contact group reconvened on Wednesday and Thursday, 17 and 18 May, to hear progress reports on each agenda item and discuss the way forward. The discussions for each agenda item, held in informal consultations, are summarized below.
OPENING STATEMENTS: Ecuador, for the Group of 77 and China (G-77/China), stressed: the importance of advancing, and maintaining a balance among, all elements of the Paris Agreement; the need to move to textual negotiations by COP 23; and NDCs as a key vehicle for delivering enhanced action under the Paris Agreement.
The European Union (EU) said the APA workshops and roundtables are proving useful in advancing technical understanding. She called for moving beyond conceptual discussions and leaving COP 23 with elements of draft text on all issues.
Australia, for the Umbrella Group, observed that discussions are now becoming more concrete, which he said was necessary to fulfill the Paris Agreement’s mandates.
Switzerland, for the Environmental Integrity Group (EIG), underlined that a technical mode of discussions is a fundamental underpinning to the text-based discussions in 2018.
Iran, for the Like-Minded Developing Countries (LMDCs), stressed the need for transparency and inclusiveness, consistency with the Convention’s principles and provisions, and significance of means of implementation (MOI) in the post-2020 period.
Ethiopia, for the Least Developed Countries (LDCs), called for informal and reflection notes, suggesting that some decisions could be taken at COP 23. He noted imbalance in discussions on reporting on emissions, which he said are more advanced than discussions on support.
China, for Brazil, South Africa, India and China (BASIC), called for starting textual negotiations as soon as possible, and for reflecting differentiation, the nationally-determined nature of contributions and flexibility for developing countries.
Bolivia, for the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America (ALBA), underlined the need to avoid renegotiating the Paris Agreement and to reflect the Convention’s principles, including equity and common but differentiated responsibilities (CBDR).
Guatemala, for the Association of Independent Latin American Countries (AILAC), stated that being party to the Paris Agreement implies a responsibility to work for its success, ambition and progression.
Saudi Arabia, for the Arab Group, underlined: that transparency should apply to all aspects, especially MOI; and the need for differentiation in addressing mitigation, stressing the necessity to link actions and support.
Maldives, for the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS), called for: initiating work on a new quantified finance goal; reaching a decision on the Adaptation Fund; defining loss and damage; and completing the design of the 2018 Facilitative Dialogue by COP 23.
Mali, for the African Group, stressed the linkages among agenda items and asked for a non-prescriptive Co-Chairs’ note to help the negotiations’ progress.
The Democratic Republic of the Congo, for the Coalition for Rainforest Nations (CfRN), suggested that REDD+ institutions could hold valuable lessons for the APA’s work on internationally transferred mitigation outcomes (ITMOs).
Trade Union NGOs called on parties to include steps for a just transition in their NDCs.
Women and Gender called for a process to involve gender experts.
Youth NGOs (YOUNGOs) urged a focus on adaptation and transparency, and, with Climate Action Network (CAN), called for more civil society engagement.
Corporate Accountability International lamented that parties’ submissions show no sign of advancing action and support. Indigenous Peoples said “offsets are hidden emissions” and called for effective participation of indigenous peoples in the Global Stocktake (GST).
ORGANIZATIONAL MATTERS: Parties agreed to continue with the APA 1 agenda (FCCC/APA/2017/1) and work in a single contact group that would conduct its work through informal consultations.
Election of officers: Co-Chair Sarah Baashan (Saudi Arabia) indicated that the deadline for nominations was 12 May and that this issue would be revisited at the closing plenary. On Thursday, 18 May, Collin Beck (Solomon Islands) reported that consultations with the Chairs and Coordinators of the regional groups and small island developing states (SIDS) had resulted in a recommendation that the APA elect Jo Tyndall (New Zealand) and Sarah Baashan (Saudi Arabia) for an additional one-year term in November 2017.
FURTHER GUIDANCE ON THE MITIGATION SECTION OF DECISION 1/CP.21 (PARIS OUTCOME): Features of NDCs, as specified in paragraph 26 (guidance on NDCs); Information to facilitate clarity, transparency and understanding of NDCs, as specified in paragraph 28; and Accounting for parties’ NDCs, as specified in paragraph 31 (guidance for accounting for NDCs): This item was co-facilitated by Gertraud Wollansky (Austria) and Sin Liang Cheah (Singapore). Parties considered these three sub-items together.
Parties expressed the need for: further guidance to facilitate understanding of the aggregate effect of NDCs while maintaining their nationally-determined nature; preserving flexibility for future NDC types; and distinguishing between issues to be discussed under the mitigation and transparency items. Noting the large number of NDC types, some parties suggested starting with minimal arrangements. Many parties supported using elements on information to be provided by parties communicating their NDCs as listed in Decision 1/CP.21, paragraph 27.
Parties identified the need to agree on whether guidance will apply to the first or subsequent rounds of NDCs and on links with the transparency framework.
A party urged consideration of semi-quantified or unquantified contributions, and how they would be used as inputs to the GST.
Some said guidance must allow for evolution over time as new information and methodologies become available.
Various countries underlined capacity-building constraints to reporting. Many developing countries underscored the importance of flexibility and called for a distinction to be made between guidance for developed and developing countries.
On the scope of the guidance, several developed country parties and groups, opposed by several developing country groups, argued this item is confined to mitigation.
A party cautioned against stand-alone guidance on land use. A few parties, opposed by one party, urged joint discussions with those under SBSTA on Article 6 (cooperative approaches).
Parties met in informal informals to discuss a draft informal note prepared by the Co-Facilitators.
FURTHER GUIDANCE IN RELATION TO THE ADAPTATION COMMUNICATION, INCLUDING, INTER ALIA, AS A COMPONENT OF NDCS, REFERRED TO IN AGREEMENT ARTICLES 7.10 AND 7.11: This item was taken up in informal consultations co-facilitated by Beth Lavender (Canada) and Nicolas Zambrano Sanchez (Ecuador).
Discussions were structured around the Co-Facilitators’ proposed “skeleton” of a possible outcome, consisting of: purposes; elements; vehicles; flexibilities; and linkages.
On the related subjects of purposes and elements, parties presented a number of options, with two proposals in particular driving discussions. Parties noted that purpose and elements are clearly interconnected, indicating that on the one hand, purposes guide the choice of elements, but on the other, many elements contribute to multiple purposes. On elements, parties presented various suggestions including: national circumstance; impacts, vulnerabilities and risk assessments; plans, priorities and actions; efforts by developing countries and progress; adaptation support needs; monitoring and evaluation; and support by developed countries. They discussed whether to have a common list of elements only, or a common list supplemented by optional elements. The Co-Chairs noted good progress on convergence.
On vehicles, some parties supported exploring how existing guidelines can be used in order to avoid duplication and additional reporting burdens.
On linkages, many parties identified linkages with existing vehicles of communication and parts of the Paris Agreement, including the GST and the transparency framework. On flexibility, parties diverged on the necessities of common or minimum reporting elements. Some parties noted that in a voluntary communications system, common or minimum reporting elements “made no sense.” Others suggested that without such common of minimum elements, the communication would fail to adequately inform processes such as the GST.
On Wednesday, 17 May, the Co-Facilitators issued a revised informal note.
MODALITIES, PROCEDURES AND GUIDELINES FOR THE TRANSPARENCY FRAMEWORK FOR ACTION AND SUPPORT: Informal consultations were co-facilitated by Xiang Gao (China) and Andrew Rakestraw (US).
Discussions, which were initiated by and captured in a Co-Facilitators’ tool, focused on: overarching considerations of the modalities, procedures and guidelines (MPGs); national inventory report on anthropogenic emissions by sources and removals by sinks of GHGs; information necessary to track progress made in implementing and achieving NDCs under Agreement Article 4 (mitigation); information related to climate change impacts and adaptation under Agreement Article 7 (adaptation), as appropriate; information on financial, technology transfer and capacity-building support provided under Agreement Articles 9-11 (MOI); technical expert review; and facilitative, multilateral consideration of progress. Parties also discussed next steps following APA 1-3.
On information necessary to track progress made in implementing and achieving NDCs, many parties called for avoiding duplication. Several stressed clarity on common and specific elements for different types of NDCs. Some parties raised concerns over specifying contributions from the land-use sector, preferring this to fall under information on parties’ accounting. Others called for reflecting differentiation, with one suggesting that developing countries provide information on barriers to implementation and on required MOI to overcome them.
On the technical expert review, parties called for specifying its inputs and outputs, and approaches related to specific types of information to be reported.
On facilitative, multilateral consideration of progress, parties suggested using past experience to improve the process, and outlining steps and organization of work, including possible future events.
On information on financial, technology transfer and capacity-building support provided, many parties agreed that clarity and coherence of reporting can reduce duplication of work and facilitate the GST. Some noted information on technology transfer and capacity-building support may be more qualitative. Many developing countries called for: operational objectives and principles; deletion of reference to “other countries providing support”; and clarification that developed countries’ provision of support is not voluntary. Some supported a definition of climate finance and a process to assist developing countries in identifying their financial needs for enhanced actions. Some cited characteristics related to specific information on tracking mobilization and support.
On information related to climate change impacts and adaptation, many developed countries noted that in the Agreement parties “shall” report on adaptation action, arguing that flexibility does not need to be elaborated in the MPGs. Various developed countries, opposed by some developing countries, called for removing reference to loss and damage in the Co-Facilitators’ tool. Other issues addressed included the need to avoid undue burden to developing countries, and effectiveness and sustainability of adaptation action.
On information on financial, technology transfer and capacity-building support needed and received, many developing countries noted challenges in: identifying information gaps related to needs; tracking of support; and, with others, untangling support for technology transfer from support for capacity building. Parties suggested: adding principles under objectives; including information on transaction costs; specifying “development and” technology transfer support; and avoiding references to reporting information on “use, impacts and results” of support and to what some considered as new ideas, such as “status of action” or “underlying assumptions” of support needs.
Many developing countries stressed that enhanced action requires enhanced support and called for a definition of climate finance and clarity on accessibility. Some suggested, opposed by others, specific references to additional Paris Agreement articles. Many noted ongoing work on modalities under SBSTA as a useful input for work under the APA.
In their discussion on next steps following APA 1-3, parties expressed broad support for: targeted submissions from parties, which would focus on the possible headings and sub-headings contained in the Co-Facilitators’ informal note; an intersessional workshop that would learn from the shortfalls of the March 2017 workshop; and submissions feeding into the workshop. Parties agreed to specify that the pre-sessional workshop should focus on issues covered in parties’ submissions and include technical discussions on how these submissions address cross-cutting issues contained in a non-exhaustive list.
On Wednesday, 17 May, the Co-Facilitators issued an informal note, with reflections on the discussions in the informal consultations.
MATTERS RELATING TO THE GLOBAL STOCKTAKE: Informal consultations were co-facilitated by Xolisa Ngwadla (South Africa) and Ilze Prūse (Latvia). Consultations addressed: linkages and context; outputs/outcomes; modalities; and inputs. The Co-Facilitators circulated five versions of their informal note during the meeting, which were based on the discussions.
On possible linkages and context, some developing countries underlined the link to support for loss and damage, and one mentioned the impacts of response measures. Various developing countries called for operationalizing equity in the GST and examining how developed countries are taking the lead. Some developed countries underlined the difficulty of defining equity in a practical way. Others mentioned links to the ambition cycle and best available science.
On possible outputs/outcomes, many parties noted that the Paris Agreement outlines the GST’s outcome. Many also called for the GST to enhance international cooperation and identify best practices, barriers to implementation and opportunities for overcoming them. Some noted that discussions of the GST’s modalities will enable the identification of outputs. Some also called for learning from the experience of the Structured Expert Dialogue on the 2013-2015 review, in particular how it distilled information to present outputs.
On the GST’s modalities, parties generally agreed that the GST should include a technical and a political phase. All parties, but one group of developing countries, supported viewing the GST as a process. Many suggested that the GST’s phases feature: information gathering and compilation; consideration of these inputs; and formulation of outcomes. Some stressed the need to maintain the integrity of the GST’s technical phase. Many suggested the CMA oversee the GST, with some proposing constituting a joint contact group to consider the results of the technical phase.
Various developing countries suggested adding equity as one of the GST’s workstreams. Developed countries opposed, viewing equity as a cross-cutting issue throughout the GST’s mandate. Views also diverged on: the inclusion of consideration of loss and damage; the GST’s timeframe, with proposals ranging from having the GST starting in 2020, to having the GST confined to 2023; and whether and how non-parties would be engaged. A group of developing countries expressed concern with using some terms not included in the Paris Agreement, such as “outputs” and “workstreams.”
On inputs, parties agreed that: Decision 1/CP.21, paragraph 99 (sources of input for the GST), could provide the basis for developing a non-exhaustive list of inputs; balance among inputs on adaptation, mitigation and MOI should be ensured; and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is the source of the best available science. Some developed countries noted that reference to “finance flows” in Agreement Article 2.1 is wider than MOI. Various developing countries called for inputs on loss and damage, while some developed countries questioned the basis for their inclusion. Some parties underlined the need to balance IPCC and non-IPCC sources, while others rejected the idea, noting that the IPCC provides the best available science.
Views also diverged on the way forward, including on proposals for: submissions, including on equity; a technical paper on lessons learned from the 2013-2015 review; a Co-Facilitators’ non-paper outlining areas of divergence and convergence; and an intersessional roundtable to discuss headings. The Co-Facilitators proposed forwarding their informal note with an indication that it does not reflect parties’ agreement on the headings and calling for submissions on possible headings.
