ENB Vol. 12 No. 738 – Katowice Climate Change Conference – December 2018 – Issue #4

Earth Negotiations Bulletin (ENB)

Volume 12 Number 738 | Wednesday, 5 December 2018
Katowice Highlights
Tuesday, 4 December 2018 | Katowice, Poland
Visit our IISD/ENB Meeting Coverage from Katowice, Poland at: http://enb.iisd.org/climate/cop24/enb/
Throughout the day, informal consultations and a contact group took place. The Global Climate Action High-level Event, and a SBSTA special event on the IPCC Special Report on 1.5°C convened.

Global Climate Action High-level Event – Embracing Inclusive Multilateralism

COP 24 President Kurtyka presided.

Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, Poland, underlined the need to achieve ambitious goals, which he said requires social acceptance.

UN Secretary-General António Guterres outlined how a new, networked multilateralism can link a wide range of actors across scales.

Recalling her time in space, Mae Jemison, 100 Year Starship, shared her “cautious optimism” derived from new technologies and “the wisdom of our grandmothers.”

Bertrand Piccard, Solar Impulse, moderated the dialogues.

Dialogue 1: Long-term Strategies for a Resilient and Climate Neutral World: First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, Scotland, highlighted the moral obligation to lead and the economic benefits of early adoption.

Mahendra Singhi, Dalmia Cement, cited the many benefits of adopting sustainable practices, from attracting top talent to brand recognition.

Dialogue 2: Finance as a Driver for Climate Action: Ralph Hamers, ING Group, focused on banks’ “indirect footprint,” announcing the “Katowice commitment” made by five banks to earmark €2.4 trillion to help their customers invest in cleaner technologies.

Hindou Oumarou Ibrahim, Indigenous Peoples, underlined the need to remove barriers to access finance, stressing that “we don’t have the time to wait for finance to flow.”

In closing, Inia Seruiratu, High-level Champion, Fiji, underscored the need for urgent action, citing the IPCC Special Report on 1.5°C. Tomasz Chruszczow, High-level Champion, Poland, noted that the Paris Agreement elevated non-party actors’ role, and called for inclusive solutions.

Several parties relayed their national efforts to catalyze mitigation and adaptation actions.

SBSTA Special Event: Unpacking the New Scientific Knowledge and Key Findings in the IPCC Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C

SBSTA Chair Watkinson moderated.

UNFCCC Executive Secretary Patricia Espinosa highlighted the report’s importance to: add substance and urgency to the adoption of the PAWP; lay the ground for completing the Talanoa Dialogue; and reinforce that governments alone cannot solve this global challenge.

Hoesung Lee, IPCC Chair, presented the report’s key messages:

  • climate change is already affecting people, livelihoods, and ecosystems worldwide;
  • limiting warming to 1.5°C is not impossible but would require unprecedented transitions in all sectors of society;
  • there are clear benefits to keeping warming to 1.5°C rather than 2°C or higher; and
  • limiting warming to 1.5°C can have co-benefits for achieving other global goals.

On understanding global warming of 1.5°C, Panmao Zhai, IPCC Working Group I (WG I) Co-Chair, said we need to reach zero CO2 emissions, and reduce non-CO2 forcing agents.

Valérie Masson-Delmotte, IPCC WG I Co-Chair, presented on spatial changes in precipitation and mean temperature, and on regional climate change hot spots.

On projected climate change, potential impacts, and associated risks, Hans-Otto Pörtner, IPCC WG II Co-Chair, reported considerable differences between the impacts of 1.5°C and 2°C of warming.

On emission pathways and system transitions consistent with 1.5°C global warming, Jim Skea, WG III Chair, reported that rapid, far reaching, and unprecedented changes are required in all systems, and that current NDCs are insufficient.

On strengthening the global response in the context of sustainable development and efforts to eradicate poverty, Debra Roberts, WG II Chair, highlighted enabling conditions, including strengthened multi-level and international governance, and realignment of investments to low-emission and climate-resilient infrastructure.

