ENB Vol. 12 No. 747 – Katowice Climate Change Conference – December 2018 – Summary & Analysis

Earth Negotiations Bulletin (ENB)

Volume 12 Number 747 | Tuesday, 18 December 2018
Summary of the Katowice Climate Change Conference
2-15 December 2018 | Katowice, Poland
Languages: EN (HTML/PDF) FR (HTML/PDF) AR (HTML/PDF) JA (HTML/PDF)
Visit our IISD/ENB Meeting Coverage from Katowice, Poland at: http://enb.iisd.org/climate/cop24/enb/
The Katowice Climate Change Conference convened from 2-15 December 2018 in Katowice, Poland. The conference included the three governing bodies of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), the Kyoto Protocol, and the Paris Agreement, and the three subsidiary bodies. The Katowice Climate Change Conference brought together over 22,000 participants, including nearly 14,000 government officials, over 7,000 representatives from UN bodies and agencies, intergovernmental organizations, and civil society organizations, and 1,500 members of the media.

Tasked with delivering a “rule book” for the Paris Agreement, and amid calls for greater ambition to address the climate crisis, the Katowice Climate Change Conference largely delivered, by producing a package that facilitate countries’ efforts to implement the Paris Agreement.

This meeting focused on completing work on the Paris Agreement Work Programme (PAWP), a set of decisions meant to operationalize the Paris Agreement. To this end, parties adopted the Katowice Climate Package, which includes decisions on nearly all of the issues mandated as part of the PAWP, including:

  • on mitigation: further guidance in relation to nationally determined contributions (NDCs), common time frames, and modalities, work programme, and functions under the Paris Agreement of the forum on the impact of the implementation of response measures;
  • on adaptation: further guidance on adaptation communication;
  • on finance: identification of the information to be provided by parties in accordance with Agreement Article 9.5 (ex ante finance transparency), matters relating to the Adaptation Fund, and setting a new collective quantified goal on finance;
  • on technology: scope of and modalities for the periodic assessment of the Technology Mechanism, and the technology framework
  • the modalities, procedures, and guidelines for the transparency framework for action and support;
  • the global stocktake; and
  • modalities and procedures for the effective operation of the committee to facilitate implementation and promote compliance.

A Brief History of the UNFCCC, the Kyoto Protocol, and the Paris Agreement

The international political response to climate change began with the 1992 adoption of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), which sets out the basic legal framework and principles for international climate change cooperation with the aim of stabilizing atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases (GHGs) to avoid “dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system.” The Convention, which entered into force on 21 March 1994, has 197 parties.

In order to boost the effectiveness of the UNFCCC, the Kyoto Protocol was adopted in December 1997. It commits industrialized countries, and countries in transition to a market economy, to achieve quantified emissions reduction targets for a basket of six GHGs. The Kyoto Protocol entered into force on 16 February 2005 and has 192 parties. Its first commitment period took place from 2008 to 2012. The 2012 Doha Amendment established the second commitment period from 2013 to 2020. It will enter into force after reaching 144 ratifications. As of December 2018, 121 parties have ratified the Doha Amendment.

In December 2015, parties adopted the Paris Agreement. Under the terms of the Agreement, all countries will submit NDCs, and aggregate progress on mitigation, adaptation, and means of implementation will be reviewed every five years through a global stocktake. The Paris Agreement entered into force on 4 November 2016 and, as of December 2018, 184 parties had ratified the Agreement.

Recent Turning Points

Durban Mandate: The negotiating mandate for the Paris Agreement was adopted at the UN Climate Change Conference in Durban, South Africa, in 2011. Parties agreed to launch the Ad Hoc Working Group on the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action (ADP) with a mandate “to develop a protocol, another legal instrument or an agreed outcome with legal force under the Convention applicable to all Parties” no later than 2015, to enter into force in 2020. In addition, the ADP was mandated to explore actions to close the pre-2020 ambition gap in relation to the 2°C target.

Lima: The 2014 UN Climate Change Conference in Lima, Peru, adopted the “Lima Call for Climate Action,” which furthered progress on the negotiations towards the Paris Agreement. It elaborated the elements of a draft negotiating text and the process for submitting and synthesizing intended nationally determined contributions (INDCs), while also addressing pre-2020 ambition.

Paris: The 2015 UN Climate Change Conference convened in Paris, France, and culminated in the adoption of the Paris Agreement on 12 December. The Agreement includes the goal of limiting global average temperature increase to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels, and pursuing efforts to limit it to 1.5°C. It also aims to increase parties’ ability to adapt to the adverse impacts of climate change and make financial flows consistent with a pathway towards low-GHG emissions and climate resilient development. The Agreement will be implemented to reflect equity and the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities, in light of different national circumstances.

Under the Paris Agreement, each party shall communicate, at five-year intervals, successively more ambitious NDCs. By 2020, parties whose NDCs contain a time frame up to 2025 are requested to communicate a new NDC and parties with an NDC time frame up to 2030 are requested to communicate or update these contributions.

Key features of the Paris Agreement include a transparency framework and a process known as the global stocktake. Beginning in 2023, parties will convene this process at five-year intervals to review collective progress on mitigation, adaptation, and means of implementation. The Agreement also includes provisions on adaptation, finance, technology, loss and damage, and compliance.

When adopting the Paris Agreement, parties launched the Paris Agreement Work Programme (PAWP) to develop the Agreement’s operational details, including through the Ad hoc Working Group for the Paris Agreement (APA), Subsidiary Body for Implementation (SBI), and the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA). They agreed to convene in 2018 a facilitative dialogue to take stock of collective progress towards the Paris Agreement’s long-term goals. This process is now known as the Talanoa Dialogue.

In Paris, parties also agreed on the need to mobilize stronger and more ambitious climate action by all parties and non-party stakeholders to achieve the Paris Agreement’s goals. Building on the Lima-Paris Action Agenda, several non-party stakeholders made unilateral mitigation pledges in Paris, totaling more than 10,000 registered actions. Attention to actions by non-party stakeholders continued through the Marrakech Partnership for Global Climate Action, launched in 2016.

Marrakech: The UN Climate Change Conference in Marrakech took place from 7-18 November 2016, and included the first Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Paris Agreement (CMA 1). Parties adopted several decisions related to the PAWP, including: that the work should conclude by 2018; the terms of reference for the Paris Committee on Capacity-building; and initiating a process to identify the information to be provided in accordance with Agreement Article 9.5 (ex ante biennial finance communications by developed countries). Other decisions adopted included approving the five-year workplan of the Warsaw International Mechanism for Loss and Damage (WIM), enhancing the Technology Mechanism, and continuing and enhancing the Lima work programme on gender.

Fiji/Bonn: The Fiji/Bonn Climate Change Conference convened from 6-17 November 2017 in Bonn, Germany, under the Presidency of Fiji. The Conference of the Parties (COP) launched the Talanoa Dialogue and established the “Fiji Momentum for Implementation,” a decision that gives prominence to pre-2020 implementation and ambition. The COP also provided guidance on the completion of the PAWP and decided that the Adaptation Fund shall serve the Paris Agreement, subject to decisions to be taken by the next meeting of the CMA. Parties also further developed, or gave guidance to, the Local Communities and Indigenous Peoples Platform, the Executive Committee of the WIM, the Standing Committee on Finance, and the Adaptation Fund.

Intersessional work in 2018: The subsidiary bodies met in June and September 2018. At the close of the second meeting in Bangkok, progress was captured in a 307-page compilation and many characterized this progress as “uneven and insufficient.” A unique feature of the intersessional meetings was the Talanoa Dialogue. In a process designed around the questions “Where are we?” “Where do we want to go?” and “How do we get there?” parties and stakeholders shared stories that informed a synthesis report presented at the Katowice Climate Change Conference.

Report of the Meetings

During the formal opening of the Katowice Climate Change Conference on Monday, 3 December 2018, COP 23 President Frank Bainimarama (Fiji) underscored that when it comes to climate change “we are all in the same canoe.” He presented COP 24 President Micha? Kurtyka (Poland), with the gavel, remarking that it “represents all parties’ efforts over the years to bring us to this point.”

Saying the world faces “yet another historic test” at COP 24, Polish President Andrzej Duda highlighted that Poland’s GHG emissions have declined by 30% below 1988 levels while its economy has grown, stressing the contribution of efficient coal technologies.

Stating that “we are in deep trouble with climate change,” UN Secretary-General António Guterres shared four messages:

  • science demands a significantly more ambitious response to the challenge of climate change;
  • the Paris Agreement provides the framework for the needed transformative action and must be operationalized in Katowice;
  • there is a collective responsibility to invest in averting “global climate chaos”; and
  • climate action offers a compelling path to transformation, but political will and more far-sighted leadership are required.

Reminding delegates that the world is watching, María Fernanda Espinosa Garcés, President of the UN General Assembly, acknowledged that negotiations would be difficult, but urged parties to see COP 24 as an opportunity to demonstrate the effectiveness of multilateralism at a time when its legitimacy is challenged.

Henryk Kowalczyk, Minister of Environment, Poland, highlighted the expectation for COP 24 to deliver the package needed to bring the Paris Agreement to life.

Explaining that the story of the region surrounding Katowice is “a story of transition,” COP 24 President Kurtyka said the path to a “deep but just transition” requires: vision, hope, and confidence that “we will get there”; reassurance to people that they will not be left behind; and transparent, implementable rules and a system of support.

Kristalina Georgieva, Chief Executive Officer, World Bank, announced the Bank’s intent to double its support for climate finance, pledging USD 200 billion for climate action, including USD 50 billion for adaptation and resilience. She said the World Bank will use a “climate lens” in all its work, apply a shadow carbon price in its economic valuations, and work to integrate low-carbon growth into policy planning.

Marcin Krupa, Mayor of Katowice, highlighted the city’s motto of “black to green,” underscoring that COP 24 is an opportunity for Katowice to share its experiences of transitioning from a coal-mining town to a modern metropolis.

Presenting the Solidarity and Just Transition Silesia Declaration, President Duda stressed the importance of bringing together the broadest possible coalition of stakeholders and delivering win-win solutions and gradual change acceptable to all. He said the declaration complements the Paris Agreement by adding an important social aspect.

Sir David Attenborough, BBC, delivered the “People’s Seat” address, noting that he represented the voice of the people and sought to deliver their collective thoughts, concerns, ideas, and suggestions directly to decision makers. Underscoring that “the message is clear,” he called on leaders to act now to ensure the continuation of human civilization and the preservation of the natural world.

On Sunday, 2 December, parties’ opening statements were heard in a joint plenary of the Conference of the Parties (COP), Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (CMP), and Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Paris Agreement (CMA), the Ad Hoc Working Group for the Paris Agreement (APA), Subsidiary Body for Implementation (SBI), and the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA).

Egypt, for the Group of 77 and China (G-77/China), stressed the need for balance between action and support, and urged reasonable comparability across issues, “leaving no issue behind.” He noted that finance could “unlock” other issues, and called for upholding common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities (CBDR-RC) in the outcome.

The European Union (EU) underscored that the outcome from Katowice must be in line with the spirit and letter of the Paris Agreement, taking into account national capacities and circumstances and ensuring the highest possible ambition over time. On the Talanoa Dialogue, he urged parties to reflect on levels of ambition in the light of the latest climate science.

Republic of Korea, for the Environmental Integrity Group (EIG), called for living up to the promises made in Paris and stressed that delaying work beyond COP 24 is not an option. He also drew attention to the Talanoa Dialogue, urging parties to look for opportunities to close the ambition gap.

Australia, for the Umbrella Group, said the group would work as hard and constructively as possible to conclude comprehensive and robust guidance for the Paris Agreement.

Describing the Paris Agreement as an enhanced regime guided by equity and common but differentiated responsibilities (CBDR), Gabon, for the African Group, outlined as core elements of the outcome, inter alia, finance, including the full operationalization of Paris Agreement Article 9.5 (ex ante finance transparency). He welcomed the presiding officers’ addenda, which were published intersessionally and provided textual proposals, but said the group would be making submissions on elements that were left out.

Saudi Arabia, for the Arab Group, emphasized the need to: preserve the balance between issues laid out in the Paris Agreement; achieve a consistent package reflecting parties’ textual submissions; and bear in mind national circumstances.

Maldives, for the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS), pointed to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Special Report on the impacts of global warming of 1.5°C, underscoring the urgency of restoring a spirit of multilateral cooperation that is not impeded by narrow national interests. He called for, inter alia, a COP decision on the Talanoa Dialogue outcome.

Ethiopia, for the Least Developed Countries (LDCs), emphasized the need for improved predictability of financial flows through addressing ex ante information, and highlighted loss and damage as a critical component of the global response to climate change.

Underscoring equity as a core principle, Iran, for the Like-Minded Developing Countries (LMDCs), called for: a balanced treatment of all items leading to a singular omnibus decision and constructive engagement by developed countries on matters of finance and technology transfer.

Highlighting the vulnerability of her region, Colombia, for the Independent Alliance of Latin America and the Caribbean (AILAC), stressed that effective implementation of the Paris Agreement requires consideration of countries’ special circumstances. She urged achievement of tangible results from mandated events, especially the Talanoa Dialogue.

India, for Brazil, South Africa, India, and China, underscored that the PAWP should support enhanced ambition without “back-sliding” on rules. He emphasized that public finance is “at the heart” of climate action in developing countries.

Argentina, for Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay, called for ambition and a balance between mitigation, adaptation, and means of implementation. She highlighted the need to avoid distractions to agreement on the PAWP.

Venezuela, for the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of our America (ALBA), said the Paris Agreement and its implementation should be governed by the principles and objectives of the Convention, urging not to reframe CBDR-RC. She expressed concern on lack of progress towards achieving the 2020 finance goal.

Business and Industry NGOs (BINGOs) said delivering the “Paris rulebook” will send a strong global signal on continued political will and that all markets should be enlisted to support the Paris Agreement.

Climate Action Network (CAN) said the IPCC report on 1.5°C is “a siren alerting humanity to the climate crisis” and called on parties to commit to strengthening their NDCs by 2020 to be compatible with a 1.5°C emissions pathway, and to deliver on climate finance.

Indigenous peoples lamented that GHG emissions increased in 2017, and called for further operationalizing the Local Communities and Indigenous Peoples (LCIP) Platform.

Underscoring their historic responsibility, Climate Justice Now! urged developed countries to step up climate finance.

Local Governments and Municipal Authorities pointed to the engagement of cities and regions in raising the ambition of climate action.

Research and Independent NGOs offered expertise to parties, calling for an evidence-based process that welcomes different perspectives.

Trade unions underscored the challenge “to make a living” in a zero-emission economy and called on parties to adopt the “Solidarity and Just Transition Silesia Declaration.”

Women and Gender cautioned against viewing climate finance obligations as investment opportunities and reminded of the need to address the financing of loss and damage.

Youth NGOs called for incorporating grassroots input into adaptation and agriculture-related policy implementation, and respect for human rights in all processes.

Much of the Katowice Climate Change Conference was devoted to completing the PAWP. The agenda items related to the PAWP are summarized below, culminating with the Katowice Climate Package, organized by the agendas of the APA, SBI, SBSTA, COP, CMP, and CMA. For non-PAWP items, the discussions by the six bodies are summarized according to their agendas.

Paris Agreement Work Programme

The Paris outcome (decision 1/CP.21) mandates the APA, SBI, and SBSTA to consider several issues necessary to operationalize the Paris Agreement. The APA, SBI, and SBSTA met during the first week and submitted their draft texts to the COP for further discussion in the second week. On 15 December, the COP adopted the decisions, and forwarded them to the CMP and CMA, as appropriate. Decisions were taken by the COP, CMP, and CMA.

Conference of the Parties

The COP began work on preparations for the Implementation of the Paris Agreement and CMA 1 on Saturday, 8 December, when it received the latest iterations of the various texts from the three subsidiary bodies, as described above. Discussions took place in presidency consultations for issues related to the work of the PAWP and for the decision adopting the Katowice Climate Package.

On the Talanoa Dialogue and the IPCC Special Report on 1.5°C, co-facilitated by Isabella Lövin, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for International Development Cooperation and Climate, Sweden, and Carlos Manuel Rodriguez, Minister of Environment and Energy, Costa Rica, the consultations focused on: how the outcome of the Talanoa Dialogue should be captured; what type of indications should be given to parties for preparing their NDCs; and how the IPCC’s Special Report on 1.5°C should be recognized. In consultations, many parties emphasized the need to state the importance of science and the work of the IPCC authors, and to raise ambition.

Other consultations are summarized under their respective agenda items.

After the co-facilitating ministers reported on their progress on Thursday, 13 December, COP 24 Presidency Kurtyka announced that negotiations would take place in a “Sejmik,” a meeting of ministers with a few delegates for support, similar to a Vienna setting. Negotiations continued in bilateral and informal informal negotiations. On Saturday, 15 December, the COP adopted the Katowice Climate Package, and forwarded the decisions to the CMA for adoption.

Final Decision: In its final decision on the Katowice Climate Package (FCCC/CP/2018/L.27), the COP, inter alia, reaffirms that, in the context of NDCs to the global response to climate change, all parties are to undertake and communicate ambitious efforts; and decides to forward 19 decisions for consideration and adoption by CMA 1-3.

On the Third High-level Ministerial Dialogue on Climate Finance, the COP:

  • notes that it highlighted progress in and remaining barriers to translating climate finance needs into action and enhancing developing countries’ access to climate finance;
  • welcomes with appreciation the pledges and announcements to the Green Climate Fund (GCF), Least Developed Countries Fund (LDCF), and Adaptation Fund, which provide further clarity to and predictability on climate finance flows to 2020.

On implementation and ambition, pre- and post-2020, the COP, inter alia:

  • underscores the urgent need for the entry into force of the Doha Amendment to the Kyoto Protocol;
  • reiterates its resolve to enhance the provision of urgent and adequate finance, technology, and capacity-building support by developed country parties to enhance the level of ambition of pre-2020 action, and in this regard strongly urges developed country parties to scale up their level of financial support, with a concrete road map to achieve the goal of jointly mobilizing USD 100 billion annually by 2020 for mitigation and adaptation, while significantly increasing adaptation finance from current levels and to further provide appropriate technology and capacity-building support;
  • further reiterates its request to those parties whose intended NDC contains a time frame up to 2025 to communicate by 2020 a new NDC and to do so every five years thereafter; and
  • reiterates its request to those parties whose intended NDC contains a time frame up to 2030 to communicate or update by 2020 the contribution and to do so every five years thereafter.

On the Special Report of the IPCC, the COP:

  • recognizes the role of the IPCC in providing scientific input to inform parties in strengthening the global response to the threat of climate change in the context of sustainable development and efforts to eradicate poverty;
  • expresses its appreciation and gratitude to the IPCC and the scientific community for responding to the request of the COP and providing the Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C, reflecting the best available science;
  • welcomes the timely completion of the IPCC Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C in response to the invitation from parties in decision 1/CP.21 (the Paris outcome);
  • invites parties to make use of the information contained in the report in their discussions under all relevant agenda items of the subsidiary and governing bodies;
  • requests SBSTA 50 to consider the report with a view to strengthening the scientific knowledge on the 1.5°C goal, including in the context of the preparation of the Sixth Assessment Report of the IPCC and the implementation of the Convention and the Paris Agreement; and
  • encourages parties to continue to support the work of the IPCC.

On the Talanoa Dialogue, the COP, inter alia:

  • takes note of the outcome, inputs, and outputs of the Talanoa Dialogue and their potential to generate greater confidence, courage, and enhanced ambition;
  • invites parties to consider the outcome, inputs and outputs of the Talanoa Dialogue in preparing their NDCs and in their efforts to enhance pre-2020 implementation and ambition.

On the modalities, procedures, and guidelines (MPGs) for the transparency framework (Agreement Article 13), the COP, inter alia:

  • decides that for parties to the Convention that are also parties to the Paris Agreement, the final biennial reports shall be those that are submitted to the Secretariat no later than 31 December 2022, and the final biennial update reports shall be those that are submitted to the Secretariat no later than 31 December 2024;
  • reaffirms that for parties to the Paris Agreement, following the submission of the final biennial reports and biennial update reports, the Paris Agreement transparency framework MPGs will supersede the measurement, reporting, and verification system established by decision 1/CP.16 (Cancun Agreements);
  • also reaffirms the reporting obligations under Articles 4 and 12 of the Convention;
  • decides in this context that, for parties to the Paris Agreement, the biennial transparency reports, technical expert review, and facilitative, multilateral consideration of progress prepared and conducted in accordance with the Paris Agreement transparency framework MPGs shall replace the biennial reports, biennial update reports, international assessment and review, and international consultation and analysis; and
  • decides that, to fulfil national inventory reporting obligations under the Convention, parties to the Paris Agreement submitting annual national inventory reports under the Convention shall use the MPGs for national inventory reports for the Paris Agreement transparency framework; by the date that reports are first due under the Paris Agreement with the technical expert review to be conducted in accordance with the corresponding modalities, procedures, and guidelines for the Paris Agreement transparency, in place of the GHG inventory reporting guidelines and the review guidelines, respectively, including in years in which a biennial transparency report is not due under the Paris Agreement.

The COP further decides that, with respect to the reporting and review of national communications under the Convention every four years, starting from the date that reports are first due under the Paris Agreement:

  • parties may submit their national communication and biennial transparency report as a single report in accordance with the Paris Agreement transparency framework MPGs for information also covered by the national communication reporting guidelines under the Convention;
  • parties shall include in the report supplemental chapters on research and systematic observation and on education, training, and public awareness;
  • for those parties that have not reported under Chapter IV of the annex to transparency framework MPGs (information related to adaptation), an additional chapter on adaptation, in accordance with the relevant guidelines contained in, as applicable, Decisions 4/CP.5 (Buenos Aires Plan of Action) and 17/CP.8 (guidelines for national communications; and
  • for those parties whose national communications are subject to review, the review shall be conducted in accordance with the relevant guidelines contained in Chapter VII of the Paris Agreement transparency framework MPGs.

