Why will Paris upcoming “loose” climate change agreement work better than the previous ones?

Participation of Miguel Arias Cañete, EU Commissioner for Energy and Climate Action, at the INDC Forum organised in Rabat, Morocco (EC Audiovisual Services, 13/10/2015)

Participation of Miguel Arias Cañete, EU Commissioner for Energy and Climate Action, at the INDC Forum organised in Rabat, Morocco (EC Audiovisual Services, 13/10/2015)

It was only last Tuesday when the European Commission (EC) together with the Moroccan government, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) convened at the Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDC) Forum in Morocco to discuss the overall effect of countries’ contributions to the climate agreement which is going to be concluded in December at the 21st Conference of the Parties (COP21) in Paris. The outcome of the Forum was that a global climate effort is greatly increasing but more endeavours are needed in order to reduce global warming in fact.

The European Parliament (EP), in view of the COP21 next month, convened two days ago and voted in favour of a global agreement that can fight climate change by targeting mainly to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and increase the relevant climate finance commitments.

As far as Europe’s contribution is concerned, it is certain that we are on the right track, with the United Kingdom (UK) to lead the way. Not only UK announced a £5.8bn climate finance pledge but also has reduced the carbon intensity of its economy more than the rest 20 biggest economies in the world (G20). Furthermore, France and Germany are following the race in carbon intensity cuts and in climate finance pledges, strengthening the EU commitment in the fight against climate change.

However, the new anticipated climate agreement is not going to include punishment measures or sanctions for the countries that will not be in line with the targets. This decision was clearly made due to the unwillingness of many member states to legally bind to it.

Recognition for a long-term climate approach

The INDC Forum though brought together around 200 experts from different backgrounds and all stressed the need for further and stronger commitments if we want to tackle the climate change issue. Particularly, Miguel Arias Cañete, EU Commissioner for Climate Action and Energy mentioned: “The initial contributions on the table make a significant difference, but these alone will not be enough to keep global warming below 2 degrees. That’s why in Paris we need to agree a long-term goal to guide our efforts, a process for taking stock of the progress made and raising ambition, and robust transparency and accountability rules. The new deal must show to the world that governments are united, determined and serious when it comes to fighting climate change.”

EP puts pressure on the EU for a legally binding agreement

The EP will be represented by 15 Members who will go to Paris to urge for commitments on reducing the greenhouse gas emissions to 80-95% below 1990 levels by 2050 and raise up the financing attributed to climate up to $100bn a year by 2020. The Parliament will also focus on the transportation which is the second-largest sector producing greenhouse gas emissions and will try to persuade the member states to implement measures that will be able to reduce emissions through the participation of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the International Maritime Organization (IMO).

UK: EU’s climate panache

Even though UK’s finance pledge is smaller than the German or the French one, UK has managed to reduce the amount of carbon dioxide emitted, per dollar of economic output, by 10.9% in 2014 according to a relevant report published by the accounting firm PWC. That was accomplished mainly by reducing burning coal.

What is more, energy-related emissions dropped by 8.7% while the economy experienced a 2.6% growth. The latter reveals that economies can grow at a fast pace while targeting at the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, which can lead to the desired goal of limiting the temperature rise since preindustrial times to 2 degrees Celsius.

Further efforts in a loose regime; will it work?

The Paris agreement is going to be concluded in less than two months but under a framework that will probably not impose “punishments” to the parties which do not comply with the rules. This is also supported by Christiana Figueres , head of the U.N. Climate Change Secretariat who pointed that: “ The overwhelming view of member states is that any agreement has to be much more collaborative than punitive, if it is to happen at all. Even if you do have a punitive system, that doesn’t guarantee that it is going to be imposed or would lead to any better action.”

But is this the case or is it too difficult (not to say impossible) to impose sanctions to the parties that fell short to the climate commitments? According to Yvo de Boer, the UN’s former top climate official, the Kyoto Protocol “was to be legally binding, but it became very clear that a lot of countries didn’t want sanctions” and weren’t imposed any when violating or abandoning the agreement.

Consequently, we end up to a Protocol that has to reduce greenhouse gas emissions dramatically over the next decades and keep global warming temperature under the 2 C barrier, but with no legal bindings whatsoever. Is this going to work at all?

