Negotiations and supplications play overtime


The new draft final declaration of the world climate conference, published this Saturday by the British presidency, did not lead to the hoped-for progress … Vibrant calls have multiplied at COP26 for the some 200 participating countries to put aside their special interests to accept the compromise on the table at this “moment of truth” in order to limit global warming.

“It is the moment of truth for our planet and it is also the moment of truth for our children and our grandchildren”, thus launched to the delegations the British president of the COP26 Alok Sharma. Admitting that the world had not kept the promises of the Paris Agreement, he said the text “recognizes this fact and calls for a response”, asking delegations to adopt this text which he called ” balance “.

“We are at a negotiating point where your delegation may wonder if you can use this time to get more for your country, your region, your group. I implore you not to do it, ”he added after a two-week marathon of negotiations which has already exceeded twenty-four hours.

The “risk of tripping in the last few meters before the finish line”

The British stated objective at this COP is to “keep alive” the most ambitious objective of the Paris agreement, to limit warming to 1.5 ° C compared to the pre-industrial era. While the world is still, according to the UN, on the “catastrophic” trajectory of a warming of + 2.7 ° C, the new text preserves the progress of this COP in terms of emissions reductions and fossil fuels, the main sources of greenhouse gases.

The representative of China assured that he did not intend to “reopen” negotiations on the text, as “imperfect” as it is. The vice-president of the European Commission Frans Timmermans also underlined the “risk in this marathon of stumbling in the last meters before the finish line” in the event of reopening of the discussions on this last proposal.

Mistrust of poor countries

These discussions are complicated by the mistrust of the poor countries – the least responsible for global warming but on the front line in the face of its impacts – since the rich countries have still not kept their promise made in 2009 to carry their climate aid from 2020 onwards. in the South to 100 billion dollars per year. The latest text does not bring substantial progress on this issue at the heart of the tensions of recent days – which Fiji, the Marshall Islands and Tuvalu regretted, which risk being submerged by the waves.

Nor on the demand of developing countries for a specific mechanism to take into account “losses and damages”, that is to say the damage already caused by the devastating impacts of storms, droughts and heat waves which are on the increase. “The rich countries are pushing towards a system which would lead to a forum of incessant chatter”, denounced Mohamed Adow of the NGO Power Shift Africa.

But developing countries have nevertheless signaled their intention to accept, reluctantly, the absence of their proposal in the text.

The question of coal

Another very controversial point, the unprecedented mention in a text at this level of fossil fuels, the main responsible for global warming and which are not even mentioned in the Paris Agreement, is preserved in this third version of the draft declaration, to the chagrin of producing countries. The text, whose scope has been reduced over the versions, now calls on member countries to “accelerate efforts to phase out coal-fired energy without capture systems (of CO2) and inefficient fossil fuel subsidies”, whereas the first versions notably did not include the terms “efforts” and “ineffectiveness”.

On this point, India has raised a dissenting voice. “Developing countries have the right to their fair share of the global carbon budget and to responsible use of fossil fuels,” said Environment Minister Bhupender Yadav.

Discussions on the last remainder of the rules for using the Paris Agreement

On greenhouse gas emissions, the new text unchanged the call to member states to increase their reduction commitments more regularly than provided for in the Paris agreement, starting in 2022. But with the possibility of adjustments for “particular national circumstances”, point added Friday and which had provoked criticism of the NGOs on the real ambition of the countries to limit the rise in temperatures.

The delegations would also like to finally come to the end of the discussions on the last remainder of the rules for using the Paris Agreement, in particular on the functioning of the carbon markets. Negotiations on this hotly contested article had failed at the last two COPs.


Source: 20Minutes – Une by www.20minutes.fr.

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