The COP also:

  • decides that the technical annex containing modalities for measuring, reporting, and verifying the activities referred to in Decision 1/CP.16 (Cancun Agreements), paragraph 70 (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD+)), shall be submitted as an annex to the biennial transparency report; and
  • decides that the technical analysis related to modalities for measuring, reporting, and verifying the activities related to REDD+ shall be carried out concurrently with the technical expert review under transparency framework of the Paris Agreement.

On the Leaders’ Summit, the COP welcomes leaders’ participation and notes the Solidarity and Just Transition Silesia Declaration.

On the UN Climate Summit in 2019, the COP welcomes the initiative and calls on parties to participate and to demonstrate enhanced ambition in addressing climate change.

Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Paris Agreement

On 15 December, the CMA adopted the Katowice Climate Package, a series of decisions under the Paris Agreement Work Programme meant to operationalize the Paris Agreement. There is an overarching decision, and several other decisions clustered along relevant themes.

Final Decision: In its decision (FCCC/PA/CMA/2018/L.4), the CMA:

  • adopts the draft decisions on matters relating to the PAWP forwarded by COP 24 and the SBI;
  • confirms that the Standing Committee on Finance (SCF), the LDCF, and the Special Climate Change Fund (SCCF) shall serve the Paris Agreement;
  • requests the SCF to prepare draft guidance for the entities entrusted with the operation of the Financial Mechanism, and the LDCF and the SCCF, for consideration and adoption by CMA 2;
  • confirms that it shall provide guidance to the entities entrusted with the operation of the Financial Mechanism of the Convention on the policies, programme priorities, and eligibility criteria related to the Paris Agreement for transmission by the COP;
  • recognizes the importance of capacity building under the Agreement in enhancing the capacity and ability of developing countries, in particular countries with the least capacity and those that are particularly vulnerable to the adverse effects of climate change, to take effective climate change action; and
  • decides to consider and adopt at CMA 2 a decision on the initial institutional arrangements for capacity building.

Ad-hoc Working Group on the Paris Agreement

The APA convened from Sunday, 2 December, through Saturday, 8 December, when it adopted the APA conclusions. On 8 December, the APA Co-Chairs, Jo Tyndall (New Zealand) and Sarah Baashan (Saudi Arabia), forwarded their proposed text to the COP, where it was taken up in presidency consultations and at the ministerial level. Unless otherwise mentioned, on 15 December, the COP adopted decisions to be forwarded to the CMA as part of the Katowice Climate Package.

Further Guidance on the Mitigation Section of decision 1/CP.21 (Paris Outcome): Discussions under this item focused on:

  • developing further guidance on features of the NDCs, which each party is required to prepare, communicate, and maintain under Agreement Article 4.2;
  • developing further guidance for the information to be provided by parties in order to facilitate clarity, transparency, and understanding (ICTU) of NDCs; and
  • elaborating guidance for accounting for NDCs.

This item was discussed in informal consultations, co-facilitated by Federica Fricano (Italy) and Sin Liang Cheah (Singapore), which met in six sessions. In addition, parties met in “informal informal” settings throughout the first week. In the informal consultations, parties focused on, first, the presiding officers’ addendum and, later, iterations of the text prepared by the Co-Facilitators, containing preambular text and operational text on features of NDCs, ICTU, and accounting.

In general, views strongly diverged on reflecting differentiation and the need to reflect mitigation as a mandatory requirement in NDCs. Parties generally expressed agreement on text on capacity-building support to developing countries for NDCs.

In the preambular section, many welcomed reference to developing countries’ different starting points, capacities, and national circumstances, and highlighted the importance of capacity-building support. Parties diverged on whether to refer to Agreement Article 3 (NDCs), with some stressing that the scope of guidance under this agenda item is mitigation only and others saying it applies to the “full scope” of NDCs.

On features of NDCs, parties diverged on whether, and when, to continue consideration of further guidance. A number of groups and countries supported a limited text, with many stating that features are already defined in relevant provisions of the Paris Agreement. Some suggested agreeing on a few specific features at COP 24 and mandating future sessions to develop guidance for the second round of NDCs. Countries diverged on whether to continue consideration of further guidance on features of NDCs at CMA 7 (2024), and on a possible future year for a revision of guidance.

On ICTU, parties diverged on the legally binding nature of the Paris outcome (decision 1/CP.21) paragraph 27 (ICTU) and operationalizing differentiation, and on the scope and level of detail needed for guidance for ICTU. On bindingness and differentiation, parties diverged on whether and how to reference Agreement Article 4.4 (developed countries taking the lead and developing countries continuing to enhance efforts). One developing country called for either differentiating between developed and developing countries or inserting “if/as applicable/appropriate” in various parts of the text. Many developed and developing countries suggested including “as applicable/appropriate” in some elements as a way to allow for differentiation or flexibility for developing countries. One developing country group and two developed countries said all countries “shall” provide ICTU “as applicable.”

On ICTU elements, parties exchanged views on, inter alia:

  • quantifiable information;
  • time frames;
  • scope and coverage;
  • methodological approaches;
  • fairness and ambition of an NDC;
  • NDCs’ contribution to the Agreement’s objectives; and
  • information on adaptation, support, and means of implementation.

One developing country further suggested adding how parties’ NDCs demonstrate leadership, noting that Agreement Article 4.4 also specifies that developed countries should continue to take the lead by undertaking economy-wide absolute emission reduction targets.

On the scope of ICTU guidance, one developing country group called for reintroducing language reflecting the full scope of NDCs into the section on ICTU. The group also opposed further consideration, or revision, of guidance on features and ICTU.

On accounting, many parties agreed on the importance of providing guidance in this area. They shared views on, inter alia, flexibility for developing countries, methodological consistency, environmental integrity, and avoidance of double counting. Many called for clarifying text relating to avoidance of double counting, with most suggesting references to corresponding adjustments. One developed country group emphasized focusing on tracking progress of NDCs, accounting for quantified elements of NDCs, and adjusting for internationally transferred mitigation outcomes (ITMOs). Many noted the need for careful definition of mitigation outcomes, with some stressing that these are nationally determined, and others calling for a clear matrix.

Several supported providing guidance that would prohibit double counting, including by not allowing a country to use mitigation outcomes from mechanisms outside of the Paris Agreement context, including the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), also in the Paris Agreement. One developing country called for brackets around text on avoidance of double counting.

On interlinkages with other APA items, some warned that discussing mitigation outcomes in the guidance on NDCs in addition to the modalities of Agreement Article 6.2 (on ITMOs used for NDCs) could open the door for trading mitigation outcomes of any form, which would be inconsistent with environmental integrity.

The text was forwarded to the APA and later to the COP for further consideration.

The COP convened presidency consultations on this issue, in conjunction with other issues related to mitigation, co-facilitated by Ola Elvestuen, Minister of Climate and Environment, Norway, and Masagos Zulkifli, Minister for the Environment and Water Resources, Singapore. Groups and countries shared their views on the third iteration of text, forwarded from the APA, identifying areas for further technical work, with one group suggesting to first discuss issues related to bindingness, timing of applicability, and differentiation, and others suggesting that these should be left to ministers. Parties reiterated positions, requesting further brackets or deletion of paragraphs, and suggested areas for streamlining. Parties found some common ground in paragraphs related to capacity-building support related to NDCs and avoidance of double counting.

On guidance on ICTU, parties continued to diverge on the:

  • level of detail;
  • scope, namely whether to include elements other than mitigation;
  • timing of applicability, namely “by 2020” or with the second and subsequent NDCs; and
  • legal bindingness, namely whether all parties “shall provide” ICTU, with details determined by the NDC type, or developed countries “shall provide” and developing countries “may include” ICTU.

Parties reflected on, inter alia: the level of detail in guidance on fairness and ambition of NDCs; and public participation and engagement and “contextual issues,” such as sustainable development in NDC planning processes.

On accounting, parties made proposals related to:

  • common metrics, including in relation to countries’ accounting using methodologies not covered by the IPCC guidelines;
  • timing of a possible review of the guidance;
  • capturing NDCs that contain targets expressed with policies and measures or strategies; and
  • emissions and removals related to sources, sinks, or activities, with one group suggesting referring to “all land area” and some others proposing adding “pools.”

Many called for further attention to how the substantive linkages with the transparency framework and Agreement Article 6 (cooperative approaches) could be addressed in a way that would reduce redundancies in the different texts.

On 15 December, the COP and the CMA adopted the decision.

Final Decision: In its decision (FCCC/CP/2018/L.22), the CMA:

  • reaffirms and underscores that support shall be provided to developing countries for the implementation of Agreement Article 4 (mitigation), including to continue to enhance the capacity of developing countries in preparing, communicating and accounting for their NDCs, and encourages the relevant operating entities of the Financial Mechanism and constituted bodies under the Convention serving the Agreement to continue to provide, within their mandates, support for such capacity building;
  • recalls that LDCs and SIDS may prepare and communicate strategies, plans, and actions for low-GHG emission development reflecting their special circumstances; and
  • also recalls Agreement Article 4.4, which provides that developed countries should continue taking the lead by undertaking economy-wide absolute emission reduction targets, and that developing countries should continue enhancing their mitigation efforts and are encouraged to move over time towards economy-wide emission reduction or limitation targets in the light of different national circumstances.

On features of NDCs, the CMA:

  • decides that in communicating their second and subsequent NDCs, parties shall provide the ICTU contained an annex to the decision as applicable to their NDCs, and strongly encourages parties to provide this information in relation to their first NDC, including when communicating or updating it by 2020;
  • emphasizes that the guidance on ICTU is without prejudice to the inclusion of components other than mitigation in an NDC; and
  • recognizes that each party with an NDC that consists of mitigation co-benefits resulting from its adaptation action and/or economic diversification plans shall provide the information referred to in the ICTU guidance annex as applicable to its NDC and as it relates to such mitigation co-benefits.

On accounting, the CMA:

  • decides that, in accounting for anthropogenic emissions and removals corresponding to their NDCs, parties shall account for their NDCs in accordance with the guidance contained an annex to the decision;
  • recalls decision 1/CP.21, paragraph 32, which provides that parties shall apply the guidance for accounting for NDCs to their second and subsequent NDCs, and that parties may elect to apply such guidance to their first NDC;
  • decides that, in accounting for anthropogenic emissions and removals corresponding to their NDCs, parties shall ensure the avoidance of double counting;
  • recognizes that each party with an NDC that consists of mitigation co-benefits resulting from its adaptation action and/or economic diversification plans shall follow the guidance contained in the accounting annex as it relates to such mitigation co-benefits;
  • decides that parties shall account for their NDCs in their biennial transparency reports, including through a structured summary; and
  • also decides to initiate the review of and, if necessary, update the ICTU of NDCs and the guidance for accounting for parties’ NDCs at CMA 10 (2027) with a view to considering and adopting a decision on the matter at CMA 11 (2028).

On features, the CMA:

  • notes that features of NDCs are outlined in the relevant provisions of the Agreement; and
  • decides to continue consideration of further guidance on features of NDCs at CMA 7 (2024).

The decision contains an annex that outlines the guidance.

Further Guidance in relation to the Adaptation Communication: Agreement Article 7.10 states that each party should, as appropriate, submit and update periodically an adaptation communication, which may include its priorities, implementation and support needs, plans, and actions. Discussions under this item focused on developing guidelines for this adaptation communication. This item was discussed in informal consultations that met six times and were co-facilitated by Beth Lavender (Canada) and Julio Cordano (Chile). Parties also discussed this issue extensively in “informal informal” settings.

Parties discussed a developing country group’s proposal to “take stock of, and if necessary, revise” the guidance on adaptation communication at CMA 8 (2024), taking into account parties’ submissions on their experience with using the guidance. Parties’ discussions centered on whether or how to identify a purpose and principles for the guidance.

On purpose and principles, views differed on mentioning the principle of CBDR-RC, with several developing countries in favor of including the principle in the guidance, while developed countries opposed. Several developed countries opposed a section devoted to principles, instead suggesting that some principles could be mentioned in the preamble of the guidance. As an alternative to defining a purpose for adaptation communication, a developed country proposed “underscoring the importance of an adaptation communication as a vehicle for, inter alia,” the various elements outlined in the addendum to the presiding officers’ joint reflections note that was issued after the Bangkok meeting. Some developed countries welcomed the flexibility this proposal provided, while some developing countries highlighted the need to define a common understanding on the purpose of adaptation communication.

In the second iteration of text, several parties lamented that the section on principles had been removed.

On linkages with other APA items, several noted linkages with the Global Stocktake (GST), the transparency framework, and APA agenda item 3 (further guidance on the mitigation section of the Paris outcome). One developing country group supported keeping a reference to the NDC-specific guidance contained in the annex of the guidance, noting that there is no guidance for adaptation communications that use NDCs as the vehicle, while other vehicles, such as National Adaptation Plans (NAPs), have guidance. Some developed countries calling for not prejudging discussions held under APA agenda item 3.

Many parties cautioned that references to the linkages between the adaptation communication and the GST should be viewed as a placeholder, in order not to prejudge the parallel GST discussions.

On the transparency framework, some countries expressed concern about the second iteration of the text, noting that the transparency framework text removed much of the detail in its section on climate change impacts and adaptation. They called for importing some of those elements into the guidance on adaptation communication.

On support, there was a general sense that parties agreed on the need for support for the preparation of adaptation communication but needed more time to discuss support for implementation. Parties also discussed which parties and entities would provide such support, with one developed country favoring a broad range of actors, including parties and UN organizations, to continue to mobilize funds. The text was forwarded to the APA, and later to the COP for further consideration.

The COP convened presidency consultations on this issue, in conjunction with other issues related to adaptation, co-facilitated by Kimmo Tiilikainen, Minister of the Environment, Energy and Housing, Finland, and Lamin Dibba, Minister of Environment, Climate Change and Natural Resources, The Gambia. On the guidance for adaptation communication, views diverged on, inter alia:

  • language introducing a degree of hierarchy between ex post and forward-looking elements of adaptation communication;
  • whether or not to consider existing guidance for communicating adaptation-related information; and
  • whether and how information communicated as a component of, or in conjunction with, an NDC on adaptation actions and/or economic diversification plans leading to mitigation co-benefits would be subject to review.

On 15 December, the COP and CMA adopted the decision.

Final Decision: In its decision (FCCC/CP/2018/L.21), the CMA, inter alia:

  • notes that the purpose of the adaptation communication is to: increase the visibility and profile of adaptation and its balance with mitigation; strengthen adaptation action and support for developing countries; provide input to the GST; and enhance learning and understanding of adaptation needs and actions;
  • decides that the adaptation communication: is country-driven and flexible, including in the choice of communication or document; shall not pose any additional burden on developing country parties; is not a basis for comparisons between parties; and is not subject to a review;
  • decides that parties may, as appropriate, also submit and update their adaptation communication as a component of or in conjunction with the reports on impacts and adaptation as stipulated in Agreement Article 13, paragraph 8 (provide information related to impacts and adaptation); and
  • invites parties that choose to submit an adaptation communication to do so in time to inform each GST.
  • invites parties, according to their national circumstances and capacities, to provide in their adaptation communication information on the elements referred to in subparagraphs (a) to (d) of the annex (national circumstances, institutional arrangements and legal frameworks; impacts, risks and vulnerabilities, as appropriate; national adaptation priorities, strategies, policies, plans, goals and actions; implementation and support needs of, and provision of support to, developing countries); and to provide, as appropriate, additional information on the elements referred to in subparagraphs (e) to (i) of the annex (implementation of adaptation actions and plans; monitoring and evaluation; adaptation actions and/or economic diversification plans; information on how adaptation actions contribute to other international frameworks and/or Conventions; information on gender-responsive adaptation action and information on traditional knowledge, knowledge of indigenous peoples and local knowledge systems related to adaptation, where appropriate; any other information related to adaptation);
  • also invites parties to include, as appropriate, ex ante information in their adaptation communications, based on the elements identified in the annex;
  • requests the Adaptation Committee to develop, with the engagement of IPCC Working Group II, by June 2022, a draft supplementary guidance for voluntary use by parties, for consideration by SB 57 (November 2022);
  • decides to take stock of, and if necessary, revise, the guidance contained in this decision, taking into account the submissions by parties on their experiences with the application of the guidance and a synthesis report of the submissions prepared by the Secretariat, at CMA 8 (2025);
  • invites the Global Environment Facility (GEF), in line with its existing mandate, to consider channeling support to developing countries for the preparation and submission of their adaptation communications; and
  • encourages the GCF, GEF, Adaptation Fund, Climate Technology Centre and Network (CTCN), and Paris Committee on Capacity-building (PCCB), in line with their existing mandates and governing instruments, to continue channeling support to developing countries for the implementation of their adaptation plans and actions in accordance with the priorities and needs outlined in their adaptation communication.

The annex to the decision contains elements of an adaptation communication.

Modalities, Procedures, and Guidelines for the Transparency Framework for Action and Support: Work under this item focused on developing common modalities, procedures, and guidelines (MPGs) for the transparency framework established in Agreement Article 13. This item was taken up in informal consultations, co-facilitated by Andrew Rakestraw (US) and Xiang Gao (China), which met six times. In informal consultations, 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.

Reporting back from informal informal discussions on technical principles, two country groups reported that parties had agreed to a conceptual approach to definitions that would adequately address transparency and completeness across different sections of the presiding officers’ addendum. Another party reported that parties had agreed to work on refining options for the role of the Consultative Group of Experts (CGE) in assisting developing countries’ implementation of the transparency guidelines.

Co-Facilitator Rakestraw presented the first iteration of draft text. He requested parties to identify “landing zones” on as many issues as possible. Many groups expressed concern that their proposals had not been reflected, with two developing country groups lamenting the absence of brackets around “shall” in a section on the information necessary to track progress in implementing and achieving NDCs under Agreement Article 4 (mitigation). Some suggested using in-text brackets consistently to indicate areas of disagreement. Two groups called for reflecting the special circumstances of LDCs and small island developing states (SIDS), with one calling for a “central group review system” for the LDCs. Several groups and parties also identified sections and paragraphs in which they wished to change text or insert brackets, or where they had reservations or objections.

Parties assigned areas for “homework” in informal informal discussions:

  • guidance to the GEF on support for developing countries’ reporting;
  • the CGE;
  • flexibility in different sections of the text;
  • referring to outputs from APA agenda item 3 (mitigation section) discussions on ICTU;
  • loss and damage; and
  • format of the technical expert review.

One group suggested adding Agreement Article 6 (cooperative approaches) to the list. Parties expressed concern throughout informal consultations that time was insufficient to address all these areas and meet the deadlines assigned by the APA Co-Chairs.

Co-Facilitator Rakestraw invited parties’ views on the APA Co-Chairs’ iteration of draft text. Parties accepted the text as the basis for further negotiations, but raised numerous concerns, especially on provisions for flexibility. The text was forwarded to the APA and later to the COP for further consideration.

The COP convened presidency consultations, co-facilitated by Teresa Ribera Rodríguez, Minister for the Ecological Transition, Spain, and Derek Andre Hanekom, Minister of Tourism, South Africa. During the presidency consultations, parties first identified the key issues, particularly flexibility and loss and damage.

On 15 December, the COP and CMA adopted the decision.

Final Decision: In its decision (FCCC/CP/2018/L.23), the COP, inter alia:

  • adopts the MPGs for the transparency framework for action and support contained in the annex;
  • requests SBSTA to undertake the first review and update, as appropriate, the MPGs no later than 2028 on the basis of experience gained in reporting, technical expert review, and facilitative, multilateral consideration of progress, and decides that subsequent reviews and updates will be undertaken when the CMA determines them to be appropriate;
  • decides that parties shall submit their first biennial transparency report and national inventory report, if submitted as a stand-alone report, in accordance with the modalities, procedures, and guidelines at the latest by 31 December 2024;
  • decides that LDCs and SIDS may submit the information referred to in Article 13, paragraphs 7 (inventories, progress toward NDCs), 8 (adaptation), 9 (means of implementation provided), and 10 (means of implementation received) at their discretion;
  • requests the Secretariat, in addition to the actions specified in the MPGs, to: produce synthesis reports on parties’ biennial transparency reports and national inventory reports; produce an annual report on the technical expert review; and publish parties’ biennial transparency reports and national inventory reports, if submitted as a stand-alone report, technical expert reports, and the record of parties’ facilitative, multilateral consideration of progress on the UNFCCC website;
  • urges and requests the GEF, as an operating entity of the financial mechanism, throughout its replenishment cycles to support developing country parties in preparing their first and subsequent biennial transparency reports;
  • urges the GEF and its implementing and executing agencies, and encourages the GEF Council, to consider options for improving the efficiency of the process for providing support for reporting under Article 13, including through better streamlining of the processes related to applications, implementation plans, and signing of grant agreements;
  • requests the GEF to continue to support the operation of the Capacity-building Initiative for Transparency as a priority reporting-related need;
  • requests SBSTA to develop, pursuant to the MPGs for consideration and adopting by CMA 3 (November 2020): common reporting tables for the electronic reporting of the information referred to in Chapter II, and common tabular formats for the electronic reporting of the information referred to in Chapters III, V, and VI of the annex, taking into account the existing common tabular formats and common reporting formats; outlines of the biennial transparency report, national inventory document, and technical expert report, pursuant to the MPGs contained in the annex; and a training programme for technical experts participating in the technical expert review;
  • invites parties to submit their views on the work referred to above via the submission portal by 31 March 2019; and
  • decides that, subject to the extension of its terms by the COP, the CGE shall also serve the Paris Agreement, starting from 1 January 2019, to support the implementation of the enhanced transparency framework, inter alia: facilitating the provision of technical advice and support to developing country parties, as applicable, including for the preparation and submission of their biennial transparency reports and facilitating improved reporting over time; and providing technical advice to the Secretariat on the implementation of the training of the technical expert review teams referred to above.

