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Tuesday, October 3, 2023

Petersberg Climate Dialogue emphasises political preparations for COP26

German Environment Minister, Svenja Schulze, and the designated President of the next UN Climate Change Conference (COP26), Alok Sharma, are co-hosting the high-level segment of the 12th Petersberg Climate Dialogue holding from May 6 to 7, 2021.

Alok Sharma
Alok Sharma, COP26 President

Taking place as an online video conference, the event will focus on political preparations for COP26 taking place in November in Glasgow, Scotland. The climate targets announced to date by many of the major economies will provide a starting point for the discussions.

According to a new calculation of the Climate Action Tracker presented on Tuesday, April 4 during the opening press conference of the Petersberg Climate Dialogue, the sum of all the targets submitted so far would limit global warming to 2.4 degrees by the end of the century.

Schulze commented: “The fight against the climate crisis has gained a whole new momentum worldwide over the past twelve months. The Paris Agreement is gradually taking full effect. For me, the results of the Climate Action Tracker calculation are an important foundation for the upcoming talks. In addition to the most urgent need for action, these results show that the efforts made are worthwhile and that progress is possible in international climate action. Just a few short years ago, the world was on course towards 3.5 degrees global warming — a scenario that doesn’t bear thinking about. The latest commitments have put us on track towards 2.4 degrees and this development is by no means finished. Short-term progress in this decade will be crucial to success.

“It is a positive sign that the EU and the UK have taken a bold step forward here and set the bar. The US, Japan and Canada have followed suit, but many others have yet to take the plunge. We now want to take the momentum generated by President Biden’s Summit with us into the negotiations on the joint set of rules under the auspices of the Paris Agreement. We need clear, consistent rules for all countries in the Paris Agreement. This concerns reporting requirements for greenhouse gases and the question of how emissions reductions are traded and accounted. In the next few days we will work together to prepare solutions for these.”

COP26 President Designate, Mr Alok Sharma, said: “With six months to go until Glasgow, at this year’s Petersberg Climate Dialogue we are focusing on the negotiations that will lead to a successful outcome at COP26. I am keen we use the Dialogue to keep the momentum going on getting climate finance flowing, greater protection against the effects of climate change, and addressing the outstanding elements of the Paris Rulebook.”

As in previous years, the Petersberg Climate Dialogue offers a platform for informal discussion at political level. The Petersberg Climate Dialogue has become established as an annual milestone event in international climate diplomacy and this year will bring together ministers from some 40 countries. The main event of this year’s meeting is the high-level segment on May 6. Participants will include UN Secretary-General António Guterres, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Federal Chancellor Angela Merkel.

The German government has been organising the Petersberg Climate Dialogue since 2010. In its first year, the event was held on the Petersberg near Bonn. The co-chair of the Climate Dialogue is the country presiding over the next UN Climate Change Conference.

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