MODALITIES AND PROCEDURES FOR THE EFFECTIVE OPERATION OF THE COMMITTEE TO FACILITATE IMPLEMENTATION AND PROMOTE COMPLIANCE: This item was co-facilitated by Peter Horne (Australia) and Janine Felson (Belize). Informal consultations addressed the committee’s scope and function, triggers, national circumstances and linkages, among others.
On function, a number of parties viewed “facilitating implementation” and “promoting compliance” as distinct functions. Discussions also focused on whether the committee’s activities would cover all provisions of the Agreement or only those that are legally binding. Parties also discussed different and common outputs for binding and non-binding provisions of the Paris Agreement.
On triggers, a developing country group supported a self-trigger only, while two developing country groups and other countries stressed the need for additional triggers. Some opposed a Secretariat trigger, noting the Secretariat’s neutral, information-gathering role, while others cited this as the reason a Secretariat trigger is needed. Several supported a CMA trigger for systemic issues. Some developing countries opposed having “early warnings” or statements of non-compliance issued.
On national capabilities and circumstances, developing countries stressed the need for modalities addressing differentiation. Several developed countries and one developing country said the committee could decide which flexibilities are warranted on a case-by-case basis. Various developing countries called for a link between the compliance mechanism and MOI. A group of developing countries, supported by various developed countries, warned against creating perverse incentives.
On linkages, many said linkages to the transparency framework could be a source of an objective or automatic trigger or as input to other triggers. Some urged, opposed by others, linkages with Article 6.4 (mechanism). Parties exchanged varying views on the role of the CMA, with a few developing countries arguing work should remain at the technical, committee level.
FURTHER MATTERS RELATED TO IMPLEMENTATION OF THE PARIS AGREEMENT: Parties addressed matters related to the Adaptation Fund separately from other issues related to the Paris work programme.
Adaptation Fund: Informal consultations on this sub-item were co-facilitated by Bueno Asesora (Argentina) and Pieter Terpstra (the Netherlands). Parties’ discussions were initiated by Co-Facilitators’ guiding questions regarding: governance and institutional arrangements as well as operating modalities of the Adaptation Fund that need to be addressed; and issues related to safeguards for the Fund to serve the Paris Agreement.
On operating modalities, many developing countries stressed direct access for developing countries as essential. Several developed countries noted the need to assess the Fund’s comparative advantage. Many agreed with some developed countries’ call for discussions focusing on: the future role of the Adaptation Fund within climate finance; sources and coherence of adaptation funding; whether the Adaption Fund will continue to serve the Kyoto Protocol and how, in doing so, it will also serve the Paris Agreement; interim arrangements; who would provide guidance to the Adaptation Fund; and eligibility, considering non-Paris Agreement parties.
Parties engaged in lengthy discussion on options for the Adaptation Fund to serve the Paris Agreement. Some preferred clarifying the Fund’s institutional home. The Secretariat’s legal team responded to parties’ questions on the legal threshold needed for the Fund to serve the Paris Agreement, clarifying that this rests on complementary, but not simultaneous, CMA and CMP decisions. Decisions on governance, arrangements and modalities, she explained, will depend on which instruments or agreements the Fund will serve.
Some developing countries considered an option that parties: agree that the CMP decides the Fund serves the Agreement and that the Fund’s Board shall be under the authority of the CMA; and mandate work on issues related to the Fund’s revenue sources, and trusteeship and eligibility of Paris Agreement parties to the Board. One group of parties, opposed by one party, proposed as the way forward that: the next CMP decide to move the Fund under the authority of the CMA; the next CMA decide the Fund shall serve the Paris Agreement; and the Fund’s rules shall apply mutatis mutandis, adopting existing safeguards.
On the way forward, developing countries noted the need to address transitional issues, such as how to deal with “grandfathering” projects already in the pipeline. They also stressed the need to work on draft decision text as soon as possible. Parties agreed that the Secretariat should upload a list of relevant CMP decisions to the UNFCCC website, with one party highlighting the 2006 CMP decision on the Adaptation Fund (Decision 5/CMP.2).
On Tuesday, 16 May, the Co-Facilitators issued an informal note, including Co-Facilitators’ reflections on the discussions and two annexes: one with a list of options and elements identified by parties in response to the guiding questions; and another, prepared by UNFCCC Legal Affairs, on informal consultations on matters related to arrangements for the Fund to serve the Paris Agreement.
Further matters except the Adaptation Fund: The APA Co-Chairs co-facilitated the informal consultations. Reminding parties about the lack of official status of the list of nine possible additional matters not addressed under the Paris Agreement work programme included in a Co-Chairs’ informal note, Co-Chair Baashan invited parties to consider each matter, reflecting on questions from the Co-Chairs’ reflections note: whether/where work is currently being undertaken; whether/where preparatory work is required; and the timeframe for this work. Parties exchanged views on: progress and procedural steps to enable the response measures forum to serve the Paris Agreement; and modalities for the recognition of developing countries’ adaptation efforts. They mandated the Co-Chairs to seek informal clarification from the SBI/SBSTA Chairs on the scope of ongoing discussions on the improved forum on response measures.
Parties also considered modalities for biennially communicating information and guidance to the operating entities of the Financial Mechanism. Some parties argued that while there is a mandate to discuss the information, there is no similar mandate for modalities. Others argued against going beyond the explicit mandate provided in the Paris Agreement. On guidance, many parties noted the existing provisions for guidance apply mutatis mutandis.
Parties also considered initial guidance by the CMA to the LDC Fund (LDCF) and the Special Climate Change Fund (SCCF) and guidance by the CMA on the adjustment of existing NDCs. Many parties stated that neither item is a priority, noting that when Paris Agreement parties begin providing support via the LDCF and SSCF they can at that time give guidance to the Global Environment Facility (GEF), which administers them. On guidance for adjusting NDCs, many parties pointed out that guidance for transmitting NDCs already covers most of the relevant details.
On a process for setting a new collective quantified finance goal, many developing countries proposed the CMA provide a mandate for discussions on this item to identify the format and modalities for negotiations. A party urged taking up this item “as early as possible” while another party, supporting inclusion on the CMA’s agenda, opposed deliberations at CMA 1. A party opposed considering this issue under the SBI.
Presenting a draft informal note, Co-Chair Baashan noted it contained proposed next steps on four of the matters: on enabling the response measures forum to serve the Paris Agreement; on recognizing developing countries’ adaptation efforts; and on (initial) CMA guidance to the GCF and GEF, and LDCF and SSCF. Responding to a party regarding how common understanding on different matters would be “passed on,” she noted the informal note and APA conclusions as possible options. On the proposal to trigger the mandate for preparing the guidance at CMA 1-3, with a view to the Standing Committee on Finance (SCF) preparing draft guidance for CMA 2, one developing country group proposed providing guidance earlier. On the process for setting a new collective quantified goal on finance, many parties agreed to refer to this as a “mandated” matter and add a reference to the relevant paragraph in the Paris outcome. Some developing countries and groups said they would propose better articulated text on the option of starting work early.
One party called for procedural clarity on how the forum on response measures would report to the APA, opposed by others. On recognition of adaptation efforts, parties discussed how a draft decision on the recommendations of the Adaptation Committee and LEG would be prepared for the CMA.
APA CONTACT GROUP: In the contact group that met Wednesday and Thursday, 17 and 18 May, discussions centered on the draft APA conclusions and the way forward.
On the conclusions, several developing country groups underlined the need for balance: among agenda items; between pre-2020 and post-2020 action; and between action and support. South Africa, for the African Group, and Iran, for the LMDCs, supported prioritizing work on issues that were “less mature.”
Several countries focused on how the conclusions reflect discussions on the Adaptation Fund. Ethiopia, for the LDCs, the African Group and the US stated the draft conclusions do not capture progress. Maldives, for AOSIS, supported by Brazil, also on behalf of Argentina and Uruguay, stressed the need for in-depth dialogue on the governance and operational modalities of the Adaptation Fund serving the Paris Agreement.
Australia, for the Umbrella Group, opposed a paragraph stating that COP 23 will address the need for procedural clarity regarding draft decisions at CMA 1 relating to the response measures forum and recognition of adaptation efforts. The US underlined that these mandates are clear.
On future work, parties’ views diverged on the need for submissions or technical papers and on how many, and on what issues, roundtables should convene, as well as on whether these should be intersessional, pre-sessional or in-session workshops.
Delegates engaged in lengthy discussions on this future technical work. Australia, for the Umbrella Group, supported submissions on the GST and compliance. The LMDCs supported a pre-sessional roundtable on transparency, opposed roundtables on mitigation and the GST, and supported focused submissions on the GST. The EU supported a two-day workshop on transparency. Switzerland, for the EIG, supported: a pre-sessional roundtable on mitigation; a two-day workshop on transparency; and submissions on adaptation communications and the GST. He stated he was “not convinced” on the need for a compliance roundtable. The LDCs supported roundtables on all agenda items to be informed by submissions and technical papers, as appropriate. AOSIS supported focused submissions on adaptation communications, the GST and an in-session roundtable on compliance. Guatemala, for AILAC, supported submissions on the GST outlining areas of convergence and divergence. The African Group called for a roundtable on the GST. Brazil, also for Argentina and Uruguay, supported roundtables on mitigation, adaptation communications and compliance.
In the afternoon, on the roundtables, the EIG, supported by the African Group, the LDCs, the EU and Norway, proposed one day for mitigation, two days for transparency and, with Argentina, also for Brazil and Uruguay, one day for adaptation communications. The African Group, supported by AOSIS and AILAC, stressed that one day of the transparency roundtable should be dedicated to transparency of support. Australia and New Zealand questioned the propriety of allocating one full day to support, noting this is only one of the areas needing further discussion.
China proposed a one-day workshop on transparency, split into two parts, on support and on adaptation, and opposed a roundtable on “NDCs.” He supported a roundtable on adaptation communications. Other parties restated their preferences for roundtables.
Co-Chair Baashan proposed: a two-day roundtable on transparency, with one day devoted to transparency of support, technical expert review and facilitative multilateral consideration, and the other day for transparency of action, including mitigation and adaptation; a one-day roundtable on adaptation communications; and a one-day roundtable on the GST. She also proposed two parallel in-session roundtables on mitigation and compliance.
The African Group called for specifying that the technical expert review and facilitative multilateral consideration are linked to transparency of support. The LMDCs suggested deleting reference to the technical expert review and facilitative multilateral consideration.
The Co-Chairs suspended the contact group, saying they would revise the draft conclusions.
On Thursday, 18 May, Co-Chair Tyndall presented the draft conclusions (FCCC/AP A/2017/L.2), noting the document contained three options: proposal for pre-sessional and in-sessional work; invitations for submissions on APA agenda items 3-7 and recognizing progress under APA agenda item 8 (further matters); and agreement to continue work at APA 1-4.
After a point of order from the LDCs, which noted that an “L” document cannot be issued without the consent of the contact group and that not all parties had been consulted on the three options, and a proposal from the African Group, the APA agreed to only discuss the first option put forward in the text.
Australia asked that the roundtable on the GST be organized taking into consideration submissions of parties instead of the Co-Facilitators’ informal note. The LDCs, supported by the US, asked that both the informal note and parties’ submissions be used.
The LMDCs asked for changing “taking into account the views of parties reflected and the content of the informal note” to “noting, as appropriate” in a paragraph on the invitation to parties to make submissions on further work on the GST.
APA Co-Chair Tyndall summarized the proposed amendments in the conclusions. Parties then adopted the conclusions as orally amended.
CLOSING PLENARY: On Thursday, 18 May, the APA adopted its conclusions (FCCC/APA/2017/L.2).
Co-Chair Baashan invited the Secretariat to report the administrative and budgetary implications of the outcomes of APA’s work. The Secretariat said an additional €385,000 was required for the three pre-sessional roundtables to be held in conjunction with the resumed APA and invited parties to make contributions. Co-Chair Baashan said the report would reflect that the roundtables could not be organized in the absence of additional funding.
The APA then adopted the report (FCCC/APA/2017/L.1).
The APA plenary had a moment of silence in honor of former Indian Minister of Environment Anil Madhav Dave, who unexpectedly passed away last month.
Ecuador, for the G-77/China, looked forward to the in-session roundtable and the opportunity for submissions on mitigation and the transparency framework. He reiterated that the Adaptation Fund will serve the Paris Agreement as agreed, stressed the need to further address procedural matters and emphasized the importance of setting a new collective quantified goal on finance.
The EU noted good progress on transparency of action and support, and on the Adaptation Fund, but noted different understandings on the GST. She supported appropriate involvement of non-party stakeholders.
Australia, for the Umbrella Group, said the group was: looking forward to further elaborate on adaption communications; viewed transparency on mitigation action as important to understand collective and individual goals; and recognized the GST as central in driving collective ambition.
Calling for technical progress not to be threatened by political discussions under the APA contact group, Switzerland, for the EIG, called for evening sessions to allow for experts from groups with interlinkages to participate in negotiations.
Maldives, for AOSIS, said progress was “mixed” across thematic areas and asked that lost time be made up with a spirit of urgency.
Iran, for the LMDCs, said historical responsibility and respective capabilities need to be reflected in the arrangements being discussed to implement the Paris Agreement and called for greater trust.
Saudi Arabia, for the Arab Group, stressed the need to preserve the balance among the various elements of the Paris Agreement and complete the negotiations on additional matters under the APA. He stressed the linkages between adaptation communication and the transparency framework and the GST, as well as to MOI, capacity building, technology transfer and response measures.
Guatemala, for AILAC emphasized: the need to further progress work on the GST; the 2018 Facilitative Dialogue as highly relevant for achieving the trajectory demanded by the science; and transparency of action and transparency of support are pillars of trust among parties.