The annex contains the MPGs for the transparency framework, under the following headings:

  • national inventory report of anthropogenic emissions by sources and removals by sinks of GHGs;
  • methods;
  • metrics;
  • reporting guidance;
  • information necessary to track progress made in implementing and achieving NDCs under Article 4 (mitigation) of the Paris Agreement;
  • information related to climate change impacts and adaptation under Article 7 (adaptation) of the Paris Agreement;
  • information on financial, technology development and transfer, and capacity-building support provided and mobilized under Articles 9 (finance) and 11 (technology) of the Paris Agreement;
  • technical expert review; and
  • facilitative, multilateral consideration of progress.

Matters relating to the global stocktake (GST): Discussions under this item focused on identifying the sources of input for, and developing the modalities of, the GST established by Agreement Article 14. There are two sub-items under this agenda item: identifying the sources of input for the GST and developing modalities for the GST.

Informal consultations were co-facilitated by Kamal Djemouai (Algeria) and Outi Honkatukia (Finland), and parties met extensively in “informal informal” settings. Parties worked through three successive iterations of draft decision text.

On equity, some proposed that 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. A developing country group presented proposals for how equity could be operationalized in information collection, inputs to the technical assessment, and outputs of the technical assessment. A developed country lamented that equity was not a defined concept and opposed inserting it throughout the text.

Views diverged on the timeline for the GST. A developing country group stressed that the overall process should take no more than six months.

Views also diverged on the participation of non-party stakeholders. One developing country group requested removing references to participation of non-party stakeholders “throughout the process,” and, with several other countries, stressed that non-party stakeholders should have a separate forum in which to participate.

On sources of input, a developing country group suggested, inter alia, references to Agreement Articles 9.5 (ex ante finance transparency) and 9.7 (ex post finance transparency). A developed country group noted that these possible sources of input to the GST are under negotiation and suggested higher-level guidance on the GST given ongoing negotiations. The text was forwarded to the APA and later to the COP for further consideration.

The COP convened presidency consultations co-facilitated by David Paul, Minister of Environment and Minister-in-Assistance to the President, Marshall Islands, and Carole Dieschbourg, Minister of Environment, Luxembourg.

Parties exchanged views on: the scope of the GST; incorporating equity considerations; the role of non-party stakeholders; sources of input; and whether loss and damage should be in a separate workstream under the technical dialogue, or if it should be addressed under the adaptation workstream.

Some parties expressed concern that “bridging proposals,” which had been previously communicated to the Co-Facilitators were not reflected in the text, and said this language should be included in the next iteration, highlighting the party-driven nature of the process. Others said the mandate from the Presidency was to work on solutions, rather than reinserting proposals “that are incapable of attracting consensus.”

Some parties expressed concern about the mode of work, stating that the unresolved issues on scope and equity were political rather than technical in nature. Others said that parties should continue to try and resolve these elements prior to ministerial engagement.

On 15 December, the COP and CMA adopted the decision.

Final Decision: In its decision (FCCC/CP/2018/L.16) the CMA, inter alia:

  • decides that equity and the best available science will be considered in a party-driven and cross-cutting manner, throughout the GST;
  • decides that the GST will consist of the following components: information collection and preparation; technical assessment; and consideration of outputs;
  • decides that the GST will be conducted with the assistance of the SBSTA, which will establish a joint contact group on the matter;
  • resolves to engage in a technical dialogue that aims to support the work of the joint contact group through expert consideration of inputs;
  • decides to establish the technical dialogue, which will, inter alia, organize its work in line with taking stock of the implementation of the Paris Agreement to assess the collective progress towards achieving its purpose and long-term goals, in the thematic areas of mitigation, adaptation, and means of implementation and support, noting that it may take into account efforts related to its work that address the social and economic consequences and impacts of response measures and avert, minimize and address loss and damage;
  • requests the SBI and SBSTA Chairs to develop guiding questions for all components of the GST;
  • decides that the information collection and preparation component will commence one session before the start of the technical assessment, which will take place during the two or three successive sessions of the subsidiary bodies preceding CMA 6 during which the consideration of outputs will take place;
  • decides that the GST will be a party-driven process conducted in a transparent manner and with the participation of non-party stakeholders and that all inputs will be fully accessible by parties, including online;
  • emphasizes that the outputs of the GST should focus on taking stock of the implementation of the Paris Agreement to assess collective progress, have no individual party focus, and include non-policy prescriptive consideration of collective progress that parties can use to inform the updating and enhancing, in a nationally determined manner, of their actions and support;
  • invites parties to present their NDCs, informed by the outcome of the GST, at a special event under the auspices of the UN Secretary-General; and
  • decides that the consideration of outputs will consist of high-level events where the findings of the technical assessment will be presented, and their implications discussed and considered by parties.

Modalities and Procedures for the Effective Operation of the Committee to Facilitate Implementation and Promote Compliance: Agreement Article 15 establishes a mechanism, consisting of a committee, to facilitate implementation and promote compliance with the provisions of the Agreement. Discussions under this item were concerned with developing the modalities and procedures for the effective operation of the committee. Informal consultations were co-facilitated by Janine Felson (Belize) and Christina Voigt (Norway) and met six times. Parties also met extensively in informal informal settings. In informal consultations, discussions largely focused on initiation and process, institutional arrangements, and measures and outputs. Parties worked through three successive iterations of draft decision text.

On initiation and process, parties discussed under what circumstances the committee can initiate consideration of an issue. Several developed countries said the committee should not have to decide whether or not a provision of the Paris Agreement is legally binding before initiating consideration, because it is not a legal committee. Some parties strongly opposed initiation by the committee for matters related to technical expert review reports under the transparency framework. Many parties stressed the need for initiation beyond self-referral. Many said initiation by the committee should not be subject to the consent of the party concerned, which one developing country group opposed.

In the text as forwarded to the COP, an option remained as to whether to fully specify the circumstances under which the committee may initiate consideration of issues, or to merely provide that the committee may initiate consideration of issues related to a party’s implementation and compliance with “mandatory provisions” of the Paris Agreement.

On measures and outputs, views diverged on whether to include a list of specific elements that the committee must consider in deciding measures and outputs, including, among others, force majeure and LDCs’ and SIDS’ special circumstances. Several developed countries preferred to provide that the committee shall take into account the national capabilities and circumstances of the party concerned, and suggested that this broad “catch-all” phrasing would cover the more specific proposals in the text. Several developing country groups urged retaining specific elements. The text, as forwarded to the COP, includes the catch-all language, as well as the special circumstances of LDCs and SIDS and force majeure.

Views also diverged on whether the committee’s consideration of measures and outputs should vary by the legal nature of the Agreement’s provisions concerned. Several countries urged a single “toolbox” of measures and outputs, while others preferred a subset of measures for legally binding provisions.

On institutional arrangements, parties differed as to whether meetings of the committee should be public. Many parties preferred that meetings of the committee be public by default, opposed by one developing country group. Views also diverged on whether to specify balance between developed and developing countries for the committee’s co-chairs.

Several groups suggested that committee members be nominated at CMA 1, rather than at CMA 2, as set out in the draft text, to allow the committee to begin its work as soon as possible. A developing country group opposed, expressing concern that regional groups would not be able to coordinate quickly enough. The text forwarded to the COP provided for elections at CMA 2.

Views diverged on flexibility in timelines. Developing countries supported language providing flexibility in timelines for developing countries. Developed countries said flexibility should apply in light of countries’ national capacities and circumstances. The text was forwarded to the APA and later the COP.

The COP convened presidency consultations, co-facilitated by Felson and Voight, and later by a member of the COP Presidency. Discussions focused on measures, initiation by the committee, and flexibility on the timelines.

On measures, parties considered a textual proposal that would, inter alia, provide that the committee may issue “findings of fact” in relation to implementation and compliance with the provisions of the Paris Agreement, except in cases related to technical expert review reports under the transparency framework. Parties could not agree to this proposal. One party said that the committee should only be able to issue “findings of fact” in relation to binary legally-binding obligations. Other parties expressed concerns about a subparagraph under which the committee may facilitate a dialogue between the party concerned and the appropriate finance, technology, and capacity-building bodies or arrangements, in order to identify possible challenges and solutions. Many parties expressed a willingness to engage further on the proposal, while one group called for an immediate compromise, expressing uncertainty about the value of further discussions.

On committee initiation, parties considered how to reflect that the committee should consider only whether a communication had been made, rather than the content of the information provided.

On 15 December, the COP and CMA adopted the decision.

Final Decision: In its decision (FCCC/CP/2018/L.5), the CMA, inter alia:

  • adopts the modalities and procedures for the effective operation of the implementation and compliance committee contained in an annex to the decision; and
  • decides to undertake the first review of the modalities and procedures at CMA 7, on the basis of the experience gained with their implementation and taking into account any recommendations of the committee, and to consider conducting further reviews on a regular basis.

Annexed to the decision are the modalities and procedures that contain sections on: purpose, principles, nature, functions, and scope; institutional arrangements; initiation and process; measures and outputs; consideration of systemic issues; information; relationship with the CMA; and Secretariat.

Further matters relating to the Adaptation Fund: Discussions under this item focused on elaborating the governance and institutional arrangements, safeguards, and operating modalities for the Adaptation Fund to serve the Paris Agreement. Informal consultations were co-facilitated by María del Pilar Bueno (Argentina) and Pieter Terpstra (Netherlands). Parties discussed the type of guidance the CMA is to provide to the Adaptation Fund Board (AFB), the operating modalities of the Fund, and sources of and eligibility for funding.

On the type of guidance, 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.

On operating modalities, parties disagreed on whether the COP should designate the Adaptation Fund as an operating entity of the Financial Mechanism of the Convention. Two country groups said they would work together to propose language on arrangements for sharing lessons from the Adaptation Fund relevant for other funds, such as the GCF or LDC Fund, and some proposed drawing on language from the operational framework of the GCF. One country group expressed concern that using language from the GCF would risk the Adaptation Fund becoming “mitigation-centric,” to which another country group clarified that the language would be generic and not specific to the GCF.

On sources of funding, parties disagreed about whether the Adaptation Fund should accept support from “other” or “innovative” funding sources. A developing country suggested inserting a placeholder designation that “x percentage” of the share of proceeds from the Agreement Article 6.4 market mechanism should go to the Fund.

Parties raised issues with the first iteration of the draft text. A developing country group said its views were not accurately reflected in revised text on the type of guidance the CMA should provide to the AFB. A developed country said the same text failed to capture components it deemed essential, and proposed new streamlined text. Two countries proposed bracketing paragraphs that refer to the Agreement Article 6.4 mechanism, as Article 6 discussions were ongoing. A developing country reiterated that it would not accept references to “innovative” sources of finance.

On eligibility for funding, parties diverged on their preferences for options. They discussed the need to recognize the special circumstances of LDCs and SIDS, and challenges in defining which countries are “particularly vulnerable.” A developing country group proposed bracketing the entire section on eligibility, arguing that it is clearly defined under the CMP and does not require changes.

On the composition of the AFB, parties’ views strongly diverged. A developed country group and a developed country urged a COP 24 decision to review the composition of the board. They cited the need for clarity on AFB arrangements during a potential transitional period and potential changes in funding sources, respectively. Several groups opposed, with one suggesting the section on board composition be deleted. The text was forwarded to the APA and then the COP

The COP convened presidency consultations on this issue, in conjunction with other matters related to finance, co-facilitated by Yasmine Fouad, Minister of Environment, Egypt, and Jochen Flasbarth, State Secretary at the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety, Germany.

On 15 December, the COP and CMA adopted a decision. The CMP also adopted a procedural decision on this issue.

Final Decision: In its decision (FCCC/CP/2018/L.11), the CMA, inter alia: decides that the Adaptation Fund shall serve the Paris Agreement under the guidance of, and be accountable to, the CMA with respect to all matters relating to the Paris Agreement, effective 1 January 2019, subject to the decision on this matter made by the CMP.

In its decision (FCCC/KP/CMP/2018/L.4), the CMP adopted the same procedural decision recognizing when the Adaptation Fund will begin to serve the Paris Agreement.

Further matters except the Adaptation Fund: This item was discussed in informal consultations, co-facilitated by APA Co-Chairs Tyndall and Baashan, which met four times. In addition, parties met informally throughout the first week. In the informal consultations, parties focused on, first, the presiding officers’ addendum and, later, iterations of the text prepared by the Co-Facilitators, containing text on five possible additional matters:

  • modalities for communicating finance information in accordance with Agreement Article 9.5 (ex ante finance transparency);
  • initial guidance by the CMA operating entities of the Financial Mechanism;
  • initial guidance by the CMA to the LDC Fund and the SCCF;
  • guidance by the CMA on the adjustment of existing NDCs; and
  • setting a new collective quantified goal on finance.

Modalities for communicating information related to Article 9.5: On 4 December, delegates noted a lack of progress at the technical level and agreed on the need to move consultations to heads of delegation level. On 5 December, Co-Chair Baashan explained that the topic had been discussed in a heads of delegation meeting and identified the need to provide assurances of continuity and predictability of finance, while leaving countries reporting information the ability to decide the level of information they are able to provide. Several groups and countries indicated willingness to engage in discussions on “procedures” or “practical arrangements,” with developed countries supporting discussing these under the SBI item on Paris Agreement Article 9.5 and, opposed by one developing country group, closing discussions on this issue under the APA. Developed countries said they would support discussions on the condition that a paragraph contained in the presiding officers’ addendum on initiating a “facilitative multilateral consideration of progress and technical expert review of information provided and reported” be omitted. In subsequent consultations, parties agreed that this item would remain “parked” pending discussions on Article 9.5 under the SBI.

The text was forwarded to the APA, then to the COP for consideration.

This item was taken up in presidency consultations on matters related to finance, co-facilitated by Yasmine Fouad, Minister of Environment, Egypt, and Jochen Flasbarth, State Secretary at the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety, Germany.

On 15 December, the COP and CMA adopted the decision on this matter.

Final Decision: In its decision (FCCC/CP/2018/L.15), the CMA:

  • reiterates that countries shall biennially communicate indicative quantitative and qualitative information related to Agreement Articles 9.1 (developed countries shall provide financial resources) and 9.3 (developed countries should continue to take the lead), as applicable, including, as available, projected levels of public financial resources to be provided to developing countries, and requests developed countries to submit the biennial communications as specified in an annex to the decision starting in 2020;
  • other parties providing resources are encouraged to communicate biennially such information on a voluntary basis;
  • requests the Secretariat to establish a dedicated online portal for posting and recording the biennial communications;
  • also requests the Secretariat to prepare a compilation and synthesis of the information included in the biennial communications starting in 2021, with a view to informing the GST;
  • further requests the Secretariat to organize biennial in-session workshops beginning the year after the submission of the first biennial communications and to prepare a summary report on each workshop;
  • decides to consider the compilations and syntheses, and the summary report on the in-session workshops, starting at CMA 4 (2021);
  • also decides to convene a biennial high-level ministerial dialogue on climate finance beginning in 2021, to be informed, inter alia, by the summary reports on the in-session workshops on the biennial communications;
  • requests the CMA President to summarize the deliberations of the ministerial dialogue for consideration by the CMA at its succeeding sessions;
  • invites the COP to consider the compilations and syntheses, and the summary reports on the in-session workshops; and
  • decides to consider updating the types of information contained in the annex to the decision at CMA 6 (2023) on the basis of the experiences and lessons learned by parties in the preparation of their biennial communications of indicative quantitative and qualitative information.

Guidance related to the operating entities of the Financial Mechanism: Parties agreed to confirm that the Standing Committee on Finance (SCF) shall serve the Paris Agreement. On a date for the SCF to start preparing draft guidance to the operating entities, parties taking the floor agreed that this is covered by Paris decision 1/CP.21 paragraph 61 (CMA’s provision of guidance to the Financial Mechanism operating entities).

Guidance to the LDCF and SCCF: Regarding the time frame for preparing the guidance, two groups spoke, expressing flexibility to have no text. One developing country group preferred to reiterate a mandate for at least the LDCF to start serving the Paris Agreement.

Guidance on the adjustment of existing NDCs: some developed countries supported, while one developed and one developing country opposed, having a decision on this matter. 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).

Setting a new collective goal on finance: Developing and developed countries’ views diverged on whether or not to indicate a starting point for a process to set the goal. Developing countries stressed the need for clarity, predictability, progression, and a collective process. Developed countries stated, inter alia, that such a process is beyond the mandate of the PAWP and therefore premature to discuss at COP 24.

The COP discussed this issue in presidency consultations co-facilitated by Ministers Fouad and Flasbarth.

On 15 December, the COP and CMA adopted a decision.

Final Decision on setting a new collective quantified goal on finance: In its decision (FCCC/PA/CMA/2018/L.3), the CMA:

  • decides to initiate at CMA 3 (November 2020), in accordance with Agreement Article 9.3 (developed countries should continue to take the lead), deliberations on setting a new collective quantified goal from a floor of USD 100 billion per year; and
  • agrees to consider, in its deliberations referred to above, the aim to strengthen the global response to the threat of climate change in the context of sustainable development and efforts to eradicate poverty, including by making finance flows consistent with a pathway towards low-GHG and climate-resilient development.

APA Contact Group Meeting: During its final contact group meeting on 8 December, the APA adopted its conclusions (FCCC/APA/2018/L.6).

Co-facilitators reported on the progress achieved over the week.

On guidance on the mitigation section of decision 1/CP.21 (Paris outcome), Sin Ling Cheah reported that the third iteration of text could serve as a basis for work in the second week.

On adaptation communication, Beth Lavender reported that three iterations had been developed.

On the transparency framework, Andrew Rakestraw reported that three iterations were completed and thanked co-facilitators of linked issues for their coordination.

On the GST, Outi Honkatukia reported that positions were “not close enough” on a limited number of issues and said that, while the third iteration is a good reflection of the group’s work, the Co-Facilitators’ notes from their final informal consultations would be forwarded to the APA Co-Chairs to inform possible future work.

On the implementation and compliance committee, Janine Felson characterized the third iteration as significantly streamlined and providing fertile ground for finding solutions.

On the Adaptation Fund, María del Pilar Bueno reported that some parties shared strong concerns about the way forward.

On possible additional matters, APA Co-Chair Baashan reported that parties had worked through all five possible matters and an in-session submission on loss and damage.

Parties then reflected on the work under each agenda item.

On guidance on the mitigation section of decision 1/CP.21, Gabon, for the African Group, and Maldives for AOSIS, opposed references to the land sector and called for guidance to ensure environmental integrity and prevent double counting under Agreement Article 6 (cooperative approaches).

Saudi Arabia, for the Arab Group, said that guidance on features and accounting should be concise, bottom-up, and non-prescriptive, and that NDCs are “full scope.” Australia, for the Umbrella Group, expressed concern over bifurcation and scope, as well as the “degree of legal bindingness” reflected in the text. Colombia, for AILAC, called for guidance that recognizes the nationally-determined nature of NDCs as the “operationalization of differentiation itself.” Switzerland, for the EIG, suggested that information could be specific to the NDC type. Ethiopia, for the LDCs, called for the inclusion of capacity-building support for NDCs.

On adaptation communication, AILAC called for clear guidance to enhance adaptation actions. The EIG expressed concern that parties can choose information to be communicated as a component of an NDC.

On transparency, the African Group raised concerns about brackets around “flexibility options,” stressed tracking progress on all elements of the NDCs, and, with AOSIS, called for guidance on reporting loss and damage. AOSIS said flexibility should be expressed in the individual provisions of the modalities, procedures, and guidance. The LDCs called for recognition of the special circumstances of LDCs and SIDS and said the adaptation section requires more elaboration.

The Umbrella Group expressed concern about bifurcation related to review and stressed the need for specific flexibility provisions to have an end date. The Arab Group opposed linkages to the compliance mechanism.

On the GST, the African Group stressed the need to operationalize equity. AOSIS called for including loss and damage. The Arab Group lamented that the text does not sufficiently reflect response measures and adaptation actions or economic diversification plans with mitigation co-benefits.

The LDCs and AOSIS underscored the need to recognize the special circumstances of LDCs and SIDS.

The EIG expressed disappointment that so many issues remain open.

On compliance, AOSIS stressed the need for initiation beyond a self-trigger or a committee trigger based on the party’s consent. AILAC cited the linkages with the transparency framework, keeping in mind the facilitative nature of the compliance mechanism.

The EIG opposed a link to response measures.

On the Adaptation Fund, the African Group underlined that he could not accept the current text. The Umbrella Group expressed concerns on the way equity is reflected in the current text.

The EIG underlined that Board membership should be equally shared between developed and developing countries and that public and private funding will be voluntary.

The EU suggested, as a way forward, to continue to use a “multi-layered approach,” namely separating issues that can be solved at a technical level from those that need political attention, noting that this had enabled progress so far.

APA Co-Chair Tyndall then introduced the draft APA conclusions, proposing to forward the text to the COP so that the COP Presidency could determine next steps. Noting the African Group’s statement that it could not accept the text on the Adaptation Fund, she proposed options on the way forward: forwarding no text to the COP; reverting to the first iteration of the text; or using the present text prepared under the Co-Chairs’ responsibility, while identifying clearly that it did not represent agreed text.

