Wednesday, December 8, 2021

A look at the state of the game at the climate talks in Glasgow

Glasgow, Scotland (AP) – As the UN climate talks go into their second week this year, talks on key topics are moving forward. Buoyed by some high-profile announcements at the start of the meeting, delegates are upbeat about the prospects for concrete progress in the fight against global warming.

Laurent Fabius, the former French foreign minister who helped create the Paris climate accord, said the general atmosphere had improved since talks began on October 31 and that “most negotiators want a deal.”

But negotiators were still struggling late Saturday to put together several draft decisions for government ministers to finalize during the second week of talks. Here’s the state of the game in four main areas at the halfway point of the UN climate talks in Glasgow:

Top results from conference

Each Conference of the Parties, or COP, ends with a general statement. It is as much a political declaration as a statement to the effect where countries agree that efforts to combat climate change are increasing.

A flurry of announcements followed the start of COP26 talks in Glasgow on issues including ending deforestation, cutting methane emissionsProviding more funds for green investment and phasing out the use of coal This may be reflected in the final announcement. Even if only a few countries signed each of those deals, others would be encouraged to add their signatures at a later date.

It is also considered important to reaffirm the goal of keeping global warming at or below 1.5 °C (2.7 °F) by the end of the century compared to pre-industrial times. With greenhouse gas emissions continuing to rise, host Britain has said it wants the Glasgow talks to “keep 1.5°C alive.” One way to achieve this would be to encourage affluent polluters to update their emissions-reduction targets every one or two years instead of every five years specifically required by the Paris Agreement.

Money matters to combat climate change

Rich countries pledged to raise $100 billion every year by 2020 to help poor countries combat climate change. he missed the target, much to the desperation of developing countries.

This issue requires a clear commitment to increase financial aid from 2025 to restore goodwill and trust between rich and poor countries. Addressing the thorny question of who will pay for the losses and damages caused to nations as a result of global warming. Observers say accountability is equally important, but consent can be elusive.

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“It’s about finance, finance, finance, finance,” Fabius said.

Carbon Trading: A Tricky Nut to Crack

Many negotiators and observers at climate conferences roll their eyes when they hear the word “Article 6”.

Sections related to regulations on carbon markets The Paris climate agreement has turned out to be one of the hardest parts to finalize. Six years after that deal was sealed, countries are moving forward and there is even talk of a breakthrough on the issue that so many frustrated negotiators in Madrid two years ago.

Observers say Brazil and India may be ready to give up demands to count their old – but others call useless – carbon credits accumulated under previous agreements. It could cost rich countries a portion of the proceeds from carbon market transactions to help poor countries adapt to climate change. This has so far been a red line for the United States and the European Union.

An agreement on Article 6 is considered important because many countries and companies aim to reduce their emissions to “net zero” by 2050. This requires balancing any remaining pollutants with an equal amount of carbon that they can reliably capture elsewhere, such as through forests or by technological means.

Transparency and strictness in national emission-reduction targets

The Paris Agreement lets governments set their own emissions-cutting targets, and many of them are in the distant future.

Verifying that countries are doing what they are committed to, and that their goals are supported by realistic measures, is difficult. China in particular has pushed for the idea of ​​providing data in formats prescribed by other countries. Meanwhile, Brazil and Russia have resisted demands to elaborate more on the short-term measures being taken to meet their long-term goals.

___ . Follow up on AP’s coverage of the climate talks


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