Bolivia, for ALBA, noted the need for balance among the multiple agenda items, and the pillars of mitigation, adaptation, MOI and capacity building. She stressed the need to: recognize different states’ particular capabilities; and distinguish between those parties unwilling to sign the Paris Agreement and those unable to do so, without punishing the latter.
Reminding countries that “the clock is ticking,” Co-Chair Baashan suspended APA 1-3 at 9:29 pm.
APA Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/APA/2017/L.2), the APA, inter alia, regarding further work on individual agenda items, notes that the focus areas for submissions use different terminology across items, reflecting the individual dynamics of the negotiations in each informal group. The APA also agrees that, as the negotiations proceed, more consistent terminology will be applied to further facilitate developing textual proposals and elements of draft texts for all items on the APA agenda.
With respect to the roundtables referred to for specific agenda items below, the APA agrees that: the roundtables will be open to parties and observer states only; and if parties agree, the Co-Facilitators designated to each relevant agenda item at APA 1-3 will prepare, under their own responsibility and the guidance of the APA Co-Chairs, an informal note reflecting the views expressed at the relevant roundtable and make that note available to parties as soon as possible thereafter.
On agenda item 3 (mitigation), the APA requests: the Co-Facilitators to prepare, by 15 October 2017, a non-paper capturing convergence, divergence and options, where appropriate, based on parties’ views expressed in the submissions, without omitting, reinterpreting or prejudging parties’ views; and the Secretariat to organize a roundtable, to be held on Monday, 6 November 2017, taking into consideration the Co-Facilitators’ non-paper.
On agenda item 4 (adaptation communications), the APA:
- invites focused submissions, by 15 September 2017, on the proposals for elements and “skeleton” outlines;
- requests the Secretariat to prepare, by 1 October 2017, a technical paper synthesizing adaptation-related information in NDCs, national adaptation plans (NAPs) and recent national communications;
- requests the Co-Facilitators to synthesize these submissions into a non-paper by 15 October 2017; and
- requests the Secretariat to organize a roundtable, to be held on 4 November 2017, taking into consideration the parties’ submissions.
On agenda item 5 (transparency framework), the APA: invites parties to make, by 30 September 2017, focused submissions taking into account the possible “headings and subheadings” contained in the annex to the informal note prepared by the Co-Facilitators; invites parties, in submitting their views, to elaborate, as appropriate, the specific operational details under the possible “headings and subheadings”; and requests the Secretariat to organize a pre-sessional roundtable, to be held on 4-5 November, focusing on issues covered in parties’ submissions, and also including technical discussions on how cross-cutting issues listed in Paris Agreement Article 13, including, inter alia, its paragraphs 2-4, were considered in parties’ submissions. The APA agrees the roundtable will address: on 4 November, transparency of support provided and received; technical expert review and facilitative, multilateral consideration of progress, both including a focus in relation to transparency of support; and, on 5 November, transparency of action in relation to mitigation and adaptation.
On agenda item 6 (GST), the APA; invites parties to make, by 30 September 2017, focused submissions on the possible elements of textual outline for the identification of the sources of input to and development of the modalities for the GST, noting, as appropriate, the views of parties reflected in the informal note; and requests the Secretariat to organize a pre-sessional roundtable, to be held on Sunday, 5 November 2017, taking into consideration the Co-Facilitators’ informal note.
On agenda item 7 (compliance), the APA: invites parties to make, by 15 September 2017, focused submissions as proposed in the annex to the informal note; and requests the Secretariat to organize a roundtable to be held on Monday, 6 November 2017, taking into consideration the Co-Facilitators’ informal note.
On agenda item 8 (further matters), the APA: requests the Secretariat to compile and make available on the UNFCCC website, by 15 September 2017, a list of all previous decisions, which have been taken on the Adaptation Fund, that touch on its governance and institutional arrangements, safeguards and operating modalities. The APA also takes note of the exchange of views by parties regarding the procedural steps for the draft decisions for consideration and adoption at CMA 1 on the following matters: progress and procedural steps to enable the response measures forum to serve the Paris Agreement; and procedural steps for the modalities for the recognition of adaptation efforts of developing country parties.
Further on response measures, the APA invites parties to raise the matter during SBSTA and SBI negotiations. Since parties expressed their understanding that the draft decision being prepared by these subsidiary bodies is to include a provision to complete the procedural step of CMA 1 deciding that the response measures forum shall serve the Paris Agreement, consistent with Article 19 (institutional arrangements), the APA agrees that no further consideration would be needed on this matter by the APA under agenda item 8.
Further on the recognition of adaptation efforts of developing country parties, the APA recommends that COP 23 address the need for procedural clarity with regard to the draft decision for consideration and adoption at CMA 1. The APA agrees that for this matter, should COP 23 provide such procedural clarity, no further consideration would be needed by the APA under agenda item 8.
The APA agrees to continue its consideration of the remaining possible additional matters, as contained in the informal note issued by the Co-Chairs at APA 1-4.
The APA also:
- invites parties to submit, by 15 October 2017, their views on how to progress work in the period after APA 1-4 in a coherent, balanced and coordinated manner, bearing in mind the related matters being considered by the SBI and the SBSTA;
- emphasizes that, for all items on the APA agenda where there is a call for submissions, the questions and focus areas in no way restrict parties from making submissions on any aspect of the issues on the APA agenda, and reiterates its earlier invitation to parties and observers to provide information, views and proposals on any work of the APA before each of its sessions; and
- notes the intention of the APA Co-Chairs to release a reflections note to provide an overview of the outcomes of this session, and to suggest options for the way forward based on the views and ideas that parties put forward at, and expressed through their submissions for, this session, without prejudice to any options or proposals that parties may put forward in the future.
SUBSIDIARY BODY FOR IMPLEMENTATION
The SBI and SBSTA jointly held several Technical Expert Meetings (TEMs) on mitigation and adaptation. The mitigation TEMs focused on the urban environment and land use (Information on this event can be found at: http://unfccc.int/resource/climateaction2020/media/1303/TEMS_March_Agenda.pdf ). The adaptation TEMs focused on the theme “Integrating climate change adaptation with the Sustainable Development Goals and the Sendai Framework on Disaster Risk Reduction” (Information on this event can be found at http://tep-a.org/).
OPENING STATEMENTS: On Monday, 8 May, Ecuador, for the G-77/China, called for: discussions on NAPs to consider MOI; sustainability and predictability of funds for the Adaptation Fund; and defining the role of non-state actors.
Australia, for the Umbrella Group, encouraged broad participation in the multilateral assessment, noted the submission of biennial update reports and looked forward to further submissions.
The EU highlighted, inter alia: the multilateral assessment and facilitative sharing of views; review of the Technology Mechanism; an improved response measures forum; and the PCCB meeting. She called for the UNFCCC budget to ensure transparency and efficiency, urging all parties to contribute.
Mali, for the African Group, and Venezuela, for ALBA, stressed the importance of enhancing the Secretariat’s resources given pre-2020 work and preparations for the Paris Agreement’s implementation.
Ethiopia, for the LDCs, called for: additional resources for the LDC Expert Group (LEG); replenishing the LDCF; and enhancing access to the GCF.
Republic of Korea, for EIG, called for the international assessment and review (IAR) and international consultation and analysis to provide lessons for the Paris Agreement’s transparency framework and for resolving outstanding issues on the budget.
Maldives, for AOSIS, stressed the need for public registries to provide accessible information on parties’ NDCs, and suggested linking the adaptation communications registry and NDC registries.
Saudi Arabia, for the Arab Group, stressed that mitigation measures should contribute to economic diversification in developing countries, and expressed the need for measurement, reporting and verification (MRV) of support.
The Democratic Republic of the Congo, for the CfRN, called for increased financial support to REDD+, adaptation, and loss and damage.
Women and Gender called for concrete steps towards a comprehensive gender action plan and for gender-responsive climate finance.
YOUNGOs called for transparency and for youth voices to be heard at the PCCB, Durban Forum, and Action for Climate Empowerment Dialogue.
CAN called on parties to scale up resources for NDC implementation.
The Philippine Movement for Climate Justice stressed the need to address conflicts of interest in the context of non-party stakeholder engagement.
Farmers stressed that a changing climate threatens farmers’ ability to feed a growing population.
Indigenous Peoples urged inclusion of indigenous peoples in the implementation of NDCs and NAPs.
Local Governments and Municipal Authorities welcomed the workshop on engaging non-party stakeholders, identifying complementarities with the Marrakech Partnership for Global Climate Action.
ORGANIZATIONAL MATTERS: SBI Chair Tomasz Chruszczow (Poland) introduced the provisional agenda (FCCC/SBI/2017/1) and organization of work. Delegates adopted the agenda with the agenda item title “Provision of financial and technical support” instead of “Financial and technical support” and with the agenda item on information contained in national communications from non-Annex I parties held in abeyance.
Multilateral Assessment: The multilateral assessment convened Friday and Saturday, 12 and 13 May. The following countries were assessed: Belarus, Canada, Cyprus, France, Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Japan, Kazakhstan, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Monaco, Portugal, Romania, the Russian Federation, Slovenia, Spain and the US. Information on these presentations can be found at: http://unfccc.int/focus/mitigation/the_multilateral_assessment_process_under_the_iar/items/10090.php .
Facilitative sharing of views: The facilitative sharing of views met Monday, 15 May. The following countries presented their biennial update reports: India, Indonesia, Israel, Malaysia, Mauritania, Montenegro, Morocco, Republic of Moldova, Thailand and Uruguay. Information on this event can be found at: http://unfccc.int/national_reports/non-annex_i_parties/ica/facilitative_sharing_of_views/items/10247.php .
Other mandated events: Information on all SBI mandated events can be found at: http://unfccc.int/meetings/bonn_may_2017/session/10078/php/view/workshops.php . Many of the events are referred to under their respective agenda items.
ANNEX I REPORTING: Status of submission and review of second biennial reports: This sub-item (FCCC/SBI/2017/INF.1) was first taken up by the SBI plenary on Monday, 8 May. SBI took note of the status of submission and review of second biennial reports.
Compilation and synthesis of second biennial reports: This sub-item was first taken up by the SBI plenary on Monday, 8 May. It was subsequently discussed in informal consultations, co-facilitated by Helen Plume (New Zealand) and Stephen M. King’uyu (Kenya). In the closing plenary on Thursday, 18 May, the SBI noted that no agreement had been reached and decided that Rule 16 of the draft rules of procedure would be applied, and the item will be taken up at SBI 47.
Revision of guidelines for national communications preparation: This sub-item was first taken up by the SBI plenary on Monday, 8 May. It was subsequently discussed in consultations led by the SBI Chair. The SBI plenary adopted conclusions on Thursday, 18 May.
SBI Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBI/2017/L.15), the SBI agrees to continue consideration of this matter at SBI 50 (June 2019).
Revision of modalities and procedures for IAR: This sub-item was first taken up by the SBI plenary on Monday, 8 May. It was subsequently discussed in informal consultations, co-facilitated by Helen Plume (New Zealand) and Stephen M. King’uyu (Kenya). The SBI welcomed the first and second rounds of IAR. The SBI plenary adopted conclusions on Thursday, 18 May.
SBI Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBI/2017/L.13), the SBI agrees to continue consideration of this matter at SBI 50 (June 2019).
NON-ANNEX I REPORTING: Information contained in national communications: The SBI decided in plenary on Monday, 8 May, to hold this item in abeyance.
Provision of financial and technical support: The SBI opening plenary considered this sub-item on Monday, 8 May. It was subsequently discussed in informal consultations, co-facilitated by Helen Plume (New Zealand) and Stephen M. King’uyu (Kenya).
On Thursday, 18 May, SBI Chair Chruszczow reported that despite efforts made, this agenda item could not be concluded at this session.
The Philippines, for the G-77/China, proposed adding in the conclusions that the SBI notes the deep concerns raised by several developing countries in accessing the necessary financial resources to fulfill their obligations under the Convention. The US and Australia opposed amending the conclusions.
Iran called for asking the GEF Secretariat to provide reasons why it has not responded to some developing countries’ requests for assistance. Egypt echoed the G-77/China’s view that their proposed amendment is “a statement of fact.” Saudi Arabia underlined the importance of financial support for developing countries to meet their reporting obligations.
Parties eventually agreed that the report on the proceedings will reflect parties’ interventions without quoting the G-77/China’s proposed text, and adopted the conclusions.
SBI Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBI/2017/L.17), the SBI agreed to continue consideration of this matter at SBI 47.
Summary reports of biennial update reports: On Monday, 8 May, the SBI took note of the summary reports on the technical analysis of biennial update reports published on the UNFCCC website, specifically those summary reports finalized in the period 1 October 2016 to 10 March 2017.
DEVELOPMENT OF MODALITIES AND PROCEDURES FOR THE OPERATION AND USE OF A PUBLIC REGISTRY REFERRED TO IN PARIS AGREEMENT ARTICLE 4.12 (NDC REGISTRY): This item was first taken up by the SBI plenary on Monday, 8 May. The SBI agreed to forward this item to informal discussions, co-facilitated by Madeleine Diouf-Sarr (Senegal) and Gertraud Wollansky (Austria).
The informal consultations focused on identifying the elements of the modalities, procedures, functions, and design elements of the NDC registry. Parties emphasized user-friendliness, public accessibility, security and searchability.
Many suggested discussing how to improve the interim NDC registry, with some stating the registry should be able to evolve over time and accommodate various documents, including successive NDCs. Views diverged on presenting additional country information, with one country noting information should be communicated in a nationally-determined fashion, not determined by the registry. Many parties supported submissions by National Focal Points, and a design based on sortable columns, including country name, submitted file(s), language, and submission date/year.
Parties supported inviting submissions on, inter alia: ways to enhance security and accessibility; languages of/in the registry; lessons from the interim registry and its user guide; and linkages or bridges between the two registries.
