Report of main proceedings for 18 May 2016
Bonn Climate Change Conference - May 2016
The Bonn Climate Change Conference continued on Wednesday with a workshop on gender-responsive climate policy in the morning. An event on the outcomes of the Lima-Paris Action Agenda (LPAA) met during lunch. In the afternoon, a special event on advice on how the assessments of the IPCC can inform the global stocktake, the Fourth Dialogue on Action for Climate Empowerment, and an informal consultation on the APA agenda and organization of work met. Throughout the day, SBI and SBSTA contact groups and informal consultations, as well as a workshop on long-term finance convened.
NAIROBI WORK PROGRAMME: The informal consultations focused on how to elaborate on additional activities under the Programme. Parties agreed that the co-facilitators would distribute their notes from the previous consultations, along with a template on the “why, who and what” points needed in order to flesh out proposed activities. Parties agreed to submit more detailed proposals for consideration.
METHODOLOGICAL ISSUES UNDER THE CONVENTION: Common metrics: In informal consultations, parties discussed draft conclusions containing three options: closing the agenda item; deferring its consideration to 2021; or continuing the item and calling for submissions. Various developed countries supported deferring discussions, noting the APA will consider this issue, and made changes to the second option. Various developing countries preferred the last option, with one country noting the need to mention global temperature potential. The co-facilitators will amend the draft conclusions.
TECHNOLOGY FRAMEWORK UNDER ARTICLE 10.4 OF THE PARIS AGREEMENT: In informal consultations, parties reviewed the co-facilitators’ summary of Tuesday’s discussions. Several parties suggested elaborating on the framework’s purpose, while others stated that the Agreement outlines the purpose. Parties converged around the idea that the framework should be a strategic document providing guidance to the Technology Mechanism. The co-facilitators will prepare draft conclusions and elaborate on their summary based on input received.
AGRICULTURE: During informal consultations, parties agreed that the workshops held at SBSTA 43 were successful and the reports reflected the outcomes. Parties were supportive of creating a platform or knowledge hub as a repository for good practices, experiences and lessons learned. Parties suggested inviting submissions on ideas for the platform, as well as general ideas on how or whether the SBSTA’s agriculture work should evolve in the context of the Paris Agreement. Informal consultations will continue.
LULUCF UNDER THE CDM: In informal consultations, parties considered a proposal that revegetation using woody perennial plants on at least 0.05 hectares, which would not meet the definition of forests for the purposes of reforestation or afforestation, would be eligible under the CDM. Parties agreed the proposing party would draft text, including on the need to work further on the modalities and procedures for other types of vegetation. Parties agreed on the desirability of concluding this agenda item at CMP 12.
ADVICE ON HOW THE ASSESSMENTS OF THE IPCC CAN INFORM THE GLOBAL STOCKTAKE: SBSTA Chair Carlos Fuller recalled that the request for advice on this issue came from COP 21. Hoesung Lee, IPCC Chair, said the structured expert dialogue on the 2013-2015 review has ensured that the Paris Agreement is “truly based on science.” The IPCC Vice-Chairs outlined the goals, approaches, products and timeframes of the IPCC’s sixth assessment cycle. The Co-Chairs of the three IPCC Working Groups presented on how their work could be relevant to the global stocktake. The Co-Chair of the Task Force on National GHG Inventories described relevant methodological work. The UNFCCC Secretariat outlined possible modalities for using the IPCC’s products to inform the global stocktake. The ensuing discussions focused on lessons learned from the 2013-2015 review, synchronization of the IPCC cycle and the global stocktake, research on the 1.5°C emission pathway and the related special report, and the use of national GHG inventories.
DECISION MAKING IN THE UNFCCC PROCESS: In informal consultations, several parties suggested concluding this agenda item, noting the transparent manner used to reach the Paris Agreement and the exemplary management by the COP 21 Presidency. One party opposed, emphasizing that the decision making process will remain the safeguard for decisions and outcomes to be elaborated post-Paris.
OUTCOME OF THE FIRST ROUND OF THE IAR PROCESS (2014-2015): During informal consultations, parties gave their views on: the possible content of draft conclusions and where to forward them; and the possible revision of the IAR modalities and procedures, including which body should undertake it. On the content of draft conclusions, parties suggested, inter alia, an assessment of the implementation of methodological and reporting requirements, a recommendation to include MOI in the scope of the multilateral assessment and drafting procedural conclusions only. Many parties stated that the SBI should conduct the revision in 2017. The co-facilitators will prepare draft conclusions for the next consultations on 19 May.
FOURTH DIALOGUE ON ACTION FOR CLIMATE EMPOWERMENT (ACE) (DAY ONE): SBI Chair Tomasz Chruszczow noted the event would contribute to the intermediate review of the Doha work programme on Article 6 of the Convention. Nick Nuttall, UNFCCC Secretariat, suggested thinking of public awareness as a science. Bertrand Piccard, the Solar Impulse Team, called for focusing on solutions and inspiring actions.
On awareness, presenters shared experiences on: sustainability education during Expo Milano 2015; a mobile train exhibition on climate change in India; an art projection on St. Peter’s Basilica, enabled by partnerships; a media campaign featuring videos narrated by celebrities; and the WWF’s Earth Hour, credited with making climate action understandable, relatable and accessible.
