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Thursday, September 28, 2023

UN Bonn climate talks: Momentum for action reaches new heights

A week-long UN climate negotiations began on Monday in Bonn, Germany as negotiators continue to make progress before meeting in in Paris in December to finalise a comprehensive and universal climate agreement. This agreement should protect people from climate risks and signal the end of the fossil fuel era.

Tasneem Essop of the WWF
Tasneem Essop of the WWF

On the opening of the talks, members of the Climate Action Network (CAN) commented on expectations from the gathering.  The CAN is a global network of over 900 NGOs working to promote government and individual action to limit human-induced climate change to ecologically sustainable levels.

Tasneem Essop, WWF: “Political momentum building outside the climate negotiations is putting pressure for greater progress inside the climate talks. All the efforts of people – through the declarations, mobilisations and actions – must translate into a meaningful deal being agreed in Paris. And while the UNFCCC is one but site of struggle for climate justice, it is an important one. We need to capitalise on the Paris moment to reflect the urgency and secure a climate-safe future.”

Martin Kaiser, Greenpeace: “It has long been clear that the submitted and expected INDCs won’t add up to the level of commitment needed to prevent catastrophic global warming. As a result, the agreement in Paris needs to be structured to scale up action. Key to this acceleration of ambition are commitments made every five years towards a long-term goal on mitigation. That goal needs to lead to a phase out of fossil fuels and deliver 100% renewable energy by mid-century.”

Alix Mazounie, RAC France: “Finance is one of the core missing pieces from the draft agreement here in Bonn. The silence around financial commitments after 2020 is deafening, and the growing public finance gap in the existing commitments is not sending the political signal that developing countries need. Developed countries must understand that accounting tricks alone and political declarations will not solve the bigger climate finance issue. Even French President François Hollande, host of the talks in December, has acknowledged that climate finance is key to any agreement in Paris. The recipe for predictable public finance, particularly when it comes to adaptation needs, needs to be established in the core agreement. The nuts and bolts may come later, but the principles need to be anchored by December.” 

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