Fifth Energy Transition Council Ministerial Chair’s Summary
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Six months after the Glasgow Climate Summit and framed by the challenges presented by the war in Ukraine, the Energy Transition Council held its fifth Ministerial Dialogue.
The Council discussed how to redouble their efforts to accelerate the global transition to clean energy and as part of the response to the current energy market uncertainty, marking a new phase of collaboration under the Council.
Alongside an address from co-chair COP President Alok Sharma, Ministers and representatives including from Egypt, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria, the Philippines, Lao PDR, and Germany engaged in dialogue with leading technical and financial institutions.
ETC partners heard analysis from the International Energy Agency on the short-term implications of the war in Ukraine and set out the risks of not achieving our Paris Agreement goal of limiting global temperature rises to 1.5-2C.
ETC partners also discussed calls from the International Labour Organisation (ILO) on countries’ urgent need to increase delivery of green jobs as part of a just and equitable energy transition.
Leading contributors of international technical assistance and finance (including Global Energy Alliance for People & Planet (GEAPP), Climate Investment Funds (CIF), African Development Bank (AFDB), and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) laid out their plans to support a just equitable energy transition in ETC countries.
The Council also discussed ongoing implementation of the ETC’s Rapid Response Facility (RRF) projects and the potential for new collaboration to further support country ambition on the pathway to COP27.
Ministers and senior officials from 10 countries as well as 8 international institutions attended the 5th convening of the Energy Transition Council (ETC) on 24 May 2022 and indicated their commitment to identify, coordinate and implement tailored solutions to decarbonise the power sector more rapidly.
Building on the ETC’s Strategic Priorities laid out at COP26 and with the announcement of the ETC’s operation to at least 2025, the ETC provides a space for high-trust dialogue between countries that require support for their energy transition and major international donors and actors offering support.
Opening the meeting UK Minister of State for Energy, Clean Growth, and Climate Change Greg Hands, underlined the important agenda of the Energy Transition Council in today’s uncertain world dominated by the war in Ukraine. The Council allows for continued frank and open ministerial dialogue on a just and equitable energy transition, to keep all on track to reach the Net Zero and Glasgow Power Breakthrough goals. He welcomed the importance of the technical assistance and resulting investments that the ETC facilitates between countries requiring support and the ETC’s global network of technical, financial, and political experts.
Ministerial discussions took place against a background of heightened energy security concerns in the wake of the unfolding war in Ukraine. The International Energy Agency delivered an important message to Ministers and officials during the Council proceedings, setting out the risks of not reaching the 1.5C Paris objectives. In this context the IEA emphasised how the transition to clean energy offers the most sustainable and secure path out of today’s difficulties.
Ministers also discussed countries’ urgent need to increase delivery of green jobs and further investment in the energy transition as part of a just and equitable energy transition responding to interventions from the ILO and the Climate Investment Funds.
ETC members – Governments and institutions – responded to the call for support, indicating their offer of finance, expertise and assistance which will help to deliver on their commitments laid out by ETC partners at COP26.
The ETC is proving its ability to provide fast-acting, catalytic support with the ETC’s Rapid Response Facility (RRF) delivering on over 22 requests for support. The RRF responds to requests from ETC partner countries to deliver on short term needs and connect countries to longer-term, larger-scale financing. Finally, ETC Ministers outlined opportunities to deepen and scale the RRF’s impact in responding to the pressing challenges faced ahead of COP27 and beyond.
Letter to all Parties From the COP26 President and COP27 President-Designate Ahead of the May Ministerial on Implementation
To: Parties, Observer Organizations and Non-Party Stakeholders, 12 May 2022
Six months have now passed since the world came together in Glasgow last November to show that we are committed to tackling the climate crisis. Despite the impacts of a global pandemic, we came together at COP26 and found solutions to complete the Paris Rulebook and agree the Glasgow Climate Pact.
We now have six months until we meet again at COP27. As you will have seen from the Egypt-UK Joint Statement, the COP26 Presidency and the incoming COP27 Presidency are determined to work in close collaboration to deliver on the goals and objectives of the UNFCCC, Paris Agreement and the outcomes of previous Conferences of Parties including most recently the Glasgow Climate Pact, with a view to accelerating climate action and building towards a successful COP27 in Sharm el-Sheikh.
