ADP: Conditions for increasing pre 2020 emissions target not met - says EU

Bonn, 8 June 2015 (Indrajit Bose)

The European Union said that its conditions for moving beyond its 20 per cent emissions reduction target by 2020 below 1990 levels had not been met and anything more would come only post-2020. This was in response to calls by developing countries to developed countries to raise their pre-2020 mitigation ambition.


The Ad Hoc Working Group on the Durban Platfrom for Enhanced Action (ADP) convened a facilitated group meeting on pre-2020 climate action, also called workstream 2, on 5 June. There was a clear divide on the way ahead on the issue.

While the call from developing countries was for the developed countries to raise ambition, the proposals of developed countries largely focused on technical expert processes and high level engagement.

[The quid pro quo in Durban in 2011 that launched the ADP process to develop a protocol, legal instrument or outcome with legal force “applicable to all Parties” was for developed countries to commit to the Kyoto Protocol’s (KP) second commitment period(CP2). Parties agreed that there will be a CP2, but what was not decided then was its length (whether a 5 or 8 year period) and what the actual numbers for the emission reduction targets by the Annex 1 Parties will be, both individually and in aggregate. In Doha in 2012, they agreed to revisit their CP 2 commitment at the latest by 2014, to raise it from 18 per cent to at least 25 to 40 per cent below 1990 levels by 2020.]

At the 5 June discussion, Parties could not agree on the way forward in terms of a product on workstream 2 from the Bonn session as several Parties provided their views on what should be the elements of a draft decision on pre-2020 action.

India called for a compilation text, comprising Parties’ views on the elements of a draft decision text for workstream 2. “In this session we can have at least a draft text comprising views of all Parties, just like the Geneva text has the views of all the Parties. We should leave Bonn with that. If we don’t demonstrate our collaboration pre-2020, it will be very difficult to collaborate on post-2020,” said India.

The EU disagreed and said Parties must focus on only the areas where there was convergence. It added that it did not want to move to any compilation text and said that any next steps should lie in pulling together a “sweet spot” of consensus. It was supported by New Zealand.

In response to the EU, India said Parties could use the compiled text to identify commonalities and see “what we concur with”. “The ADP process comprises two workstreams – 1 (post-2020) and 2 (pre-2020). Just as in workstream 1, we are trying to conclude with a draft negotiating text with the cooperation and views of all the Parties, similarly for workstream 2, we have to have a parallel process because everywone wants to know what will happen pre-2020 before they commit for post-2020,” it said.

“We need a clear cut decision text on workstream 2. Our suggestion would be let us capture all of the opinions shared here. We should have a draft negotiating text. It should include the EU, the Umbrella Group, the G77 and China’s proposals as well as proposals of individual Parties,” said India.
 
As Parties move forward in workstream 1, they should work parallelly on workstream 2 as well, added India. Calling for more sessions on workstream 2 at the ongoing Bonn session, India said there is time to decide on the modalities post-2020, whereas there is no time for pre-2020.  China and Saudi Arabia supported India’s call for a compilation text.

Responding to India, EU said that workstream 1 had not provided a good model of how things could be done very fast. (On 4 June, Parties had indicated that the pace of the streamlining process of the negotiations text had been rather slow. Please see TWN Update #7: Next steps identified on way forward on negotiating text.) The EU said it needs to wait and see what the proposals on workstream 2 look like and reiterated that Parties should not move to a compilation text.

In a further response, India agreed that the Geneva text is unwieldy but clarified that it is not the fault of the Parties. “The Geneva text is unwieldy because the previous ADP co-chairs did not take Parties’ views on board, which was the result of what happened in Lima. It is not the fault of the Parties that we have such a text. If we capture the opinions of all Parties on workstream 2, it won’t exceed five to seven pages,” said India.

Besides the compilation text, Parties also had divergences over the revisit mechanism of the KP. India recalled the decision on the revisit mechanism and said that it has to be considered how the current 2013-2015 review would inform pre-2020 ambition and how willing are countries to close the mitigation gap.

In response, the EU said it had gone through a revisit mechanism exercise and added that its conditions of moving beyond the 20 per cent target had not been met. The EU added that anything more would come only post-2020. It said it is concerned with repeated questions on the revisit mechanism. “If there are issues that are beyond what is possible to reach consensus on, for instance revisit mechanism, that will not happen,” the EU said.

While the call from developing countries was for the developed countries to raise ambition, the proposals of developed countries largely focused on technical expert processes and high level engagement.

Responding to such proposals, Mexico questioned the effectiveness of the technical expert meetings (TEM) under workstream 2. “TEMs have not produced actions we seek. Presentations by experts for two days do not trigger the action we need,” said Mexico.

India said Mexico’s intervention was very pertinent. “Until and unless we see addition from the initiatives being talked of, it does not help us. The proposal from Mexico is very welcome and we must look at the utility of these processes,” said India. It also called for evaluating the effectiveness of high-level events and asked, “By convening high-level events, have we galvanised action?”