The African Group requested amending the draft conclusions to reflect that it is the APA Co-Chairs’ proposals, rather than the “outcome of work,” which are being forwarded to the COP, and that this is without prejudice to the content and form of the final outcome of the PAWP. Parties accepted this and another, minor amendment.

Closing Plenary: In plenary, the APA adopted its draft conclusions as amended in the contact group, and its draft report (FCCC/APA/2018/L.5).

Final Outcome: In its conclusions (FCCC/APA/2018/L.6), the APA agreed to forward the proposals by its Co-Chairs on the PAWP, as presented in an annex. The proposals were being forwarded for consideration by COP 24 without prejudice to the content and form of the final outcome of the PAWP and recognizing that further work by the COP was necessary to finalize the PAWP outcome.

Subsidiary Body for Implementation

SBI 49 convened from 2-8 December, when it adopted its conclusions. On Saturday, 8 December, SBI Chair Emmanuel Dlamini (eSwatini) forwarded the proposed text to the COP, where it was taken up in presidency consultations and at the ministerial level. Unless otherwise mentioned, on Saturday, 15 December, the COP adopted decisions to be forwarded to the CMA as part of the Katowice Climate Package.

Common Time Frames: Discussions on this item focused on the common frequency by which parties update or communicate their NDCs. Currently, those parties with a five-year NDC are requested to communicate by 2020 a new NDC and those parties with a ten-year NDC are requested to communicate or update their NDC by 2020. Agreement Article 4.10 requires common timeframes for NDCs to be considered. This item was taken up by the SBI during its opening plenary and forwarded to informal consultations, which convened three times. Parties also met informally.

In the informal consultations, co-facilitated by Marianne Karlsen (Norway) and George Wamukoya (Kenya), discussions centered on the presiding officers’ addendum and text proposed by the Co-Facilitators. Parties expressed different preferences regarding common time frames, including five, ten, five or ten, and “five plus five.” 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. Some groups and parties called for the removal of paragraphs referring to the outcomes of the GST and content or scope of NDCs.

A developing country group proposed text that builds on the first round of submissions in 2015 and on paragraphs 23 and 24 of the Paris outcome (1/CP.21) relating to communicating or updating NDCs, explaining it reflected these paragraphs and also contained a request to the SBI to consider common NDC time frames to be implemented from 2041 onwards. Others suggested mandating the SBI to consider common time frames to be implemented from 2031 onwards.

Noting that an agreement on common time frames would be unlikely in Katowice, several parties supported procedural conclusions on this item from SBI 49 and capturing progress made so far either in conclusions text, an annex, an addendum, or a separate document referred to in a footnote of the conclusions.

Informal consultations continued on 8 December, and parties agreed to a draft COP decision.

On 15 December, the COP and CMA adopted a decision.

Final Decision: In its decision (FCCC/SBI/2018/L.27), the CMA:

  • welcomes the progress made in the consideration of common time frames for NDCs and takes note of the rich exchange of views and range of options considered and proposed by parties on this matter;
  • decides that parties shall apply common time frames to their NDCs to be implemented from 2031 onward; and
  • requests SBI 50 to continue the consideration of common time frames for NDCs with a view to making a recommendation thereon for consideration and adoption by the CMA.

Modalities and Procedures for the Operation and Use of a Public Registry referred to in Agreement Article 4.12 (NDCs): Agreement Article 4.12 states that NDCs shall be recorded in a public registry maintained by the Secretariat. Discussions under this item focused on developing modalities and procedures for the registry’s operation and use. This item was taken up by the SBI during its opening plenary and forwarded to informal consultations, which convened five times. Parties also met informally. In the informal consultations, co-facilitated by Peter Wittoeck (Belgium) and Emily Massawa (The Gambia), discussions focused on the presiding officers’ addendum and text iterations prepared by the Co-Facilitators.

Parties expressed preferences among three options contained in the main decision text: two options referring to adopting the modalities and procedures for the registry’s operation; and one to not adopt specific modalities and procedures. One developing country group suggested “running a prototype registry,” noting that once parties see how this prototype functions, they could propose its adoption by CMA 2.

Parties expressed diverging views on: removal of the registry’s search function; and whether there should be one or two registries, with some proposing having one portal with access to two registries. A developing country group proposed adding text on “one registry with two sections, one for NDCs and one for adaptation communication.”

On 15 December, the COP and CMA adopted a decision.

Final Decision: In its decision (FCCC/CP/2018/L.8), the CMA:

  • adopts the modalities and procedures for the operation and use of a public registry for Agreement Article 4.12 as referred to in the annex;
  • decides that the interim public registry shall serve as the public registry referred to in Agreement Article 4.12 following any revisions required to bring it into accordance with the modalities and procedures in the guidance;
  • decides that the public registry shall be made available by the Secretariat through a registry with two parts, comprising NDCs and adaptation communications, respectively;
  • requests the Secretariat to develop a prototype by June 2019 and to operate the public registry;
  • decides to consider and conclude at CMA 2 whether the prototype conforms to the modalities and procedures; and
  • decides the interim registry shall continue to be used on an interim basis.

Modalities and Procedures for the Operation and Use of a Public Registry referred to in Agreement Article 7.12 (Adaptation Communication): Discussions under this item focused on developing modalities and procedures for the operation and use of the public registry where adaptation communication shall be recorded under Agreement Article 7.12. This item was taken up by the SBI in its opening plenary and forwarded to informal consultations, which convened five times. Parties also met informally. In the informal consultations, co-facilitated by Emily Massawa and Peter Wittoeck, parties discussed the presiding officers’ addendum and text prepared by the Co-Facilitators.

Parties diverged on whether to have one or two registries. Some groups and countries requested bringing back their preferred options from the Bangkok outcome, including a registry for adaptation communication with hyperlinks to where these can be found and having a single registry with two parts. One developing country group requested holding a joint meeting at SBI 49 with the NDC registry item, which many opposed.

On 15 December the COP and CMA adopted a decision.

Final Decision: In its decision (FCCC/CP/2018/L.9), the CMA, inter alia:

  • decides to establish a registry for adaptation communications;
  • decides to adopt the modalities and procedures for the operation and use of the registry in the annex of the decision;
  • further decides that the public registry shall be made available by the Secretariat, together with the public registry for Article 4.12 (NDCs) through a registry portal with two parts, comprising adaptation communications and nationally determined contributions, respectively;
  • requests the Secretariat to: develop a prototype by June 2019 and to operate the public registry; and
  • decides to consider and conclude at CMA 2 whether the prototype conforms to the modalities and procedures.

Response Measures: Modalities, work programme, and functions under the Paris Agreement: Discussions under this item are focused on elaborating the modalities, work programme and functions of the forum on the impacts of the implementation of response measures under the Paris Agreement. This joint SBI and SBSTA item was first taken up in plenary and subsequently addressed throughout the week in a contact group co-chaired by the SBI Chair Emmanuel Dlamini (eSwatini) and SBSTA Chair Paul Watkinson (France), and in informal consultations co-facilitated by Andrei Marcu (Belize) and Keith Anderson (Switzerland).

Parties accepted the presiding officers’ addendum as a basis for further negotiations. During discussions, views diverged, inter alia, on 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.

The COP convened presidency consultations on this issue, co-facilitated by Andrei Marcu and Keith Anderson. Discussions focused on a draft CMA decision including elements of modalities, work programme, and functions under the Paris Agreement of the forum on the impact of the implementation of response measures.

On the work programme, some parties asked for broadening the scope and for a sequential assessment of response measures and, when these are found to have negative impacts, to recommend actions to prevent such negative impacts from reoccurring.

Some stressed the need for tools, capacity building, and awareness on response measures, while others cautioned against including too much detail or specifying tools such as economic modelling. On governance, one party suggested that a “Katowice Committee on the Impacts of Implementation of Response Measures” could implement the work programme of the forum.

On 15 December, the COP and CMA adopted a decision.

Final Decision: In its decision, (FCCC/CP/2018/L.17), the CMA, inter alia:

  • decides that the forum on the impact of the implementation of response measures (hereinafter referred to as the forum) under the Subsidiary Bodies (SBs) shall serve the Paris Agreement in relation to matters under the Paris Agreement;
  • adopts the modalities, work programme, and functions of the forum contained in the annex;
  • acknowledges that there is one single forum that covers the work of the COP, CMP, and CMA on all matters relating to the impact of the implementation of response measures;
  • affirms that the forum shall report to the CMA with respect to matters falling under Agreement Article 4.15 (parties shall take into consideration concerns of parties most impacted by response measures), where the forum requires the guidance of the CMA;
  • decides to establish a Katowice Committee of Experts on the Impacts of the Implementation of Response Measures to support the work of the forum on the impact of the implementation of response measures, and to operate in accordance with the terms of reference contained in the annex;
  • requests SBs 59 (November 2023) to consider the functions, work programme, and modalities of the forum, with a view to providing recommendations for consideration by COP 29, CMP 19, and CMA 6 (November 2023);
  • requests the Secretariat to organize the first meeting of the Katowice Committee of Experts to be held for two days, in conjunction with SB 50;
  • invites parties to nominate members to serve on the Katowice Committee of Experts, noting that the Chairs of the SBs shall be notified of these appointments by 15 April 2019;
  • decides that the forum shall develop and recommend a six-year workplan in line with the forum’s functions, work programme, and modalities, taking into account relevant policy issues of concern to parties, for consideration and adoption by the subsidiary bodies at their fiftieth sessions;
  • requests the SBs to conduct a midterm review of the workplan of the forum, starting from SB 56 (June 2022), with a view to enhancing the effectiveness of the forum;
  • invites parties to submit their views on the workplan of the forum and its Katowice Committee of Experts via the submission portal by 15 April 2019;
  • decides that the forum on the impact of the implementation of response measures shall provide recommendations for consideration by the SBs with a view to the subsidiary bodies recommending actions to the COP, CMP, and CMA for consideration and adoption;
  • requests the Secretariat to support the implementation of the work programme of the forum on the impact of the implementation of response measures;
  • takes note of the estimated budgetary implications of the activities to be undertaken by the Secretariat; and
  • requests that the actions of the Secretariat called for in this decision be undertaken subject to the availability of financial resources.

The annex to the decision includes three parts on functions, work programme, and modalities.

Report of the Adaptation Committee and Matters relating to the LDCs, referred to in paragraphs 41, 42, and 45 of decision 1/CP.21: Discussions under these items focused on requests to the Adaptation Committee regarding the nature and substance of its reporting and workplan, and on various issues of importance to LDCs, including financial support, capacity building, and the LDC Expert Group. These items were first taken up on 2 December in the COP plenary, then referred to joint SBSTA/SBI informal consultations to discuss paragraphs 41, 42, and 45 of decision 1/CP.21, as mandated to Adaptation Committee and the LDC Expert Group (LEG). Informal consultations were co-facilitated by Pepetua Latasi (Tuvalu) and 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
  • 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.

These discussions continued in presidency consultations on adaptation, co-facilitated by Kimmo Tiilikainen, Minister of the Environment, Energy and Housing, Finland, and Lamin Dibba, Minister of Environment, Climate Change and Natural Resources, The Gambia. Disagreement remained, inter alia, regarding:

  • which parties should be encouraged to provide resources for the implementation of the work of adaptation-related institutions under the Convention and the Paris Agreement;
  • who should be requested to develop, and regularly update, an inventory of relevant methodologies for assessing adaptation needs; and
  • options for requesting SBSTA to consider ways to improve the applicability of such methodologies, and the role of the IPCC in that process.

On 15 December, the COP and CMA adopted a decision.

Final Decision: In its decision (FCCC/CP/2018/L.14), the CMA, inter alia:

  • decides that the Adaptation Committee and the LEG shall serve the Paris Agreement;
  • invites the CGE and LEG, in line with their mandates, as appropriate, ensuring efficiency and consistency, to work together on training for assessing vulnerability and other aspects of adaptation;
  • urges developed countries and invites other parties that provide resources on a voluntary basis to make available sufficient resources for the successful and timely implementation of the work of adaptation-related institutions under the Convention and the Agreement;
  • requests the Secretariat to include in the synthesis report prepared for the GST information on the adaptation efforts of developing countries, in order to facilitate recognition of such efforts in the GST, drawing on, inter alia, the most recent documents that may contain adaptation information, which may include adaptation communications, NAPs, national communications, NDCs, other relevant reports prepared under the transparency framework and reports of the IPCC and other relevant scientific bodies;
  • decides to recognize, guided by the high-level committee and taking into account a country-driven approach, the adaptation efforts of developing countries during the high-level events of the GST;
  • requests the Secretariat to prepare a report summarizing the recognition of adaptation efforts of developing countries drawing on, inter alia, the synthesis report and outputs;
  • requests the Adaptation Committee, in collaboration with the LEG, partner organizations of the Nairobi Work Programme, users and developers of relevant methodologies, including academia and the private sector, to develop by June 2020 and to regularly update an inventory of relevant methodologies for assessing adaptation needs;
  • requests the Adaptation Committee with the engagement of IPCC Working Group II, as appropriate, to prepare, drawing on the inventory and the submissions by parties on the development and application of methodologies for assessing adaptation needs, a technical paper on methodologies for assessing adaptation needs and their application, as well as on the related gaps, good practices, lessons learned, and guidelines, for consideration and further guidance by SBSTA 57 (November 2022);
  • invites the SCF, in line with its mandate and in collaboration with the TEC and the PCCB, to consider, taking into account the recommendations of the Adaptation Committee and the LEG, as well as relevant submissions from parties and observer organizations, ways to facilitate the mobilization of support for adaptation in developing countries;
  • requests parties to report on support provided and received in line with the reporting instruments and modalities being developed under the Agreement; and
  • requests the Secretariat to include in the synthesis report prepared for the GST an assessment of the support needs for adaptation of developing countries.

Matters Relating to Climate Finance: Identification of information to be provided in accordance with Agreement Article 9.5 (ex ante finance transparency): Discussions under this item were concerned with identifying the information to be provided under Agreement Article 9.5. Under this article, developed country parties shall biennially communicate indicative quantitative and qualitative information related to Agreement Articles 9.1 and 9.3, which provide that:

  • developed country parties shall provide financial resources to assist developing country parties with respect to both mitigation and adaptation; and
  • developed country parties should continue to take the lead in mobilizing climate finance.

This item was taken up by the SBI in its opening plenary and forwarded to informal consultations, which convened four times. Parties also met informally.

In the consultations, co-facilitated by Seyni Nafo (Mali) and Outi Honkatukia (Finland), discussions built on the presiding officers’ addendum and Co-Facilitators’ iterations.

In the first meeting, parties disagreed on language referring to which parties should provide information. Many developing countries argued that Article 9.5 refers only to information provided by developed countries, while developed countries argued that it 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.

During the next meeting, Co-Facilitator Honkatukia drew attention to the heads of delegation meeting and to discussions under APA agenda item 8 (possible additional matters) the same day, which she said had indicated a mandate and willingness to engage in “elements that have not been discussed in the past in this room,” related to the process for communicating the information under Article 9.5. Parties agreed to seek a balance between discussing text on information to be provided and on issues related to modalities, or a “process” for the provision of information.

On draft decision text, parties’ views diverged, inter alia, on the timing of the first biennial communications. On elements of information, parties disagreed on text related to loss and damage, technology and capacity-building support, and a baseline reference, among others. On issues related to the process, developed countries indicated preference for discussing the elements “required for operationalizing Article 9.5 only,” such as availability of information or timing of the first communications. They disagreed with developing countries’ suggestions to include common time frames, a review or a role for the SCF, and linkages between Articles 9.5 and 9.7 (ex post finance transparency).

In plenary, on 8 December, the SBI agreed to forward the most recent iteration of the text to the COP. Those discussions are summarized under the APA on page 12.

Scope of and Modalities for the Periodic Assessment of the Technology Mechanism in supporting the Paris Agreement: Discussions under this item are focused on elaborating the scope of and modalities for the periodic assessment of the effectiveness of the Technology Mechanism, established under paragraph 117 of decision 1/CP.16 (Cancun Agreements), in supporting the implementation of the Paris Agreement on matters relating to technology development and transfer. This item was first taken up by the SBI in its opening plenary and subsequently addressed in informal consultations throughout the week co-facilitated by Ian Lloyd (US) and Claudia Octaviano (Mexico).

Discussions on a draft CMA decision text focused on assessing various kinds of support, including in-kind, and the adequacy of the support provided to the Technology Mechanism. Several developed countries recognized the valuable in-kind support provided to the TEC, including by developing countries, and cautioned against losing this recognition with language specifying only developed countries’ support. Some developing countries agreed on the value of developing countries’ support, but highlighted developed countries’ obligations under the Convention. Developed countries called for focusing specifically on support to the Technology Mechanism, with some noting that the outcome of the Mechanism could not be expected to bring about transformational change. Developing countries suggested focusing on the financial needs of the Mechanism to enable technology transfer and finding solutions for these.

The COP convened presidency consultations co-facilitated by Carlos Fuller (Belize) and Ian Lloyd (US). Parties could not agree on how to reflect the role of national designated entities (NDEs) as recipients of the support. In addition, parties could not agree on how to specify the relationship between the periodic assessment and the GST, and whether support to the Technology Mechanism should be provided by developed countries.

On 15 December, the COP and CMA adopted a decision.

Final Decision: In its decision, (FCCC/CP/2018/L.3), the CMA, inter alia:

  • adopts the scope of and modalities for the periodic assessment of the effectiveness and adequacy of the support provided to the Technology Mechanism, as contained in the annex;
  • decides that the periodic assessment should be undertaken in a transparent, inclusive, and participatory manner;
  • also decides to initiate the first periodic assessment at CMA 4 (November 2021) in accordance with the scope and modalities in the annex, or as these may be subsequently amended, with a view to completing the first periodic assessment at CMA 5 (November 2022); and
  • further decides that the outcomes of the periodic assessment should serve as an input to the GST.

The annex to the decision is divided into two parts: scope, which includes sections on effectiveness of the Technology Mechanism as well as on adequacy of the support provided to the Technology Mechanism; and a section on modalities.

Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice

SBSTA 49 convened from 2-8 December, when it adopted its conclusions. On Saturday, 8 December, SBSTA Chair Paul Watkinson (France) forwarded the proposed text to the COP, where it was taken up in presidency consultations and at the ministerial level. Unless otherwise mentioned, on 15 December, the COP adopted decisions to be forwarded to the CMA as part of the Katowice Climate Package.

Article 6 (Cooperative Approaches), Article 6.2 (Internationally Transferred Mitigation Outcomes (ITMOs)), Article 6.4 (mechanism under cooperative approaches), and Article 6.8 (non-market approaches): Discussions under this item aimed at operationalizing three types of market and non-market mechanisms under the Paris Agreement: a cooperative mechanism for transfers between countries of internationally transferred mitigation options (ITMOs); a mechanism for allowing private sector parties to generate and sell emission reduction units; and a non-market mechanism. This item with all its sub-items was first taken up in the opening plenary. Negotiations took place in a SBSTA contact group and subsequent informal consultations co-chaired by Kelley Kizzier (Ireland) and Muslim Anshari Rahman (Singapore) that met throughout the first week. On 8 December, the SBSTA forwarded draft text to the COP for further discussions, which took place in presidency consultations.

In the contact group, 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. 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 REDD+, while Panama and Belize supported such a link.

St. Lucia, for AOSIS, emphasized 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 Agreement Article 6.2 (ITMOs) oversight body to allow for up-front reporting.

Negotiations continued in informals on the basis of three draft decision texts presented by the Co-Chairs on each of the sub-items.

On Agreement Article 6.2 (ITMOs) and Agreement Article 6.4 (mechanism under cooperative approaches), discussions focused on, inter alia: share of proceeds; overall mitigation; transfer; corresponding adjustments; and governance issues and safeguards with regards to ITMOs used outside the scope of NDCs.

Parties discussed an option that the share of proceeds from an Agreement Article 6.4 activity would be levied and delivered to the Adaptation Fund to assist developing country parties that are particularly vulnerable to the adverse effects of climate change to meet the costs of adaptation. Some parties advocated the delivery to the Adaptation Fund because the Fund does not have too many programme restrictions and countries not engaging in the market mechanism thereby can still benefit from it. These countries also argued the share of proceeds to the Adaptation Fund should also apply to Agreement Article 6.2 activities. On this, views diverged. Those opposing cautioned against renegotiating the Paris Agreement. Views also diverged on an increased level of 5% of share of proceeds, and whether this should be voluntary.

On provisions for an overall mitigation requirement and its application under Agreement Articles 6.2 and 6.4, parties discussed a definition of achieving overall mitigation in global emissions with many stressing the need to deliver an overall reduction in global emissions. One party cautioned against allowing market mechanisms to transfer responsibilities to developing countries. Another noted the need to discuss, in the context of raising ambition, approaches utilized both “inside and outside NDCs.” Many called for considering mandatory cancellation and discounting options in this regard. Parties also discussed baselines for the calculation of emission reductions to be applied in the design of activities for ITMOs and adjustments in the context of ITMOs.

On the transition of mitigation outcomes under the Kyoto Protocol, such as the Clean Development Mechanism, to Agreement Article 6.4 activities, several developing countries supported such a transition, stressing it would build credibility and ensure demand for certified emission reductions. Many other parties opposed, with one developed country group stressing that parties should first establish a credible system before making decisions on transitioning. Another group expressed concern that the large supply of Kyoto Protocol units could undermine prices and limit mitigation results. A number of parties said a transition of current projects could be considered, if they met certain conditions.

On how to avoid double counting and on the need for adjustments, views diverged, among other issues, on options for avoiding the use of emission reductions resulting from the Article 6.4 mechanism to achieve an NDC by more than one party. One group underscored its view that there should be no requirement to make corresponding adjustments for the first international transfer of Article 6.4 emissions reductions from the mechanism registry, only thereafter. Many opposed, underscoring the necessity of upholding environmental integrity, and calling for a requirement to make corresponding adjustments, as under Agreement Article 6.2 (ITMOs), for all emission reductions when those are transferred internationally.

