Bonn climate conference shows disconnect between action and reality at ground: CAN

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Bonn: The Climate Action Network (CAN) has claimed that the Bonn Climate Conference showed the disconnect between the negotiation rooms and the reality on the ground of people suffering from climate-induced loss and damage.
“Discussions across various issues offered no new breakthroughs – on overall finance, adaptation and emission reduction actions” a statement from CAN, a consortium of climate activists said.

It said despite their reassurances from COP26 to take finance and addressing loss and damage seriously through the last two weeks rich countries, particularly the EU, Switzerland and the USA, consistently stalled progress on discussions on loss and damage on the Santiago Network on Loss and Damage and on putting loss and damage finance on the formal agenda towards getting an outcome on a loss and damage finance facility from COP27″ it said.

Bonn Climate Conference was looked upon as the go-between for the COP26 and COP27, the last year’s and this year’s annual climate summit.

Amongst the main agenda items asks for global south – were the finance for loss and damage and enhanced action by the rich nations when it comes to cutting down emissions to keep the overall global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius compared to the historic levels.

“The stark warnings from the IPCC report earlier this year and recent climate catastrophes all around the world seem to have made no dent in the moral and political landscape of historical polluters” the statement said.

It added that while countries like Germany shop around for new sources of fossil fuels in the context of a brutal war in Ukraine, they refuse to commit to additional and scaled-up finance for communities who have done the least to cause this climate crisis and are experiencing unavoidable impacts even at 1.2°C.

Developing countries stand united in their demand for a loss and damage finance facility and ask for discussions on loss and damage finance to be on the agenda at COP27.

“This uncertainty and lack of leadership from rich polluters set up challenges ahead of the G7 summit in two weeks, and in building trust before COP27” CAN alleged.

Chiara Martinelli, Director, Climate Action Network Europe, said: “People and the planet cannot afford the EU’s irresponsibility and lack of ambition that we have witnessed over the last weeks in Bonn and at home. The EU completely misses the point of what it is to be a climate leader. The EU should stop blocking progress on loss and damage and increase finance for adaptation.”

Harjeet Singh, senior climate impacts adviser, Climate Action Network International, said: “The last two weeks exposed the EU’s hypocritical stance, with major countries such as Germany sourcing new fossil fuels abroad while denying support to developing countries facing devastation from climate-induced super storms and rising seas. If the EU wants to step up as a climate champion it needs to align with the most vulnerable in their fight for justice.”

“Undelivered climate finance and action by rich countries are standing in the way of future action by all. Countries are falling back into old habits of holding one issue hostage to another issue dear to them. So when some countries block progress on loss and damage finance and responding to increasing impacts of climate change, others block progress on mitigation. The process must lead to action, and urgency must be at the centre of all actions and processes if we are to have a successful COP27 in Sharm el-Sheikh.” said Mark Lutes, WWF Head of Delegation.

David Waskow, International Climate Director, World Resources Institute said “This UN meeting elevated the severe losses and damages that vulnerable countries face from climate change higher than any negotiations have before but failed to clarify how to address the problem. While developed countries acknowledged the need to address such damages, they rebuffed requests from vulnerable nations to work toward establishing a new funding mechanism.

“Perhaps the most decisive outcome from these talks is that developed countries now realize that the chorus calling for solutions to loss and damage is only getting louder and addressing this issue is a central measure of success for the UN climate summit in Egypt.

“Now the pressure is on for leaders to pick up the slack and use upcoming diplomatic gatherings to deliver the political momentum that is needed ahead of COP27. Key opportunities include the G7 Summit and Petersberg Dialogue” he added.

The Bonn Climate Change Conference comes to a close today after two weeks of intense work to make progress on important technical issues and prepare decisions for adoption at the UN Climate Change Conference (COP27) in Sharm el-Sheikh in November.

The Bonn Climate Change Conference has been the first opportunity for all Parties to the UNFCCC to meet since the adoption of the Glasgow Climate Pact at COP26 last year. In Glasgow, governments agreed a package of decisions that pave the way for full implementation of the Paris Agreement.

Marianne Karlsen, the Chair of the Subsidiary Body for Implementation (SBI) said: “The Global Stocktake and other discussions at the Bonn Climate Conference have demonstrated the many gaps that exist in climate action, but also the opportunities. I am heartened that governments and numerous stakeholders have been showcasing solutions, opportunities, innovations and best practices from throughout the world. And we have seen unprecedented engagement on the part of non-Party stakeholders who have a key role to play in helping governments achieve their climate goals.”

“The international community has yet to live up to its commitment to mobilize USD 100 billion annually in climate finance for developing countries. And these countries are calling for an overall substantial increase in finance, especially finance for adaptation and loss and damage, which is crucial to build a more sustainable and resilient future,” the UN’s top climate change official Ms. Espinosa said

The UN Climate Change Conference COP27 will take place in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, 6-18 November of this year.

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