This week as we mark the 30th Anniversary of the UNFCCC, it is more important than ever that we show the commitment and solidarity needed to achieve our shared goals. The recent IPCC reports have laid out starkly the urgency of our task and the need for immediate and sustained political action and cooperation. This week – with thanks to Minister Jørgensen and the Government of Denmark – we will be meeting in Copenhagen with a broad group of ministers to follow up on and accelerate the implementation of commitments in this critical decade. We all know that much more needs to be done to ensure we keep 1.5C in reach, protect the most vulnerable, and ensure that finance flows at the necessary scale. But we also know it is possible to get there if we act quickly and act together.
Delivering on commitments made
COP26 was a historic moment. The Glasgow Climate Pact and the completion of the Paris Rulebook if fully implemented will accelerate progress on mitigation, adaptation, finance and loss and damage. This represents a significant contribution to keeping 1.5 in reach, supporting the most vulnerable, and delivering on the objectives of the Paris Agreement and the UNFCCC.
The Glasgow Climate Pact is anchored in the science which underpins our obligations. It requests countries to revisit and strengthen the 2030 targets in their NDCs as necessary, and submit ambitious long term strategies to align with the Paris temperature goal – the UNFCCC Secretariat has since communicated a deadline of 23rd September for such revisions to be considered in the mandated synthesis reports. The Pact established a work programme to urgently scale mitigation ambition and implementation across this critical decade to keep 1.5C in reach, and agreed to hold annual ministerial round tables on pre2030 ambition. It sets out an important work programme to drive action and support on adaptation, including through the Global Goal on Adaptation. It acknowledges that climate change has already caused and will increasingly cause loss and damage, and that as temperatures rise impacts from climate change will pose an ever greater social, economic and environmental threat. It called specifically for more action to address loss and damage, through the Glasgow Dialogue and for practical action through the Santiago Network. It confirmed the importance of the adequacy and predictability of adaptation finance, urged developed countries to rapidly scale up climate finance, in particular to meet the $100bn/yr goal, and to double finance for adaptation by 2025, it emphasised the need to mobilise climate finance from all sources to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement. In addition, it calls on countries to phase down unabated coal power and phase out inefficient fossil fuel subsidies and recognises the need to ensure just transitions that promote sustainable development and eradication of poverty.
Furthermore, beyond the intergovernmental negotiations, Heads of State and Government, businesses and financial institutions made substantial commitments and pledges to net zero, agreed to clean up sectors such as power and road transport, to put an end to deforestation, to build more resilient supply chains and businesses, to accelerate the pace of new technologies through the Glasgow Breakthroughs, and to support developing countries in the transition. We welcome the appointment of Dr Mahmoud Mohielden to join Nigel Topping as High Level Champion and drive practical action.
The May Ministerial Meeting on Implementation
The May Ministerial represents an opportunity to follow up and promote implementation of the key commitments and pledges made in Glasgow.
The meeting will cover four tracks: 1) Adapting to climate impacts 2) Averting, minimising and addressing loss and damage 3) Reducing emissions and keeping 1.5C alive 4) Mobilising finance.
Attached is a brief background on the May Ministerial and the topics under discussion.
During the Ministerial, we will be focusing on practical implementation rather than negotiations which will commence shortly at the Subsidiary Bodies meetings in Bonn. UNFCCC observer groups and the High Level Champions will be present to support an all-of-society approach.
Negotiations process – looking ahead to Bonn
As we approach the 56th Session of the Subsidiary Bodies in Bonn next month, we must also ensure that we make progress across the suite of issues needed to drive our process forward. As we move to implementation mode, it is vital that all Parties arrive in Bonn ready to actively engage, find solutions, and move things forward.
As the COP26 and the incoming COP27 Presidencies, we are committed to working with the Chairs of the Subsidiary Bodies and the UNFCCC Secretariat to support an inclusive, transparent and Party-driven process to ensure we maintain the necessary urgency and momentum as we approach COP27 in Sharm el-Sheikh.
We all have a responsibility to deliver. The world is now watching us. We must show that we are responding to the science with the necessary urgency. Reaching shared solutions at COP26 was only possible because of your determination to make things happen. We will continue to work closely with all of you to ensure our collective efforts take us closer to achieving our shared goals and priorities for people and the planet.
As Egypt accelerates preparations for COP27, we are confident of your continued support and renewed commitment to ambitious outcomes and impactful implementation. This will be vital to ensure the success of our collective efforts at Sharm el-Sheikh and beyond that to confirm our continued and highest political commitment to tackle climate change.
