The Progress of Global Stocktake in the final APA Informal Sessions.

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With Global Stocktake’s expected beginning date in 2023 and pressure from the heads of the APA, there is a race for an informal working document on the Modalities Guidelines and Procedures (MPGs) of the Agenda Item 6 of the APA. Global stocktake is an effort to continuously monitor the collective progress towards achieving the purpose…
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Seas the Day

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Living along the bottom of the seabed are the hydrothermal vents. These vents exist in environments under immense pressure, with volatile temperatures, toxic minerals, and devoid of sunlight. As the tectonics plates spread and magma rises, hydrothermal vents form. They are created when seawater circulates through fissures in the ocean’s crust and becomes super-heated by magma….
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COP23 Moves the Oceans from the Blue Zone to the Green Zone

Oceans Action Day. The one day in a climate change conference where the oceans become the center of discussion. Considering that 75% of the Earth’s surface is composed of oceans and that oceans absorb 25% of carbon dioxide emissions and 90% of heat associated with climate change, it was a wonder that the UNFCCC’s Conference of the…
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Don’t You Forget CGE

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Before Nationally Determined Contributions and Capacity-Building, there was the Consultative Group of Experts. The Consultative Group of Experts was established by the 5th Conference of the Parties under the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change. The CGE is the key technical support element under the UNFCCC that assists developing country Parties in meeting their reporting…
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Draining the Swamp

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Peatlands contain peat soil, which is wet, thick, and made of partially-decomposed plant materials. The International Peatland Society (IPS) cover approximately 3% of the Earth’s surface. Tropical peatlands in Asia, the Caribbean, Central and South America, and Southern Africa contain 10-12%of the total peatland resource. Peatlands are also extremely valuable ecosystems because they foster biodiversity,…
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Points of Divergence: Linkages and Differentiating Obligations under the Transparency Framework

Credit to the World Resources Institute

The Transparency Framework under Article 13 of the Paris Agreement covers all components. At least, that is what the Agreement seems to say at first blush. However, as Parties begin to flesh out specific procedures, it is obvious that they disagree with the extent of the Transparency Framework’s coverage. The Philippines, speaking for the G77 and…
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A Caffeine Constrained World

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At the 23rd Conference of Parties (COP 23), Denise Loga, Co-founder and Managing Director of the Sustainable Food Academy, brought to light the issue of food security in changing climate. She recognized that the earth cannot sustain humanity’s current food systems. Unsustainable patterns of human consumption paired with climate change lends kindling to an already…
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Money doesn’t grow on trees

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Walking into the COP, observer and party delegations alike are given a bar of chocolate. And while the candy bar does not give its holder a Golden Ticket, it does draw chocolate-lovers’ attention to an important message for the Trillion Tree Campaign. That campaign is spearheaded by Plant-for-the-Planet, an NGO launched in 2007 by a…
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Equity Takes Center Stage in Global Stock Take Discussions

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In determining the modalities, procedures, and guidelines for the Global Stock Take under Article 14 of the Paris Agreement, equity is the name of the game. Parties joining the first informal consultation on the Ad Hoc Working Group on the Paris Agreement on November 7, 2017 have repeatedly mentioned the need for considering the impact…
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Future of the Adaptation Fund: Developing Countries vs. Developed Countries

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The Adaptation Fund (AF) is a mechanism created through the Marrakesh Accords but funded through the Clean Development Mechanisms (CDMs) described in the Kyoto Protocol. The intention of the COP in the creation of the AF is the facilitation and funding of adaptation projects in developing countries to strengthen their resistance to climate change. Two percent of…
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The public health crisis that is climate change

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The Lancet, the leading global health journal, just came out with a searing report on how climate change affects public health. “Climate change is happening, and it’s a health issue today for millions worldwide,” said Anthony Costello, a co-chairman of the commission that produced the report. Based on research done at 26 universities and intergovernmental organizations around the world, the Lancet report…
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Climate Change “Refugees” in Hot Water

UN "Refugee" Status

Direct effects of climate change such as droughts, floods, rising sea levels, and hazardous weather events have immediate and lasting impacts upon displacement of communities. For example, five reef islands in the remote Solomon Islands have already been deemed uninhabitable due to sea level rise and erosion. Since 2008, approximately 22.5 million people have been…
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Is the US withdrawal from the Paris Agreement a conservative act?

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“We’re definitely, completely, undoubtedly leaving the accord.” With these words, President Trump announced his intention to withdraw from the Paris Agreement. This decision did not come as a surprise, although it disappointed many around the globe. Now the question is, will it impede global progress toward limiting the rise in temperatures? Michael Oppenheimer, Princeton climate…
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Trusting Corporations by Weakening Antitrust?

Corporate Influence and Climate Change

This September, many socially conscious corporations have donated to climate change mitigation and sustainability. Ikea has devoted $44.6 million to the We Mean Business coalition, which began at a UNFCCC Business and Industry Day to provide a platform to “amplify the business voice and catalyze bold climate action.” Mars just pledged $1 billion in investments towards climate…
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Closing the UNFCCC Gender GAP?

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The Gender Action Plan, with its apt acronym – GAP – was on the agenda earlier this month at the UNFCCC intersessional meetings in Bonn, Germany. And, rightly so. Women’s equal and meaningful participation in the development and implementation of effective climate policy is an agreed goal of the Parties to the Convention. Since COP7…
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