The next meeting regarding the climate agreement is to be held in Born on 19-23 October and is the last gathering before the major COP21. This is the last chance for all parties to assemble a beneficial and realistic plan to be sealed in Paris. The European Sting will be monitoring the matter closely.

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

the European Sting Milestones

Featured Stings

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

Eating less beef and more beans would cut deaths by 5-7%

The European Parliament hemicycle in Strasbourg (Copyright: European Union, 2017 / Source: EC - Audiovisual Service / Photo: Mauro Bottaro)

EU Parliament sends controversial copyright law reform back to discussion

Here are five ways we can make mental healthcare better

IMF’s Lagarde indirectly cautioned Eurozone on deflation

Who holds the key to the future of biotechnology? You do

Eurozone: New data show recession and debt closer to explosion

Ethiopia will soon introduce visa-free travel for all Africans

How smart farming is helping Brazil feed the world

Could robot leaders do better than our current politicians?

Facilitating the access to finance and risk capital for SMEs and midcaps

Can elections in Italy and Germany derail Eurozone?

This is how people in Europe are helping lead the energy charge

Policymakers can ensure the 4IR is fairer than the last three

London, Berlin, Paris to fight over EU budget

UN receives ‘Humanium’ wristwatch gift, symbolizing peaceful transformation

Mine ban agreement ‘has saved countless lives’, but ‘accelerated efforts’ needed to end scourge for good: Guterres

Why does the whole world want Britain to stay in the EU?

Will Qualcomm avoid Broadcom’s hostile takeover post the 1 bn euro EU antitrust fine?

World Summit Awards 2016: Sustainable impact through digital innovation

168 hours left for MEPs – ECOFIN Council to deliver a Banking Union

The global appetite for meat is growing, and it’s harming the planet

The vicious cycle of poverty and exclusion spreads fast engulfing more children

Can a Bavarian Oktoberfest beer indulger bring down the Berlin government?

Travel the world, find yourself

Confronting neo-mercantilism: why regulation is critical to global trade

EU leaders agree on 2030 Climate and Energy Package: is “flexible” brave enough?

Greece @ MWC14: Greek-born mobile champions at MWC 2014

Deutsche Bank chased away from US, threatened with more fines

UN rights office calls on Zimbabwe Government to end ‘crackdown’ in response to fuel protests

The dangers of data: why the numbers never tell the full story

Berlin repels proposal for cheaper euro

This is where teachers are most (and least) respected

New roadmap toward healthier and cleaner oceans adopted by UN Environment and European Commission

Syria: UN Humanitarian Coordinator calls for unimpeded access from within the country

Tax crimes: MEPs want EU financial police force and financial intelligence unit

Launch of Pact for Youth: European Youth Forum calls for real business engagement

Ukraine: Is there a political force able to undo the division?

Draghi tells the EU Parliament his relaxed policies are here to stay

Tenants ‘forced out their homes’ by global investment firms, say UN experts

No agreement in sight on EU budget

Brexit talks stalled at launch; issues with European Court’s authority in Britain

Remembering Kofi Annan

Look Mom, even the House of Lords says the #righttobeforgotten is not right

Giving humanitarian help to migrants should not be a crime, say MEPs

Water supply a human right but Greeks to lose their functioning utilities

European Globalisation Adjustment Fund, who gets it and who pays the bill?

What makes Copenhagen the world’s most bike-friendly city?

Security spillovers from Trump’s trade wars: China, Germany prepare for global disorder

This project is turning abandoned fishing gear into volleyball nets

The Fourth Industrial Revolution must not leave farming behind

Crucial medical supplies airlifted to north-east Syria to meet ‘desperate need’

World must do more to tackle ‘shadowy’ mercenary activities undermining stability in Africa, says UN chief

Parliamentary bid to democratize Myanmar constitution a ‘positive development’ says UN rights expert

South Sudan: ‘Horrific acts’ by government may constitute ‘war crimes’ says UN, demanding justice

Contact the Sting

Four ways we can fix economics in 2019

EU Budget: InvestEU Programme to support jobs, growth and innovation in Europe

Christine Lagarde: the three priorities for the global economy

From inconvenience to opportunity: the importance of international medical exchanges

THE ROAD TO GANESHA

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s