The Rt Hon Alok Sharma MP COP26 President
Sameh Shoukry COP27 President Designate
Annex – May Ministerial Meeting on Implementation, 12-13 May, Copenhagen, Denmark
The May Ministerial Meeting on Implementation will focus on the practical action needed to drive progress on implementation going forward, including in response to commitments from the UNFCCC, the Paris Agreement, previous Conferences of the Parties and most recently the Glasgow Climate Pact and related declarations and pledges from COP26.
Ministerial discussions will be structured around four break out group sessions, focusing on implementation and action across the following topics:
Adapting to climate impacts
Averting, minimising and addressing loss and damage
Reducing emissions and keeping 1.5C alive
Discussion questions for these four sessions are set out below.
Ministers are encouraged to engage in open and frank discussions, avoiding the use of scripted interventions and focusing on maximising progress towards shared solutions. For all discussions, Ministers are encouraged to consider ways to implement inclusive climate action, including consideration of gender responsiveness, indigenous peoples and youth, and just transition.
Session 1: Adapting to climate impacts
The IPCC AR6 Working Group II report has delivered a clear message that climate impacts are worsening and the window of opportunity for action is closing rapidly, posing risks to sustainable development for all, with over three billion people living in global vulnerability hotspots, particularly in developing countries. Adaptation and sustainable development are inextricably linked and mutually reinforcing. Despite progress on adaptation planning, widening gaps persist between planning and implementation. Adaptation action remains fragmented and incremental, unequally distributed among regions and takes place at small scales and short time horizons.
Since the adoption of the Paris Agreement, including at COP26, state and non-state actors have galvanised adaptation action through initiatives (e.g. Race to Resilience), coalitions (e.g. Adaptation Action Coalition) and financial commitments (including to double adaptation finance by 2025 and mobilise record amounts for the Adaptation Fund and Least Developed Countries Fund). We must deliver on pledges and implement commitments and decisions under the UNFCCC and the Paris Agreement, as well as those agreed in Glasgow and at previous COPs, and drive further support and action.
How can countries move beyond incremental progress to achieve “transformational adaptation”? What is needed to translate NDCs, adaptation communications and national adaptation plans into coordinated adaptation action at scale, at local, national, regional and global levels and across borders?
What steps are you taking to ensure implementation of individual and collective adaptation commitments and pledges? What progress and cooperation is needed by COP27 to drive practical action?
What is needed to close the adaptation finance gap and how can this be better linked to local and national planning, access to finance, capacity building support as well as broader public and private investment?
Session 2: Averting, minimising and addressing loss and damage
The IPCC AR6 Working Group II report has also demonstrated the urgent need for scaled up action and support to address loss and damage, particularly in developing countries. Successive decisions under the UNFCCC and the Paris Agreement, including most recently through the Glasgow Climate Pact, have called for enhanced and additional support for activities to avert, minimise and address loss and damage, acknowledging a number of sources that provide funds in this area. Commitments must be implemented to deliver practical action.
What is needed at the national and local levels to enhance practical action to avert, minimise and address loss and damage?
How can action on loss and damage, including across the broader development, disaster risk reduction and humanitarian communities, be made more coherent? How can we use a build back better approach to reduce future climate impacts and related losses?
Recognising ongoing discussions in relation to the Santiago Network and the Glasgow Dialogue, what is needed to enhance the mobilisation of technical and financial support to avert, minimise and address loss and damage?
Session 3: Reducing emissions and keeping 1.5C alive
In Paris Parties agreed to hold the increase in global average temperatures to well below 2C above pre-industrial levels and pursue efforts to limit the increase to 1.5C. The IPCC AR6 Working Group I and II reports showed that the planet has already reached an average global warming of 1.1C above pre-industrial levels, that the impacts of climate change vary significantly across regions, and that every fraction of a degree of warming makes a difference and creates additional risks. Furthermore, the recently-published IPCC AR6 Working Group III report indicates the closing window for action to keep 1.5C in reach and reinforces the urgent need to accelerate efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 45% on the 2010 level by 2030 as recognised in the Glasgow Climate Pact. At COP26 Parties set a way forward for how to close the emissions gap and keep 1.5C alive, including by requesting Parties to revisit and strengthen NDCs and increasing sectoral action and implementation.
What steps are you taking to deliver on the Glasgow Climate Pact requests to communicate long term strategies and to revisit and strengthen 2030 targets in NDCs as necessary to align with the Paris temperature goal? What factors and support can help increase NDC ambition and implementation?
