Analysis by Ron Israel and Lois Barber, Co-chairs of the Citizen’s 2015 Global Climate Agreement Campaign.
The 21st United Nations sponsored Conference of the Parties (COP21) will be held in Paris this December. The goal of COP21 is to produce the first meaningful, legally binding international climate treaty since the Kyoto Protocol in 1997. As we have already seen, a global average surface temperature rise of 0.8 º Celsius above pre-industrial levels and another 0.5 º Celsius are already in the system, due to ongoing greenhouse gas emissions.Read more
Last week saw Christiana Figueres, the head of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), in Australia to promote the importance of international climate policy this year across multiple sectors. In keeping with her busy schedule she spoke at events hosted by non-governmental organisations, business groups, universities and state governments.
2015 is a big year for the UNFCCC, with countries due to finalise a new international agreement on climate change action in Paris later this year. The last time countries tried to reach a new climate agreement of comparable significance was in 2009 in Copenhagen. The aftermath of Copenhagen is well known, with these talks being widely criticised as countries failed to produce a new legally binding instrument to address climate change.Read more
The United States released its Intended Nationally Determined Contribution (INDC) yesterday. The core of the commitment is a reduction of 26% to 28% below 2005 greenhouse gas emissions levels by the year 2025, a rate of emissions cuts that puts the US on track for 80% emissions reductions by 2050, but will likely not be enough to prevent a continued rise in global average temperatures to no more than 2ºC above pre-industrial levels. What is crucial is that this plan allows for the adding of more aggressive decarbonization over time, as progress is made, technology develops, investment patterns shift, and as the UN process looks toward setting 1.5ºC as the upper limit for temperature rise.
On February 27, Switzerland became the first nation to officially submit its Intended Nationally Determined Contribution (INDC), under the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action, to the UNFCCC. The summary of Switzerland’s national commitment to the global climate solution reads as follows:
Switzerland commits to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 50 percent by 2030 compared to 1990 levels, corresponding to an average reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by 35 percent over the period 2021–2030. By 2025, a reduction of greenhouse gases by 35 percent compared to 1990 levels is anticipated. Carbon credits from international mechanisms will partly be used. The INDC is subject to approval by Parliament. The methodological approaches underlying the Swiss INDC are included in this communication.Read more
La Secretaría de la Convención Marco de Cambio Climático anunció este miércoles que ya está disponible la página web para que los países reporten sus planes de acción climática [intended national determined contributions-INDC es la sigla en los términos técnicos de la Convención], es decir sus compromisos de reducción de emisiones de gases de efecto invernadero o de aportes financieros a la lucha contra el calentamiento global. Como en otras convenciones, la información estará disponible en orden alfabético por países, pero aún no hay ninguna entrada, como se ve en la captura de pantalla.Read more
Oil prices have come down dramatically in the last few months, causing speculation that we are about to see a boom in oil consumption, and a move away from fuel-efficient vehicles, hybrid engines, alternative fuels, and electric cars. Maria van der Hoeven, executive director of the International Energy Agency, sees it differently: this is an opportunity to put in place the policies that will allow us to avoid future negative fallout from overdependence on fossil fuels.Read more
As we enter 2015, it’s worth looking back at a valuable insight shared during a COP20 side-event relating to the building of country-specific roadmaps to a low-carbon economy. On Dec. 10, in Lima, Jeffrey Sachs answered an audience question about advanced technology research and then added, for clarity: “This is not a game.” Sachs is Director of Columbia University’s Earth Institute and of the UN’s Sustainable Development Solutions Network. The SDSN is steering the biggest economies in the world to develop ambitious transition strategies that will result in true low-carbon prosperity, with the aim of preventing dangerous climate disruption.Read more
Resilience Intel Charter aims for 100% climate-smart finance
The Resilience Intel Charter was launched at an open dialogue on Advancing the Climate-Smart Future of Finance, in San Francisco, during the Global Climate Action Summit. The Charter calls for progress on measuring hidden value and lays out principles for protecting and expanding natural capital, developing of wider pools of climate-smart finance, supporting locally rooted sustainability-driven economies, and building an integrated, multi-scale climate-smart economy.
The PARIS Principles for effective, efficient, equitable carbon pricing
- Price pollution with a defined, steadily rising price on climate-disrupting emissions, preferably at the source.
- Add momentum. Enhance incomes; build economic value at the human scale.
- Reduce emissions effectively and accountably, by keeping the administrative structure simple and transparent.
- Internalize inefficiencies — cost and harm linked to polluting business models — incrementally, with escalating certainty and with no leakage.
- Spread by aligning price signals and supporting policies, harmonizing across borders, so pricing can be enacted country by country.
The COP24 in Katowice, Poland, was an opportunity to design and activate a global process to secure human liberty and prosperity. While it was not a meeting to solve all problems at once or to end climate change today, the defined outcome — the Katowice Climate Package [PDF] — provides some clear guidelines for nations to work toward a climate-smart future.
The Signals Brief — a climate-smart future news magazine
The Signals Brief is a climate-smart future news magazine, connected to Resilience Intel, and published on Flipboard. It is co-curated by Citizens’ Climate Education and Geoversiv, and aims to provide useful insights regarding: macro-critical drivers of value, efforts to visualize and capture external returns on investment, technical innovations and other signs of progress toward full-spectrum climate-smart finance.
The Signals Brief can be accessed at ResilienceIntel.news
ParisProgress.org tracks major events & climate solutions platforms
As implementation speeds ahead on the many operational elements of the Paris Agreement, there is an increasing need to provide a clear, concise, straightforward map of the landscape of action and innovation. ParisProgress.org aims to provide the clarifying insight of direct links to a number high-value, direct action platforms tracking or informing the implementation of the Paris Agreement.