This week’s COP 24 was concluded on Wednesday as a consensus was reached and all delegations signed the The Barcelona Agreement. The comprehensive agreement saw some key novelties that will shape the negotiations at upcoming COPs, especially related to mitigation.
Most notably, the countries agreed to enhance their ambitions to limit global average temperature increase to well below 2°C and striving for 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels, peak global emissions in 2025 and to form three new categories of countries: Developed, developing and least developed countries. The categorisation is based on IHDI, will be monitored by a special UN taskforce and includes transition periods and the possibility to request reclassification in order to get all signatories on board.
As for adaptation, the delegations agreed on merging the Adaptation Fund into the Green Climate Fund and aiming for a fund size of USD 100 billion annually by 2020, USD 145 billion annually by 2025 and USD 195 billion annually by 2030. Nonetheless, the signatories did not agree on how to reach these fund sizes, postponing this decision to COP 25. Another milestone was the appeal to the UNHRC to establish a widely accepted definition of climate refugees and to include them in the 1951 Refugee Convention.
In the market mechanism group, countries agreed on combining and integrating CDM and JI into the Sustainable Development Mechanism and allowing all countries that have adopted and ratified the Paris Agreement to invest in and host SDM projects. Another milestone was the definition of the concept of additionality. The Barcelona Agreement defines an SDM project as additional if anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases by sources are reduced below those that would have occurred in the absence of the registered SDM project activity. Lastly, the signatories agreed that they should pledge a specific amount to REDD+ funding with the minimum goal of raising yearly funds necessary to prevent the 30% of deforestation by 2030 in this COP, which is to be increased at least in alignment with the size of the GCF. The Barcelona Agreement in full can be read here.
COP 24 also saw the re-entry of the United States in the Paris Agreement, as reported earlier by El Observador. As a result, delegations can look back at a successful Conference of the Parties and can be hopeful about what future COPs have to bring.