The co-facilitators for workstream 2, Aya Yoshida (Japan) and George Wamukoya (Kenya) encouraged Parties to submit their proposals online and would get back to Parties on the next steps after consulting with the ADP Co-chairs.

Highlights of the interventions

Speaking for G77 and China, Mali said the Group is working to present a text to Parties and took Parties over the major elements of its proposal. It said that in its proposal the preamble would contain the provisions of the Convention to enhance ambition pre-2020 and would recall earlier decisions from Durban through Lima. The preamble would also mention the ambition gap pre-2020. Besides the preamble, the Group’s proposal would comprise the following elements: a work programme, accelerated implementation modalities pre-2020, multilateral cooperation support, call for enhancing mitigation action through concrete actions, technical expert process on adaptation and high level engagement.

Speaking for the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS), Maldives said that they had been pushing for workstream 2, not just for the technical process but for greater action in the short term. It said the COP decision should focus on enhancing implementation so that new voluntary mitigation cooperation initiatives emerge, and recognize that considerable work had been done on workstream 2. It said that the preamble should recognise the pre-2020 gap, and that it would submit its proposal.

India said that it views pre-2020 as an issue of enhancement of ambition and better implementation of the existing provisions of the Convention, stressing that pre-2020 action would build trust. It said that there should be a specific mechanism in the draft decision on pre-2020, which defines the modalities as has been agreed to earlier. It recalled the decision on the revisit mechanism and said that it has to be considered how the current 2013-2015 review would inform pre-2020 ambition and how willing are countries to close the mitigation gap. It called for the pre-2020 decision to have an evaluation mechanism of the quantified emissions reduction targets.

India said along with the gap in mitigation, there exists a lot of gaps in adaptation, finance, technology and capacity building. There has to be a clear component (in the decision) of how support on these elements should be provided. India said that the Executive Director of the Green Climate Fund met with G77 earlier in the day and India was dismayed to hear that only US$2.5 billion per year is available for 2015-2018. It wondered how the varied requirements would be met through this. India also called for a collaborative mechanism to ensure barriers such as intellectual property rights are removed, stressing that “We need to look beyond technical expert meetings and look at the actual grounding of technology”.

It said that a draft text for pre-2020 should comprise all the elements it had pointed out to. “In this session we can have at least a draft comprising views of all Parties, just like the Geneva text has the views of all the Parties. We should leave Bonn with that. If we don’t demonstrate our collaboration pre-2020, it will be very difficult to collaborate post-2020,” said India.

China said there are substantial issues to be addressed in the pre-2020 period in a holistic and balanced manner. It said that a lot of the developing countries had done their best to take climate action, even without finance, technology or capacity building support from the developed countries whereas the developed countries’ actions remained far from satisfactory. It brought to the attention of Parties that as of 20 May 2015, of the 32 countries that had ratified the Doha Amendment to the KP, there were only 3 Parties from Annex 1. It said that developed countries had committed to reduce emissions to 18 per cent below 1990 levels by 2020, which is far from the scientific need of 40 per cent reductions below 1990 levels. It urged the developed countries to remove conditionalities and called for a clear roadmap on finance and for barriers to be removed for technology transfer to developing countries.

Argentina underscored that pre- and post-2020 are related and it is important to close the ambition gap. Pre-2020 cannot be closed to adaptation, it said, adding that the Doha Amendment to the Kyoto Protocol is critical. It expects to leave the Bonn session with a clear image about workstream 2 that would be adopted in Paris.

Calling for a comprehensive and substantitve outcome pre-2020 to facilitate the post-2020 outcome, Iran said there needs to be a clear roadmap. TEMs should be extended to adaptation and workstream 2 should address means of implementation, said Iran.

The EU outlined the elements of a draft decision on workstream 2 and presented an overview of the elements. These include a high level segment, technical expert processes, Convention bodies and outside actors and a review component which would evaluate the effectiveness of processes within the 2016-2020 period. Its proposal was reflected on the screen and it said that the proposal had been posted on the UNFCCC website.

Speaking for the Umbrella Group of countries, Australia went through its pre-2020 proposal, which also focuses largely on advancing the technical examination process and and high level engagement.

Supporting the EU proposal, Norway said TEMs are useful to get different stakeholders on one platform and discuss issues.

Switzerland said that all countries should think of what mitigation actions should be taken up and said it is ready to engage in a discussion on how workstream 2 would continue after 2020. It recognized the importance of high level meetings but did not want to decide if such high levels events should continue. Referring to non-state actors as “key”, Switzerland said it was ready to engage in a discussion on how they could be strengthened without creating burdensome structures.

The EU took the floor again and reassured Parties that the ratification of the Doha Amendment is well underway and the fact that targets are binding makes it a more complex process. It said the EU is well underway on the task of reducing emissions by 20 per cent by 2020.

TWN Bonn News Update 9

UNFCCC / ADP 2.9
1 June - 11 June 2015, Bonn, Germany
by Indrajit Bose
Bonn, 8 June 2015