Exchanging views on a paragraph reflecting discussions in the first week of SBI 46 in the draft conclusions text prepared by the Co-Facilitators, parties made several suggestions regarding choice of words and possible additional elements, including on language-related accessibility. One developing country group, opposed by a developed country group, proposed a paragraph on avoiding duplication with work under APA agenda item 3 (mitigation).
In plenary on Thursday, 18 May, the SBI adopted conclusions.
SBI Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBI/2017/L.6), the SBI:
- takes note of views exchanged by parties at SBI 46 on this matter, including on linkages to work under SBI agenda item 6 (public registry on Agreement Article 7.12 (adaptation communications));
- takes note of the information provided by the Secretariat about the current operation of the interim registry for NDCs and views expressed by parties in relation to the public registry under SBI agenda item 6, at SBI 46, including: allowing only the National Focal Points to upload NDCs; ensuring the security of accounts and accessibility; maintaining previously communicated NDCs and providing a user guide for parties and continuous operating support; and agrees that the modalities and procedures should be developed on the basis of these aspects;
- invites submissions by parties and observers, by 21 September 2017, on, inter alia: lessons learned in using the interim NDCs registry; functions, structure and design elements of the public registry; ways to enhance its security, accessibility, user-friendliness and user support; and possible linkages to work under SBI agenda item 6; and
- agrees to continue its consideration of this matter at SBI 47.
DEVELOPMENT OF MODALITIES AND PROCEDURES FOR THE OPERATION AND USE OF A PUBLIC REGISTRY REFERRED TO IN AGREEMENT ARTICLE 7.12 (ADAPTATION COMMUNICATIONS REGISTRY): This item was first taken up by the SBI plenary on Monday, 8 May. The SBI agreed to forward this item to informal discussions, co-facilitated by Gertraud Wollansky (Austria) and Madeleine Diouf-Sarr (Senegal).
In the informal consultations, Co-Facilitator Diouf-Sarr proposed that parties postpone discussions over the number of registries and linkages to APA discussions, inviting a focus on the operation of the registry for adaptation communications. Countries supported user-friendliness, public accessibility, security for users, and the Secretariat maintaining the registry. Many drew attention to the need for flexibility and linkages with other portals hosting vehicles for adaptation communications. Many noted the modalities should not prejudge outcomes under APA item 4 (adaptation communications).
Exchanging views on a paragraph capturing discussions in the first week in the draft text prepared by the Co-Facilitators, parties made proposals regarding the choice of words and possible new elements, including on simplicity and user-friendliness of the registry. Various developing countries proposed requesting the Secretariat to prepare an information note before, instead of after, submissions by parties and observers.
In plenary on Thursday, 18 May, the SBI adopted conclusions.
SBI Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBI/2017/L.8), the SBI:
- takes note of views exchanged by parties at SBI 46 on this matter, including on linkages to work under SBI agenda item 5 (public registry, Agreement Article 4.12 (NDCs)) and the webpage maintained by the Secretariat on undertakings in adaptation planning;
- takes note of the views expressed by parties on the technical design and functionality of the registry, including the simplicity and user-friendliness, account security, accessibility and support necessary for the development of the registry, and agrees that the modalities and procedures should be developed considering these aspects;
- takes note of the views expressed by parties on the technical design of the registry and how different vehicles for submitting the adaptation communication could be accommodated in the design;
- invites submissions by parties and observers, by 21 September 2017, on this matter, including on possible linkages to work under SBI agenda item 5; and
- agrees to continue its consideration of this matter at SBI 47.
REVIEW OF CLEAN DEVELOPMENT MECHANISM MODALITIES AND PROCEDURES: This item was first taken up by the SBI plenary on Monday, 8 May, and subsequently discussed in informal consultations, co-facilitated by Karoliina Anttonen (Finland) and Yaw Osafo (Ghana).
Parties’ views diverged on the interlinkages and sequencing of this item with Agreement Article 6 (cooperative approaches) discussions.
The SBI plenary was not able to adopt conclusions on this item, which will be included in the provisional agenda for SBI 47.
MATTERS RELATED TO LDCs: This item (FCCC/SBI/2017/6) was first taken up by the SBI plenary on Monday, 8 May, and subsequently discussed in informal consultations co-facilitated by Pepetua Latasi (Tuvalu) and Jens Fugl (Denmark).
The SBI plenary adopted conclusions on Thursday, 18 May.
SBI Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBI/2016/L.2), the SBI:
- welcomes the two-year rolling workplan of the LEG (FCCC/SBI/2017/6, Annex I);
- underscores the value of NAP Expos and expresses concern about the postponement of the NAP Expo that was initially planned for 11-13 April, 2017;
- welcomes new contributions to the LDCF, and noting 23 project proposals technically cleared by the GEF but awaiting resources, urges further contributions;
- welcomes guidance by the LEG on integrating the Sustainable Development Goals and NAPs;
- invites the LEG to include an item on access to the GCF readiness and preparatory support programme on the agendas for regional training workshops on NAPs and for NAP Expos; and
- invites parties’ views on the need to update the LDC work programme for consideration by SBI 48.
NATIONAL ADAPTATION PLANS: This issue was first taken up in the SBI plenary on Monday, 8 May, and subsequently in informal consultations, co-facilitated by Pepetua Latasi (Tuvalu) and Jens Fugl (Denmark).
Co-Facilitator Latasi introduced, and parties agreed to, draft conclusions, which were subsequently adopted by the SBI plenary on Thursday 18 May.
SBI Conclusions: In the conclusions (FCCC/SBI/2017/L.3), the SBI postpones consideration of this issue to SBI 49 (December 2018), taking into account activities being considered under other relevant agenda items.
SCOPE AND MODALITIES FOR THE PERIODIC ASSESSMENT OF THE TECHNOLOGY MECHANISM IN RELATION TO SUPPORTING THE PARIS AGREEMENT: This item (FCCC/SBI/2017/INF.2) was introduced in the SBI plenary on Monday, 8 May, and subsequently addressed in informal consultations, co-facilitated by Elfriede-Anna More (Austria) and Washington Zhakata (Zimbabwe).
In their discussions on the modalities for the periodic assessment, parties suggested the process be: cost-effective and results oriented; aligned with the Technology Framework; specific to the purpose of improving the Technology Mechanism; and inclusive of stakeholders. On scope, parties suggested that the purpose of the assessment is enhancing Paris Agreement implementation and assessment inputs include recipient countries’ experiences. Views differed as to whether the assessment should be conducted under the auspices of the CMA or COP.
On Thursday, 18 May, the SBI plenary adopted conclusions.
SBI Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBI/2017/L.4), the SBI, inter alia:
- requests the Secretariat to prepare a technical paper on the experience, lessons learned and best practices in conducting reviews of various arrangements under the Convention and the Kyoto Protocol that are relevant for the periodic assessment, including a list of such reviews, by SBI 47; and
- agrees to continue elaborating the scope of and modalities for the periodic assessment, taking into account parties’ deliberations at SBI 46 and the information contained in the technical paper to be prepared by the Secretariat.
MATTERS RELATED TO CLIMATE FINANCE: Review of the functions of the Standing Committee on Finance: This item was introduced in the SBI plenary on Monday, 8 May, and subsequently discussed in informal consultations, co-facilitated by Delphine Eyraud (France) and Festus Luboyera (Uganda).
During discussions on the review, several developed countries advocated that parties’ submissions should be taken as input for a technical paper by the Secretariat. Views diverged on what constitutes activities versus functions of the SCF, with one party preferring to look at efficiency gains and prioritization in the way the SCF conducts its work. Others stressed the need for a focus on MRV of support, in light of the Paris Agreement’s transparency framework.
On Thursday, 18 May, the SBI adopted conclusions.
SBI Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBI/2017/L.7), the SBI emphasizes the need to continue to enhance all the functions of the SCF, including, inter alia, in the areas of: the quality of the biennial assessments; the dissemination and utilization of outputs and recommendations provided by the SCF, including those resulting from the SCF Forum; and participation of members in SCF meetings and working modalities.
Third Review of the Adaptation Fund: This item was introduced in the SBI plenary on Monday, 8 May, and subsequently discussed in informal consultations co-facilitated by Herman Sips (Netherlands) and Patience Damptey (Ghana).
SBI Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBI/2017/L.9), the SBI, inter alia:
- recognizes the important role that the Adaptation Fund has played and continues to play, and its unique features that have enabled the Fund to significantly contribute to meeting the support needs of developing country parties for concrete adaptation projects, programmes and readiness development; and
- recognizes that the outcomes of the third review do not prejudge negotiations under the APA on the Adaptation Fund serving the Paris Agreement, but will provide relevant information to enable parties to take an informed decision.
MATTERS RELATED TO CAPACITY BUILDING: Capacity building under the Convention and Capacity building under the Protocol: These sub-items (FCCC/SBI/2017/2 and Add.1, 3 and INF.5) were first taken up by the SBI plenary on Monday, 8 May. The SBI agreed to address both sub-items in informal discussions, co-facilitated by Marzena Chodor (Poland) and Bubu Jallow (Gambia).
On Wednesday, 10 May, the sixth meeting of the Durban Forum on Capacity building convened. The presentations and breakout group reports are available at: http://unfccc.int/cooperation_and_support/capacity_building/items/10133.php
In the informal consultations, Co-Facilitator Jallow invited country presentations on the implementation of the capacity-building framework for economies in transition (EIT), requesting reflections on: type of support received; results; lessons learned; current and emerging gaps; and relevance to the Paris Agreement and other related provisions. One EIT presented, followed by a discussion among parties.
Parties mandated the Co-Facilitators to prepare draft texts on the fourth review of the implementation of the capacity-building framework for EITs, and on the implementation of the framework for capacity building in developing countries, based on submissions, parties’ in-session discussions and textual inputs.
After a draft conclusions text had been made available on the fourth review of the implementation of the framework for capacity building in EITs, parties exchanged views. Co-Facilitator Chodor provided an update on the first PCCB meeting outcome, noting a technical progress report will be available in August 2017, which could inform discussions on the developing countries’ framework. Parties agreed to hold further consultations on the framework for capacity building in developing countries, on which text had not yet been made available.
In subsequent informal consultations, parties exchanged views on draft conclusions and decision text. They were unable to agree to the text proposed by the Co-Facilitators, which contained paragraphs, inter alia: welcoming the Secretariat’s synthesis report (FCCC/SBI/2017/3); noting that capacity-building efforts are being undertaken in developing countries but that gaps, needs and constraints remain; and concluding the fourth review of the implementation of the capacity-building framework in EITs and recommending a draft decision. Parties agreed to procedural draft conclusions, deciding to continue discussions at SBI 47.
In plenary on Thursday, 18 May, the SBI adopted the conclusions.
SBI Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBI/2017/L.11 and 12), the SBI agrees to continue its consideration of both sub-items at SBI 47.
RESPONSE MEASURES: This joint SBI/SBSTA item was introduced during the SBI and SBSTA plenaries on Monday, 8 May. It was subsequently addressed in a joint SBI/SBSTA contact group under the leadership of both the SBI and SBSTA Chairs, with the assistance of Co-Facilitators Andrei Marcu (Panama) and Natalya Kushko (Ukraine).
An Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group (TEG) on response measures convened on Tuesday, 9 May, focusing on economic diversification and Wednesday, 10 May, focusing on just transition of the workforce. Co-Chairs Peter Govindasamy (Singapore) and Alexandria Rantino (Australia) prepared a summary report, which was forwarded to the contact group.
Improved forum and work programme: Informal discussions were led by Co-Facilitators Marcu and Kushko. On Saturday, 13 May, the Secretariat presented a technical paper on just transition of the workforce, and the creation of decent work and quality jobs (FCCC/TP/2016/7). Many developing countries noted their appreciation of the TEG’s work, and advocated for the TEG to be continued, and for a formal TEG report to be produced. Many developed countries opposed, arguing that there was enough in-session time for the improved forum to fulfil its mandate and that the Co-Chairs’ summary note sufficed as a report. On Wednesday, 17 May, the contact group agreed to the Co-Facilitators’ draft recommendations and the SBI adopted them in plenary on Thursday, 18 May.
SBI/SBSTA Conclusions: In their conclusions (FCCC/SB/2017/L.2), the SBI and the SBSTA welcome with appreciation the work of the TEG, and request the TEG Co-Chairs to prepare a detailed report of the TEG’s discussions, for consideration at SBI 47 and SBSTA 47, building on the TEG summary. The SBI and SBSTA invite parties and observers to submit, by 30 September 2017, their views on aspects related to economic diversification and transformation, and just transition of the workforce and the creation of decent work and quality jobs, in the context of sustainable development, with a view to informing the in-forum discussion on possible needs for modeling tools, including capacity-building opportunities, to take place at SB 47, and the in-forum training workshop on the use of economic modeling tools at SB 48.
Modalities, work programme and functions under the Paris Agreement: Informal discussions were co-facilitated by Andrei Marcu (Panama) and Natalya Kushko (Ukraine). Many developing countries stressed the need for more time to engage concretely on the work programme, and proposed pre-sessional events and more case studies as per the workplan. Many developed countries opposed, preferring in-session work. On Wednesday, 17 May, the contact group adopted the Co-Facilitators’ draft recommendations and forwarded them to the SBI and SBSTA, which adopted them on Thursday, 18 May.
SBI/SBSTA Conclusions: In their conclusions (FCCC/SB/2017/L.3), the SBI and SBSTA, inter alia:
- agree that the recommendation being prepared under this agenda sub-item for consideration and adoption by CMA 1 will include language for the CMA to take the necessary procedural steps to enable the forum to serve the Paris Agreement as per decision 1/CP.21, paragraphs 33 and 34 (response measures);
- request the Secretariat to organize a pre-sessional workshop before SB 47 that will focus on the elements of the modalities, work programme and functions under the Paris Agreement of the forum on the impact of the implementation of response measures; and
- invite the SBI and SBSTA Chairs to revise the reflections note they prepared at SB 45 after the pre-sessional meeting.
