Daily Tck: Day four of the UN climate talks in Bonn

un climate talks

Creative Commons: UNFCCC, 2015

  • New proposals move government delegations closer to a trimmed negotiating text, though way forward still to be determined 
  • Campaigners press strong role for human rights in Paris agreement, as Saudi Arabia moves to delete reference
  • With attention soon to shifting from negotiators to ministers, G20 finance meeting in Turkey puts spotlight on fossil fuel subsidies and climate finance

Our partners in the Climate Action Network kicked Thursday off with a press conference reflecting on their sense of progress made thus far, and suggested how negotiators could best use their remaining time in Bonn. Much like we described in our Wednesday edition of the Daily Tck, they emphasized signals that high-level meetings outside of the formal UNFCCC process were translating to progress on the inside.

If we had to pick a token phrase, Thursday’s would be ‘bridging proposals.’ A number of submissions from government delegations and groups of countries showed positions starting to converge – in some cases in very positive directions.

LDCs and AOSIS merged their proposals on Loss & Damage, which were put forward by the G77 as a bloc. We also saw a joint proposal from the US, EU, Switzerland and Australia. While the former is more ambitious, the latter is also moving in the right direction. There’s growing confidence that Loss & Damage will be included in the Paris outcome. The fight shifts to how and where.

Negotiations on finance saw new proposals as well. Submissions on how to scale support for developing countries and what the institutional framework for climate finance might look like in the Paris deal were the subject of a number of proposals made in the second half of this week.

On the mitigation front, an impressive contribution by Saint Lucia added weight to our push for countries to increase their climate action plans every five years – especially essential given the weak pledges currently on the table. Conversations around how to differentiate between country’s mitigation obligations – one of the most difficult issues to grapple with – continued as well.

Movement on each piece of the negotiations travelled at a different speed, and some important pieces moved in the wrong direction altogether. As campaigners filled the halls with buzzsupporting a strong role for human rights in the Paris Agreement, Saudi Arabia moved tostrip the language out. A number of issues our partners worked hard to advance in recent months – gender, a just transition, and indigenous rights – have lost ground in the draft.

It’s clear that we need to do quite a bit of work to get the ambitious, equitable and comprehensive climate deal the world needs. We need to work harder, better, faster, and stronger. Negotiations will continue, issue by issue, through Friday.

News, links & useful grist that caught our eye

Bonn is just the start of a packed calendar of opportunities to speed the phase-out of fossil fuels and shape the Paris agreement in September and October. While negotiators meet to further consolidate and streamline options Friday, Finance ministers from G20 countries are gathered in Turkey. European campaigners are calling EU members to shift fossil fuel subsidies into climate finance. The EU’s financial support for fossil fuel subsidies is six times than its support for climate action.

Many of the same finance ministers are set to attend a ministerial meeting in Peru in early October, where a long-awaited plan detailing how developed countries will meet a 2009 promise to deliver US$100 billion a year of climate funds to poor countries will be presented.

The ice cream company Ben & Jerry’s had a presence outside the negotiations in Bonn, launching a new global advocacy initiative with the message “If it’s melted, it’s ruined.” The company is calling on international leaders to work towards 100% clean energy by 2050, and plans to get to 100% of it’s own energy from renewables by 2020 at the companies US sites.


The Climate Action Network International is publishing daily ECO newsletters laying out their case to negotiators. You can also catch the groups closing press conference at 1400 UTC here.

IISD’s reporting service has high-resolution pictures from Day 4 inside the World Conference Center, and more to come throughout the next two weeks. They also have a detailed overview ofTuesday’s negotiations.

We have a small team of Climate Trackers in Bonn, blogging at adoptanegotiator.org and writing for a few newspapers around the world. Amidst the refugee crisis making headlines around the world, tracker Andreas Sierber asks if America is ready for climate refugees. Renee Karunungan looks at the role of women in the face of climate change. Check out more their work in EnglishSpanish and German.

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 attcktcktck.org and treealerts.org.

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