Hundreds of world leaders gathered in Paris today to officially kick off the highly anticipated global climate talks. This is a critical moment for the future our life here on Earth. The conference is expected to produce a new and binding global climate accord, which could shape the ways in which we live, govern, create energy, and adapt to a changing climate.
The expectations are set high for this 21st Conference of Parties (COP21) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change – because they have to be. In the next two weeks, States will have the opportunity to show their commitment to combating climate change. At the close of the negotiations, if all goes well, governments from around the world will adopt the measures necessary to ensure a better planet for present and future generations.
The task at hand for this Conference is finalizing the Paris climate package, which includes a final draft of the new climate agreement and a series of decisions to be adopted by Member Parties. Both are vital to the proper implementation of the Convention. Though it has been successful in elevating climate change in policy discussions worldwide, the Convention still requires States to adopt clear and concrete actions to ensure compliance.
There are two key tasks that AIDA will press Conference negotiators to achieve:
Clarify the commitments related to climate financing after 2020.
Climate finance is fundamental to ensuring that the commitments established in the Paris Agreement, as well as in the Convention itself, become a reality. Concerning climate finance, the new agreement should include the following key elements:
Climate finance is a critical component of progress on the climate agenda. Providing clarity on this matter is essential to achieving goals and paradigm shifts in the short, medium, and long term.
The protection and promotion of human rights is vital in the fight against climate change. The very success of the Paris Agreement depends on this element being integrated into the text and, particularly, into its objectives. A climate agreement featuring language to protect human rights will help to:
The Paris Conference is a historic opportunity for AIDA to strengthen the substantial progress made to date in the fight against climate change.