Closing the meeting, Chair Lee reminded delegates and scientists that they have “every opportunity” to contribute to enriching the IPCC’s Sixth Assessment Report.


Common Time Frames: Co-Facilitator Marianne Karlsen (Norway) and George Wamukoya (Kenya) invited views on the presiding officers’ addendum. Parties welcomed the addendum overall.

They expressed different preferences regarding common time frames, including five, ten, five or ten, and “five plus five.” Some expressed flexibility in this regard. Many groups and parties supported removing an option referring to “nationally-determined” common time frames.

On the timing of communications or updates of NDCs, for the next round of submissions, one developing country group proposed text that builds on the first round of submissions in 2015 and on text from the Paris decision (1/CP.21) relating to communicating or updating NDCs. Stressing the need to synchronize time frames, another developing country supported this proposal in principle and suggested it could be understood as applying to the target year of countries’ NDCs only. Co-Facilitator Karlsen encouraged parties to consult informally to draft language around this proposal.

A number of groups and parties suggested removing a paragraph referring to the outcomes of the global stocktake. Many groups and parties also suggested removing references to the content or scope of NDCs.

Parties’ views differed on whether or not to finalize discussions in Katowice, with some suggesting providing guidance to the next round of NDCs only and mandating the SBI to consider communications from 2031 onwards.

The Co-Facilitators will prepare a first iteration of the text for the next informal consultations.

Registry Referred to in Agreement 4.12 (NDCs): Co-Facilitator Peter Wittoeck (Belgium) invited parties to share views on the presiding officers’ addendum. Parties diverged on whether or not to include as an option in the draft decision text the removal of the search function from the registry.

One developing country group suggested adding text referring to two placement options for the draft decision text: as an individual CMA decision or as a section of an omnibus CMA decision on the Katowice outcome. She also suggested “running a prototype registry,” noting that once parties see how this prototype functions, they could propose its adoption by CMA 2. Informal consultations will continue.

Registry Referred to in Agreement Article 7.12 (Adaptation Communications): Co-Facilitator Emily Masawa (the Gambia) invited parties to focus on the options contained in the addendum’s draft decision text. Parties diverged on whether to have one or two registries. One developing country group requested holding a joint meeting at SBI 49 with the NDC registry item. Many other groups and countries opposed, stating that the joint meeting held at the Bangkok session was a “one-time agreement.”

Some groups and countries raised concerns that their preferred options in the Bangkok outcome were not reflected in the addendum, including a registry for adaptation communication with hyperlinks to where these can be found and a single registry with two parts.

Parties agreed to mandate the Co-Facilitators to first bring back the addendum text that parties had indicated as “missing,” with this text then being considered in the next informal consultations.

WIM: In informal consultations, co-facilitated by Lisa Gittos (Australia) and Lucas di Pietro (Argentina), parties shared views on the content of a decision. Views diverged on whether and to what extent to include specific recommendations of the ExCom in the decision text. Two developing country groups supported specifically referring to a number of recommendations and including others in an annex, while several developed countries preferred to not refer to any specific recommendation in the decision text. Discussions will continue in informal informals.

Matters Relating to Climate Finance: Identification of information to be provided in accordance with Agreement Article 9.5 (ex ante finance transparency): Seyni Nafo (Mali) and Outi Honkatukia (Finland) co-facilitated. Parties shared views on the presiding officers’ addendum, identifying missing elements and suggesting opportunities to streamline. Parties disagreed on language referring to which parties should provide information. A developing country group, supported by others, argued that Article 9.5 refers only to information provided by developed countries. Several developed countries argued that the language in Article 9.5 encourages “other parties” to provide resources and information.