What are the challenges, best practices and next steps for implementing commitments from the Glasgow Climate Pact and related declarations and pledges for key emitting sectors? What is needed to accelerate efforts towards the phasedown of unabated coal power and the phaseout of inefficient fossil fuel subsidies?
How can international cooperation, including through Article 6 and other mechanisms and initiatives, be increased to raise ambition and accelerate just transitions towards achieving net zero emissions by or around mid-century?
Session 4: Mobilising finance
Although positive steps were taken on finance commitments at COP26, significant action and political momentum will again be required this year to demonstrate that progress is being made, including on the $100bn goal, the doubling of adaptation finance by 2025, access to finance, and the broader alignment of financial flows. The findings of the IPCC AR6 WGII and WGIII reports should catalyse accelerated progress on these issues, noting as well the relevance of the work undertaken by the Standing Committee on Finance in relation to developing countries’ needs and to making finance flows consistent with a pathway towards low greenhouse gas emissions and climate-resilient development.
What can be done this year to show the $100bn Delivery Plan is being implemented and demonstrate action towards doubling the collective provision of adaptation finance by 2025?
How can COP27 accelerate the alignment of finance flows from all sources to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement, in the context of developing countries’ needs? What is the role of the private sector in achieving this?
How can practical progress be made on access to finance?
COP President Alok Sharma visits Mexico to promote global climate action and implementation of the Glasgow Climate Pact
COP President Alok Sharma visited Mexico from April 24-27 to drive momentum on delivering commitments made in the Glasgow Climate Pact signed last November by 196 countries.
COP President Alok Sharma met representatives from the federal and state Mexican government, as well as representatives of civil society, indigenous peoples and youth
He visited the state of Quintana Roo to hear about sustainable forestry management from communities and see coastal areas blighted by the brown algae sargassum
The visit was made to follow up on the agreements made during COP26, held in Glasgow in November 2021
COP President Alok Sharma visited Mexico from April 24-27 to drive momentum on delivering commitments made in the Glasgow Climate Pact signed last November by 196 countries.
On his first visit to the country, the COP26 President participated in several bilateral meetings in Mexico City focused on climate action issues, including a push for greater ambition and a net zero commitment.
At the start of the visit, the COP President met representatives of civil society organisations, youth groups and indigenous peoples who highlighted their climate change concerns across sectors including forests, energy, and agriculture.
The COP President also held bilateral Government meetings with Rocío Nahle, Minister of Energy and Martha Delgado, Undersecretary for Foreign Affairs. He also met the Mexico City Mobility Secretary, Andres Lajous, during a visit to the Cablebus, the city’s new low carbon transport system and the Quintana Roo Secretary of Ecology and Environment, Efrain Villanueva.
Throughout these meetings, Alok Sharma underlined the importance of greater ambition in Mexico’s Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) and the potential to achieve a net zero goal as well as the importance of decarbonising Mexico’s energy mix. Mexico’s perspectives post COP26 and in preparation for COP27 were also heard.
Mr Sharma participated in a business round table with members of the private sector in Mexico to discuss the important role business has to play in delivering the Glasgow Climate Pact and driving ambitious climate action in the country.
While in Mexico, Mr Sharma also visited Muyil in the Yucatan peninsula to meet with indigenous representatives and hear views on nature-based solutions and community integration in projects in the region.
On his final day he witnessed coastal areas affected by the brown algae sargassum, considered by experts to be a consequence of rising ocean temperatures, fertiliser use and deforestation.
During this visit, the COP President took part in a dialogue with the leading local and federal authorities, including the Mexican Navy tasked with managing the sargassum crisis in the state.
I came to Mexico to speak with my government counterparts, civil society groups and business who are all so important in turning climate change commitments into action.
State ministers, parliamentarians and business leaders all demonstrated their commitment to action in undertaking work to tackle climate change.
Many countries are already seeing the impact of climate change, including Mexico.
During my visit to Quintana Roo it was great to see how sustainable forest management and land restoration are being used to protect those most vulnerable to climate change.
Pledges made at COP26 in Glasgow must come to life this year. Mexico has a crucial role in helping to deliver this, both through net zero commitments and shorter-term emission reduction targets. I look forward to the UK and Mexico working closely together on this.