Matters relating to Article 3.14 of the Kyoto Protocol: Progress on the implementation of decision 1/CP.10 (Buenos Aires programme of work on adaptation and response measures): These items were considered in conjunction with the two agenda items described above.
SCOPE OF THE NEXT PERIODIC REVIEW OF THE LONG-TERM GLOBAL GOAL UNDER THE CONVENTION AND PROGRESS TOWARD ACHIEVING IT: This issue was first taken up in the SBI and SBSTA opening plenaries on Monday, 8 May, and subsequently in a contact group co-chaired by Leon Charles (Grenada) and Frank McGovern (Ireland).
Many countries noted ongoing discussions on the modalities of the 2018 Facilitative Dialogue and the GST, and supported postponing consideration of this item until SB 48. Others argued that discussions on this item should take precedence and inform negotiations on the GST, and should therefore take place at this session. These parties also noted that the agenda of the subsidiary bodies in 2018 is already going to be very busy. After some discussions in informal informals, parties agreed to postpone consideration of this issue until 2019.
In plenary on Thursday, 18 May, the SBSTA and SBI adopted the conclusions and draft decision.
SBI/SBSTA Conclusions: In the final conclusions (FCCC/SB/2017/L.1 and Add.1), the SBSTA and SBI recall that the COP decided that subsequent reviews of the long-term global goal should take place following the adoption of an IPCC assessment report or at least every seven years. They note the relevant work on the GST, the 2018 Facilitative Dialogue and the technical examination processes, and recall the COP mandate to accelerate work on the Paris work programme to be completed by COP 24.
In order to ensure that the next periodic review is conducted in an effective and efficient manner, avoids duplication of work and takes into account the results of relevant work, the SBSTA and SBI agree to recommend a draft COP 23 decision. The COP decision would have the COP note the recommendation by the SBSTA and SBI on the scope of the next periodic review of the long-term global goal under the Convention and of overall progress towards achieving it, and decide that consideration of this scope should be resumed at SB 50 (June 2019), with a view for the SBI and SBSTA to forward a recommendation for consideration by COP 25 (November 2019) that takes into account relevant work on the GST and the Facilitative Dialogue, which will take place in 2018, and the technical examination processes.
ARRANGEMENTS FOR INTERGOVERNMENTAL MEETINGS: This item (FCCC/SBI/2017/5 and INF.3) was first taken up by the SBI plenary on Monday, 8 May. Nazhat Shameem Khan, incoming COP 23/CMP 13 Presidency, provided an update on the status of preparations for COP 23/CMP 13. The SBI then agreed to forward the item to a contact group chaired by Collin Beck (Solomon Islands). An in-session workshop was held on opportunities to further enhance the engagement of non-party stakeholders on Tuesday, 9 May, and is summarized here: http://enb.iisd.org/vol12/enb12693e.html
In the contact group, parties exchanged views on enhancing the engagement of non-party stakeholders. Many commended the workshop held on Tuesday, 9 May, and the Secretariat’s report on it (FCCC/SBI/2017/INF.7). Discussions centered on the engagement of non-party stakeholders and proposals to differentiate among them.
In the contact group, all parties supported inclusiveness and transparency, but diverged on the need for a policy or participation criteria. The US described a proposed conflict of interest policy as a “conceptual misapplication.” Saudi Arabia stressed the need to include social and economic interests in the process. Norway, supported by Australia, opposed “differentiated engagement,” saying defining criteria would be difficult. Canada called for inclusiveness across all stakeholder groups. Japan said the implementation of the Paris Agreement requires all stakeholders’ participation. Ecuador, China, Cuba and Uganda, for the LDCs, called for submissions on the issue. Senegal, for the African Group, agreed, noting that, while everyone should participate, rules are required.
In the contact group, on an alternative paragraph inviting the Secretariat to enhance existing practices for the facilitation of non-party stakeholder participation, parties, including Ecuador, the Russia Federation and the US, expressed diverging views. Ecuador supported references to “integrity, legitimacy and reputation,” which others opposed, with the US noting these terms did not have agreed upon definitions. On the way forward, Ecuador supported submissions, with the US and EU expressing reservations. Parties agreed to both paragraphs, without the references proposed by Ecuador, but inviting submissions and taking stock of progress at SBI 48.
In plenary on Thursday, 18 May, the SBI adopted the conclusions.
SBI Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBI/2017/L.10), the SBI, inter alia:
- requests the Secretariat to take note of the views expressed by parties on the possible elements of the provisional agendas for COP 23/CMP 13;
- recommends that the SBSTA, SBI and APA conclude their work by noon on Wednesday, 15 November, so that, inter alia, the high-level segment can commence in the afternoon of 15 November;
- emphasizes the importance of enhancing action on climate change and the mandated high-level event on enhancing climate action to be convened at COP 23;
- encourages the presiding officers to consider organizing joint plenary meetings of the subsidiary bodies to hear statements, with a view to improving time management and enhancing the coherence and coordination of the consideration of issues across the bodies;
- underscores the paramount importance of the principles of inclusiveness and transparency of the UNFCCC process and the value of the effective engagement of non-party stakeholders and their contributions to the deliberations on substantive issues;
- identifies opportunities to further enhance the openness, transparency and inclusiveness of the effective engagement of non-party stakeholders, reflecting the proposals and views expressed in the in-session workshop, and inviting presiding officers of the subsidiary bodies and constituted bodies, future Presidencies and the Secretariat to undertake a number of activities;
- invites parties and non-party stakeholders to submit views by 31 January 2018 and agrees to take stock at SBI 48 of progress in the implementation of the numerous SBI conclusions on non-party stakeholder engagement, with a view to considering how such engagement can be further enhanced; and
- taking note of the estimated budgetary implications of the activities to be undertaken by the Secretariat, requests that these actions be undertaken subject to the availability of resources.
ADMINISTRATIVE, FINANCIAL AND INSTITUTIONAL MATTERS: Programme budget for the biennium 2018-2019 and Other financial and budgetary matters: These items (FCCC/SBI/2017/4, Add.1-2) were introduced in the SBI plenary on Monday, 8 May. The Secretariat provided a report (FCCC/SBI/2017/INF.4), and suggested ways to address outstanding contributions and options for increasing the flexibility of the funds in the Trust Fund for Supplementary Activities.
UNFCCC Executive Secretary Patricia Espinosa presented the draft programme budget for the biennium 2018-2019, noting that it provides a bridge from the current work of the Secretariat to the anticipated work going forward. Noting that parties had requested a zero percent increase and that such an option was included in the draft, she also reported that the Secretariat’s requested option is a 7.9% increase, to accommodate, inter alia,the CMA, APA and 2018 Facilitative Dialogue.
A contact group on this matter was co-facilitated by Georg Børsting (Norway) andTosi Mpanu-Mpanu (Democratic Republic of the Congo), with Amena Yauvoli (Fiji) assisting in the second week A spin-off group, facilitated by Laurence Mortier (Switzerland), was established to consider the proposed budget for the international transaction log (ITL) and methodology for collection of its fees for 2018-2019.
In the contact group, discussions focused on clarity. Some parties sought more detail on the zero percent budget increase in order to compare it to the 7.9% budget increase and assess potential losses. One party went further, seeking to use the budget of the previous year as a starting point from which to build on further elements. Some parties viewed getting into the relative priorities of the substantive areas of the work programme as inappropriate.
On Thursday, 18 May, the SBI plenary adopted draft conclusions on the ITL and on the budget programme with draft decision text for consideration by COP 23 and CMP 13.
SBI Conclusions: In its conclusions regarding the ITL (FCCC/SBI/2017/L.14), the SBI recommends a draft decision for consideration and adoption by CMP 13 on the budget for the international transaction log and a methodology for the collection of its fees for the biennium 2018–2019.
In its conclusions on the budget programme (FCCC/SBI/2017/L.18), the SBI recommends a draft decision on the programme budget for the biennium 2018–2019 (FCCC/SBI/2017/L.18/Add.1) for consideration and adoption by COP 23 and invites CMA 1-2 to take note of the decision once adopted by the COP. It also recommends a draft decision on the programme budget for the biennium 2018–2019 as it applies to the Kyoto Protocol for consideration and adoption by CMP 13 (FCCC/SBI/2017/L.18/Add.2).
The SBI also, inter alia:
- recommends that COP 23 approve a core programme budget of €56,889,092 for the biennium 2018–2019;
- authorizes the Executive Secretary to notify parties of their 2018 contributions and the parties concerned about their annual fee for 2018 for the connection of their national registry to, and use of, the ITL and for the related activities of the ITL administrator;
- requests the Secretariat to prepare a revised document of the work programme, with budget allocations based on documents FCCC/SBI/2017/4/Add.1 and FCCC/SBI/2017/INF.8 and inputs received and views expressed by parties, for consideration at SBI 47;
- requests the Secretariat, subject to the availability of financial resources, to organize a technical workshop, to be held on the margins of SBI 47, with the aim of discussing possible ways to increase the efficiency and transparency of the budget process, taking into account the information made available on the UNFCCC website;
- requests its Chair to report on the outcome of the technical workshop for consideration at SBI 47, with a view to providing guidance to the Secretariat in the implementation of the programme budget; and
- requests the Secretariat to prepare a report on the outcome of the technical workshop for consideration at SBI 48.
Continuing review of functions and operations of the Secretariat: This item (FCCC/SBI/2017/INF.6) was introduced in the SBI plenary on Monday, 8 May and subsequently addressed in informal consultations facilitated by the SBI Chair. On Thursday, 18 May, the SBI plenary adopted conclusions.
SBI Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBI/2017/L.16), the SBI inter alia:
- notes with appreciation the views expressed by parties on ensuring full transparency of the selection processes for the Executive Secretary and his/her deputy; and
- notes that the recent selection of the Deputy Executive Secretary at the level of Assistant Secretary-General was undertaken according to the United Nations principles and practices.
Implementation of the headquarters agreement: This item (FCCC/SBI/2017/INF.6) was introduced in the SBI plenary on Monday, 8 May. The SBI Chair drafted conclusions in consultation with interested parties and on Thursday, 18 May, the SBI plenary adopted conclusions.
SBI Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBI/2017/L.5), the SBI inter alia:
- welcomes the systematic collaboration between the host government, the Secretariat and other relevant stakeholders on issues such as meeting and office facilities, as well as enhanced services and information for meeting participants; and
- requests the Secretariat to continue to update parties on the UNFCCC website about aspects of the implementation of the Headquarters Agreement, and invites the host government and the Executive Secretary to report to SBI 50 on progress made.
CLOSING PLENARY: Frank Bainimarama, Prime Minister of Fiji and President-designate of COP 23/COP 13, outlined his vision for COP 23: advance the work of the UNFCCC and preserve the multilateral consensus for decisive action; uphold and advance the Paris Agreement; ensure progress on the design and process for the Facilitative Dialogue in 2018; build greater resilience by enhancing access to adaptation finance; promote sustainable agriculture; and forge a “grand coalition” of all actors to promote climate solutions. The SBI adopted its report (FCCC/SBI/2017/L.1) without amendment or comment. SBI Chair Chruszczow suggested that parties’ closing statements be made together with APA statements in the APA closing plenary, and gaveled the session to a close at 7:37 pm.
SUBSIDIARY BODY FOR SCIENTIFIC AND TECHNOLOGICAL ADVICE
OPENING STATEMENTS: On Monday, 8 May, Ecuador, for the G-77/China, stressed the need to enhance pre-2020 action and respect the “delicate balance of all issues” achieved in Paris.
Mexico, for the EIG, underscored the importance of negotiations on Paris Agreement Article 6 (cooperative approaches) and that the Nairobi work programme (NWP) should be enhanced.
The EU highlighted the cross-cutting role of technology and the Technology Framework in addressing the goals of the Paris Agreement, and the importance of both private and public sector involvement.
Australia, for the Umbrella Group, stressed that this session should focus on progressing arrangements under cooperative approaches and further discussing response measures.
Maldives, for AOSIS, stressed the need to effectively address loss and damage, raise adaptation and mitigation ambition, and maintain environmental integrity in markets.
Saudi Arabia, for the Arab Group, stressed negotiating adaptation and mitigation matters in a balanced manner and ensuring a “package” can be reached by 2018.
Ethiopia, for the LDCs, expected progress on agriculture and the transparency framework.
Mali, for the African Group, called for agreement on addressing the impacts of climate change on agriculture. On response measures, he said activities for the post-2018 forum need to be defined.
Guatemala, for AILAC, stressed, among others, that cooperative approaches could be an additional source of financial resources to facilitate the achievement of NDCs.
Cuba, for ALBA, said the Technology Framework should lead to an “action framework” and that cooperative approaches cannot be used to avoid obligations to provide finance.
The Democratic Republic of the Congo, for the CfRN, called for a full set of decisions to provide rules, guidelines and procedures to implement actions on forests.
Iran, for the LMDCs, called for a comprehensive scope for the periodic review of the long-term global goal and work on the response measures forum under the Paris Agreement.
Women and Gender expressed concern over proposals to include agriculture and land use in market mechanisms.
YOUNGOs urged greater focus on agriculture, calling crop-based biofuels a “fake solution.”
CAN underscored the importance of establishing detailed accounting systems for finance and aviation emissions.
Climate Justice Now! (CJN!) said there is no space for offsetting in the limited carbon budget.