On Agreement Article 6.8, parties discussed reporting under Article 6.8 and its work programme activities and the governance of the framework for non-market approaches (NMAs). Some preferred to continue work without creating a new body, suggesting that a subsidiary body could to determine the need for governance agreements after the completion of certain activities under the framework’s work programme. Others called for establishing a task force, held in conjunction with meetings of the subsidiary bodies, to maintain and operationalize the broader nature of NMAs. One party stressed that the taskforce could address concerns and questions, including by addressing linkages between mitigation and adaptation, and “matching them” to means of implementation by building on existing processes and institutional arrangements.

The COP convened presidency consultations on Article 6, co-facilitated by James Shaw, Minister for Climate Change, New Zealand, and Carolina Schmidt, Minister of the Environment, Chile.

Under Article 6.2 (ITMOs), on corresponding adjustments, parties could not agree to a proposed “menu approach” allowing countries to choose from a number of options including working on an emission, or emission reduction, basis, and ensuring clarity on conversion of metrics. Several parties supported the proposal, while others opposed, calling for a single approach providing the same basis for all parties.

On purposes other than the achievement of NDCs, parties expressed: the need for a definition; concerns about double counting; and recognition that the UNFCCC does not have a mandate to make rules for other international bodies. Parties had opposing views on requiring up-front quantification for reporting purposes.

Under Article 6.4 (mechanism under cooperative approaches), parties discussed methodological principles of the activity cycle. One party called for high-level principles and a work programme to develop them. Several parties expressed views on appropriate baseline approaches, with some expressing reservations about applications of business as usual and historic baselines. Some noted linkages to overall mitigation in global emissions. Parties also discussed the composition of the supervisory body.

Under Article 6.8 (framework for non-market approaches), parties discussed a compromise in which the governance of the framework would begin with the establishment of a forum with assurances that a permanent governance arrangements will be established in 2019. They also considered a compromise proposal on work programme activities.

On the way forward, Co-Facilitator Shaw explained that he would inform the presidency that given the remaining differences, only bracketed text could be developed.

On 15 December, the COP and CMA adopted a procedural decision to continue consideration.

Final Decision: Final Decision: In its decision (FCCC/CP/2018/L.28), the CMA, inter alia:

  • notes the consideration by the SBSTA and COP of the mandates contained in decision 1/CP.21, paragraphs 36-40 (matters relating to Article 6);
  • also notes that draft decision texts on these matters in the proposal by the President were considered, but that parties could not reach consensus thereon; and,
  • requests the SBSTA to continue consideration, taking into consideration the draft decision texts considered at COP 24, with a view to forwarding a draft decision for consideration and adoption by CMA 2.

Modalities for Accounting of Financial Resources Provided and Mobilized in Accordance with Agreement Article 9.7 (ex post finance transparency): This item was taken up by the SBSTA in its opening plenary and forwarded to a contact group. The issue was discussed over five meetings, in either a contact group or informal consultations.

In the contact group and informal consultations, co-chaired by Delphine Eyraud (France) and Seyni Nafo (Mali), discussions focused on the presiding officers’ addendum, textual proposals developed in informal consultations and text prepared by the Co-Chairs. In the first meeting, parties disagreed about including 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.

In a subsequent meeting, parties discussed a proposal for underlying assumptions, definitions, and methodologies. Many countries supported the changes in principle. Parties diverged on a new formulation related to “new and additional” support. Discussions continued in further meetings on the underlying assumptions, definitions, and methodologies, with parties requesting text to be added, suggesting places where brackets could be removed, and expressing preferences for options.

In plenary, on 8 December, SBSTA agreed to forward the most recent iteration of the text to the COP. The COP convened presidency consultations on this issue in conjunction with other issues related to finance. The text was included as a section in the MPGs for the transparency framework, which is summarized under the APA, see page 8.

Technology Framework: This item was first introduced in the opening plenary and subsequently addressed in informal consultations, co-facilitated by Carlos Fuller (Belize) and Mette Moglestue (Norway). The SBI forwarded the text to the COP, which convened further presidency consultations, co-facilitated by Carlos Fuller and Ian Lloyd. Parties worked on two draft CMA decisions on development and transfer of technologies.

Regarding the technology framework, parties’ views diverged on enabling environments, including on incentivizing the private and public sectors to fully realize technology development and transfer of climate technologies. Many stressed the importance of a reference to the public sector and that many NDEs are public institutions. Others opposed, suggesting that the “public sector” in this context is unclear. On collaboration and stakeholder engagement, views diverged on the aim, including in a phrase related to bridging knowledge and financial gaps.

The Co-Facilitator noted that bracketed text would be forwarded to the COP Presidency.

On 15 December, the COP and CMA adopted a decision.

Final Decision: In its decision (FCCC/CP/2018/L.7), the CMA, inter alia:

  • adopts the technology framework, as contained in the annex;
  • decides that the Technology Executive Committee (TEC) and the CTCN, consistent with their respective functions, mandates, and modalities of work, shall implement the technology framework in close collaboration and under the guidance of the CMA;
  • requests the TEC and the CTCN to incorporate the guidance contained in the technology framework into their respective workplan and programme of work, which should also include methods for the monitoring and evaluation of their activities;
  • requests the TEC and the CTCN to include information in their joint annual report for 2019 on how they incorporated the guidance contained in the technology framework into their respective workplan and programme of work;
  • requests the TEC and the CTCN to report on the progress of their work and challenges and lessons learned in implementing the technology framework in their joint annual reports;
  • reiterates the importance of the support, including financial support, that shall be provided to developing country parties for strengthening cooperative action on technology development and transfer at different stages of the technology cycle and agrees that the technology framework can facilitate the strengthening of such support;
  • decides that the outcome of and/or recommendations resulting from the periodic assessment of the Technology Mechanism shall be considered when updating the technology framework; and
  • requests the Secretariat to facilitate the implementation of the technology framework.

The annex to the decision is divided into three parts: purpose, principles, and key themes for the technology framework. The key themes, which represent focused areas of action to be undertaken under the framework, include five sections on innovation, implementation, enabling environment and capacity-building, collaboration and stakeholder engagement, and support.

Items Other than the Paris Agreement Work Programme

At the Katowice Climate Change Conference, several issues relating to the ongoing implementation of the Convention and the Kyoto Protocol were also on the agenda. These discussions and outcomes are summarized below in the order of the agenda.

Conference of the Parties

Organizational Matters: Rules of procedure: Parties agreed to apply the draft rules of procedure (FCCC/CP/1996/2), with the exception of draft rule 42 on voting.

Adoption of the agenda: On Sunday, 3 December, President Kurtyka introduced a supplementary provisional agenda (FCCC/CP/2018/1/Add.1), containing a new agenda item proposal on the special needs and special circumstances of African countries under the Paris Agreement. He explained that, since the issuance of this document, Honduras, for AILAC, Iran, for the Asia-Pacific States, and Saudi Arabia, for the Arab Group, had proposed new agenda items, each on the special needs and special circumstances of developing countries in their respective groups or regions.

He proposed, and the COP agreed, to adopt the supplementary provisional agenda without a sub-item on a proposal to remove Turkey from the list in Annex I to the Convention and without the four proposed items on the special needs and circumstances. He said that consultations on these issues would convene under the presidency’s authority. The COP adopted the agenda as proposed. On Friday, 14 December, Vice-President Ian Fry (Tuvalu) reported that these consultations had not reached consensus.

Election of officers other than the President: On 15 December, the COP elected members of the COP Bureau: Georg Børsting (Norway); Ian Fry (Tuvalu); Mohamed Nasr (Egypt); Lois Young (Belize); and Majid Shafie-Pour (Iran).

The COP also elected members to the Adaptation Committee, Adaptation Fund Board, Advisory Board to the CTCN, Consultative Group of Experts (CGE), Compliance Committee, both the facilitative and enforcement branches, Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) Executive Board, WIM Executive Committee (ExCom), Joint Implementation Supervisory Committee, Technology Executive Committee (TEC), LDC Expert Group (LEG), and Local Communities and Indigenous Peoples (LCIP) Platform Facilitative Working Group.

Admission of observers: The COP admitted new observers, as proposed (FCCC/CP/2018/2).

Dates and venues of future sessions: The COP agreed that Chile would host COP 25 (FCCC/CP/2018/L.6).

Credentials: The COP adopted the report on credentials (FCCC/CP/2018/9).

Reports of the Subsidiary Bodies: On 8 December, the COP adopted the reports of the subsidiary bodies. The COP also adopted the decisions and conclusions contained in the report of SBI 48 (FCCC/SBI/2018/9/Add.1) on:

  • the LDC work programme;
  • the review of the CTCN;
  • conclusions on the terms of reference for the review of the Doha work programme; and
  • conclusions on coordination of support for the implementation of activities in relation to mitigation actions in the forest sector by developing countries, including institutional arrangements.

Mandated Events: There were two events that were mandated for the COP to consider: the Talanoa Dialogue, mandated by COP 21 as the 2018 facilitative dialogue; and the pre-2020 stocktake. Both had technical and political phases during COP 24. For details see the following:

Talanoa Dialogue: Technical Phase: http://enb.iisd.org/vol12/enb12740e.html

Talanoa Dialogue: Political Phase: http://enb.iisd.org/vol12/enb12744e.html

Talanoa Dialogue: Closing Ceremony: http://enb.iisd.org/vol12/enb12745e.html

Pre-2020 Stocktake of Implementation and Ambition: Technical phase: http://enb.iisd.org/vol12/enb12739e.html

Pre-2020 Stocktake of Implementation and Ambition Political phase: http://enb.iisd.org/vol12/enb12743e.html

Consideration of Proposals by Parties to Amend the Convention under Article 15: Proposal from the Russian Federation to amend Article 4.2(f): The COP agreed to hold this item in abeyance.

Proposal from Papua New Guinea and Mexico to amend Articles 7 and 18: The COP agreed to hold this item in abeyance.

Report of the WIM: This item was first taken up the COP on 3 December. Discussions and the decision are summarized under the SBI on page 25.

Development and Transfer of Technologies and Implementation of the Technology Mechanism: Linkages between the Technology Mechanism and the Financial Mechanism of the Convention: This item was first taken up in plenary on 2 December 2018 and subsequently addressed in informal consultations co-facilitated by Kishan Kumarsingh (Trinidad and Tobago) and Swan Senesi (Italy). The informal consultations met five times between 8-12 December, with party-led informal informals meeting in between.

The negotiations focused on draft decision text, presented by the Co-Facilitators, which many countries initially viewed as “GCF-heavy.” They called for mentioning the collaboration between the GEF and CTCN.

Critical discussions focused on opposing views on whether to conclude this agenda item at COP 24, with one developed country group arguing that the work is complete because the linkages are established. A developing country opposed, arguing that the aims of the work on linkages are not met and may not be until COP 26.

Parties discussed a compromise proposal by developed countries to continue this item, after taking stock of progress in strengthening the linkages in 2020, under the reports of the GEF and GCF, respectively. This was opposed by two developing country groups, who cautioned that those agenda items focus on reports from the respective bodies only and could not sufficiently address relevant linkages.

Parties also considered a proposal to continue substantive work under the SBI. Many developing countries stressed that only after a stocktake of progress could the continuation or conclusion of the item be considered. They proposed agreeing on considering the conclusion of this issue in the future, without prejudging the outcome of that consideration. Many developed countries opposed, preferring to conclude consideration of this item.

Observing no consensus, the group in informal consultations concluded with an understanding that Rule 16 would apply, with many lamenting that negotiation progress made on draft decision text would be lost. Co-Facilitator Kumarsingh informed he would report to the COP Presidency of the lack of agreement.

On Friday, 14 December the COP adopted its decision.

Final Outcome: In its decision, (FCCC/CP/2018/L.4), the COP, inter alia, requestsSBI 53 (November 2020), to take stock of progress in strengthening the linkages between the Technology Mechanism and the Financial Mechanism with a view to recommending a draft decision on this matter, including on the consideration of a conclusion on this matter, for consideration and adoption by COP 26 (November 2020).

The COP invites:

  • the CTCN and the GCF to continue enhancing collaboration, wherein the services and expertise of the CTCN can be used to strengthen proposals seeking support under the readiness and preparatory support programme of the Fund, noting the need for such engagement in supporting developing country parties in building their capacity for undertaking technology projects and programmes;
  • developing country parties to seek support from the CTCN to develop and submit technology-related projects, including those resulting from technology needs assessments and from the technical assistance of the CTCN, to the operating entities of the Financial Mechanism for implementation, in accordance with their respective policies and processes; and
  • the CTCN to consult with the GCF and GEF to identify ways to enhance information sharing among NDEs, national designated authorities and GEF focal points.

The COP also welcomes:

  • the support provided for technology development and transfer by the GEF and GCF through projects and programmes, including for projects resulting from technology needs assessments; and
  • the collaboration between the TEC, CTCN and GCF on climate technology incubators and accelerators, noting that this will help to inform the GCF as it develops the terms of reference for a request for proposals to support climate technology incubators and accelerators.

Second Review of the Adequacy of Articles 4(a) and (b) of the Convention: This item was held in abeyance.

Matters Relating to Finance: All these sub-items were first taken up in the COP plenary on 2 December.

Long-term finance:This item (FCCC/CP/2018/4) was first taken up in the COP Plenary on 2 December, and subsequently in a contact group, co-chaired by Ivan Zambrana Flores (Bolivia) and Norbert Gorißen (Germany).

In informal consultations, the Co-Chairs noted the submissions received and encouraged further submissions during the session. Parties agreed to mandate the Co-Chairs to prepare draft text based on the submissions.

The EU said a lot has been achieved on the long-term finance agenda and said the Standing Committee on Finance (SCF) 2018 Biennial Assessment and Overview of Climate Finance Flows confirms that finance has been mobilized. Norway suggested that the decision, inter alia, take note of activities such as the 2018 in-session workshop on long-term climate finance and biennial high-level ministerial dialogue on climate finance. Parties also proposed topics for the next in-session workshop, with Solomon Islands, for AOSIS, proposing a session on the effects of 1.5°C of global warming. Discussions continued in informal consultations on 7 December. On 11 December, the Secretariat published a draft decision that contained a bracketed reference to urging developed countries to scale up financial support for developing countries. The bracketed decision was discussed as part of the presidency consultations on finance.

On 15 December, the COP adopted the decision.

Final Outcome: In its decision (FCCC/CP/2018/L.20), the COP, inter alia:

  • welcomes with appreciation the 2018 Biennial Assessment and Overview of Climate Finance Flows of the SCF, in particular its key findings and recommendations highlighting the increase in climate finance flows from developed to developing countries;
  • welcomes with appreciation the continued progress of developed countries towards reaching the goal of mobilizing jointly USD 100 billion annually by 2020;
  • urges developed countries to continue to scale up mobilized climate finance towards achieving the 2020 finance goal;
  • urges developed countries to continue their efforts to channel a substantial share of public climate funds to adaptation activities and to strive to achieve a greater balance between finance for mitigation and for adaptation, recognizing the importance of adaptation finance and the need for public and grant-based resources for adaptation;
  • welcomes the biennial submissions received to date from developed countries on their strategies and approaches for scaling up climate finance from 2018 to 2020, and urges those developed countries that have not yet done so to submit this information;
  • welcomes the progress of parties’ efforts to strengthen their domestic enabling environments in order to attract climate finance, and requests parties to continue to enhance their enabling environments and policy frameworks to facilitate the mobilization and effective deployment of climate finance;
  • decides that the in-session workshops on long-term climate finance in 2019 and 2020 will focus on the effectiveness of climate finance, including the results and impacts of finance provided and mobilized, and the provision of financial and technical support to developing countries for their adaptation and mitigation actions in relation to holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2ºC and pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5ºC;
  • requests the Secretariat to prepare a compilation and synthesis of the biennial submissions of developed countries’ strategies and approaches for scaling up climate finance from 2018 to 2020 in order to inform these in-session workshops;
  • requests the Secretariat to organize these in-session workshops and to prepare summary reports on the workshops for consideration by COP 25 (November 2019) and COP 26 (November 2020), respectively; and
  • requests the Secretariat to continue to ensure that the workshops are well-balanced by, inter alia, inviting both public and private sector actors to attend them and summarizing the views expressed at the workshops in a fair and gender-balanced manner.

Matters relating to the Standing Committee on Finance:This item (FCCC/CP/2018/15, Add.1, and INF.1) was first taken up on 2 December and subsequently in a contact group co-chaired by Carlos Ivan Zambrana Flores (Bolivia) and Norbert Gorißen (Germany).

In the contact group, views strongly diverged regarding references to the key findings of the SCF’s 2018 Biennial Assessment and Overview of Climate Finance Flows technical report. South Africa, for the African Group, supported by India, cautioned against “cherry picking” individual findings. Saudi Arabia, for the Arab Group, opposed referring to the findings. The EU underscored the relevance of highlighting the continuous increase in climate finance flows, with the US adding the assessment’s findings were the result of a comprehensive exercise and adopted by consensus by the SCF. Switzerland proposed to note the report with appreciation and move it to the annex.

Views also diverged on: urging the SCF to continue the work on relevant information to make finance flows consistent with a pathway towards low-GHG and climate-resilient development; alternating frequency between the fora of the SCF and the Biennial Assessment, with a view to balance the SCF’s workload; and requesting the SCF to undertake an assessment of developing countries’ financial needs. Informal consultations convened.

The 10 December draft contained three bracketed requests to the SCF, each containing additional bracketed text. The brackets reflected disagreement over, inter alia: the relation between the Convention and the Paris Agreement, references to Agreement Article 9 (financial support), and whether the SCF should, in collaboration with others, explore ways and means to “assess the needs of developing countries” or “assist developing countries in assessing their needs and priorities, and in translating climate finance needs into action.” These were discussed in the presidency consultations on finance.

On 15 December, the COP adopted the decision.

Final Outcome: In its decision (FCCC/CP/2018/L.13), the COP, inter alia:

  • welcomes with appreciation the report of the SCF to COP 24, taking note of the recommendations contained therein;
  • welcomes with appreciation the 2018 Biennial Assessment and Overview of Climate Finance Flows of the SCF, in particular the summary and recommendations as contained in the annex of the decision;
  • encourages the SCF to take into account the best available science in future Biennial Assessments;
  • requests the SCF to use in the Biennial Assessments the established terminology in the provisions of the Convention and the Agreement in relation to climate finance, where applicable;
  • requests the SCF to map, every four years, as part of its Biennial Assessments, the available information relevant to making finance flows consistent with a pathway towards low-GHG emissions and climate-resilient development;
  • encourages the SCF to provide input to the technical paper of the WIM Executive Committee on the sources of financial support;
  • requests the SCF to prepare, every four years, a report on the determination of the needs of developing countries related to implementing the Convention and the Agreement, for consideration by COP 26 and CMA 3 (November 2020); and
  • requests the SCF to report to COP 25 (November 2019) on progress in implementing its workplan.

The annex contains the summary and recommendations by the SCF on the 2018 Biennial Assessment and Overview of Climate Finance Flows.

Report of the GCF:Richard Muyungi (Tanzania) and Stefan Schwager (Switzerland) co-facilitated informal consultations. On 10 December, parties considered a new iteration of text prepared during the day based on informal consultations in the morning. Discussions centered on a paragraph requesting the SCF to prepare assessments of funds necessary to assist developing countries in implementing the Convention with a view to help inform the first GCF replenishment process.

Many developed countries opposed discussing an alternative text proposal by a developing country group. One country opposed reference to the IPCC Special Report on 1.5°C, stating that this would skew funding towards mitigation. This was opposed by another country, who saw this as “also an investment in adaptation.” Parties also bracketed paragraphs related to, inter alia, addressing remaining policy gaps and urging parties to fully execute their contribution arrangements or agreements under the initial GCF resource mobilization. In a brief contact group meeting, Co-Chair Schwager said the text would be presented to the COP presidency.

Further presidency consultations on finance discussed this issue. On 15 December, the COP adopted the decision.

Final Outcome:In its decision (FCCC/CP/2018/L.12), the COP, inter alia:

  • urges the Board to continue consideration of procedures for adopting decisions in the event that all efforts at reaching consensus have been exhausted, as specified in the Fund’s Governing Instrument;
  • stresses the urgency to reach pledges for the first formal replenishment process aiming to conclude the process in October 2019;
  • invites parties to submit to the Secretariat, no later than two weeks prior to COP 25 (November 2019), their views and recommendations on elements to be taken into account in developing guidance for the Board;
  • requests the SCF to take into consideration the submissions referred to above when preparing its draft guidance for the Board for consideration by the COP; and
  • requests the Board to include in its annual report to the COP information on the steps that it has taken to implement the guidance provided in this decision.

Report of the GEF: Richard Muyungi (Tanzania) and Stefan Schwager (Switzerland) co-facilitated informal consultations on this item (FCCC/CP/2018/6, Add.1, and INF.1). Exchanging views on draft text, parties disagreed on whether to recognize, welcome, or note the 7th replenishment of the GEF, as well as whether to include percentages or figures to specify decreases in GEF funding between the 6th and 7th replenishment. One developing country proposed replacing quantitative information with the term “significant decrease.” Parties strongly disagreed on language that instructs the GEF to consider improving access modalities for developing country institutions. A developed country group argued that because the GEF differs fundamentally from other funds, enabling direct access modalities would “open the floodgates” for national institutions’ accreditation across different environmental conventions. A developing country opposed, calling for a “paradigm shift” to promote direct access for developing country institutions.