Parties strongly disagreed on options referring to the adequacy, or review, or outcomes of the modalities, of the information provided. Several parties stated that they do not have a mandate to discuss options other than their preferred option, and subsequently agreed to elevate the issue to the heads of delegation level. The Co-Facilitators will relay this request to the SBI Chair and will reflect parties’ views in the next iteration of the text.

Matters relating to Capacity Building: Jeniffer Collado (Dominican Republic) and Makoto Kato (Japan) co-facilitated informal consultations. Rita Mishaan, PCCB Co-Chair, introduced the annual technical progress report of the PCCB and intersessional work conducted, noting the report shows significant progress made.

A developing country group expressed hope for draft decision text on reviewing the effectiveness of the PCCB, lamenting, with other developing countries, its lack of resources. One developing country stressed the need for “clear” and additional resources. A developed country group and party noted good progress made by the PCCB in a short time.

Countries shared views on the next steps for defining, at COP 24, a process for initiating the review of the PCCB, including a possible invitation for submissions and request for a synthesis report. The Co-Facilitators will prepare draft text on both issues. Informal informals will convene to review the text.

Gender: Informal consultations were co-facilitated by Penda Kante Thiam (Senegal) and Colin O’Hehir (Ireland). The Secretariat presented on activities undertaken in 2018, highlighting a technical paper and capacity building activities with the Adaptation Committee and the PCCB, and noted upcoming capacity building activities with the CTCN, WIM ExCom, CDM Executive Board, SCF, and LEG. Parties discussed modalities for conducting the review of the Lima Work Programme and the Gender Action Plan. The Co-Facilitators will prepare draft conclusions for parties to consider on Thursday, 6 December.


Local Communities and Indigenous Peoples Platform: Annela Anger-Kraavi (Estonia) and Majid Shafiepour (Iran) co-facilitated informal consultations, which focused on the operational paragraphs in the draft decision text. On representation in the Facilitative Working Group of the Platform, parties agreed to have seven party representatives, including one from each UN regional group, SIDS, and LDCs, and seven from indigenous peoples’ organizations, one each from the seven UN indigenous sociocultural regions. They agreed that the COP, at a future session, will consider adding at least three additional representatives to represent local communities, as well as a process for agreeing to such representatives. Informal consultations will continue.

Modalities for the Accounting of Financial Resources Provided and Mobilized through Public Interventions (Agreement Article 9.7): Informal consultations, focused on the presiding officers’ addendum, were co-facilitated by Delphine Eyraud (France) and Seyni Nafo (Mali). Parties disagreed about inclusion of language on “climate specific” and “new and additional” financial resources, with a developing country group expressing discomfort with any “dilution” of these aspects. Several parties and groups proposed focusing on elements that can be resolved at the technical level, particularly underlying assumptions, definitions, and methodologies.

Agreement Article 6 (Cooperative Approaches): The contact group was co-chaired by Kelley Kizzier (Ireland) and Muslim Anshari Rahman (Singapore).

COSTA RICA read out a joint submission by Colombia, for AILAC, Australia, Canada, the EU, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, and Switzerland on the need for corresponding adjustments in connection with transfers of mitigation outcomes and emission reductions under Article 6. Switzerland, for the EIG, described this as “a good starting point” and informed that the Republic of Korea joined the submission. JAPAN stressed that the joint submission stems from parties representing different views. The EU stressed the need to make tough decisions, including being specific on environmental integrity.

Saudi Arabia, for the LMDCs, suggested avoiding too much technical complexity. PANAMA and BELIZE, with Senegal, for the AFRICAN GROUP, stressed the need to respect the diversity among NDCs. BRAZIL opposed linking Article 6 to Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD+), while PANAMA and BELIZE supported such a link.

St. Lucia, for AOSIS, proposed prioritizing: operationalizing the accounting structure; establishing environmental integrity safeguards; sustainable development provisions; and, with Egypt, for the ARAB GROUP, allocating a share of proceeds to adaptation. Tuvalu, for the LDCs, called for an Article 6.2 (Internationally Transferred Mitigation Outcomes, ITMOs) oversight body to allow for up-front reporting.

