Bonn Challenge Takes First Steps

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The Bonn Challenge is a global initiative to restore 150 million hectares of the world’s deforested and degraded lands by 2020, and 350 million by 2030. So far, 38 countries have pledged to restore 124.32 million hectares in order to achieve this goal. The challenge now is holding these nations to their commitments and ensuring…
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The Sustainable Development Mechanism AKA The New Carbon Market Mechanism

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  The Sustainable Development Mechanism is a new mitigation mechanism established in Art. 3 ter of the draft Paris Agreement. The purpose of this mechanism is to “promote the mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions [in developing country Parties] while fostering sustainable development….” In order to achieve its goals, the mechanism provides incentives for successfully mitigating…
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It’s All About the Benjamins: Ratcheting Up Financial Support for Developing Countries

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In 2009 Parties to COP15 in Copenhagen agreed to a global goal of mobilizing $100B (that’s right, billion) per year for climate finance by 2020. A recent OECD report indicated that we are well on our way to achieving that goal (with $62B committed in 2014). Unfortunately though, $100B may not even be enough to…
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Riding the Wave of Divestment

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Divestment is essentially the opposite of investment. The climate action group gofossilfree.org describes it as “getting rid of stocks, bonds, or investment funds that are unethical or morally ambiguous.” Generally speaking, institutions divest when they stop financially supporting specific entities because of the means by which those entities generate revenue. Divestment has been used as…
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A Woman Saving the Planet

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This week’s New Yorker leads off with a “Reporter at Large” article by science writer Elizabeth Kolbert (The Sixth Extinction), The Weight of the World: Can one woman get the U.N. to save the planet?  While ostensibly about UNFCCC Executive Secretary Christiana Figueres – answering the subtitled question, “can [she] persuade humanity to save itself?”…
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The Inevitable Linkage Discussion

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Let’s face: it is almost the end of 2014 and we are still negotiating an international agreement to mitigate climate change for after 2020. The good news is that several countries have taken the initiative, and adopted climate change policies. These policies vary from emissions trading, carbon taxes, performance standards, among others. But what role…
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ADP Workstream 2: The most pressing and immediate of needs shuffled to end of queue

Exhibit in Lima, Peru

Under the ADP, two ‘workstreams’ were created to meet climate change goals. Workstream 1 was created to identify Individual Nationally Determined Contributions (INDC) that will be signed at the Paris 2015 COP; Workstream 2 was created to fill the ‘gap’ between present and the 2020 date of implementation of the Paris 2015 agreement. Since the…
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Side (event) . . .

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Side events can more than occupy one’s time at a COP.  Presented by a range of actors — academics, activists, businesses, government agencies — they can range in content and quality.  Thus I was fortunate that the few I attended at COP19, given my focus on tracking the ADP negotiations, were fascinating and informative. On the…
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Getting Day 2 Off to a Good Start

This morning, COP19 began with a webcast press briefing on emissions trading.  Dirk Forrister, President and CEO of the International Emissions Trading Association (and former US delegation member who has been active since COP1), gave an overview on the growth of market mechanisms and emission trading as private enterprises respond to national incentives set by state…
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