Parties also strongly disagreed on two paragraphs addressing political and non-technical barriers to accessing GEF funding, with one developed country describing the language as a “red line.” The draft text was forwarded to the presidency for consideration at the ministerial level.

This issue was also further discussed in presidency consultations. On 15 December, the COP adopted its decision.

Final Outcome:In its decision (FCCC/CP/2018/L.10), the COP, inter alia:

  • highlights the importance of enhancing country ownership in the impact programmes of the 7th GEF replenishment;
  • urges all parties that have not made pledges for the 7th GEF replenishment to do so as soon as possible;
  • invites the GEF to enhance the information in its reports to the COP on the outcomes of the collaboration between the Poznan strategic programme on technology transfer’s climate technology and finance centers and the CTCN;
  • welcomes the GEF Council’s decision to begin the process of developing improved fiduciary standards, including anti-money-laundering and counter-terrorism finance policy;
  • requests the GEF to review and, if necessary, update, or adopt policies for the prevention of sexual harassment and abuse of authority with the aim of protecting the staff of the GEF Secretariat as well as its partner organizations against unwanted sexual advances, preventing inappropriate behavior, and abuse of power and providing guidelines for reporting incidents;
  • invites parties to submit to the Secretariat in writing, no later than ten weeks prior to COP 25, their views and recommendations on elements to be taken into account in developing guidance for the GEF;
  • requests the SCF to take into consideration the submissions referred to above when preparing its draft guidance for the GEF by the COP; and
  • requests the GEF to include in its annual report to the COP information on the steps that it has taken to implement the guidance provided in this decision.

Reporting from and Review of Annex I Parties: This item was referred to the SBI (see page 24).

Reporting from Non-Annex I Parties: This item was referred to the SBI (see page 24).

Capacity Building Under the Convention: This item was referred to the SBI (see page 26).

Implementation of Articles 4.8 and 4.9 of the Convention: Implementation of the Buenos Aires programme of work on adaptation and response measures: This item was referred to the SBI and SBSTA (see page 27).

Matters relating to the least developed countries: This item was discussed at SBI 48 and the decision was forwarded to the COP.

Final Decision: In its decision (FCCC/SBI/2018/9/Add.1), the COP decidesto update the elements of the LDC work programme as listed below in order to reflect the needs of LDCs, taking full account of the numerous groups and bodies that are involved in assisting countries with these activities, noting the importance of avoiding duplication of work, and taking into account available resources:

  • continue strengthening existing, and where needed establishing, national climate change secretariats and/or focal points to enable the effective implementation of the Convention, the Protocol and the Agreement in LDCs;
  • continue providing training, as needed, in negotiating skills and language to develop the capacity of negotiators from LDCs to participate effectively in the climate change process;
  • supporting the preparation and implementation of successive NDCs as well as the process to formulate and implement NAPs and related relevant adaptation strategies, including national adaptation programmes of action;
  • continue promoting public awareness programmes to ensure the dissemination of information on climate change issues;
  • continue strengthening cooperative action on adaptation technology development and transfer;
  • continue strengthening the capacity of meteorological and hydrological services to collect, analyze, model, interpret and disseminate weather and climate information to support the implementation of adaptation actions; and
  • continue supporting capacity-building initiatives to enable effective engagement in reporting and review activities under the Convention and the Agreement, as needed.

The COP also, inter alia:

  • requests the LEG to support, and encourages other relevant bodies and programmes under and outside the Convention and the Paris Agreement, including UN entities, to assist with, in accordance with their respective mandates, as appropriate, the implementation of the LDC work programme and to include information on this in their reports, as appropriate; and
  • also requests the LEG to continue considering ways to promote South-South cooperation in the implementation of the LDCs work programme.

Administrative, Financial and Institutional Matters: On 2 December, the COP referred this item, and its sub-items, to the SBI. The decisions are summarized on page 28.

Decision-making in the UNFCCC Process: The COP agreed to include this agenda item on the agenda for COP 25.

High-Level Segment: The high-level segment convened on 11 and 12 December. The high-level segment included statements from over 115 countries, 16 intergovernmental organizations, and 11 NGOs. For partial coverage of the statements, see: http://enb.iisd.org/vol12/enb12745e.html

Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol

Adoption of the agenda: On 2 December, parties adopted the agenda (FCCC/KP/CMP/2018/1) for CMP 14 and agreed to refer several sub-items to the SBSTA and SBI.

Election of officers: The CMP adopted the members and alternative members of bodies under the Kyoto Protocol as presented by CMP President Kurtyka under the COP.

Credentials: The CMP adopted the report on credentials (FCCC/KP/CMP/2018/7).

Status of ratification of the Doha Amendment of the Kyoto Protocol: CMP President Kurtyka reported that, as of 20 November 2018, 122 parties had submitted instruments of acceptance.

Reports of the Subsidiary Bodies: SBSTA: The CMP took note of the SBSTA 48 report (FCCC/SBSTA/2018/4), SBSTA 48-2 report (FCCC/SBSTA/2018/6), and draft SBSTA 49 report (FCCC/SBSTA/2018/L.17). SBSTA Chair Watkinson noted that the SBSTA will take up the annual report on the technical review of GHG inventories and other information reported by Annex I parties at SBSTA 50.

SBI: The CMP took note of the SBI 48 report (FCCC/SBI/2018/9), SBI 48-2 report (FCCC/SBI/2018/11), and draft SBI 49 report (FCCC/SBI/2018/L.20). SBI Chair Dlamini reported that the SBI agreed to continue its consideration of compilations and syntheses of second and third biennial reports from Annex I parties at SBI 50.

Matters related to the CDM: On 2 December, SBI Chair Dlamini reported that discussion on this item (FCCC/KP/CMP/2018/3 and Corr.1) would continue at SBI 50.

On 13 December, the CMP adopted the decision forwarded by SBI 48.

Final Decision: In its decision (FCCC/KP/CMP/2018/L.1), the CMP, inter alia:

  • designates as operational entities those entities that have been accredited and provisionally designated as such by the Executive Board to carry out the sector-specific validation functions and/or sector-specific verification functions;
  • encourages the Executive Board to review methodological approaches for calculating emission reductions from project activities, resulting in the reduced use of non-renewable biomass in households; and
  • requests the Executive Board and the Secretariat to ensure the efficient and prudent use of resources of the Trust Fund for the CDM to the end of the true-up period (the additional period for the purpose of fulfilling commitments under Protocol Article 3.1) for the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol, and to present a comprehensive report to CMP 15 on the present financial situation of the Clean Development Mechanism and the foreseen budgets for activities until the end of 2023.

Matters related to Joint Implementation: On 2 December, the CMP took note of the annual report of the Joint Implementation Supervisory Committee (FCCC/KP/CMP/2018/2).

Report of the Compliance Committee: On 2 December, the CMP took note of the annual report of the Compliance Committee (FCCC/KP/CMP/2018/6).

Matters related to the Adaptation Fund: On 2 December, this item (FCCC/KP/CMP/2018/4 and Add.1) was first taken up in plenary and subsequently in a contact group co-chaired by Ismo Ulvila (Finland) and Richard Muyungi (Tanzania).

In the contact group, reacting to the report of the Adaptation Fund Board (AFB) (FCCC/KP/ CMP/2018/4), South Africa for the G-77/China, the EU, Solomon Islands for AOSIS, Switzerland for the EIG, and Malawi for the LDCs commended the work and role of the Adaptation Fund in supporting adaptation efforts in developing countries, with the G-77/China also appreciating the Fund’s “innovativeness” in the area of access modalities.

The EIG identified as particularly useful the Fund’s direct access modality and sources of funding. AOSIS suggested that the Fund’s experience, with projects focused on the most vulnerable, could serve the Paris Agreement by filling the data gaps highlighted in the SCF 2018 Biennial Assessment. The LDCs expressed a wish for further improvements in the accreditation process, and project review and approval cycle. The G-77/China expressed alarm at the low levels of financing to the Fund accrued through the sale of certified emission reductions (CERs). The LDCs called for “a number of countries” to make further contributions to the Fund. Parties mandated the Co-Chairs to prepare draft decision text, based on the interventions.

Exchanging views on the draft decision text, Maldives, for AOSIS, proposed adding a placeholder to outcomes from Adaptation Fund consultations underway “under the APA.” Muyungi said the Co-Chairs did not have a mandate to cross-reference text to a stand-alone agenda item. The EU, South Africa for the African Group, and Pakistan supported the AOSIS proposal. The draft text with the placeholder was forwarded for consideration by the CMP.

On 15 December, the CMP adopted the decision.

Final Decision: In the final decision (FCCC/KP/CMP/2018/L.6) the CMP, inter alia:

  • takes note of the annual report of the Adaptation Fund Board, including its addendum, and the information contained therein;
  • notes, inter alia, the accreditation of 28 national implementing entities for accessing resources from the Adaptation Fund directly, cumulative project and programme approvals reaching USD 476.8 million, funds available for new funding approvals amounting to USD 225.7 million, and the value of projects and programmes in the active pipeline estimated at over USD 270 million;
  • notes the total amount of USD 95.9 million in contributions made to the Adaptation Fund in 2017, which surpassed the USD 80 million fundraising target;
  • reiterates its concern regarding the issues related to the sustainability, adequacy, and predictability of funding for the Adaptation Fund due to the current uncertainty about the prices of CERs;
  • welcomes with appreciation the AFB’s consideration of and report on linkages to other funds to ensure coherence and complementarity; and
  • encourages the AFB to continue its efforts to enhance complementarity and coherence with other funds both under and outside the Convention, including to better align processes and leverage financing.

Report of the High-Level Ministerial Roundtable on Increased Ambition of Kyoto Protocol Commitments: This item was first taken up by the CMP plenary on 2 December and subsequently in informal consultations facilitated by Adam Guibourgé-Czetwerty?ski (Poland). On 13 December, Guibourgé-Czetwerty?ski reported there was no consensus on the way forward. The CMP agreed that this item will be included on the provisional agenda of CMP 15.

Reporting to and from Annex I Parties: National Communications: The CMP agreed to take this up at SBI 50.

Annual compilation and accounting report for the second commitment period for Annex B parties under the Protocol: The CMP took note of the information contained in the annual compilation and accounting report for Annex B parties (FCCC/KP/CMP/2018/5 and Add.1).

Capacity Building under the Kyoto Protocol: This issue was discussed in conjunction with other matters relating to capacity building under the Convention and the Paris Agreement, and referred to the SBI, see page 26.

Matters related to: Kyoto Protocol Article 2.3 and 3.14 (minimization of adverse effects of response measures by Annex I parties): This item was taken up in conjunction with other matters relating to response measures, and was referred to the SBI and SBSTA, see page 27.

Administrative, Financial, and Institutional Matters: Audit report and financial statements for 2016: Budget performance for the biennium 2016-2017: This matter was taken up in conjunction with the COP discussion on administrative, financial, and institutional matters, discussed under the SBI, and is summarized on page 28.

Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Paris Agreement

Organizational Matters: On 2 December, CMA 1-3 agreed to continue with the CMA 1 agenda and organization of work adopted in 2016.

Election of officers: On 15 December, the CMA agreed to the elections of officers as outlined by CMA President Kurtyka under the COP, with the addition of a CMA Vice-President Amjad Abdulla (Maldives), and noting that a nomination for an additional Vice-President from the Central and Eastern Europe region was still outstanding.

Status of ratification of the Paris Agreement: CMA President Kurtyka reported that, as of 1 December 2018, 184 parties to the Convention had ratified the Paris Agreement, and invited parties to expedite the deposition of their instruments of ratification, acceptance, approval, or accession. The CMA took note of the information.

Credentials: The CMA adopted the report on credentials (FCCC/PA/CMA/2018/2).

Subsidiary Body for Implementation

Organizational Matters: SBI 49 adopted its agenda (FCCC/SBI/2018/12) and organization of work on 2 December.

Multilateral Assessment: The EU, Canada, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, France, Germany, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Slovakia, and the Netherlands presented updates on achieving their 2020 emissions reduction targets.

Facilitative Sharing of Views: Argentina, Bosnia and Herzegovina, China, Jordan, Andorra, Lebanon, Mongolia, Namibia, Togo, and Tunisia presented their biennial update reports.

Annex I Reporting: Status of submission and review of seventh national communications and third biennial reports from Annex I Parties: The COP took note of the status of submission and review of seventh national communications and third biennial reports (FCCC/SBI/2018/INF.14)

Compilation and synthesis of second and third biennial reports: On this item (FCCC/SBI/2018/INF.8/Corr.1 and INF.8 and Add.1), the SBI Chair undertook informal consultations. The SBI agreed to continue its consideration of this matter at SBI 50.

Report on national GHG inventory data from Annex I Parties for the period 1990-2016: The SBI considered a report from the Secretariat (FCCC/SBI/2018/17), and, on 8 December, the SBI agreed to continue its consideration of this matter at SBI 50.

Non-Annex I Reporting: Information contained in national communications: This item was held in abeyance.

Work of the CGE on national communications from non-Annex I parties: This item (FCCC/SBI/2018/14, 21) was first considered in plenary on 2 December. The CGE presented the progress report of the CGE (FCCC/SBI/2018/20) and its activities to increase the technical capacities of national experts of developing countries. He highlighted key achievements of the CGE, including developing training materials, training over 1,000 national experts, and holding 23 regional workshops and 25 webinars.

Informal consultations were co-facilitated by Helen Plume (New Zealand) and Stephen King’uyu (Kenya). On Saturday, 8 December, the SBI adopted conclusions.

Final Outcome: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBI/2018/L.25), the SBI, inter alia, acknowledges the substantial contribution of technical advice and support from the CGE to improving the process for the preparation of national communications and biennial update reports for non-Annex I parties.

Review of the terms of reference of the CGE on national communications from non-Annex I parties: This item was first taken up in plenary on 2 December and subsequently in informal consultations co-facilitated by Helen Plume and Stephen King’uyu.

On 8 December, the SBI was unable to conclude its consideration of this matter. Later that evening, during the COP plenary, SBI Chair Dlamini reported there was strong support to resolve this issue under the COP presidency’s guidance, given linkages to Paris Agreement Article 13 (transparency framework).

This item was further discussed in presidency consultations. On 15 December, the COP adopted the decision on the review of the terms of reference of the CGE.

Final Decision: In its decision (FCCC/CP/2018/L.18), the COP, inter alia, decides to extend the term of the CGE on National Communications from parties not included in Annex I to the Convention for eight years, from 1 January 2019 to 31 December 2026, and to rename it the Consultative Group of Experts, and to continue operating according to its current mandate. The COP also requests SBSTA to review and revise the terms of reference at SBSTA 50.

Financial and technical support: This item was first discussed in plenary on 2 December. The GEF presented on its activities relating to the preparation of national communications and biennial update reports (FCCC/SBI/2018/INF.9). She noted that, as of 3 September 2018, the GEF had approved support for 20 national communications and 22 biennial update reports.

On 8 December, the SBI agreed to continue its consideration of this issue at SBI 50.

Summary reports of biennial update reports: The SBI took note of the summary reports on the technical analysis of biennial update reports of non-Annex I parties.

Matters relating to mechanisms under the Protocol: Review of CDM modalities and procedures: The SBI will continue its consideration of this issue at SBI 50.

Koronivia Joint Work on Agriculture: This item was first taken up on 2 December, and subsequently in informal consultations co-facilitated by Milagros Sandoval (Peru) and Heikki Granholm (Finland). On 3 December a workshop took place, see http://enb.iisd.org/vol12/enb12737e.html

In informal consultations, parties approved the draft conclusions and, in the ensuing discussion, emphasized the need: for the workshop report to highlight how the constituted bodies under the Convention contribute to work on agriculture; and to move from procedural considerations to considering how the Koronivia process can inform action on the ground, including with regard to small-scale farmers, food security, gender equity, and poverty eradication.

On 8 December, the SBI and the SBSTA adopted conclusions.

Final Outcomes: In their joint conclusions (FCCC/SB/2018/L.7), the SBI and the SBSTA, inter alia:

  • welcome the first in-session workshop from the Koronivia road map on modalities for implementation of the outcomes of the five in-session workshops on issues related to agriculture
  • invite the GEF, GCF, Adaptation Fund, LDCF, and SCCF to attend the workshops under the Koronivia road map; and
  • welcome a proposal made by New Zealand to host a workshop related to the Koronivia road map, and agreed to continue consideration of this matter at SBI 50 and SBSTA 50.

Report of the Adaptation Committee: This item (FCCC/SB/2018/3) was jointly considered by the SBI and SBSTA. Discussions related to paragraphs 41, 42, and 45 are discussed under the PAWP (see page 15).

On 2 December, the Adaptation Committee outlined its report, noting it: includes information on organizational and procedural issues; highlights progress on implementation of its flexible workplan; and contains the 2019-2021 flexible workplan and a recommendation for SBSTA’s consideration. On 6 December, Pepetua Latasi (Tuvalu) co-facilitated informal consultations in which parties agreed to draft conclusions on the Adaptation Committee report.

On 8 December, the SBI and SBSTA adopted conclusions containing a draft COP decision.

Final Outcomes: In its decision (FCCC/SB/2018/L.5), the COP, inter alia:

  • urges parties and other stakeholders to mainstream gender considerations in all stages of their adaptation planning processes;
  • encourages parties to apply a participatory approach to adaptation planning and implementation;
  • encourages parties to take into consideration and utilize, as appropriate, various approaches to adaptation planning, including community-based adaptation, ecosystem-based adaptation, livelihood and economic diversification, and risk-based approaches;
  • invites relevant institutions under the Convention and non-party stakeholders to strengthen support (financial, technical, technological and capacity-building) for adaptation planning, including for collecting climate data and information;
  • invites parties and others to share case studies of initiatives that focus on ecosystems and adaptation planning for vulnerable communities and groups as agents of change; and
  • invites parties and relevant entities working on national adaptation goals and indicators to strengthen linkages with the monitoring systems of the Sustainable Development Goals and the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction.

Report of the Warsaw International Mechanism for Loss and Damage: This item (FCCC/SB/2018/1) was first taken up in the COP plenary on 2 December. Australia, for the Umbrella Group, and Maldives, for AOSIS, noted that the consultations will consider the Executive Committee (ExCom) report and recommendations, rather than the COP’s authority over and guidance to the WIM. Subsequent informal consultations were co-facilitated by Lisa Gittos (Australia) and Lucas di Pietro (Argentina) in which parties discussed a draft decision.

Views diverged on whether and to what extent to include specific recommendations of the ExCom report 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.

On 8 December, the SBI and the SBSTA forwarded a draft decision to the COP.

Final Outcome: In its decision (FCCC/SB/2018/L.6), the COP inter alia:

  • notes the IPCC Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C;
  • welcomes the annual report of the WIM ExCom, the progress made by the ExCom in implementing its five-year rolling workplan, the report of the Task Force on Displacement, and the report of the Suva expert dialogue;
  • invites parties and others to consider,when undertaking relevant work, the recommendations of the annexed ExCom report on integrated approaches to averting, minimizing, and addressing displacement related to the adverse impacts of climate change;
  • welcomes the decision of the ExCom to extend the mandate of the Task Force on Displacement;
  • encourages the ExCom to draw upon the work, information, and expertise of bodies under the Convention and the Paris Agreement, as well as international processes, such as the 2030 Agenda and the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction; and to increase its consideration of groups vulnerable to the adverse impacts of climate change when implementing its five-year rolling workplan;
  • invites parties to consider developing policies, plans, and strategies, and to facilitate coordinated action and the monitoring of progress, in their efforts to avert, minimize, and address loss and damage; and
  • invites parties to take into consideration future climate risks when developing and implementing their relevant national plans and strategies that seek to avert, minimize, and address loss and damage, and reduce disaster risks.

National Adaptation Plans: This item was first taken up in plenary on 2 December and subsequently in informal consultations co-facilitated by Pepetua Latasi (Tuvalu) and Malcolm Ridout (UK). On 7 December, parties discussed and agreed upon a draft text.

On 8 December, the SBI adopted conclusions and forwarded a draft decision to the COP.

Final Outcomes: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBI/2018/L.26), the SBI, inter alia, welcomes the successful conduct of regional NAP Expos in Malawi, Panama, and Gabon in 2018, and recommends a draft decision to the COP.

In its decision (FCCC/SBI/2018/L.26/Add.1), the COP, inter alia:

  • requests the LEG and the Adaptation Committee, respectively, within their existing mandates and workplans, to consider gaps and needs related to the process to formulate and implement NAPs that have been identified through the relevant work of the LEG and the Adaptation Committee and how to address them, and to include relevant information thereon in the LEG’s report to SBI 51 (November 2019) and the AC’s annual report for 2019; and
  • requests the SBI to specify the actions and steps necessary to assess progress in the process to formulate and implement NAPs at SBI 55 (November 2021), with a view to launching the assessment not later than 2025 and noting plans for the first GST.

Development and Transfer of Technologies: Joint report of the TEC and CTCN: This item (FCCC/SB/2018/2) was first taken up in plenary on 2 December 2018, where the TEC and CTCN reported on their activities, highlighting work related to innovation research, development, and demonstration, and South-South and triangular cooperation on adaptation and mitigation technologies. The item was subsequently addressed in informal consultations throughout the week, co-facilitated by Stella Gama (Malawi) and Ulrika Raab (Sweden).

Discussions included concerns about the lack of clarity on how TEC actions facilitate actions by the CTCN, and calls for reflecting the gaps in the work of the TEC and CTCN. Countries also 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.

On 8 December, SBI adopted its conclusions, including a draft COP decision.