The Co-Chairs will draft decision text based on parties’ discussions and submissions.


Report of the Adaptation Committee: Matters referred to in paragraphs 41, 42, and 45 of the Paris outcome: Informal consultations were co-facilitated by Malcolm Ridout (UK). On ways to enhance the coherence of the work of adaptation-related institutional arrangements, discussions centered on: encouraging or requesting institutional arrangements to strive for a balance between adaptation and mitigation, with developing countries cautioning against backsliding; requesting the CGE and LEG to work together on training for assessing vulnerability and other aspects of adaptation; and on who should be encouraged to provide resources for the work of adaptation-related institutions, with some developed country parties supporting a broad formulation. Delegates also discussed methodologies on reviewing the adequacy and effectiveness of adaptation and support. Informal informal consultations will convene.

Response Measures: In informal consultations, co-facilitated by Andrei Marcu (Belize) and Keith Anderson (Switzerland), delegates accepted the presiding officers’ addendum as a basis for further discussions on modalities, work programme, and functions under the Paris Agreement of the forum on the impact of the implementation of response measures.

Several developed countries urged to remove the section on principles, while two developing country groups preferred retaining it. Views also diverged on, inter alia,whether: the areas of work should include elements other than just transition and economic diversification; intersessional workshops are needed; and to establish a permanent executive committee. Informal consultations continued in the afternoon.

TEC/CTCN Report: Stella Gama (Malawi) and Ulrika Raab (Sweden) co-facilitated the informal consultations, and presented parties with draft decision text based on Monday’s discussions.

On enhancing climate technology development and transfer through the Technology Mechanism, some developing countries called for reflecting the gaps in the work of the TEC and CTCN, with one party raising concerns about the lack of clarity on how TEC actions facilitate actions by the CTCN.

Countries expressed the need for a COP decision to account for the limitations observed in the work of the TEC and CTCN in 2018 with a view towards making improvements in this regard. One party called for a priority-based work plan and employing long-term strategies. On climate technology action, several noted the need for a balance between adaptation and mitigation technologies. Co-Facilitators will revise the draft.


Mitigation section of NDCs: Co-Facilitator Federica Fricano (Italy) and Sin Liang Cheah (Singapore) invited countries’ reactions to the presiding officers’ addenda.

On features, a number of groups and countries supported limited text, with many stating that features are already defined in relevant provisions of the Paris Agreement. One group suggested agreeing on a few specific features at COP 24 and, with one country supporting and another opposing, mandating future sessions to develop guidance for the second round of NDCs.

On information to facilitate clarity, transparency and understanding (ICTU), parties diverged on the legal bindingness of the Paris decision paragraph 27 (ICTU) and the level of detail needed for guidance for ICTU. Parties also, inter alia: suggested removing a section on objectives; and expressed support for capacity building in developing countries for ICTU.

On accounting, many parties agreed on the importance of providing guidance and shared views on flexibility for developing countries, methodological consistency, avoidance of double counting, environmental integrity, and references to the ICAO and IMO.

Co-Facilitator Fricano encouraged countries to coordinate on specific parts of text, including capacity building, methodological consistency, and double counting. Informal informals will convene.

Adaptation Communication: Informal consultations were co-facilitated by Beth Lavender (Canada) and Julio Cordano (Chile). Delegates discussed a developing country group’s proposal to “take stock of, and if necessary revise” the guidance annexed to the presiding officers’ addendum on adaptation communication at  CMA 8 (2024) taking into account parties’ submissions on their experience using the guidance. On the preamble, views diverged on whether to keep the reference to the NDC-specific guidance contained in the annex, with some developed countries calling for not prejudging discussions held under APA 3 (mitigation section). Views also differed on: specifically mentioning the principle of CBDR-RC; and mentioning specific articles of the Paris Agreement. Informal consultations will continue.