On public engagement, panelists presented on public engagement on Costa Rica’s voluntary carbon neutrality goal, and on Green Radio World, with 70 journalists in 18 countries working to promote adaptation and sustainable land management.
One presenter called for engaging social sciences and humanities as integral parts of climate change strategies. Another proposed that ACE create a youth pavilion at COP 22 and scholarships for under-represented youth. A business representative highlighted his company’s experience building a movement using multiple entry points to entice aspiring activists.
Four working group discussions convened to brainstorm on good practices, challenges, needs and recommendations relating to: integrating public awareness efforts into climate change policy; policies, programmes and activities for achieving behavioral change; using digital communications and social media for awareness; and engaging youth in awareness raising.
WORKSHOP ON GENDER-RESPONSIVE CLIMATE POLICY (DAY ONE): Moderator George Wamukoya (Kenya) explained the workshop would aim to enhance understanding on: key gender-related terms; steps and processes of gender mainstreaming; synergies of relevant bodies and mechanisms under the Convention; and good practices.
Verona Collantes-Lebale, UN Women, provided an overview on how gender is taken up in UNFCCC decisions, areas of work and bodies.
Three sessions examined good practices at different levels. On the subnational level, presenters shared experiences from work with: community empowerment for civic engagement in the Philippines and Kenya; and Georgia’s gender-sensitive nationally appropriate mitigation action (NAMA).
On the national and regional levels, panelists presented on: processes for developing gender-responsive national policies in Peru and Cambodia; and improving gender diversity in power sector utilities. On the international level, presentations examined, inter alia, training for female UNFCCC delegates by the Women Delegates’ Fund and gender mainstreaming in the GEF and gender considerations in the work of the LDC Expert Group.
In discussions, participants highlighted: linking support to grassroots-level needs; gender budgeting; and lack of experience in developing countries on gender integration and policy implementation.
WORKSHOP ON LONG-TERM FINANCE
In the morning sessions, UNFCCC Executive Secretary Christiana Figueres called finance key to turning the Paris Agreement vision into reality and urged engaging with the finance community to support adaptation and avoiding viewing public and private finance through a binary lens.
Barbara Buchner, Climate Policy Initiative, identified major barriers that inhibit private investment and discussed steps taken by development finance institutions to bridge pre-investment and investment phases.
On assessing adaptation needs of developing countries, Antwi-Boasiako Amoah, Ghana, discussed Ghana’s process for developing an integrated plan and the benefits of mainstreaming. Discussions addressed, inter alia, engaging subnational actors in adaptation planning, adaptation in technology action plans and country ownership.
During breakout groups, participants discussed: tools to assess and communicate adaptation needs; forms of support most useful in translating needs to action; and integration of adaptation needs into planning and budgetary processes, including by fostering capacity building and improving science-based evidence.
In the afternoon sessions, participants first discussed scaling up finance for adaptation actions. Jay Koh, Siguler Guff, discussed how the Global Adaptation and Resilience Fund addresses adaptation challenges by creating investment maps and unlocking capital flows to infrastructure, among others.
Panelists exchanged views on the use of contingency funds and concession contracts; innovative instruments of the Africa Risk Capacity’s Extreme Climate Facility; and strategies to address challenges faced by LDCs in accessing climate finance.
On enhancing transparency of adaptation finance, Renato Redentor Constantino, Adaptation Finance Accountability Initiative, emphasized the role of civil society in bridging gaps in accountability to better match finance with needs.
Panelists discussed use of tools such as climate integration indices to track results; accounting challenges associated with climate mainstreaming; and the work of the SCF.
In the breakout groups, participants discussed: how access to, and delivery of, climate finance can be accelerated; lessons to inform 2016 submissions on strategies and approaches for scaling up climate finance; actions required to improve the tracking of finance; and ways to measure and increase the transparency of adaptation finance outcomes.
OUTCOMES OF THE LPAA
LPAA partners, namely Peru, France and the UNFCCC Secretariat, provided an overview of the LPAA outcomes, including commitments made by non-party stakeholders and 70 climate action coalitions that have been mobilized across 12 action areas. Panelists described the LPAA’s objectives, method of work in 2015, results at COP 21 and lessons learned. Examples were highlighted on renewable energy, energy efficiency, cities and subnational actors, forests and resilience. Morocco addressed the future of LPAA beyond 2016. During discussions, participants noted several follow-up considerations, such as how to ensure initiatives will support NDCs, and leverage the relationship between LPAA and pre-2020 action.
IN THE CORRIDORS
On Wednesday morning, delegates deepened their technical work in informal consultations, while still engaging behind the scenes to resolve the ongoing APA and SBI agenda woes. One delegate found it was difficult at times to “find a safe space to negotiate,” as the lack of clarity on the agendas infringed upon discussions in other areas, with delegates trying to sort through “old work” from the Convention and the Protocol, and “new work” emanating from the Paris outcome.
While eager to start this new work in earnest, many recognized the importance of getting the agenda right and balancing the weight of its components. As informal consultations continue, one delegate worried, “although agenda controversies were expected, they now delay discussions on important agenda items.” With the APA Co-Chairs inviting written submissions on amendments to the agenda, an observer hoped that Thursday would bring greater clarity and what one observer called a “real start” to the APA.