Final Outcome: In its decision on enhancing climate technology development and transfer through the Technology Mechanism (FCCC/SB/2018/L.8), the COP, inter alia:

  • encourages the TEC and the CTCN to enhance their collaboration, including to ensure the coherence and synergy of their work;
  • notes the challenges and lessons learned as reported by the TEC and the CTCN, and encourages them to further improve the reporting on this matter in their future joint annual reports, including on their efforts to address the challenges;
  • takes note of the collaboration of the TEC and the CTCN with the operating entities of the Financial Mechanism, constituted bodies under the Convention, and other relevant organizations; and
  • welcomes the information provided by the TEC and the CTCN on the monitoring and evaluation of the impact of their activities, and encourages them to continue reporting on this matter and to include information on tracking of progress and on methodologies used.

On TEC activities and performance in 2018, the COP invites:

  • parties and all relevant stakeholders working on technology development and transfer, when implementing climate technology action, to consider the recommendations of the TEC for follow-up actions based on the outcomes of the 2018 technical expert meetings, as well as its key messages for 2018 on climate technology entrepreneurship, South-South and triangular cooperation on climate technologies, and technology needs assessments, all of which are contained in the joint annual report; and
  • the TEC to continue enhancing its communication and outreach strategy with a view to expanding the reach of its outputs to national designated entities and other regional stakeholders.

On CTCN activities and performance in 2018, the COP inter alia:

  • notes the progress made in implementing its programme of work, that CTCN continues to face challenges that require attention regarding sustainable funding for implementing its functions, and that further financial support should be provided;
  • also notes that an increasing number of the technical assistance requests submitted to the CTCN are directly related to recommendations and priorities identified in technology needs assessments (TNAs), and encourages the CTCN to continue to prioritize the implementation of the outcome of the TNAs;
  • encourages the CTCN to enhance its engagement with the GCF with respect to utilizing the Readiness and Preparatory Support Programme and the Project Preparation Facility; and
  • decides to extend to two years the maximum term of office of members of the Advisory Board of the CTCN representing environmental NGOs, business and industry, and research and independent NGOs to allow their constituencies to contribute more effectively to the Board’s discussions and to bring their terms of office in line with those of the other members.

Poznan strategic programme on technology transfer: The SBI will continue consideration of this item at SBI 50.

Matters related to Capacity Building: Capacity building under the Convention, Annual technical progress report of the Paris Committee on Capacity-building (PCCB), Capacity building under the Kyoto Protocol: In its opening plenary, on 2 December, the SBI heard an oral introduction of the annual technical report of the PCCB (FCCC/SBI/2018/15). The SBI also took note of the summary report of the 7th Durban Forum on Capacity-building (FCCC/SBI/2018/13), and referred the three sub-items to informal consultations.

On 4 December, Jeniffer Collado (Dominican Republic) and Makoto Kato (Japan) co-facilitated informal consultations on all SBI capacity building sub-items. 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. Based on the inputs, the Co-Facilitators prepared draft text on both issues. These texts were discussed further in informal informal consultations.

In its closing plenary on 8 December, the SBI adopted conclusions and forwarded a draft decision to the COP.

Final Outcomes: In its conclusions on the annual technical progress report of the PCCB and review of the Committee (FCCC/SBI.2018/L.21), the SBI:

  • notes that the SBI initiated its work on the review of the progress, need for extension, effectiveness, and enhancement of the PCCB, with a view to recommending a draft decision on enhancing institutional arrangements for capacity building for consideration and adoption at COP 25;
  • invites parties and observers to submit their views on these matters by 31 March 2019 for consideration at SBI 50;
  • requests the Secretariat to prepare a compilation and synthesis of the submissions for consideration at SBI 50;
  • agrees that all available annual technical progress reports of the PCCB will serve as inputs for the review; and
  • agrees to continue its work on these matters at SBI 50 and 51.

In its decision on the annual technical progress report of the PCCB (FCCC/SBI/2018/L.21/Add.1), the COP:

  • invites parties, the operating entities of the Financial Mechanism, the constituted bodies under the Convention, UN organizations, observers, and other stakeholders to consider the recommendations of the 2018 PCCB report and to take any necessary action, as appropriate and in accordance with their mandates;
  • invites parties and relevant institutions to provide support and resources to the PCCB in implementing its rolling workplan for 2017-2019 in the light of the aim of the Committee established in decision 1/CP.21 (Paris Outcome); and
  • requests the SBI to thematically align future meetings of the Durban Forum with the annual focus area of the PCCB.

Response Measures: Improved forum and work programme: This joint SBI and SBSTA item (FCCC/SB/2018/INF.3 and 4) was first taken up on 2 December.

In a full day event on the review of the work of the improved forum on the impact of the implementation, co-facilitated by Andrei Marcu (Belize) and Keith Anderson (Switzerland), parties shared lessons learned from the improved forum. For more details, see http://enb.iisd.org/vol12/enb12737e.html

On 8 December, the SBI and SBSTA adopted their conclusions and forwarded draft conclusions to the COP. On 13 December, the COP adopted its conclusions on the improved forum on the impact of the implementation of response measures.

Final Outcomes: In their conclusions (FCCC/SB/2018/L.9) the SBI and SBSTA, inter alia, conclude the review of the work of the improved forum, take note of the range of views expressed during the review and recommend that they could be considered in developing the functions, work programme, and modalities of the forum that will serve the Paris Agreement. The conclusions list these as:

  • continuing to use the modalities of inviting submissions from parties and non-party stakeholders, preparing synthesis reports and technical papers, and organizing workshops, including regional;
  • collaborating with external experts, international organizations, and the private sector, and engaging with vulnerable groups and indigenous peoples;
  • undertaking technical work focusing on different sectors, including transportation, energy, agriculture, and tourism;
  • assessing and analyzing the impact of the implementation of response measures;
  • impacts of the implementation of response measures on economic development in relation to international trade, employment, just transition of the workforce, and the creation of decent work and quality jobs, and economic diversification and transformation;
  • establishing a permanent governance structure through a technical expert group;
  • a focused and effective work programme comprising the two areas of economic diversification and transformation; and just transition of the workforce and the creation of decent work and quality jobs; and
  • ensuring that the forum welcomes and includes all parties, encouraging participation by all, and is thus convened in conjunction with the sessions of the subsidiary bodies.

In its conclusions, (FCCC/SB/2018/L.9/Add.1), the COP, inter alia:

  • recalls decision 1/CP.21 (Paris outcome), paragraphs 33 and 34, and decision 11/CP.21 (on the forum and work programme);
  • notes the work undertaken by the improved forum and parties’ views on the work programme and modalities of the improved forum; and
  • takes note of the conclusions of the SBSTA and the SBI in relation to the review of the work of the improved forum and concludes the review.

Matters relating to Article 2.3 and 3.14 of the Kyoto Protocol (minimization of adverse impacts on developing country parties by Annex I parties): On 2 December the CMP decided this item would be addressed in SBI and SBSTA consultations “as needed.” On 15 December, they adopted a decision that was forwarded to the CMP.

Final Decision: In its decision (FCCC/KP/CMP/2018/L.5), the CMP:

  • acknowledges that the existing forum on the impact of the implementation of response measures serves the Kyoto Protocol in relation to matters under the Kyoto Protocol;
  • adopts the modalities, work programme, and functions of the forum on the impact of the implementation of response measures for the work of the forum under the Kyoto Protocol;
  • acknowledges that there is one single forum that covers the work of the COP, CMP, and CMA on all matters relating to the impact of the implementation of response measures; and
  • affirms that the forum shall continue to report to the CMP with respect to matters falling under Article 2.3 and 3.14, where the forum requires the guidance of the Conference of the Parties serving as the meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol.

Progress on the implementation of decision 1/CP.10 (Buenos Aires programme of work on adaptation and response measures: On 2 December, the plenary referred this item to the SBI and SBSTA. On 13 December, after hearing a report by SBI Chair Dlamini, the COP took note that the SBI agreed to continue its consideration of this matter at SBI 50.

On 15 December, the COP adopted a procedural decision similar to other agenda items on response measures.

Final Outcome: In its decision, (FCCC/CP/2018/L.19), the COP:

  • recalls decision 5/CMP.7, paragraph 4, and decision 1/CP.21, paragraph 33, by which it was decided, inter alia, that the forum on the impact of the implementation of response measures shall also serve the Kyoto Protocol and the Paris Agreement;
  • adopts the modalities, work programme and functions of the forum on the impact of the implementation of response measures as contained in the annex for the work of the forum under the Convention;
  • acknowledges that there is one single forum that covers the work of the COP, CMP, and CMA on all matters relating to the impact of the implementation of response measures; and
  • affirms that the forum on the impact of the implementation of response measures shall continue to report to the Conference of the Parties in respect of matters falling under Convention Article 4.8 and 4.10, where the forum requires the guidance of the COP.

Gender: This item (FCCC/SBI/2018/INF.15) was taken up in plenary on 2 December and subsequently in informal consultations, co-facilitated by Penda Kante Thiam (Senegal) and Colin O’Hehir (Ireland).

In informal consultations, the Secretariat presented 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.

On 8 December, the SBI adopted conclusions and forwarded draft decision to the COP.

Final Outcomes: In its conclusions (FCCC/SBI/2018/L.22), the SBI, inter alia:

  • reminds parties of the COP’s invitation to appoint, and provide support for, a national gender focal point, and noted that, to date, only 42 parties had appointed a gender focal point; and
  • encourages parties and observers to submit information by 31 August 2019 on the implementation of the gender action plan, identifying areas of progress, areas for improvement and further work to be undertaken in subsequent action plans so as to inform the synthesis report on this topic to be prepared by the Secretariat for consideration at SBI 51.

In its decision (FCCC/SBI/2018/L.22/Add.1), the COP, inter alia:

  • notes the progress made in enhancing the representation of women in constituted bodies and urged parties to improve the participation of women in their delegations, including in senior positions, and in all the bodies established under the Convention and its Kyoto Protocol; and
  • requests SBI 50 to initiate a review of the areas of progress, areas for improvement, and further work to be undertaken under the Lima work programme on gender and its gender action plan on the basis of all submissions received and reports produced under the Lima work programme and its gender action plan, with a view to the SBI forwarding recommendations on the outcome of the review for consideration and adoption at COP 25.

Report on activities related to Action for Climate Empowerment: On 2 December, the SBI took note of the summary report from the 6th Dialogue on Action for Climate Empowerment (FCCC/SBI/2018/19).

Administrative, Financial and Institutional Matters: Audit report and financial statements for 2017, Budget performance for the biennium 2018-2019, Budgetary matters, Continuing review of functions and operations of the Secretariat:On 2 December, the Secretariat introduced this item and its sub-items (FCCC/SBI/2018/16, Add.1, and Add.2). The SBI also heard an oral report by the UN Board of Auditors. This item was taken up in a contact group chaired by Amena Yauvoli (Fiji). On 8 December, the SBI adopted conclusions and forwarded draft COP and CMP decisions.

On 13 December, the COP and CMP adopted the decisions.

Final Decision: In the decisions (FCCC/SBI/2018/L.24/Add.1 and Add.2), the COP and CMP, respectively, inter alia:

  • express concern about the high level of outstanding contributions to the core budget for the current and previous bienniums, and strongly urge parties that have not made contributions in full to the core budget for the current and/or previous bienniums to do so without further delay;
  • call upon parties to make their contributions to the core budget for 2019 in a timely manner, bearing in mind that contributions are due on 1 January of each year in accordance with the financial procedures for the COP; and
  • urge parties to further contribute to the Trust Fund for Participation in the UNFCCC Process in order to ensure the widest possible participation in the negotiations in 2019, and to the Trust Fund for Supplementary Activities.

The COP and CMP further request the Executive Secretary to:

  • implement the recommendations of the auditors, as appropriate, in particular those related to outstanding contributions and the policies on hiring consultants and individual contractors, and to update parties on progress in the next audit report;
  • present the outcome of the review of the Secretariat’s operations and structure, including on the synergy and prioritization of its activities, with a view to reducing redundancies and increasing cost-efficiency, in the context of the programme budget for 2020-2021;
  • prepare, regularly update, and publish before each session of the subsidiary bodies brief reports on standard costs and, if available, options for reducing the cost of activities, where practicable;
  • provide budgetary cost implications in pre-session documents if they include suggestions for new mandates to the Secretariat and if sufficient information is available on the details of the proposed activities;
  • provide any other such information to parties as may be required to ensure that the budgetary implications of decisions and conclusions, including those proposed in pre-session documents, can be taken into account in advance of decision-making.

Closing Plenary: On 8 December, the SBI adopted the report of the session (FCCC/SBI/2018/L.20).

SBI Chair Dlamini presented the procedural draft conclusions on PAWP-related SBI items (FCCC/SBI/2018/L.28), which the SBI adopted:

  • common time frames;
  • development of a public registry referred to in Agreement Article 4.12 (NDCs);
  • development of a public registry referred to in Agreement Article 7.12 (adaptation communication);
  • matters referred to in paragraphs 41, 42, and 45 of decision 1/CP.21;
  • development and transfer of technologies: scope and modalities for the periodic assessment of the technology mechanism in relation to supporting the implementation of the Paris Agreement,
  • information to be provided in accordance with Agreement Article 9.5 (ex ante finance transparency); and
  • impact of the implementation of response measures: modalities, work programme, and functions under the Paris Agreement of the forum on the impact of the implementation of response measures.

Chair Dlamini closed the SBI at 9:15 pm.

Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice

Organizational Matters: Adoption of the agenda: SBSTA 49 adopted its agenda (FCCC/SBSTA/2018/7).

Election of Officers other than the Chair: Annela Anger-Kraavi (Estonia) was elected as Vice-Chair and Stella Funsani Gama (Malawi) was elected as Rapporteur.

Report of the WIM: This is summarized under the SBI on page 25.

Development and Transfer of Technologies: Joint annual report of the TEC and CTCN: This item is summarized under SBI on page 26.

Research and Systemic Observation: This item was first taken up in plenary on 2 December, and subsequently in informal consultations co-facilitated by Festus Luboyera (Uganda) and Stefan Roesner (Germany).

In informal consultations, views strongly diverged on whether to: “note,” “acknowledge,” or “welcome” the IPCC Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C; note “with concern” the World Meteorological Organization’s 2018 Statement on the State of the Global Climate and Greenhouse Gas Bulletin; and include specific global climate indicators such as atmospheric CO2.

In plenary on 10 December, Maldives, for AOSIS, supported by Colombia for AILAC, Republic of Korea for EIG, Ethiopia for the LDCs, Norway, the EU, Canada, New Zealand, Ghana, South Africa, Tanzania, Zambia, and Argentina urged “welcoming,” rather than “noting,” the IPCC Special Report on 1.5°C in the draft conclusions (FCCC/SBSTA/2018/L.19). Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and the Russian Federation opposed. The US said that the IPCC’s acceptance of the Report does not imply that the US endorsed it.

After a huddle, parties considered compromise language to “welcome the effort of the IPCC experts.” Many parties opposed, urging that the UNFCCC welcome the report. Invoking rule 16, SBSTA forwarded the issue for further consideration by SBSTA 50.

Local Communities and Indigenous Peoples Platform: This item was first taken up in plenary on 2 December 2018, and subsequently in informal consultations, co-facilitated by Annela Anger-Kraavi (Estonia) and Majid Shafie-Pour (Iran).

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 socio-cultural 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.

Indigenous peoples suggested that the process, where indigenous peoples had a seat at the table, sets an example for the future. Shafie-Pour invited nominations for the facilitative working group.

On 8 December, SBSTA recommended a decision to be adopted by the COP.

Final Outcome: In its decision (FCCC/SBSTA/2018/L.18), the COP, inter alia, decides:

  • to establish the LCIP Platform Facilitative Working Group;
  • that, striving for gender balance, the Facilitative Working Group shall comprise 14 representatives, with one party representative of each of the five UN regional groups, one representative of a SIDS party, one representative of a LDC party, seven representatives from indigenous peoples organizations, one from each of the seven UN indigenous socio-cultural regions, and that all shall serve for a term of three years;
  • that the Facilitative Working Group shall operate on the basis of consensus, meet twice per year in conjunction with subsidiary bodies and COP sessions, and the meetings shall be open to parties and observers;
  • that the Facilitative Working Group, under an incremental approach, will propose an initial two-year workplan for the period 2020-2021 for implementing the functions of the Platform for consideration by SBSTA 51 (November 2019);
  • that the workplan take into account experiences from any activities that have already taken place under the Platform, and may include annual in-session events in conjunction with the COP and the SBSTA, on which summary reports, which could be of a technical nature, would be prepared by the Facilitative Working Group;
  • that the initial mandate for the Facilitative Working Group will span three years, to be extended as determined by a review; and
  • that the meetings of the Facilitative Working Group shall be open to parties and observers under the Convention.

The COP also:

  • requests the Facilitative Working Group to report on its outcomes, including a draft second three-year workplan, and on the activities of the Platform, for consideration by COP 27 through SBSTA 54 (May-June 2021);
  • decides that SBSTA will review the outcomes and activities of the Facilitative Working Group; and
  • requests the SBSTA to consider, in the context of the review and taking into account progress related to the representation of local communities, the addition of at least three additional representatives to represent local communities, as well as a process for the appointment of such representatives, and an equal number of party representatives, with a view to recommending a draft decision on the representation of local communities on the Platform for consideration and adoption by COP 27 (November 2021).

The COP requests the Secretariat:

  • with the support of the Facilitative Working Group, to make the work of the Platform widely accessible, including through the development of a dedicated web portal on the Platform on the UNFCCC website;
  • to organize a thematic in-session workshop, in conjunction with SBSTA 50 (June 2019), on enhancing the participation of local communities, in addition to indigenous peoples, in the Platform;
  • to develop, under the incremental approach for the operationalization of the Platform, activities related to the implementation of all three functions of the Platform, at each SBSTA session until the workplan is adopted, and invites parties, observers, and other stakeholders to submit their views on possible activities via the submission portal by 28 February 2019; and
  • to support and facilitate the work of the Facilitative Working Group.

Koronivia Joint Work on Agriculture: This item is summarized under SBI on page 24.

Response Measures: This item is summarized under the SBI on page 27.

Bunker Fuels: This item was first taken up by the SBSTA plenary on 2 December and subsequently in informal consultations co-facilitated by Luiz Andrade (Brazil) and Bert van Loon (Belgium).

In plenary, Saudi Arabia recalled that parties were unable to reach consensus on this issue at SBSTA 48 and emphasized that parties had therefore not extended an invitation to the ICAO and International Maritime Organization (IMO) to report on their work at SBSTA 49. SBSTA Chair Watkinson highlighted that, although no conclusion was adopted during the last meeting, parties had at previous meetings issued a standing invitation to the ICAO and IMO to inform SBSTA at its future meetings.

On 8 December, the SBI applied rule 16 and agreed to take this issue up again at SBSTA 50.

Reports on Other Activities: On 2 December, the SBSTA took note of reports on other activities (FCCC/SBSTA/2018/INF.3, INF.4, and INF.5).

The IPCC highlighted its Special Report on 1.5°C of global warming, stressing that “every bit of warming matters.”

The World Meteorological Organization reported on the current state of climate indicators, including GHG concentrations, global average mean temperature, and extent of sea ice.

ICAO reported that its Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA) became effective in October 2018.

The IMO reported on actions and commitment to reduce emissions from international shipping, including its adoption of the Initial IMO Strategy in April 2018 and work on technology cooperation and capacity building.

Saudi Arabia restated his previous concern regarding the invitation to ICAO and IMO to make statements during this session.

Annual report on the technical review of information reported under the Convention by Annex I Parties in their biennial reports and national communications: SBSTA took note of the technical report on this matter (FCCC/SBSTA/2018/INF.5).

Annual report on the technical review of GHG inventories of Annex I Parties: SBSTA took note of the technical review on this matter (FCCC/SBSTA/2018/INF.3).

Annual report on the technical review of GHG inventories and other information reported by Annex I Parties: SBSTA took note of the technical review on this matter (FCCC/SBSTA/2018/INF.4).

Closing Plenary: The SBSTA adopted its report (FCCC/SBSTA/2018/L.17).

Chair Watkinson noted “mixed progress,” highlighting the decision on the LCIP Platform as an “excellent result” while expressing disappointment about the lack of a decision on research and systematic observation. He closed the SBSTA at 9:18 pm.

The SBSTA, SBI, and APA heard closing statements together in a joint plenary on 8 December.

In their statements, many groups thanked the presiding officers. Several lamented the SBSTA’s inability to agree on appropriate language regarding the IPCC Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5 °C.

The EU looked forward to a strong outcome from the Talanoa Dialogue.

Maldives, for AOSIS, noted deep concern over the slow pace of progress thus far and underscored that his group “stands ready to do everything for this COP to be a success.”

Ethiopia, for the LDCs, called for more adequately capturing parties’ views in iterations of draft text and emphasized the need to preserve the integrity of the Paris Agreement.

Iran, for the LMDCs, opposed attempts to renegotiate the Paris Agreement through the work under its work programme and called for reflecting differentiation and equity in all modalities.

The Democratic Republic of the Congo, for the Coalition for Rainforest Nations, called for including all sectors in the Paris Agreement.

Brazil, on behalf of Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay, said that although there was progress during the week, the current status of negotiations showed a “clear misbalance across different topics.”

Indonesia called for a “balanced, comprehensive outcome” that is applicable to all while maintaining the principle of CBDR-RC.

Joint COP/CMP/CMA Closing Plenary

The joint COP/CMP/CMA closing plenary convened late on 15 December. Parties adopted a resolution expressing gratitude to the Government of Poland and people of the city of Katowice (FCCC/CP/2018/L.2) and the reports of the COP 24 (FCCC/CP/2018/L.1), CMP 14 (FCCC/KP/CMP/2018/L.2), and CMA 1-3 (FCCC/PA/CMA/2018/L.2).

