Warsaw-Lima-Paris: on the way to a new climate agreement

In December, representatives of the states meet in Lima (Peru) at the UN Climate Conference - COP 20. The outcome of the event should be a draft of a comprehensive agreement to be signed in 2015. Representatives of public environmental organizations urge countries to work together to prepare an ambitious and meaningful new agreement.position NGO Lima COP

At the UN Conference on Climate Change in Warsaw at the end of 2013, the countries agreed to start preparing contributions to climate actions determined at national levels, which should be included in the 2015 agreement.

On the eve of the meeting of the parties in Lima in September of this year, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon held a summit of heads of states and leaders of the private sector, the main aim of which was acceleration of climate actions and increasing ambition of climate commitments by countries and corporations.

By the end of the negotiations at the latest climate meeting in Bonn (Germany), several countries have designated ideas and proposals aimed at increasing ambition of domestic commitments and transition to a more low-carbon economy. Technical expert meetings started, as well as the process of promoting policies and initiatives that contribute to reduction of greenhouse gas emissions during the time period up to 2020. The technical events during the meeting have focused on renewable energy and energy efficiency – the two areas where technological progress can help countries to quickly achieve the goal of sustainable development.

The forthcoming December meeting of the parties in Lima is called an important step in preparation of the new agreement. The future of the climate process and the planet as a whole depends largely from what would be a draft document. Many call the talks, which will be held in South America, the "Feast of tropical forests - REDD +». It is also planned to discuss the global goals of adaptation - financial, institutional and technological parts of the process.

Some experts are predicting "slippage" for the so-called "core issues" of all conferences of the parties before the decisive conference. It is expected that the key points - the results of bilateral and private agreements between China, EU, US, India, etc. - will not be made public and will remain behind the scenes.

The format of intended nationally determined contributions (INDC) - their position in the documents of the new agreement is an important issue. According to Olga Senova, the head of the Climate Secretariat of the Russian Social Ecological Union, Russia as one of the largest emitters of greenhouse gases can make a significant contribution to the actions within the new agreement – both in emissions reductions and in support for adaptation. This will meet the national interests of sustainable economic development based on energy efficiency and reduce dependence on fossil fuels.

Prior to the meeting in Lima, Russian environmental NGOs have formulated their Position. They call on Russia to take strong commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions for the period up to 2030. Also, environmentalists believe it is important for the Russian Federation to become one of the participants of the New York Declaration on Forests in 2015. According to representatives of environmental organizations, nuclear and large hydropower cannot be regarded as environmentally sound solutions to reduce the impact on the climate, while the priority of low-carbon development shall be energy efficiency and renewable energy, which requires increased state support for these sectors.

This position of NGOs was developed at the 7th All-Russian Conference of the Russian Social Ecological Union, which was attended by 76 representatives from 28 regions of eight federal districts of the Russian Federation: the Far East, Siberia, the Urals, Volga, Central, North-West, South and Crimea.

The new agreement, according to the environmentalists, must be global one and involve equal participation of all major countries - emitters of greenhouse gases. Environmental activists find unacceptable to separate countries on the basis of Annex 1 of the UN Convention on Climate Change.

The Position reads: "The new agreement must include numerical commitments (contributions of countries) to global emission reductions and emission reduction targets that correspond to the scenario with holding the rise in global temperature below 2 °C at the end of the 21st century. One of the important conditions of the new agreement shall be its mandatory ratification by all major emitting countries: China, US, India, and Russia”.