ORGANIZATIONAL MATTERS: SBSTA Chair Carlos Fuller (Belize) introduced the provisional agenda (FCCC/SBSTA/2017/1). Saudi Arabia recommended holding joint sessions with other bodies where appropriate. SBSTA 46 adopted the agenda and organization of work.
Election of Officers other than the Chair: Noting the lack of nominations received for the SBSTA Vice-Chair, Chair Fuller said Vice-Chair Tibor Schaffhauser (Hungary) would continue until his successor is elected. On Thursday, 18 May, Chair Fuller noted the nomination by the Eastern Europe Group of Annela Anger-Kraavi (Estonia).
NAIROBI WORK PROGRAMME: This item was first taken up in the SBSTA plenary on Monday, 8 May. Beth Lavender (Canada) and Julio Cordano (Chile) co-facilitated informal discussions. Parties exchanged views on how to improve the Focal Point Forum. The Secretariat noted that the Forum’s role had evolved from facilitating an exchange of views into recommending actions. She highlighted challenges, including lack of time for discussion and inability to engage experts. Some parties noted the need to provide greater focus to future forums, while one focal point said that focused sessions might alienate those focal points not working in that area.
SBSTA Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBSTA/2017/L.7), the SBSTA:
- invites NWP partner organizations and other relevant organizations to implement relevant actions to address impacts, vulnerability and adaptation to climate change, taking into account, inter alia: a synthesis report on human health and adaptation prepared in consultation with the participants of the 10th Focal Point Forum; a synthesis report on planning, implementation and evaluation addressing ecosystems and areas such as water resources; and a report on progress made in implementing NWP activities;
- agrees that the Focal Point Forum should be improved with a view to: enhancing engagement of experts and expert organizations; providing an interactive space for information-sharing and the formal exchange of views among NWP partner organizations, parties and other relevant organizations; facilitating collaboration and partnerships among NWP partner organizations, parties and other stakeholders; and informing future activities of the NWP to support the implementation of the Paris Agreement;
- requests the Secretariat to co-organize events that would complement the Focal Point Forum;
- requests the Secretariat to emphasize rural and coastal settlements including remote settlements during the 11th Focal Point Forum; and
- invites parties and relevant organizations to submit views on further improving the effectiveness of the NWP for consideration at SBSTA 48.
DEVELOPMENT AND TRANSFER OF TECHNOLOGIES: Technology Framework under Paris Agreement Article 10.4: This item was introduced in the SBSTA plenary on Monday, 8 May, and subsequently addressed in informal consultations, co-facilitated by Elfriede-Anna More (Austria) and Washington Zhakata (Zimbabwe).
Parties discussed: possible principles and structure of the Technology Framework; functions of the Technology Mechanism, including the need for enhancing the Technology Mechanism; flexibility for updates of the Technology Framework; interlinkages between the Framework and other Paris Agreement processes, as well as between the Technology Mechanism and the Financial Mechanism; and alignment of the Technology Framework with the periodic assessment of the Technology Mechanism. Parties also elaborated: initial key themes of the framework; the cross-cutting nature of key elements; and how institutions can collaborate to support the Framework’s implementation.
On the Framework’s principles, parties’ views differed. Some parties viewed elaboration of principles as important work to be continued at future sessions. Several parties preferred mentioning only general attributes. Other parties opposed mentioning principles, with some developed countries, opposed by other parties, suggesting instead referring to “guiding values.”
On initial key themes parties considered: innovation; implementation; enabling environments and capacity building; collaboration and stakeholder engagement; and support. Some parties suggested the need to address barriers to technology transfer. Another party recalled enabling environment as one principle agreed upon in Marrakech.
On the Framework’s structure, several developing countries sought emphasis on: promotion of technology development and transfer; new or updated functions to increase ambition; and roles played by stakeholders in various phases of the technology cycle. Some parties expressed concerns around using the idea of the technology cycle as part of the structure of the Framework, while others welcomed it as a good approach to capture the dynamics of technology-readiness levels.
Many developing countries stressed clarifying the need for an “enhanced” role of the Technology Mechanism, which others opposed. One party viewed listing options on research and development, demonstration and deployment, and diffusion and transfer as “premature.” Several parties called for clarifying alignment with the periodic assessment to inform future updating of the framework.
Some parties called for linkages to the Financial Mechanism. Others called for specification of activities and flow of funds and technology. Parties suggested requesting input from the TEC and CTCN on how their work fits into the Framework. One group emphasized the framework should support NDC implementation and transformational change.
On stakeholder involvement, parties agreed that the Technology Framework should strengthen the Technology Mechanism and the involvement of relevant stakeholders.
On Thursday, 18 May, the SBSTA plenary adopted conclusions.
SBSTA Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBSTA/2017/L.10), the SBSTA, inter alia:
- agrees that the Technology Framework’s principles, which are coherence, inclusiveness, result-oriented approach, transformational approach and transparency, should guide the Technology Mechanism in implementing the Paris Agreement;
- notes that the Technology Framework should strengthen the Technology Mechanism and the involvement of relevant stakeholders in accordance with their respective roles in achieving the transformative changes envisioned in the Paris Agreement, taking into account the initial key themes agreed at SBSTA 45 and the technology cycle;
- agrees that the possible headings of the Technology Framework include, inter alia, purpose, principles and key themes and to continue its consideration of this matter at SBSTA 47, taking into account progress made at SBSTA 45 and this session; and
- invites the TEC and the CTCN to provide at SBSTA 47 information on activities that have been or are currently being undertaken, which are relevant for the implementation of the Paris Agreement, taking into account the key themes and their relation to the technology cycle as well as additional activities that the TEC and the CTCN, subject to available resources, could undertake within their respective mandates and functions, individually or jointly, to implement the Paris Agreement.
AGRICULTURE: This item was first taken up in plenary on Monday, 8 May, and forwarded to informal consultations co-facilitated by Emmanuel Dlamini (Swaziland) and Heikki Granholm (Finland).
During informal informal consultations, parties discussed a proposal put forward by one group of developing country parties, and requested the Co-Facilitators to develop an informal non-paper.
In informal consultations, parties welcomed positive progress made in the review of previous workshops. All parties supported, as a basis for future negotiations, the Co-Facilitators’ non-paper, which outlines a process for elaborating issues related to agriculture and issues for future consideration, including advice to implementing bodies, and work for the SBSTA, the Secretariat and others. Developing countries underlined the need to move toward implementation, and welcomed that the non-paper includes advice to implementing bodies as issues for consideration, with some noting the need to respect the mandates of UNFCCC bodies and the process. Developed countries welcomed substantive discussions and steps forward.
On Thursday, 18 May, SBSTA adopted its draft conclusions
SBSTA Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBSTA/2017/L.12), the SBSTA notes its continued work, welcomes the rich exchanges at its past five in-session workshops and agrees to continue its consideration of this agenda item at SBSTA 47, taking into account parties’ deliberations and progress made at SBSTA 46.
SCIENCE AND REVIEW: Research and Systemic Observation: This issue was first taken up in the SBSTA plenary on Monday, 8 May, and subsequently in informal consultations co-facilitated by Ann Gordon (Belize) and Christiane Textor (Germany). Discussions focused on, inter alia, reference to the upcoming IPCC special reports, and a paragraph referring to consideration of the gender dimension, indigenous peoples and traditional knowledge. Parties agreed to refer to the short titles of the IPCC reports and not their full titles, which was opposed by one party. They also agreed to compromise language referring to “the human” instead of the “gender” dimension, which was opposed by the same party.
On Thursday, 18 May, the SBSTA plenary adopted the conclusions.
SBSTA Conclusions: In the conclusions (FCCC/SBSTA/2017/L.3), the SBSTA:
- welcomes the summary report by the SBSTA Chair on the eighth meeting of the research dialogue held in May 2016;
- notes the views from parties and the information note on the ninth meeting of the research dialogue;
- welcomes the ninth meeting of the research dialogue and the poster session, and requests the SBSTA Chair to produce a summary report on this meeting;
- welcomes the work of the IPCC, including on the Special Reports on “Global Warming of 1.5 °C”, “Oceans and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate” and “Climate Change and Land,” and the “2019 Refinement to the 2006 IPCC Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories;”
- notes the importance of the work of the scientific community and the IPCC in support of strengthening the global response to climate change; and
- invites parties to submit their views, by 2 February 2018, on possible topics for the research dialogue to be held at SBSTA 48 and beyond, and taking into account the report from the consultations of the COP 22 and COP 23 Presidencies on preparations for the 2018 Facilitative Dialogue, in particular any aspects relating to scientific information.
Scope of next periodic review of the long-term global goal: This item is summarized under the SBI.
RESPONSE MEASURES: This item is summarized under the SBI. See page 12.
METHODOLOGICAL ISSUES UNDER THE CONVENTION: Revision of the UNFCCC reporting guidelines on annual inventories for Annex I parties: This sub-item was taken up by the SBSTA plenary on Monday, 8 May, and the Chair undertook consultations with interested parties. On Thursday, 18 May, the SBSTA plenary adopted the conclusions.
SBSTA Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/ SBSTA/2017/L.2), the SBSTA: welcomes the information submitted by parties on their experience in the use of the IPCC’s 2013 Supplement on Wetlands; notes that some parties also chose to submit their views related to reporting on harvested wood products, inviting parties to submit their views on, and experiences with, such reporting; and welcomes the plans of the IPCC to produce the methodology report “2019 Refinement to the 2006 IPCC Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories.”
Training programme for review experts for the technical review of GHG inventories of Annex I parties: This sub-item was taken up by SBSTA in plenary on Monday, 8 May, and the Chair undertook consultations with interested parties. On Thursday, 18 May, the SBSTA plenary adopted the conclusions.
SBSTA Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/ SBSTA/2017/L.8), the SBSTA: acknowledges the relevance of the training programme in contributing to the quality and consistency of the technical reviews of GHG inventories of Annex I parties; notes that the Secretariat has received positive feedback from parties and experts on the scope and focus of the courses of the training programme; and agrees that there is no need to further develop and enhance the training materials at the present time. The SBSTA agrees to assess the results of the training programme at SBSTA 50 (June 2019) with a view to making recommendations to COP 25 (November 2019), and agrees to extend the implementation of the ongoing training programme to 2020.
Training programme for review experts for the technical review of biennial reports and national communications of Annex I parties: This sub-item was taken up by SBSTA in plenary on Monday, 8 May, and in informal consultations facilitated by Walter Oyhantcabal (Uruguay) and Harry Vreuls (the Netherlands). On Thursday, 18 May, the SBSTA plenary adopted the conclusions.
SBSTA Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/ SBSTA/2017/L.4), the SBSTA: acknowledges the relevance of the training programme in contributing to the quality and consistency of the technical reviews of biennial reports and national communications of Annex I parties and notes that the period of implementation of the training programme ended in 2016; requests the Secretariat to enhance the materials of the training programme, based on decisions 24/CP.19 and 9/CP.21 and taking into account experience gained in conducting the technical reviews of biennial reports and national communications of Annex I parties, before the start of the reviews of the seventh national communications and third biennial reports in 2018. The SBSTA also requests the Secretariat to enhance the user interface of the training courses with a view to making them more user-friendly, and recommends a draft decision (FCCC/SBSTA/2017/L.4/Add.1) on the training programme and on its implementation in the period 2017–2020 for consideration and adoption at COP 23. The SBSTA further agrees to consider the need to further extend the training programme’s implementation at SBSTA 50 (June 2019).
GHG data interface: This sub-item was taken up by the SBSTA in plenary on Monday, 8 May, and in informal consultations facilitated by Takeshi Enoki (Japan). On Thursday, 18 May, in plenary, the SBSTA adopted the conclusions.
SBSTA Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/ SBSTA/2017/L.14), the SBSTA: notes the need to continue to display the modules of the previous version of the GHG data interface, which have not yet been updated, pending the completion of the ongoing technical changes mandated by the revised guidelines; and notes with concern the lack of financial resources to complete those changes. The SBSTA agrees to continue its consideration of this sub-item at SBSTA 50 (June 2019), with a view to determining next steps.
Common metrics: This sub-item was taken up by SBSTA in plenary on Monday, 8 May, and the Chair undertook consultations with interested parties. On Thursday, 26 May, the SBSTA plenary adopted the draft conclusions. Parties did not reach agreement and, in accordance with Rule 16 of the UNFCCC draft provisional rules of procedure, the issue will be taken up by SBSTA 47.
Bunker Fuels: This sub-item was taken up by SBSTA in plenary on Monday, 8 May, and the Chair undertook consultations with interested parties. On Thursday, 18 May, in plenary, the SBSTA adopted the conclusions.
SBSTA Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/ SBSTA/2016/L.6), the SBSTA: takes note of the information received from and results reported by the Secretariat of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO); takes note of the information received from the Secretariat of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) about its plan to provide information on ongoing work at SBSTA 47; and requests them to continue to report on their ongoing work on relevant issues.
METHODOLOGICAL ISSUES UNDER THE KYOTO PROTOCOL: Land use, land-use change and forestry (LULUCF): This item was first taken up in the SBSTA plenary on Monday, 8 May, and subsequently in consultations carried out by the SBSTA Chair with interested parties.
On Thursday, 18 May, the SBSTA plenary adopted its conclusions.
SBSTA Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBSTA/2017/L.9), the SBSTA agrees to continue its consideration of this sub-item at SBSTA 48 with a view to recommending draft CMP 14 decisions, and to reporting to CMP 14 on the outcomes of the work programme on accounting of anthropogenic emissions by sources and removals by sinks from LULUCF.
Reforestation of lands with forests in exhaustion as afforestation and reforestation in Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) project activities: This item was first taken up in the SBSTA plenary on Monday, 8 May, and subsequently in consultations carried out by the SBSTA Chair with interested parties.
