What discussions will take centre stage at COP28

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What discussions will take centre stage at COP28
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It is just 2 days to the start of the conference of parties (COP 28) tom be held in the UAE, 30th November to 12th December with  around 70.000 people are expected to attend the event this year. 2023 has seen several crunch summits and conferences trying to tackle the climate crisis including the G7, the G20, the UN Climate Ambition Summit as well as key bilaterals such as the recent US-China meeting. It's been an unprecedented year of impacts with the world experiencing its hottest 12 months on record. But what could be some of the expectation sof the C0P 28?

Fossil fuel phase out/ Fossil fuel phase down /CCS

  • The IPCC Sixth Assessment Synthesis report highlighted the need for a rapid phase out of fossil fuels to meet 1.5c. Civil society organisations are calling for this COP to be the one that lands this deal.
  • A high ambition outcome would involve countries agreeing to meet percentage targets for reduced oil and gas supply and demand with a minimum 15% reduction by 2030 and a 65% reduction by 2050 as well as commitments to end new production and exploration and ending subsidies.
  • Carbon capture and storage (CCS) and Direct air capture (DAC) will feature prominently during any discussions around a fossil fuel phase out / phase down. This useful factsheet from Zero Carbon Analytics looks at the facts versus fiction on CCS.
  • Carbon market negotiations are set to continue under Article 6 to the backdrop of concern over deals being penned between a UAE company and several African countries. The deals could see the UAE take control of African land mass the size of the UK, but if market rules tighten and players like Brazil come in pushing the need for alternative ways to pay for nature, these deals won’t wash. See what’s at stake in this year's negotiations in this briefing from Zero Carbon Analytics.

 

GST (Global Stocktake)

  • The findings of the Global Stocktake report from September reminded us how off track we are. The Global Stocktake is an element of the Paris Agreement and this year’s COP is expected to have a ‘GST decision’.
  • It is hoped that the assessment, carried out every five years, will be used to set a roadmap forward for accelerated action both inside and outside the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
  • The negotiated outcome of Global stocktake (GST) covers all aspects of the negotiations including Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC’s ), climate finance, loss and damage, energy, nature, adaptation and non party stakeholders.

Finance

  • The gap in climate finance and the ongoing discussions around the reform of multilateral financial institutions are likely to remain a priority.
  • The latest Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development ( OECD) report says that the $100bn goal pledged in 2009 is likely to have been met in 2022 but there is no public data to show this. Calls are being made for increased transparency to avoid a lag in reporting.
  • Watch for pledges to the Green Climate Fund - Australia, Italy, Sweden, Switzerland and the United States have announced their intention to also make pledges to the Green climate fund (GCF)’s second replenishment, which has received $9.3 billion from 25 countries so far. Pressure is also growing on Gulf states, including COP host, the UAE, to become contributors.
  • Organisations are calling for a fossil fuel tax to pay for losses and damages. A recent report from Climate Action Network (CAN) estimated that a fossil fuel extraction levy could raise $210bn.
  • During the conference France and Kenya are expected to launch a taskforce on innovative sources of financing.

 

Adaptation

  • Negotiators hope to launch the framework on the Global Goal on Adaptation at COP28 meaning they hope to agree to various aspects of the framework including its purpose, principles, dimensions, themes, cross-cutting considerations, sources, targets.
  • COP28 could be a turning point to close the growing adaptation financial gap. The Adaptation Gap Report 2023 said that the doubling of adaptation finance would at best reduce the gap by 5-10%. At COP28 leaders can commit to addressing the 15% decrease in international public funding since 2021.

 

Loss and damage 

  • The expected outcome at COP28 on  loss and damage is the ‘operationalisation’ of the fund.
  • Since COP27 there have been five meetings of the Transitional Committee which has been tasked with making recommendations to COP28. After tense negotiations in November developing countries agreed with developed countries demands that the World Bank would be the interim host of the fund. This is based on certain conditions. It was also agreed that the floor (the baseline for the fund) should exceed $150bn per year.
  • We could see pledges from the EU, Denmark and the UAE. Some countries may only come forward with pledges after the fund is set up as an entity. John Kerry has said the US “will commit ‘several million dollars”.
  • Expect further announcements and pledged on the Global Shield a V20 -G7 mechanism to unlock funds for loss and damage.

 

Tripling renewables, doubling energy efficiency 

  • The UAE is hoping to land a deal on the tripling of renewable energy and the doubling of energy efficiency. This would build on the agreement already made at the G20 in India this year. The latest assessment from Ember finds that many countries are already on track to exceed their national targets. So far over 60 countries are on board with the goal.

These and many more will be centre stage discussion in the 13 day conference in Dubai.

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