UNFCCC Executive Secretary Espinosa read out a message from UN Secretary-General António Guterres, in which he notes that: Katowice has shown resilience of the Paris Agreement; the approval of the Paris Agreement rule book is the basis for a transformative process; and science has shown that we need enhanced ambition to defeat climate change.

UNFCCC Executive Secretary Espinosa thanked UN Secretary-General Guterres for his extraordinary engagement, leadership, support, and presence in this process.

Egypt, for the G-77/China, stressed that he fears a “mitigation-centric regime in the making,” where the urgent adaptation needs of developing countries are relegated to “second-class status.” He underscored that efforts to strengthen the regime must recall the principles of CBDR and equity.

Switzerland, for the EIG, welcomed the outcome as robust guidance that provides parties with the necessary tools to implement collective and individual commitments under the Paris Agreement. He noted concern about the lack of agreement on the guidance on cooperative approaches for Agreement Article 6, saying the disagreement leaves the package unfinished.

Australia, for the Umbrella Group, welcomed the outcomes on NDCs, adaptation, the transparency framework, the GST, and finance and means of implementation. He noted commitment to work with parties to secure a strong and robust outcome to operationalize Article 6 at COP 25.

Welcoming a “balanced and solid result” that makes the Paris Agreement operational, the EU highlighted the GST as the “central innovation” of the Paris Agreement. He called on parties to reflect the results of the Talanoa Dialogue in their national policies and long-term strategies.

Ethiopia, for the LDCs, said he was pleased to have adopted the rules, but lamented parties’ inability to complete work on Article 6 and called for further addressing loss and damage. He called for the report of the session to reflect that the LDCs wholeheartedly and unequivocally welcome the IPCC Special Report on 1.5°C.

Maldives, for AOSIS, welcomed binding language on NDC guidance for ICTU and its clear focus on mitigation, but noted concern on the 2028 review date, saying this would be too late for vulnerable countries. He welcomed language under the transparency framework and GST that reflected progress on the issue of loss and damage and underscored that real support needs to be delivered soon.

Saudi Arabia, for the Arab Group, highlighted that his group is committed to fully respecting the Paris Agreement in a manner consistent with the principle of CBDR-RC. He emphasized the group had some reservations throughout the negotiations, but nevertheless demonstrated flexibility in agreeing to the decisions.

Colombia, for AILAC, expressed deep concern over unresolved issues related to Agreement Article 6, stressed the need to deliver on the objective of a global transformation towards low-emissions and resilient development, and called for strengthening guidelines and stepping up ambition.

Gabon, for the African Group, welcomed the outcome of the PAWP and highlighted the need for a similar commitment to ensure adequate means of implementation. He expressed the expectation of enhanced flows of finance and technology to developing countries to unlock their potential to take part in global action to combat climate change.

Malaysia, for the LMDCs, said that we cannot ignore the past in understanding the present and planning for the future. Underscoring the historically larger share of the global carbon space occupied by developed countries, and that developing countries’ right to development depends on a fair share of carbon space, he called for the operationalization of equity in the GST.

India, for Brazil, South Africa, India, and China, welcomed the formulation of the guidelines and the development of a workable implementation of the Paris Agreement, but reminded that the IPCC report shows much work remains to be done. He recalled commitments to CBDR-RC, saying that this means ensuring climate justice to the poor and vulnerable.

India, speaking in his national capacity, expressed his reservation on the treatment of equity in the decision on the GST. He explicated that paragraph 34 (outputs in relation to the thematic areas) of that decision and its paragraph 6(b) (thematic areas of the GST) should take the entire Agreement article that refers to equity into account.

CAN said the outcome is not a credible response to the planetary emergency of climate change, urging parties to pursue domestic processes to step up climate action.

Climate Justice Now! said the outcome is a failure “on every test,” emphasizing that parties have not committed to begin a managed decline and just transition of the fossil fuel industry and “we deserve better.”

Encouraging governments to continue collaboration with businesses, BINGOs underscored the need to scale up innovative low-carbon solutions.

Farmers called for the Koronivia Joint Work on Agriculture to make a real difference to the livelihoods of farmers, by transforming agricultural and food systems, and stressed the need for an ambitious financing framework to ensure that no farmers are left behind.

Indigenous Peoples congratulated delegates for the operationalization of the LCIP Platform, but said he is deeply disappointed to see language on human rights missing from the rulebook text, noting without these references the text is incomplete.

Local Governments and Municipal Authorities welcomed the outputs of the Talanoa Dialogues and the decision on the Standing Committee on Finance focusing on sustainable cities as topic for its 2019 forum.

Women and Gender underscored that climate change causes loss and damage, and called on all parties to recognize this reality, stressing it as unacceptable that the most vulnerable are paying the climate change bill.

Youth NGOs called for: the protection of the rights of children, youth and future generations; domestic actions through strong and binding legislation; and more ambitious NDCs and the fulfillment of existing obligations, including in the areas of climate finance, divestments, and sustainable transportation.

Kurtyka gaveled COP 24 to a close at 12:09 am, CMP 14 at 12:16 am, and CMA 1-3 at 12:36 am.

A Brief Analysis of the Katowice Climate Change Conference

“From now on it is only through a conscious choice and through a deliberate policy that humanity can survive.” Pope John Paul II

In a world facing the increasingly devastating impacts of climate change, the Katowice Conference was a pivotal moment. With the deadline to finalize the Paris Agreement “rulebook” looming, parties needed to overcome long-standing disagreements and hammer out the technical details of a robust and ambitious post-2020 climate regime.

But much has changed in the three years since Paris. Despite the clear warnings of science and the steady drumbeat of extreme weather events worldwide, global emissions increased in 2017. The political context has shifted, with a marked turn away from multilateralism to populism and, in some cases, opposition to scientific evidence. The transition to a zero-emissions economy is not yet fully underway, a fact made clear by the location of the Katowice Climate Conference in the heart of Poland’s coal-producing region.

Despite these political headwinds, the long-standing disagreements among countries, and the technical complexity of the task, COP 24 delivered. The “Katowice Climate Package” adopted late on Saturday, 15 December, puts in place a set of implementation guidelines that were considered by many to be sufficiently robust. But does it establish the strong and stable institutional framework needed to implement the Paris Agreement? And, given the signals of increasing urgency, what does this framework mean for ambition in the post-2020 era? This brief analysis will examine the rulebook in more detail by focusing on key parameters of success, namely: resolution of contentious political issues; delivering effective guidelines for a dynamic architecture; and building the basis for increased ambition.

The Road to the Rulebook

COP 24 had one clear goal: to deliver the “rulebook.” After three years of difficult negotiations, parties had two final weeks to turn the Paris Agreement’s broad commitments into the detailed technical guidance needed to measure mitigation, account for finance, and ensure transparency. Since establishing this deadline at COP 22 in Marrakesh, countries had barely budged from their negotiating positions. And despite an extra negotiating session in Bangkok in September 2018, delegates arrived in Katowice with fundamental differences yet to be resolved in a 236-page text.

These differences were both long-standing––rooted in historical debates about responsibility and leadership––and specific to differing interpretations of the Paris Agreement itself. The primary sticking point was differentiation. Developing countries have long argued that they should be granted flexibility in their mitigation efforts, while developed countries have sought common rules that will hold all, especially emerging economies, equally accountable. The Paris Agreement provided little clarity on this issue. While it broke the binary division between Annex I and non-Annex I parties, it replaced this with language that is either ambiguous or varies across different provisions. For example, in financing provisions, the Paris Agreement introduced the concept of “other parties” that are encouraged to provide voluntary support. Establishing a “robust” rulebook therefore required resolving these ambiguities in a way that balances developing countries’ differing capacities with clear and common guidance that ensures higher ambition.

Additionally, parties had to overcome simmering distrust about the sufficiency and predictability of financial support to developing countries, which they regard as crucial to enhance their ambition. In the past year, this distrust had crystallized in debates over “Article 9.5” (indicative information on provision of finance) and the process to establish a new long-term finance goal. As negotiations proceeded slowly during the first week, and chaotically behind closed doors during the second, some expressed fear that the divides over differentiation and finance would simply be too broad to bridge, and that another Copenhagen catastrophe could be in the making.

Parties delivered despite these fears. But how strong is the Katowice Climate Package? The rulebook could be expected to deliver stronger ambition in at least four ways. First, by resolving politically difficult issues left lingering from Paris. Second, by balancing the need for binding and prescriptive guidance with the need for flexibility, to maximize both effectiveness and participation by all countries. Third, by enabling a dynamic agreement through strong collective and individual review mechanisms and timelines for revisiting its guidelines. Fourth, by addressing all relevant issues now, as opposed to leaving them for future negotiations.

A Balanced Rulebook

Resolving long-standing issues was a prerequisite for a successful outcome, as parties would only agree to what they perceived to be a balanced package. The ministerial negotiations during the second week were crucial for unlocking the agreement on the two most contentious issues: differentiation and finance. In the final agreement, more uniform and mitigation-centric NDC guidance, which developed countries see as central to the Agreement, is balanced with improved processes for financial support for developing countries.

In guidance for communicating and accounting for mitigation targets, the majority view of creating a common set of elements that each country would apply based on the type of its NDC?an absolute emission reduction target or a relative emission intensity target, for example?prevailed over long-standing calls for a binary set of rules, one for developed and another for developing countries, which had been supported by the Like-minded Developing Countries and Arab Group. These groups also called for a “full scope” approach to guidance on NDCs, by which countries would communicate their mitigation intentions together with their plans on adaptation and means of implementation. The agreed guidance focuses on mitigation but, in an acknowledgement to these countries, allows for inclusion in NDCs of information on adaptation and on mitigation co-benefits resulting from adaptation actions or economic diversification plans.

Developing countries’ calls for a clear process to assess and review developed countries’ indicative finance provision reports were heeded. The agreed guidance in this area (Paris Agreement Article 9.5) now provides for synthesis reports, workshops, and ministerial meetings that will focus on evaluating finance information and, undoubtedly, its sufficiency.

Developing countries also welcomed an agreement to initiate, in 2020, deliberations on setting the new collective quantified finance goal for the post-2025 period. Under the Paris Outcome, countries agreed to set this goal, but developed countries had so far demonstrated unwillingness to even set a date for starting discussions. While the rationale for this position was not openly spelled out, many attributed this initial reluctance to discuss the new finance goal to the US walking away from the Agreement as well as political and economic challenges in many industrialized countries.

Also significant for developing countries was the final decision on the Adaptation Fund, as many of these countries consider adaptation finance a top priority. The Adaptation Fund, which currently serves the Kyoto Protocol and receives shares of proceeds from its offsetting mechanisms, will now exclusively serve the Paris Agreement once the share of proceeds from the Paris Agreement offsetting mechanism becomes available. The Fund will also be financed by voluntary public and private sources.

An Effective Rulebook

Reaching compromise on the politically-challenging issues of differentiation and finance enabled parties to focus on developing guidance that would be binding and detailed enough while maximizing participation. Many did not expect countries to reach an outcome that contains both legally-binding language, such as “shall” or “should,” and prescriptive guidance that ensures information communicated by countries is clear and comparable. However, the overall sense was that the 97 pages of operational guidelines delivered by parties in Katowice represent a commendable outcome in both regards.

The transparency framework, which, together with the global stocktake, is often considered to be the core component of the Paris Agreement’s “ambition mechanism,” delivers on all these parameters: the detailed guidance on countries’ reporting and review obligations establishes that all parties “shall” submit transparency reports every two years. The transparency guidelines include elements that are common for all parties, including common reporting tables and a requirement to submit the first report by 2024, but they also allow for flexibility for developing countries in the scope, frequency, and level of detail of reporting. However, developing countries are also required to explain why they need the flexibility and provide self-determined time frames to improve reporting. In many areas of the rulebook, including transparency, the guidelines also give the most vulnerable countries, namely LDCs and SIDS, added flexibility in terms of how and when they apply the guidance.

It was also crucial that the guidance emerging from Katowice enable the Paris Agreement to become the dynamic ambition mechanism it was intended to be, with comprehensive rules for five-year cycles for submitting national plans, or NDCs, and reviewing their implementation, on the one hand, and a robust system for taking stock of collective progress, on the other. The global stocktake, which is the central mechanism for this latter purpose, was duly operationalized, but left some discouraged. Many observers from the environmental NGO and research community, as well as a large number of developing countries, felt that there is insufficient guidance on how to consider equity in the inputs and outputs of the stocktake. Observers also lamented what they felt was a near-exclusion of non-party stakeholders from the process, with their role reduced to making submissions and not, for example, participating in the consideration of outputs from the stocktake. Some fear that without accounting for equity or engaging non-party stakeholders, the global stocktake could be less effective in holding countries accountable and in presenting a sufficiently comprehensive overview of global efforts.

The guidelines from Katowice also give some teeth to the implementation and compliance committee, which, as set in Paris, has a facilitative role only, but is now empowered to initiate, of its own accord, consideration of non-compliance in certain cases. These include when a country has not communicated or maintained a NDC, submitted its transparency report, or, in the case of a developed country, its indicative finance report.

A further dimension of the rulebook’s contribution to dynamism is how it mandates adjustments to the rules over time. Many sections of the Katowice package set timeframes for review and possible revision of the guidance. One such example is the guidance on information and accounting related to mitigation, which is mandated to happen in 2028, even if some groups, such as AOSIS, felt that this will come too late.

Finally, one of the most important accomplishments of the Katowice outcome is that parties were able to agree to most elements of the Paris Agreement Work Programme. Failing to agree would have weakened external perceptions of countries’ determination to implement the Agreement and damaged the credibility of the UNFCCC process. The only major exception was cooperative approaches under Article 6 relating to guidance for international transfers of mitigation outcomes, rules for the Agreement’s carbon offsetting mechanism, and a work programme for non-market-based approaches. Decisions on all these items were postponed to the next CMA session in 2019 due to what many described as one country’s opposition to strict rules on double counting of emission reductions. This refusal caused negotiations to stretch late into Saturday as countries sought to save the work accomplished during this session and to agree to key rules and institutional arrangements, which they felt were important to provide a signal of continuity to markets and the private sector.

Parties’ inability to resolve the future role of markets in the institutional architecture of the Paris Agreement at COP 24 did not necessarily weaken the outcome, but will need to be quickly resolved.

A Rulebook that Enables Ambition

The “1,000 little steps countries took together” to reach agreement on the rulebook adopted in Katowice will undoubtedly help “move us one step further to realizing the ambition enshrined in the Paris Agreement,” as noted by COP 24 President Micha? Kurtyka upon gaveling the package through. The rulebook itself sends an important political message that the Paris Agreement is alive and well. But what does it mean for more ambitious climate action going forward?

Many who came to Poland expected further political signals on ambition, in the form of a strong outcome, or perhaps even a continuation of the Talanoa Dialogue, broadly considered as a “pre-global stocktake” of sorts, initiated by the Fijian COP 23 Presidency and based on a Pacific storytelling tradition. There were also calls for decision text encouraging countries to enhance their NDCs by 2020. Instead, the “Katowice Climate Package,” decision, which contains the Paris rulebook and also other sections with more political messages, merely “takes note” of the Dialogue and invites parties to consider its outcome in preparing their NDCs. Some also noted that there were fewer announcements of new climate finance than at previous COPs, which they felt indicated reduced commitment by developed countries to support ambition of developing countries.

Non-party stakeholders are considered crucial to help raise ambition both by increasing the transparency of the negotiation process and as important contributors to climate action. Many observers lamented the fact that the entire second week of negotiations unfolded behind closed doors with few reports back from the ministerial consultations. Some also noted a diminished focus on the Global Climate Action Agenda, kickstarted in 2014 to orchestrate broad coalitions of the willing and incorporate these actors into the formerly exclusively intergovernmental regime. While diminished transparency may have been necessary to allow for resolution of the most politically-difficult issues at this COP, some expressed doubts about the UNFCCC’s ability to institutionalize the participation of a broader set of actors in the longer term.

Vulnerable countries, in particular, also hoped for political signals on determination to keep global warming below 1.5°C, considered a question of survival by many small island states. In this regard, resistance by four countries—Saudi Arabia, the US, Russia, and Kuwait—to “welcome” the IPCC Special Report on 1.5°C during the first week created a media tsunami, which may have compensated for the lack of strong language on the report in the final package decision. The least developed countries and small island developing states were also disappointed with what they described as continued sidelining of the issue of loss and damage and stressed the urgency to provide real financial support.

The Katowice COP delivered on its mandate and now parties must turn the page to a new era of implementation and higher ambition. As noted by UN Secretary-General António Guterres, in a speech read at the closing of the conference by UNFCCC Executive Secretary Patricia Espinosa: the priorities now are “ambition, ambition, ambition, ambition, and ambition,” on mitigation, adaptation, finance, technological cooperation, capacity building, and innovation. In this regard, many delegates left Katowice feeling cautiously uplifted, looking ahead to 2019 when the UN Secretary-General, who personally facilitated the negotiations during the second week, will hold a Climate Summit to raise ambition ahead of the crucial year of 2020, when many countries will deliver updated NDCs and the Paris Agreement will face its first true litmus test.

Upcoming Meetings

55th Meeting of the GEF Council: The Council is the GEF’s main governing body that meets twice annually to develop, adopt, and evaluate the operational policies and programmes for GEF-financed activities. It also reviews and approves the work programme (projects submitted for approval).  dates: 17-20 December 2018  location: Washington D.C., US  contact: GEF Secretariat email: https://www.thegef.org/contact www: http://www.thegef.org/council-meetings/gef-55th-council-meeting

High-level Meeting: Climate Protection for All: This meeting is organized following a mandate from the UN General Assembly (UNGA resolution 72/219) on the protection of the global climate for present and future generations, in the context of the economic, social and environmental dimensions of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The High-level meeting will focus on: synergies between the climate and sustainable development agendas; long-term planning and the consideration of future generations in implementation; and means of implementation: financing, capacity building, low-carbon technologies. date: 28 March 2019 location: UN Headquarters, New York contact: Hana Alhashimi, Office of UNGA President phone: +1-646-799-1332 email: [email protected] www: https://www.un.org/pga/73/2018/12/05/high-level-meeting-on-climate-and-sustainable-development-for-all/

IPCC-49: This meeting of the IPCC will approve the 2019 Refinement to the 2006 National GHG Inventories. dates: 8-12 May 2019 location: Kyoto, Japan phone: +41-22-730-8208/54/84 fax: +41-22-730-8025/13 email: [email protected] www: http://www.ipcc.ch/

56th Meeting of the GEF Council: The 56th meeting of the GEF Council is tentatively scheduled to take place in June to develop, adopt and evaluate the operational policies and programs for GEF-financed activities and to review and approve the work program (projects submitted for approval). dates: 10-13 June 2019 (TBC) location: Washington D.C., US contact: GEF Secretariat email: https://www.thegef.org/contact www: https://www.thegef.org/council-meetings

50th Sessions of the UNFCCC Subsidiary Bodies: The 50th sessions of the UNFCCC Subsidiary Bodies will meet in June 2019. dates: 17-28 June 2019 location: Bonn, Germany contact: UNFCCC Secretariat phone: +49-228-815-1000 fax: +49-228-815-1999 email: [email protected] www: https://unfccc.int/event/first-sessional-period-sb-50

IPCC-50: The 50th session of the IPCC is tentatively meeting in August 2019. dates: 13-17 August 2019 (TBC) location: TBC phone: +41-22-730-8208/54/84 fax: +41-22-730-8025/13 email: [email protected] www: http://www.ipcc.ch/

High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF) 2019: HLPF 2019 will address the theme “Empowering people and ensuring inclusiveness and equality.” It will conduct an in-depth review of SDG 4 (quality education), SDG 8 (decent work and economic growth), SDG 10 (reduced inequalities), SDG 13 (climate action), and SDG 16 (peace, justice and strong institutions), in addition to SDG 17 (partnerships for the Goals), which is reviewed each year. dates: 9-18 July 2019 location: UN Headquarters, New York contact: UN Division for Sustainable Development Goals fax: +1-212-963-4260 www: https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/hlpf/2019

IPCC-51: The 51st session of the IPCC is expected to approve the summary for policymakers of the special report on the ocean and cryosphere in a changing climate. dates: 20-23 September 2019 location: Principality of Monaco phone: +41-22-730-8208/54/84 fax: +41-22-730-8025/13 email: [email protected] www: http://www.ipcc.ch/

UN 2019 Climate Summit: UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres will convene a summit to mobilize political and economic energy at the highest levels to advance climate action that will enable implementation of many of the goals of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The UN 2019 Climate Summit will convene on the theme “A Race We Can Win. A Race We Must Win,” and seek to challenge states, regions, cities, companies, investors, and citizens to step up action in six areas: energy transition, climate finance and carbon pricing, industry transition, nature-based solutions, cities and local action, and resilience. date: 23 September 2019 location: UN Headquarters, New York www: http://www.un.org/climatechange/

SDG Summit: The High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development under the auspices of the United Nations General Assembly, will assess progress achieved so far since the adoption of the 2030 Agenda in September 2015 and provide leadership and guidance on the way forward that would help accelerate implementation of the 2030 Agenda and SDGs. dates: 24-25 September 2019 location: UN Headquarters, New York contact: UN Division for Sustainable Development Goals fax: +1-212-963-4260 www: https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/summit2019

2019 UN Climate Change Conference (UNFCCC COP 25): The 25th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 25), the 15th meeting of the Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (CMP), and the second meeting of the Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Paris Agreement (CMA) will convene. dates: 11-22 November 2019 (TBC) location: Chile contact: UNFCCC Secretariat phone: +49-228-815-1000 fax: +49-228-815-1999

email: [email protected] www: https://unfccc.int

For additional meetings, see http://sdg.iisd.org/

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