New publication: Mitigation Commitments and Fair Effort Sharing in a New Comprehensive Climate Agreement Starting 2020

Ecofys, Climate Analytics, the Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research, the NewClimate Institute, the Oeko-Institute and the Wuppertal Institute have published a new report on effort sharing in the new climate agreement to be adopted at the Paris Conference in December 2015 and to be applied starting in 2020.

Countries’ mitigation contributions are one central element in the negotiations. By the end of October 2015, 128 Parties had submitted their “intended nationally determined contributions” (INDCs), reflecting 155 countries, and covering around 87% of global emissions and 88% of global population.

Ever since the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) was agreed upon, the level of ambition as well as the fair balance between parties has been the linchpin of negotiations. How can negotiations ensure that aggregate action by parties suffices to achieve the jointly agreed goal to limit warming below 2°C – or even 1.5°C as called for by the most vulnerable countries, in light of current science? How can a fair and equitable distribution of effort be enshrined in the agreement? How to move forward action on mitigation and adaption, and reconcile this with the pursuit of countries’ development aspirations and needs?

While the process of INDC submissions showed that most countries are to some extent willing to contribute to climate change mitigation, it was not possible yet to include a centralised assessment of country contributions. The level of ambition of contributions as well as the establishment of an assessment and review process will remain to be in the center of negotiations at the Paris Conference.

Against this background, the new report offers deliberations on what a “fair share” of mitigation in 2025 and 2030 could be. It shows, for a selection of ten countries – Brazil, China, the European Union (EU), India, Japan, Mexico, Morocco, Russia, South Africa, and the United States of America (USA) – , how their respective INDCs perform if related to different fair share approaches and effort sharing models. These assessments also take into account national mitigation potential and costs and the wider context of socio-economic development of the countries. Finally, current policies and politics of each country are included in the assessments.

Climate News of the Week Roundup: Dramatic Economic Change Is Inevitable

This week’s roundup covers a NASA funded study saying that civilisational collapse is a pretty regular historic phenomenon and one that may get repeated this century, a viewpoing arguing that a positive economic transformation is far more likely, the IEA lowballing the potential of renewables and new figures on solar energy developments.

(more…)

Climate News of the Week Roundup: Germany Projected to Miss Emission Targets Due to New Government’s Energy Policy

This week’s roundup covers a sobering analysis of what impacts the new German government’s energy policy can be expected to have, an analysis of whether the major economies will meet their 2020 pledges, the US tabling its vision for the 2015 climate agreement, an analysis of the Boxer-Sanders climate bill, a proposal for breaking the deadlock on a 2030 EU renewables target, Denmark’s cross-party consensus to be a climate frontrunner, India switching water pumps from diesel to solar, a vision of the Western Balkans as new Desertec, the results of the first year of free public transport in Talinn, and another major sign of the collapse of the Clean Development Mechanism.

(more…)

Climate News of the Week Roundup: China Smashes Germany’s Solar Installation Record While Europe is Content With Low Ambition

This week’s roundup features the European Commission’s proposals for post-2020 climate and energy policy, the new German government’s plans to overhaul the renewable energy law, studies on the benefits of renewables and efficiency in Europe and Germany, solar installation figures from China, India and Japan, ambitious solar plans in Kenya, a report saying that Obama’s executive authority on climate policy goes quite far, an HBSC report saying that ambitious climate policy could halve the value of coal companies’ assets, a study saying that climate change could increase the frequency of devastating El Niños, and more.

(more…)

Climate News of the Week Roundup: Reasons for Optimism on Climate Action?

This week’s roundup features a plea for optimism on climate action, Wall Street and Deutsche Bank going crazy about solar, renewable energy developments in South Africa, Latin America, the US, Italy, China and India, the EU’s debate about its post-2020 climate and energy framework heating up, news from the German energy transition, and more.

(more…)

Climate News of the Week Roundup: Even Warming Below 2°C May Significantly Increase Global Water Scarcity

This week’s roundup covers a new study saying that even “moderate” levels of global warming may significantly increase global water stress, a good debunking of some of climate contrarians’ favourite talking points, Michael Liebreich summing up the year’s trends in clean energy,  a UBS report saying that traditional utilities’ business models are becoming increasingly unviable, a study saying that stand-by mode eats up more electricity than the actual use of the appliances, new evaluation criteria of Chinese officials that no longer have GDP growth at their core, a World Bank report on India’s solar prospects, Spain and Scotland continuing to post renewables records, France introducing a carbon tax, bad grades for the EU’s international climate finance, figures showing that Denmark and Germany have expectional grid reliability despite having high shares of wind and solar, an assessment of what Germany’s new cabinet means for the Energiewende, and more.

(more…)

Climate News of the Week Roundup: Global Emission Growth Slowing Down?

This week’s roundup features a report saying that global 2012 emission growth was less than half the average of the past decade, a study finding that the EU ETS hasn’t lead to any carbon leakage, the US curbing financing of overseas coal projects, Shanghai planning to ban coal burning, Brazil, South Africa and India ramping up renewables, more news on the influence of German car makers on German policy, RWE being in trouble due to its coal-based strategy, a study saying that the German grid can be run reliably on 100% renewables, and more.

(more…)

Climate News of the Week Roundup: Who Created the Misleading “Warming Pause” Narrative?

This week’s roundup features a discussion of how the faux warming pause narrative came into being, German Christian Democrats citing estimates of costs of climate inaction as costs of climate action, the IPCC being accused of being conservative on sea level rise, India’s solar programme restarting, the arrival of unsubsidised solar, how Danish utilities turned an efficiency obligation into an opportunity, the benefits of public transport, talks to expand the US’s first carbon market, the EU having already achieved its 2020 emission target, and more.

(more…)

Climate News of the Week Roundup: Ocean Researchers Disagree with IPCC – It’s Even Worse

This week’s roundup covers a report by ocean experts saying that the situation of the world’s oceans is even more dire than the IPCC says, an analysis saying that contrary to recent media reporting the IPCC’s temperature projections have actually held up pretty well, the Australian Climate Comission getting resurrected by citizen crowdfunding, ICAO agreeing to agree something about aviation emissions by 2016, an examination of the drivers behind the rapid global scale-up of solar, China trying to reign in coal, solar records in China, India and Germany, legacies from the Nazi era still doing damage in Germany, an argument that public investment is crucial for the necessary infrastructure transformation and that carbon pricing is hence helpful but not sufficient, and more.

(more…)

Climate News of the Week Roundup: Bloomberg Projects Chinese Power Sector Emission Peak Within 10-15 Years

This week’s roundup features projections of peaking Chinese emissions, the non-availability of an Archimedian lever to tackle climate change, governments deserving a better reputation for successfully promoting innovation, an argument that carbon revenues may be more important than the carbon price as such, new figures on falling renewables’ technology costs, Japan’s METI aiming to ramp up clean energy spending, renewables growing in the US, India and the UK, a Dutch energy agreement in the making, enormous disparities in European energy efficiency policies, governments being accused of failing to give clear directions for green investments, predictions of a lignite boom in Germany, a proposal to name hurricanes after US members of Congress who reject climate science, and more.

(more…)