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Daily Tck: Negotiations toward a new global climate agreement resume in Bonn

The Daily Tck: A daily dispatch from the GCCA team at the UN climate talks in Bonn. Sign up to have them delivered to your inbox during the climate talks.  

new global climate agreement

Creative Commons: UNFCCC, 2015

  • Last round of pre-Paris negotiations kicked off Monday, amidst backdrop of growing political momentum and increasing public pressure
  • Analysis shows new national action plans are bending down the curve of expected warming, but not enough to safeguard our future
  • Frustration over lack of ambition and key options missing from streamlined co-chairs text highlight challenges faced in the work ahead

The penultimate round of negotiations on a new global climate agreement kicked off Monday in Bonn. Much of the day’s focus was on governments’ reactions to a 20-page text put forward by the co-chairs leading the process as a basis for this week’s talks. The new text is significantly more concise than the 76-page document that served as the basis for the last round of negotiations. It centers around the same pillars as the previous draft, including mitigation, adaptation and finance, and is separated into sections on the “agreement”, which will form the basis of the Paris deal, and the “decisions”, which will elaborate on the details.

With 50 pages cut from the latest version, a number of important elements were left out, spurring concern that the 20-page document and months of work leading up to it might be tossed altogether. Instead, governments appear to have agreed to use the text as a basis for negotiations over what key elements might be added back as ‘surgical insertions.’ Ultimately, negotiators need to finish the week in Bonn with a text – containing a few clear political options for each element – ready for ministers take forward in November.

Our partners are working together throughout this week to ensure a range of key elements in the draft text are strengthened, such as finance, adaptation, and loss & damage; added back in, including the strongest options for a long-term goal; and clarified, to ensure the climate action plans and the means to implement them increase in regular and frequent cycles.

Join our Daily Tck morning meeting live online at 10am CST

We are experimenting with live-streaming our morning Daily Tck meetings from Bonn. The meetings are an opportunity for civil society actors from across the UNFCCC to gather intelligence, share tactics and ignite collaboration.

Tuesday’s meeting will include a conversation with Tasneem Essop from WWF, who will talk us through key elements in the draft text and outline the specifics options that many of our partners are fighting to strengthen, add back in, and clarify.

Catch the live-stream here: www.tcktcktck.org/daily-tck-livestream

This latest round of talks are taking place against a backdrop of significant political momentum pushing toward a deal. Since negotiators last met, governments have agreed new global Sustainable Development Goals, in part intended to complement the forthcoming climate agreement; China and the US, the world’s biggest contributors of climate changing pollution,increased the ambition of their nascent bilateral climate deal; and Heads of State met to engage directly in the issues at hand, sharing perspectives and setting the stage for a potential compromise on some of the crux issues.

Growing public pressure is fueling the increase in political momentum, and will only continue to do so in the coming weeks. It addition to mass mobilizations led by our partners around the world, scientists are relentlessly repeating warnings of urgency; broad groups of businesses are calling for ambitious new national and international climate policies, while reducing the carbon footprint of their own operations and investments; the bold and visible positions on the moral imperative of climate action by faith leaders are taking root; and each day, new voices from every sector of society enter the fray with their own substantive demands supporting policies and action to safeguard our future.

Political momentum is moving beyond rhetoric. The near 150 national climate action plans submitted in recent months are bending the global warming curve downward. The latest analysis from Climate Action Tracker estimates that the world is now headed toward 2.7ªC of warmingby the end of the century – down from a 3 – 4ºC trajectory forecasted earlier this year. The new plans bring us closer to the internationally agreed 2ºC limit, and the 1.5ºC limit demanded by the world’s most vulnerable nations.

At the same time, recent events illustrate why progress made to date is far from enough. Over the weekend, tens of thousands of people were displaced, and some killed, by the fourth ‘super typhoon’ to strike the Philippines in as many years – an event that was once rare. The world is already close to 1ºC of average warming above pre-industrial levels, and that additional energy in our oceans and atmosphere is fueling extreme weather. The devastating impacts of climate change have arrived.

We also know that many countries aren’t yet doing their fair share – especially plans put forward by developed countries. A new report backed by 18 civil society groups including Oxfam, WWF and ActionAid show that the developed world should deepen emissions cuts five times or more by 2030.

In spite of the complicated backdrop for this week’s negotiations, it’s clear that our shared efforts supporting people around the world – to better understand climate issues and more effectively advocate for solutions – are bearing fruit. It’s clear that deeper and faster cuts in emissions are necessary. It’s also clear that success this week in Bonn, and later this year in Paris, will be defined by whether or not the new global climate agreement serves as an enabling architecture to support the difficult and essential work of increasing climate action far beyond what we’ve achieved thus far, in the years ahead.

Resources

For more information on this week’s Bonn session, including a library links to resources that will deepen your understanding of the state of play, check out our Tree Alert: Draft climate agreement ready for ambition injection in Bonn. You can find additional Tree Alerts in English, French and Chinese at TreeAlerts.org.

A whole series of press conferences hosted Monday helped deepen our understanding of the the stakes for this week’s talks in Bonn and the negotiations overall. The Climate Action Network – International laid out expectations for the week ahead. Representatives from the diverse set of civil society groups responsible for the ‘Fair Shares‘ analysis of national climate action plans talked through their findings. And representatives from southern-oriented climate action networks laid out their critiques of the draft text and demands for what needs to happen next.

Our friends at the Climate Action Network International are publishing daily ECO newsletters laying out their case to negotiators.

We have a small team of Climate Trackers in Bonn, blogging at adoptanegotiator.org and writing for a few newspapers around the world. They kicked off their week of tracking with a big picture webinar discussion on what’s expected to come out of Paris and how we got here. It’s useful as a primer to better understand the UNFCCC.

IISD’s reporting service has high-resolution pictures from Day 1 inside the World Conference Center, and more to come throughout the next two weeks. They also have a detailed overview ofMonday’s negotiations.

Useful hashtags for tracking the negotiations in real-time are #ADP2#UNFCCC and #COP21.  We’ll join the conversation on twitter via @tcktcktck.

We’ll also keep you abreast of developments in the wider world of climate activism and action at tcktcktck.org.

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