COP26 President Alok Sharma
Joint Statement from UK, Egypt and UNFCCC in response to IPCC Working Group 3 Report
Last month’s Working Group II Report on Adaptation, Impacts and Vulnerability laid bare the impacts that will be felt if temperature is not limited to an increase of 1.5C. Today’s report on mitigation makes it clearer than ever that the window of opportunity to achieve this is rapidly closing. Global emissions continue to rise, and the emissions pathways implied by the current set of Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) are not enough to hold the increase in global average temperature to well below 2C above pre-industrial levels and pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5C. To keep 1.5C in reach, global CO2 emissions need to peak immediately and halve by 2030. Finance must also be significantly scaled up and support the urgent just transition to a low carbon economy, and deal with adaptation challenges.
Despite the urgency of our task, there is hope. The window for action has not yet closed. The report highlights that the falling costs of renewables and green technologies present significant opportunities for progress. There is also clear evidence that – with timely and at scale cuts to emissions. – countries can pursue a mitigation pathway consistent with limiting. global warming as envisaged in the Paris Agreement and further reflected in the Glasgow Climate Pact, while also developing their economies through a just transition and in a. sustainable way. Increasingly, transitioning to a low carbon and resilient economy is the safest and most competitive choice any country, business or investor can make.
As the COP26 Presidency, incoming COP27 Presidency and UNFCCC Executive Secretary, we remind Parties of their obligations under the Paris Agreement to respond to the science; a commitment Parties themselves recognized in Glasgow last year when they acknowledged that collectively we need to do more in this critical decade to keep 1.5C in reach. We committed to revisiting and strengthening the 2030 targets in our NDCs as necessary to. align with the Paris temperature goal by the end of this year. This report brings into sharp focus the necessity of such actions. For the sake of the next generation and the future of our planet we urge all Parties, particularly the major emitters, to respond urgently to this report by implementing the pledges and commitments made under the UNFCCC and the Paris Agreement, and by delivering on the Glasgow Climate Pact.
Alok Sharma, COP President
Sameh Shoukry, COP 27 President Designate
Patricia Espinosa, UNFCCC Executive Secretary
Youth4Climate Summit concludes in Milan with young people sharing proposals for tackling climate change with ministers
3 minute read
Translated from Italian
Around 400 young people from all over the world have been able to present their proposals for tackling climate change to the Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Italian Minister for Ecological Transition, Roberto Cingolani, COP26 President-Designate, Alok Sharma, and environment ministers from more than 40 countries. Ministers representing the international community are tasked with delivering a decisive agreement at COP26 in Glasgow next month to tackle the urgent global threat of climate change.
At the Youth4Climate Summit in Milan (28 – 30 September), four co-chairs representing the youth delegates, Nisreen Elsaim (Sudan), Ernest Gibson (Fiji), Nathan Metenier (France) and Sophia Kianni (USA), set out key asks from the under-30s.
The hope is that Youth4Climate was not a one off event in order to strengthen and maintain international dialogues: this was stressed by Minister Cingolani and Alok Sharma, and supported by Prime Minister Mario Draghi. Reducing inequalities, involving young people in decision-making processes, encouraging a public-private aid programme, are just some of the proposals that came out of the meetings.
Addressing the youth delegates, Prime Minister Draghi said “Your generation is the most threatened by climate change. You are right to ask for empowerment, to ask for change. The ecological transition is not a choice, it is a necessity. We have only two options. Either we face the costs of this transition now, or we act later – which would mean paying the much higher price of a climate disaster.
“We are aware that we must do more, much more. This will be the goal of the summit in Rome that will be held at the end of October. At the G20 level, we want to make a commitment regarding the goal of containing global warming below 1.5 degrees. And we want to develop long-term strategies that are consistent with this goal.”
Mr Draghi did not avoid the issue raised by Greta Thunberg in her speech on Tuesday: “Sometimes the “blah blah blah” is just a way to hide our inability to take action, but when you carry out such big transformations you have to convince people, explain that numbers, such as the increase of 1.5 degrees, are not something created out of the blue but are provided by science, and people must be convinced of this”.
Another key issue, raised with energy and passion by Ugandan climate activist, Vanessa Nakate, and by other delegates from developing countries, was that of financial support for poor countries and/or those most at risk from the effects of climate change.
Mr Cingolani announced that he would encourage the Government to double Italy’s contribution to one billion euros.
He also underlined the geo-political challenge: “Sustainability for me is a compromise. We have to be super-fast in mitigating the effects of climate change, but slow enough not to destroy jobs. It’s not easy, it’s very difficult. And it’s a different tradeoff from country to country. The solutions have to be state-specific, there’s no one-size-fits-all solution.”