On Thursday, 18 May, the SBSTA plenary adopted its conclusions.
SBSTA Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBSTA/2017/L.5), the SBSTA agrees to continue its consideration of this agenda sub-item at SBSTA 50 (June 2019) with a view to recommending draft conclusions on this matter for consideration and adoption by CMP 15 (November 2019).
MATTERS RELATING TO PARIS AGREEMENT ARTICLE 6: This item was first taken up in the SBSTA plenary on Monday, 8 May, and subsequently in informal consultations co-facilitated by Kelley Kizzier (EU) and Hugh Sealy (Maldives). Parties agreed to close informal sessions on this item and sub-items to observers.
Co-Facilitators proposed, and parties agreed, to collect as a non-paper a compilation list of elements on each of the three sub-items reflecting the submissions made by parties and views expressed during this session. During SBSTA 46, parties discussed two iterations of these lists, with a final “version 2.1” available on the UNFCCC website.
On ways forward, parties exchanged diverging views on, among others: inviting the Secretariat or the SBSTA Chair to prepare a synthesis report based on a new round of submissions; and the engagement of observers in making submissions and in the roundtable. On a synthesis report, many parties and groups underlined its value, particularly to smaller delegations. A number of parties and groups opposed, noting it was “premature” to capture views of parties without having discussed their views exhaustively. On observers, while many parties and groups stressed the value of engaging observers in this process and, in particular, the technical input they may be able to provide, a few groups of developing country parties and a party opposed, noting the potential for observer inputs to generate further divergence among parties.
Guidance on cooperative approaches referred to in Article 6.2: In informal consultations, parties exchanged views on possible elements, including: the definition of ITMOs, including methods for their quantification; technical tools and infrastructure for the operationalization and management of ITMOs; means to ensure environmental integrity through robust accounting rules; and comparability of outcomes. They exchanged divergent views on how ITMOs will be applied towards NDCs and whether there should be caps in their application. Several parties identified overarching principles such as additionality, comparability, supplementarity and national determination. Parties diverged on the inclusion of a provision for share of proceeds for adaptation, with some parties opposed to identifying the Adaptation Fund as a destination for the share of proceeds. Parties also considered the extent of multilateral versus national oversight and links with Article 6.4 (mechanism) and guidance on NDCs.
The SBSTA plenary adopted its conclusions on 18 May.
SBSTA Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBSTA/L.15), the SBSTA:
- takes note of the roundtable organized on 9 May;
- takes note of the informal information note containing an informal list of elements available on the UNFCCC website;
- invites parties to submit their views on the content of the guidance by 2 October;
- requests the Secretariat to organize a roundtable in conjunction with SBSTA 47; and
- requests the relevant Co-Facilitators of the roundtable to prepare an informal document capturing the views presented by parties in the roundtable discussion.
Rules, modalities and procedures for the mechanism established by Article 6.4: Many parties emphasized the need for centralized governance, institutional arrangements and oversight for the mechanism to produce mitigation outcomes and support sustainable development unlike Article 6.2 (ITMOs), with some parties disagreeing. Parties further discussed: ensuring alignment with the principles of the Paris Agreement and its objectives; the role of the CMA and supporting institutional arrangements; share of proceeds and their destination, including the Adaptation Fund; whether and how corresponding adjustments and double counting would be applied; and methodologies to ensure overall mitigation.
On how the mechanism can facilitate sustainable development, a party suggested articulating links with the Sustainable Development Goals, while some described this as a national prerogative and opposed multilaterally agreed guidance.
On transitional issues surrounding the Protocol mechanisms, parties exchanged views on: how to address CDM and joint implementation pipelines, with a number of parties proposing, and others opposing, eligibility checks to ensure conformity with guidance to be agreed under this sub-item; carrying over institutional arrangements from the CDM and joint implementation, including, among others, methodologies and definitions of additionality; and how to best provide a strong signal to the private sector.
The SBSTA adopted conclusions in plenary on 18 May.
SBSTA Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBSTA/L.16), the SBSTA:
- takes note of the roundtable organized on 9 May;
- takes note of the informal information note containing an informal list of elements available on the UNFCCC website;
- invites parties to submit their views on the content of the guidance by 2 October;
- requests the Secretariat to organize a roundtable in conjunction with SBSTA 47; and
- requests the relevant Co-Facilitators of the roundtable to prepare an informal document capturing the views presented by parties in the roundtable discussion.
Work programme under the framework for non-market approaches referred to in Article 6.8: In informal consultations, parties exchanged views on, among others: the need to include non-commoditization as a principle of non-market approaches (NMAs); building on existing bodies and avoiding duplication of work under the UNFCCC and other multilateral forums; and the scope of the work programme.
While a few parties asked to include examples of NMAs such as policies and strategies, Co-Facilitator Hugh Sealy (Maldives) urged avoiding a list of NMAs to leave options open at this stage.
On functions of the framework for NMAs, a party stressed the need for the framework’s elaboration, and a group of parties said NMAs should address the social and economic impacts of market approaches (Articles 6.2 and 6.4).
Parties’ views diverged on whether all NMAs need to fulfill all of the three aims listed in the Paris Agreement.
The SBSTA plenary adopted conclusions on Thursday, 18 May.
SBSTA Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBSTA/L.17), the SBSTA:
- takes note of the roundtable organized on 9 May;
- takes note of the informal information note containing an informal list of elements available on the UNFCCC website;
- invites parties to submit their views on the content of the guidance by 2 October;
- requests the Secretariat to organize a roundtable in conjunction with SBSTA 47; and
- requests the relevant Co-Facilitators of the roundtable to prepare an informal document capturing the views presented by parties in the roundtable discussion.
MODALITIES FOR ACCOUNTING OF FINANCIAL RESOURCES PROVIDED AND MOBILIZED THROUGH PUBLIC INTERVENTIONS UNDER AGREEMENT ARTICLE 9.7: This item (FCCC/TP/2017/1) was first taken up by the SBSTA plenary on Monday, 8 May, with the SBSTA agreeing to establish a contact group co-chaired by Outi Honkatukia (Finland) and Rafael da Soler (Brazil).
In the contact group, many countries described available inputs, including a technical paper and the Co-Chairs’ reflection note, as a good basis for work. The Philippines, for the G-77/China, identified further areas, including additionality of finance and clarifying developing countries’ needs. Some developing country groups underscored the importance of coordination with APA discussions on transparency. Switzerland, supported by Norway, the EU and Belize, for AOSIS, proposed structuring discussions around clusters, as in the technical paper.
On support mobilized through public interventions, several developing countries argued that definitions must precede discussions on reporting modalities. Some questioned whether investments mobilized by supporting frameworks should be counted as climate finance, while some developed countries argued that it should. One group argued that the entirety of a leveraged investment should not be attributed to one funder. Others noted challenges, including establishing causality, attribution for multilateral development bank support and double counting.
Exchanging views on a Co-Chairs’ informal note, parties agreed to amended text that reflects requests for, inter alia: reference to the transparency framework in the objectives section; and moving three items to additional further consideration, namely, harmonization of reporting approaches across parties, loss and damage, and Article 9.5 (biennial communication of support to developing countries). On these last two items, some developed countries suggested these are beyond the SBSTA’s mandate, which some developing country groups disagreed with. The contact group then convened, agreeing to draft conclusions and to upload the Co-Chair’s informal note to the UNFCCC website.
On Thursday, 18 May, the SBSTA plenary adopted the conclusions.
SBSTA Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBSTA/2017/L.13), the SBSTA:
- welcomes the technical paper prepared by the Secretariat on the item (FCCC/TP/2017/1) and progress made in the work on this item as reflected in the contact group Co-Chairs’ informal note;
- requests the SBSTA Chair to continue consultations with the APA Co-Chairs with a view to ensuring coherence and coordination and the timely incorporation of the accounting modalities developed by the SBSTA under this item into the MPGs for the transparency framework; and
- agrees to advance its work on this matter at SBSTA 47, taking into account the contact group Co-Chairs’ informal note, and building on the recommendations by the SCF on the 2016 Biennial Assessment and overview of climate finance flows.
COOPERATION WITH OTHER INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS: This item (FCCC/SBSTA/2017/INF.2) was first taken up by the SBSTA plenary on Monday, 8 May. It was subsequently discussed in consultations between the SBI Chair and interested parties. The SBI plenary adopted conclusions on Thursday, 18 May.
SBSTA Conclusions: In its conclusions (FCCC/ SBSTA/2017/L.11), the SBSTA takes note of the summary of the Secretariat’s cooperative activities with other intergovernmental organizations.
CLOSING PLENARY: The Secretariat briefed parties on the budgetary implications of activities in the SBSTA conclusions. Parties then adopted the report of the session (FCCC/SBSTA/2017/L.1).
Many parties and groups voiced concerns about the resistance of parties to participation of observers in Article 6 (cooperative approaches) negotiations.
Indigenous Peoples opposed using forests for offsets, and called for respecting indigenous peoples’ rights, including free prior informed consent when considering hydropower or wind power projects.
Research and independent non-governmental organizations welcomed. inter alia: recognition that the implementation of the Paris Agreement will require input from all disciplines; and an opening up of the submissions process to enhance information flow from experts to parties.
Describing women as “unique” holders of knowledge, Women and Gender urged the inclusion of women as stakeholders in the Technology Framework.
YOUNGOs urged a greater focus on those most affected by climate change and called for flexibility by parties for speedier progress.
CAN called for a joint SBI/SBSTA work programme on agriculture.
CJN! lamented the “shrinking” opportunities for civil society organizations and urged greater openness.
Ecuador, for the G-77/China, emphasized the need for comprehensive, coherent and balanced progress. He welcomed progress on Article 6, response measures and agriculture.
The EU highlighted progress achieved through constructive technical discussions at this session on, inter alia, principles for the Technology Framework, agriculture and Article 6, with an outcome reflecting a delicate balance that involved concessions by all parties.
Australia, for the Umbrella Group, expressed concern at the pace of the Article 6 discussions and welcomed progress on agriculture.
Mexico, for the EIG, called for: a strong role for the IPCC and the scientific community in the Facilitative Dialogue and the GST; and substantial progress on technical issues on Article 6, with the participation of observers.
Saudi Arabia, for the Arab Group, said the balance struck in the Paris outcome between mitigation and adaptation needs to be maintained, and that intellectual property rights should not be a barrier for technology transfer.
Recalling recent early-season cyclones, Maldives, for AOSIS, welcomed progress in the research dialogue, and noted incremental progress on Article 6, saying that market mechanisms can help achieve ambition, but environmental integrity must not be eroded.
Guatemala, for AILAC, called for coordination and consistency with other agreements, such as ICAO’s Carbon Offset and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation, and suggested dialogues in the form of workshops or contact groups.
Cuba, for ALBA, invited innovative approaches under Article 6.8 (non-market approaches), cautioning against “reinventing” market-based approaches under this item.
Mali, for the African Group, stressed the need to start substantive discussions on the modalities for the accounting of financial resources provided and mobilized through public interventions and welcomed progress on agriculture.
Noting only three years are left for emissions to peak, Ethiopia, for the LDCs, emphasized the increasing costs associated with waiting to act, and lamented that the financial needs for implementing the Paris Agreement have not been met.
The Democratic Republic of Congo, for CfRN, stressed that ICAO and IMO must follow UNFCCC guidance and be consistent with the climate change regime.
Indonesia called for a COP decision on agriculture to “open the door” for implementation.
Ecuador said it was important for indigenous peoples to make “permanent” contributions to the work of the UNFCCC.
In closing, SBSTA Chair Fuller thanked everyone, welcomed the new SBSTA Vice-Chair and gaveled the meeting to a close at 7:54 pm.
A BRIEF ANALYSIS OF THE MEETING
We were focused on progress and making those incremental steps, thousands of incremental steps that got you closer. – Neil Armstrong, first human on the moon
Whereas the annual intersessional climate talks usually feature technical and detail-oriented discussions, this time delegates arrived in Bonn expecting an unusually heated round of negotiations. The minds of many were overshadowed by the uncertainty regarding US participation in the Paris Agreement going forward. However, the “elephant in the room” at the start of the meeting soon became a non-issue as the US administration delayed its decision, allowing negotiators to settle back into a “business as usual” mode of work.
The Bonn meeting was the first official UNFCCC session since the 22nd session of the Conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC (COP 22) in Marrakech, Morocco, which had set 2018 as the deadline for the adoption of the Paris Agreement “rulebook”—the operating manual on how the Agreement will be implemented in the decades to come. With this deadline looming, the technical work required to put flesh on the bones of the Paris Agreement took center stage in Bonn. The Ad Hoc Working Group on the Paris Agreement (APA) stole most of the limelight, moving attention away from the “routine” work of the permanent subsidiary bodies. These two bodies also ended up devoting a substantial amount of time to efforts to build the post-2020 regime.
This analysis uses three yardsticks to measure progress achieved in Bonn in operationalizing the Paris outcome, namely: whether there was a shift towards textual negotiations on the rulebook; whether the elements of the outcome advanced in a coherent way; and if the basis for climate action was strengthened and broadened. It also draws implications from the meeting’s takeaways for COP 23 in November 2017, when delegates are scheduled to come back to Bonn under Fiji’s Presidency.
INCREMENTAL STEPS TOWARDS TEXTUAL ELEMENTS
To advance work on the Paris rulebook, the APA Co-Chairs had tasked delegates with “moving to the next phase” by focusing on “the development of specific elements of text and textual proposals wherever possible.” Parties arrived in Bonn equipped with significant pre-sessional inputs, including over 100 submissions, as well as pre-sessional events on transparency, adaptation communications and mitigation. Despite carrying in this significant “technical luggage” and the positive spirit in which parties engaged throughout the two weeks, many felt that the APA Co-Chairs’ expectations were not quite met.
