High-level government representatives met from 17 to 27 June in Bonn for the 50th Sessions of the UNFCCC Subsidiary Bodies (Bonn Climate Change Conference SB50) to flesh out further details of the Paris Agreement rulebook.
During the Bonn Climate Change Conference (SB50) further details of the Paris Agreement rulebook were agreed. At the conference at the UNFCCC Secretariat in Bonn from 17 to 27 June, government representatives agreed on an approach to review damage caused by climate change and drew up different options to prevent double counting of avoided greenhouse gases on international emissions trading markets. These and similar issues will be presented for decision at the next UN Climate Change Conference (COP25) in December in Santiago de Chile. In addition, a ministerial meeting is starting today in Brussels to advance implementation of the Paris Agreement. State Secretary at the Federal Environment Ministry Jochen Flasbarth will participate in this meeting.
Federal Environment Minister Svenja Schulze said: "The expectations placed on climate policies are high, both here in Germany and around the world. It was crucial that we used the negotiations in Bonn to lay a solid foundation for the UN Climate Change Conference in Chile at the end of this year. In Chile, we will need to decide on the matters that are not yet included in the Katowice rulebook, such as the rules for international emissions trading markets. For us, it is key to ensure that market mechanisms actually reduce emissions, that double counting is avoided and that the mechanisms contribute to sustainable development. In preparation for Santiago, the Climate Action Summit of the UN Secretary-General in September in New York will provide the heads of state and government with the opportunity to send first signals on the NDCs they want to submit in 2020."
At the Climate Change Conference in Poland last year, the Parties reached agreements on the majority of the rulebook for implementing the obligations under the Paris Agreement. The question as to what shape the rules governing international trade with emission allowances will take remained unanswered.
In Bonn, the countries agreed on several options. These are to be put to the vote at the upcoming UN Climate Change Conference in Chile. They also decided how they want to review the mechanism dealing with loss and damage caused by climate change (Warsaw International Mechanism) at COP25. In view of an increasing number of extreme weather events, this topic is becoming more and more important, particularly among the vulnerable and low-lying island states. With its special report from last year, the IPCC made clear the severity of the impacts of climate change with a global warming of 1.5 degrees Celsius. This is now also becoming apparent to us with extreme weather events around the world and heat waves in early summer in Germany. The report shows that any additional warming will further increase the risks and that it is becoming more urgent than ever to implement concrete and far-reaching climate action measures in all sectors. The delegates held intensive discussions on how these findings could be incorporated into the negotiations and the national climate policies.
They consulted the national emission reports and began drawing up detailed tables for reporting on mitigation, adaptation and support under the Paris Agreement. Beyond the technical negotiations, the delegates coordinated their contributions for the upcoming conferences this year.
Today is the first day of the Ministerial on Climate Action taking place in Brussels at the invitation of the EU Commission, China and Canada. The meeting marks the next step in international climate diplomacy. Its aim is to shift the focus of international climate action from negotiation to implementation. Ministers attending the meeting will also discuss the upcoming Climate Action Summit. UN Secretary-General António Guterres has invited the heads of state and government to New York on 23 September for this meeting. The goal of the Climate Action Summit is to enhance global climate action. So far, the NDCs submitted in 2015 under the Paris Agreement are not yet sufficient to keep global warming below two degrees Celsius or to limit it to 1.5 degrees Celsius. In 2020, the NDCs will be reviewed and ideally raised. Furthermore, countries will submit long-term strategies outlining the path to greenhouse gas neutrality by 2050.
Every year in May or June, the negotiators come together to prepare the climate change conferences at the end of the year. These negotiations always take place at the headquarters of the UN Climate Change Secretariat in Bonn. Every two years the budget for the Secretariat is negotiated. This year, the budget for 2020 to 2021 was adopted.
Important political climate events on the way to Santiago:
- 28 June 2019: Ministerial on Climate Action (MoCA) at the invitation of China, Canada and the EU Commission
- 30 June to 1 July: Preparatory conference in Abu Dhabi for the UN Secretary-General’s Climate Action Summit
- 23 September 2019: Climate Action Summit of the UN Secretary-General at the level of heads of state and government on the fringes of the UN General Assembly in New York
- 8 to 10 October 2019: Pre-COP in San José, Costa Rica
- 2 to 13 December 2019: COP25 in Santiago, Chile