Public and private sector finance is needed to achieve the Paris Agreement objectives
The Paris Agreement sets out two different objectives as regards climate finance: on the one hand developed countries need to invest $100bn dollars per year for mitigation and adaptation projects in developing countries and on the other hand, all finance flows need to progressively be consistent with a pathway towards low greenhouse gas emissions and climate-resilient development.
According to recent estimates, the costs of adapting to climate change could reach 280-500$ billion per year until 2050 while total bilateral and multilateral funding in developing countries reached 22.5$ billion in 2014. The Fund has been in operation since 2017, has allocated 462 million dollars to 70 adaptation programmes in 58 countries and had a fundraising target of 80 million dollars for 2017 that was surpassed. The numbers speak for themselves, representing a very small fraction of the amount needed for adaptation and loss and damage worldwide, which is often explained by the nature of the fund and the lack of orientation towards scalability of projects.
When studying economics you learn among others about game theory, a field of study that studies strategic decision making in situations of competition and conflict, cooperation and interdependence under specific rules. A “climate dilemma” is often described, derived from the Prisoner’s dilemma by Albert Tucker where the best possible outcome for all parties cannot be achieved given the short term benefit from an individual perspective to quit. The best example of course is the announced US exit from the Paris agreement. While trying to apply these theories to better understand the process of negotiations as an observer, you quickly realise that you lack large amounts of information about preferences of actors, their knowledge, strategic actions they are allowed to make and how each decision influences the outcome. And that while the ice is melting you may only really see the tip of the iceberg.
Thursday 16th of November in the NY plenary room of the UN Campus in Bonn. In front of a half-filled room, His Excellency Enele Sosene Sopoaga, Prime Minister of Tuvalu addressed the crowd with powerful words: “how would you feel if you were in my shoes? What would you do if you were facing the total disappearance of your country?”. Emphasizing on the threat of disappearance that are facing most Small Islands Developing States (SIDS), H.E Sopoaga raised his concerns about the state of negotiations regarding Loss and Damages at COP23.
«I want you to try to understand what it is like to be in my shoes, what you would do if you faced the total disappearance of your nation?" P.M. of Tuvalu gave a strong message @CliMates_@COP23pic.twitter.com/qMZfR1wChb
2016 has been the deadliest year on record for environmental activists defending their land. A collaborative research, which has been conducted by the Guardian and the organisation Global Witness, revealed that 200 environmental defenders were killed last year. While representing only 5 % of the world population, indigenous peoples make up 40 % of the total recorded death number. These stark statistics underline the high vulnerability of indigenous peoples all over the world.
Although Indigenous communities contribute little to greenhouse emissions, they play an active role in shaping climate action. Indeed, they are on the very frontline of climate change and may draw from their traditional knowledge in order to develop local-based climate solutions. Data from the World Resources Institute show that significant global carbon benefits result from tenure-secure indigenous forestlands. Yet, this particular relationship between indigenous communities and their ancestral land remains largely omitted and might even represent a motive to aggression.
Paris Agreement, two buzz words, has set an unambiguous goal to hold global temperature increase to “well below 2⁰C “ and for parties to pursue efforts to limit this to 1.5⁰C above preindustrial levels. And it is so unfortunate that there is not much progress to figure out the urgency in COP 23. But there is a hope .i.e. Talanoa Dialogue!!! The first key political moment after Paris!!!
« Since the Adaptation fund was created in 2001 in COP7 in Marrakech for the developing countries to help them to adapt to the harmful effects of climate change, there have been good improvements but they are not enough according to lots of reports.”
This is how we started our policy paper when we were talking about the Adaptation Fund from youth perspective at COP23. But when it comes to the parties, there are some other opinions.
Historically, oceans were the sole connectors of the earth: from expeditions by ship to messages in bottles, the oceans provided a channel between continents. Nowadays, one may say the UN is the main channel by which states communicate, at least on a diplomatic level. Other channels, including technology, international trade and the transport sector, come with one significant downside: carbon emissions, which drive climate change. Affected ecosystems are linked such that the melting Arctic causes sea-level rise in far off Pacific islands. As youth and young ocean lovers we celebrate the Ocean Pathway Partnership today since we think: partnership should not only follow economic logics but solidarity especially when facing climate change.
The Paris Agreement was a political success, a diplomatic milestone, and what we all thought would be the first step of a different global trajectory. It was a promising wedding among countries with different -and sometimes opposing- priorities and views.
But Marrakech and Bonn have shown that the honeymoon period is over. Parties set aside important contradictions in the negotiations to tie the knot, and now they are all bubbling back to the surface and exposing structural flaws in the implementation process. For example, there is no consensus on whether identifying new features or elaborating on existing ones represents renegotiation or not, and that is just the beginning. That is why the negotiations are moving at such a slow and uneven pace: certain items in the agenda are just too divergent.