As discussions delved into the details of the Paris outcome, the underlying differences that had existed among parties in the lead up to Paris continued to resurface. While on most APA agenda items these differences hindered the shift to more textual negotiations, on other issues parties were able to set aside the political divergences and focus on technical aspects.
Stemming from the lingering question of differentiation between developed and developing countries, calls were heard for adopting a binary approach in the development of the modalities of the committee to facilitate implementation and promote compliance, and in guidance related to mitigation and transparency. The divergence between those wishing to introduce a differentiated treatment within the Paris Agreement’s modalities and others arguing that the nationally-determined nature of the nationally determined contributions (NDCs) provides for sufficient differentiation hindered agreement on the “skeletons” of the decisions on the rulebook that are expected to be adopted in 2018. However, as one seasoned observer noted, delegates were not expected to “resolve things” in Bonn, and the rich discussions under all APA agenda items, captured in the Co-Facilitators’ informal notes, arguably had the merit of laying out the issues.
Parties were able to engage in technical discussions on a number of issues where there was agreement to carve out a “safe area” in which to focus on technical or legal aspects, while avoiding political pitfalls. The two discussions on a public registry—for NDCs and adaptation communications—had been polarized over whether to create one or two registries. In Bonn, parties managed to focus on technical aspects, such as registry user features and accessibility, even if the seemingly mundane and slow-paced deliberations made one observer question whether it was the best use of negotiators’ time.
Useful exchanges also took place in finance-related transparency discussions. While many developing countries felt that the support aspects of the transparency framework received inadequate attention under the APA, many others felt that the discussions on ex-ante and ex-post finance information (Paris Agreement Articles 9.5 and 9.7, respectively) convening under the SBSTA and a special in-session COP roundtable helped move the discussions forward.
Another area where progress was made in Bonn was agriculture. Here again, instead of polarized debates on whether to include mitigation in the discussion, the SBSTA focused on substantive agricultural activities, enabling parties to set the scope of future negotiations.
Incremental progress was also evident under the APA in clarifying the options on the so-called “orphan issues,” which have not yet been explicitly included on the agendas of the subsidiary bodies. For instance, the inputs provided by the UNFCCC Legal Affairs team on the legal requirements for the Adaptation Fund to serve the Paris Agreement, related arrangements and modalities, and transitional measures helped move the debate beyond whether or not the Fund “should” serve the Agreement, but also clarified that this issue may require more time than some developing countries had initially hoped for.
STEPS THAT GET US CLOSER BY ENSURING COHERENCE
The 36-page Paris Agreement and accompanying decision constitute a very complex and carefully balanced outcome that includes a myriad of tasks and mandates for the subsidiary and constituted bodies under the Convention. Given the complex interlinkages among the elements of the Paris outcome, parties were wary that delays on any one issue could risk bringing the whole process to a halt. This underlined the importance of coordination and sequencing. Another measure of progress achieved in Bonn is therefore whether parties were able to advance on elements of this “package” in a coherent manner to address linkages and to keep the political compromises made in Paris intact.
To ensure coordination among their respective agenda items, the Chairs and Co-Chairs of the subsidiary bodies made visible efforts, including by meeting ahead of the session, holding a joint informal plenary, encouraging the APA co-facilitators to meet and avoiding scheduling conflicts between meetings on related issues.
Parties also sought to address sequencing among the various agenda items in various ways, for example by postponing consideration of the scope of the review of the long-term global goal under the SBSTA until 2019 to allow for the modalities of the Global Stocktake and the 2018 Facilitative Dialogue to be completed under the APA. For similar sequencing reasons, SBI discussions on the review of the Clean Development Mechanism and of the capacity-building framework, and on national adaptation plans were deferred to November 2017 or even December 2018.
The need to advance in a coherent manner, in light of the complexity of the task, is uncontested. However, the calls by some parties in Bonn for balanced progress illustrated the resurfacing of another dividing line that existed in the lead up to Paris, namely the balance between action and support. During the session, various developing countries argued repeatedly that mitigation was allotted more “bandwidth” than other issues. These concerns culminated in the final days, which saw parties engage in protracted debates over which APA items to prioritize for the limited slots of roundtables to be held before COP 23, and in particular on the need for the roundtable on transparency to give equal treatment to transparency of action and of support.
Many recognized, however, that there are elements of the Paris rulebook that require more work because they are “newcomers” to the UNFCCC world. Two such issues are the Global Stocktake and some elements of cooperative approaches under Article 6 of the Paris Agreement. Without the benefit of years of proceedings to draw from, delegates spent considerable time exchanging views, often far apart, on these two items. On Article 6, many felt frustrated by being unable to agree on how to capture the 36 hours of discussions, which included an in-session roundtable, let alone on the headings under which to structure further negotiations.
While many also lamented the lack of agreement on headings for the Global Stocktake, some pointed out that Bonn had kicked off positively the shaping of the 2018 Facilitative Dialogue, dubbed by some as an “initial stocktake.” Encouraged by the good spirit and openness of the consultations held in Bonn by the Moroccan COP 22 Presidency and the incoming Fijian COP 23 Presidency on this dialogue, one long-term observer expressed hope that it would help build confidence on a partnership beyond 2020.
THOUSANDS OF STEPS BY A GROWING NUMBER OF ACTORS
Success can also be measured by how the meeting contributed to future implementation of the Paris Agreement beyond the mechanics of the rulebook—a task that arguably entails strengthening pre-2020 action to close the ambition gap and broadening the range of actors engaged in climate action worldwide. In Bonn, most of this effort was carried out through mandated events outside the formal negotiations. The first meeting of the Paris Committee on Capacity-building constituted a positive step in supporting pre-2020 action in developing countries. At this event, which many characterized as highly productive, the Committee elected its co-chairs, agreed to its rolling workplan for 2017-2019, and began defining its role within the UNFCCC architecture. Observers praised the Committee meeting for its openness and inclusiveness.
The Technical Expert Meetings (TEMs) on mitigation and adaptation, a cornerstone of the pre-2020 action element of the Paris outcome, were held over seven days of the session. In designing both meetings, attention was given to convening stakeholders from a variety of sectors and making the events more interactive. However, some still felt more work remains to better connect the TEMs both to the formal negotiating process, as well as to the broader Global Climate Action Agenda and the work of its High-level Champions.
Non-party stakeholder engagement is another crucial enabler of the implementation of the Paris outcome. The Bonn meeting made progress on this front in two ways. First, a well-received multi-stakeholder dialogue convened to initiate discussions on operationalization of the local communities and indigenous peoples’ platform, established in Paris. Second, discussions under the SBI explored concrete means of enhancing the engagement of non-party stakeholders, including at a dedicated in-session workshop. The issue of whether or not to “differentiate” between different stakeholder groups through a conflict of interest policy or participation criteria, first proposed by one developing country group at SBI 44, continued to spark controversy. While recognizing the concerns over stakeholders whose interests might be in conflict with the objectives of the Convention, the majority of parties agreed that one party’s textual proposals on “safeguarding” the “integrity” of these objectives would not be the right message for communicating openness and transparency. As pointed out by one delegate advocating for bringing everyone into the room, “those who are not part of the solution are part of the problem.” Many welcomed the SBI conclusions on this item, which mandate UNFCCC presiding officers, COP Presidencies and the Secretariat to undertake several tasks to enhance non-party stakeholder participation.
KEEPING THE FOCUS ON PROGRESS
So did Bonn deliver? Many felt that parties were able to progress—even if only incrementally—by beginning to map out options for the skeletons of the decisions that will need to be adopted at COP 24 in 2018. The meeting also provided some reassurance to parties that all the elements of the Paris work programme are advancing in a coherent manner. While one party suggested that “moving meaningfully was more important than moving fast,” the slow pace disappointed those stressing the urgency of tackling climate change.
Leaving Bonn, many hoped that the numerous informal notes prepared by the Co-Chairs and Co-Facilitators, together with the calls for focused submissions on all APA items and the five pre-sessional and in-session APA roundtables, would enable parties to further shift to textual negotiations at COP 23. Some also suggested that being guided by the same APA Co-Chairs, whose mandate parties agreed to extend by another year, could provide the necessary continuity to make this “transition COP” a success.
Some, however, returned to what was on their minds coming into the meeting, namely the question of US participation in the Paris Agreement, concerned over the implications not only for COP 23, but for the future of the regime. Even so, one optimistic delegate suggested that momentum behind the Paris Agreement is already too strong to be stopped by any single country.
52nd Meeting of the GEF Council: The 52nd meeting of the GEF Council will take place from 23-25 May 2017. The meeting will be preceded by the GEF-CSO Consultation on 22 May. On the final day, the Council will convene as the Council of the LDCF and SCCF. dates: 22-25 May 2017 location: Washington D.C., US contact: GEF Secretariat phone: +1-202-473-0508 fax: +1-202-522-3240/3245 email: firstname.lastname@example.org www: https://www.thegef.org/council-meetings
3rd European Climate Change Adaptation Conference: The European Climate Change Adaptation Conference (ECCA) 2017 will be organized around the theme “Our Climate Ready Future.” The Conference will bring together representatives from business, industry, NGOs, local government and communities to share knowledge, ideas and experiences with leading researchers and policymakers. On Thursday and Friday, excursions to showcase a range of inspiring adaptation projects and cultural sites across the region will be offered. ECCA 2017 is organized for the European Commission (EC) by three EU-funded projects: IMPRESSIONS, Helix, and RISES-AM. dates: 5-9 June 2017 location: Glasgow, Scotland, UK contact: ECCA 2017 www: http://ecca2017.eu/conference/
Eighth International Forum on Energy for Sustainable Development: Convening under the theme “Meeting the Challenge of Sustainable Energy,” the Forum will combine a ministerial meeting followed by a high-level plenary session with parallel workshops and site visits. The Forum is organized by the Government of Kazakhstan and the UN Regional Commissions. dates: 11-14 June 2017 location: Astana, Kazakhstan contact: Forum organizers phone: +7-7172-794978, 790172 email: email@example.com www: http://energyministerial.kz
FCPF 16th Carbon Fund Meeting: The Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF) will convene the 16th Carbon Fund Meeting in order to consider Emission Reduction Program Idea Notes (ER-PINs), agree upon funding decisions and portfolio management, and discuss links with other funding programmes. The FCPF is a global partnership of governments, businesses, civil society and Indigenous Peoples focused on REDD+. dates: 19-22 June 2017 location: Paris, France www: http://www.forestcarbonpartnership.org/
9th Africa Carbon Forum (ACF 2017): The Africa Carbon Forum (ACF) is organized by the Nairobi Framework partners, namely: the UNFCCC; UN Environment, along with the UNEP DTU Partnership; the International Emissions Trading Association; the World Bank Group; and the African Development Bank. Under the overarching mandate of the Nairobi Framework, AFC 2017 will provide an opportunity and platform for African policymakers and practitioners to: discuss the latest developments related to climate change policy, carbon markets and finance; share knowledge on innovative solutions in the context of NDCs and other strategies; and explore possibilities for collaboration on regional and global climate change initiatives. dates: 28-30 June 2017 location: Cotonou, Benin www: http://www.africacarbonforum.com/
G20 Summit: The 20 Heads of State and Government and top-level representatives of international organizations will gather under the motto of Germany’s G20 Presidency: “Shaping an interconnected world.” A main concern of the Presidency is to make progress on realizing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, including the SDGs, and the Paris Agreement on climate change. dates: 7-8 July 2017 location: Hamburg, Germany www: https://www.g20.org/Webs/G20/EN/Home/home_node.html
Montreal Protocol OEWG 39: The 39th Session of the Open-ended Working Group of the Parties to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer will be preceded by a workshop on safety standards relevant to the use of low-global warming potential alternatives to hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), to be held on 10 July, and the 58th meeting of the Implementation Committee under the Non-Compliance Procedure for the Montreal Protocol, to be held on 9 July. dates: 11-14 July 2017 location: Bangkok, Thailand contact: Ozone Secretariat contact: Ozone Secretariat phone: +254-20-762-3851 fax: +254-20-762-0335 email: firstname.lastname@example.org www: http://conf.montreal-protocol.org/SitePages/Home.aspx
46th Session of the IPCC: IPCC-46 will meet to discuss, inter alia, the outcome from the AR6 scoping meeting, including the outlines for the AR6 Working Group reports, and the programme and budget. The 54th Session of the IPCC Bureau will meet prior to IPCC-46. dates: 6-10 September 2017 location: Montreal, Canada contact: IPCC Secretariat phone: +41-22-730-8208/54/84 fax: +41-22-730-8025/13 email: IPCC-Sec@wmo.int www: http://www.ipcc.ch
30th Meeting of the Adaptation Fund Board: The Adaptation Fund finances projects and programmes that help vulnerable communities in developing countries adapt to climate change. It was established under the Kyoto Protocol of the UNFCCC. dates: 10-13 October 2017 location: Bonn, Germany contact: Adaptation Fund Board Secretariat phone: +1-202-458-7347 fax: +1-202-522-3240 www: https://www.adaptation-fund.org/events/30th-adaptation-fund-board-meeting/?instance_id=4
UNFCCC COP 23: COP 23 will be organized by Fiji and hosted at the headquarters of the UNFCCC Secretariat in Bonn, Germany. The COP and CMP will meet, as will the SBI, SBSTA and APA. dates: 6-17 November 2017 location: Bonn, Germany contact: UNFCCC Secretariat phone: +49-228-815-1000 fax: +49-228-815-1999 email: email@example.com www: http://unfccc.int/meetings/unfccc_calendar/items/2655.php?year=2017
For additional meetings, see http://sdg.iisd.org/