Transparency: Andrew Rakestraw (US) and Xiang Gao (China) co-facilitated. Parties considered the co-facilitators’ proposed organization of work, including the order in which sections will be addressed and the use of informal informal discussions to clarify core concerns, interests, and priorities. They intend to produce a first iteration of draft text by Wednesday. Discussions continued in informal informals.

Global Stocktake (GST): In informal consultations, co-facilitated by Kamal Djemouai (Algeria) and Outi Honkatukia (Finland), delegates accepted the presiding officers’ addendum as a basis for discussion. On equity, some proposed qualitative or quantitative inputs inform how equity considerations are operationalized in the GST. Some developed countries preferred an overarching principle that the GST should be conducted in light of equity, as well as provisions on inputs on equity. By contrast, some developing countries said equity should be included in each element of the GST. Views also diverged, inter alia, on the timeline for the GST. Discussions continued in informal informal consultations.

Implementation and Compliance Committee: In informal consultations, co-facilitated by Janine Felson (Belize) and Christina Voigt (Norway), delegates accepted the presiding officers’ addendum as a basis for further discussions. A developing country group made a textual proposal to streamline the section on initiation, in a way which retains guiding principles while deleting several paragraphs containing a more detailed process. The proposal was widely accepted as a basis for moving forward.

Several parties identified paragraphs containing a more detailed process that they wished to retain, for instance provisions on flexibility in timelines for developing countries. In response, the developing country group clarified that many of these, for example provisions on involvement in the process of the party concerned, are covered by the general principles. Discussions continued in informal informal consultations.

Adaptation Fund: Informal consultations were co-facilitated by María del Pilar Bueno (Argentina) and Pieter Terpstra (the Netherlands). Parties shared views on the type of guidance the CMA should provide to the Adaptation Fund Board (AFB). Some parties favored a clear list of activities, others wished to see a few specific issues addressed, and others did not consider a list of activities necessary. A developing country group proposed three general “clusters” of guidance to the AFB: purpose, governance, and resource mobilization. Three options for changes to the operating modalities and safeguards of the Adaptation Fund were discussed: no change to modalities, consideration of the need to change, or review and consideration of possible changes. Parties did not merge or delete any options. Discussions will continue in informal informal consultations.

Possible Additional Matters: Informal consultations were co-facilitated by APA Co-Chair Jo Tyndall (New Zealand) and Sarah Baashan (Saudi Arabia). Delegates discussed a proposal for preparing guidance on the adjustment of existing NDCs in accordance with Agreement Article 4.11 (common time frames). While parties agreed to “park” this item to give priority to advancing the PAWP, they disagreed on whether and when to address the proposal, with several developed countries emphasizing the need to clarify the process for adjusting NDCs before CMA 3 (2020).

On modalities for communication under Agreement Article 9.5 (ex ante finance transparency), delegates noted a lack of progress at the technical level and agreed on the need to move consultations to heads of delegation level.

On initial guidance to the Financial Mechanism operating entities, parties agreed to confirm that the SCF shall serve the Paris Agreement. Albeit expressing unease with the term “initial,” parties also agreed on the need for the SCF to prepare guidance to the operating entities of the Financial Mechanism, with one party asking when this task would be triggered. Informal consultations will continue.

In the Corridors

On Tuesday, many declared that the time had come to make compromises. But although a constructive spirit pervaded several informal negotiating sessions, in other sessions a more pessimistic mood emerged. Leaving a meeting on cooperative approaches, one delegate noted that his delegation had reached its “flexibility limit.” In ex ante finance discussions, a limited mandate from capitals made delegates doubt whether technical negotiations could move discussions forward or if political guidance would be already necessary at this stage. In this sense, some hoped a push in the right direction might come from the heads of delegation meeting on finance that met in the evening.  Another seasoned delegate suggested a tangible signal on finance could unlock further progress in other areas.

Leave a Reply