All eyes are now on the Pre-Cop, which began on Thursday afternoon and continues until Saturday. Ministers gathered in Milan will need to lay the foundations for a successful COP26 in Glasgow that strengthens global climate commitments.
Alok Sharma, Minister Cingolani, the UN Secretary General’s Envoy on Youth, Jayathma Wickramanayake, and delegates Vladislav Kaim, from Moldova, and Reem Al Saffar, from Iraq, all spoke at a closing press conference.
Following the meeting, Mr Sharma said: “The messages we have heard from young people here at Youth4Climate should serve as a wake-up call to ministers around the world. Their outcomes, which align with many of our goals for COP26, will help to inform this critical multilateral process.
“This is a generation that faces frightening consequences, and will rightly judge us if we fail to act. We must be able to look young people in the eye and say that we did everything necessary to protect their future.
“Keeping a 1.5C future alive hinges on COP26 in Glasgow. So we must make Pre-COP count, ensuring that we lay the foundations for successful negotiations and address the ambition gaps on adaptation, mitigation, loss and damage and finance, as well as finalising the Paris Rulebook. As the last time many of us will meet before Glasgow, I hope we can build on the sense of common purpose that was achieved at the July Ministerial in London.”
Letter to all Parties from the COP26 President Designate, ahead of Pre-COP
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To: all Parties to the UNFCCC
Today marks 40 days to the official opening of COP26, when I look forward to welcoming all delegates in-person in Glasgow. As last month’s IPCC report set out, the science is clear, there is absolutely no doubt that human activity has warmed the planet. Impacts are being felt worldwide, and without immediate action the effects will only get worse. The UNFCCC NDC synthesis report and OECD’s assessment of progress towards the $100bn have laid bare the scale and urgency of the challenge. They have shown the significant gaps that remain if we are to put the world on track to delivering the Paris goals. Collectively we need to step up. The world is watching and responsibility lies with all of us. We must respond to this challenge in Glasgow.
Our four goals for COP26 show us the way. As I wrote in July, success at COP26 will be judged against our collective efforts to achieve them: through the negotiated outcome, commitments by national governments, and the actions of governments, business, investors, cities and regions, civil society, Indigenous Peoples and youth.
We have heard from all of you how important it is for COP26 to be in person and inclusive. Construction of the venue and the vaccination of delegates who have responded to the UK’s vaccination offer are well underway. You will have also seen my announcement earlier this month that the UK is offering funding for quarantine hotel stays for all accredited delegates arriving from red list countries. More information on COP26 logistics will follow shortly.
I was pleased to welcome many of you to London in late July for a frank and informal exchange on expectations of the Glasgow outcome. At that meeting, Ministers emphasised that Glasgow must keep 1.5°C in reach – addressing the ambition gaps on adaptation, mitigation, loss and damage and finance, and completing the Paris Rulebook. There was a shared recognition of the need for tangible action and support in the critical decade to 2030, and that collectively we are not doing enough.
Next week I look forward to joining Minister Cingolani in Milan to welcome you to Pre-COP – the final key ministerial meeting before COP26. I am very grateful to our Italian partners for their collaboration and careful preparation. We will transition between breakout groups and plenary to discuss: Keeping 1.5°C Alive; Adaptation, Loss and Damage; Article 6; Transparency; Common Time Frames of NDCs and Climate Finance, before a final session on the overall set of expected outcomes from COP26. With so little time left before COP26, I will be encouraging you to build on conversations held in London to reach a shared understanding of expected outcomes from Glasgow. I want to hear your ideas for reaching agreement on all issues. This will require us all to strive for high ambition and move beyond national position.
I have annexed to this letter a list of key elements of the Glasgow outcome that Parties have identified as priorities, and specific questions for each of the breakout groups will follow shortly. Together, these are intended to inform discussions in Milan. As part of our ongoing commitment to transparency and inclusivity I am sharing this letter publicly, and welcome written inputs from any Parties or observer constituencies that wish to provide them (IncomingPresidency@unfccc.int). These will be considered by the incoming presidency and also made available online to help inform conversations. Discussions at Pre-COP will be captured in a Chairs’ Summary to be published online.
Alongside Pre-COP a number of moments mark the road to COP26, including:
UNGA (New York, 14-30 September): where we are already seeing more new announcements from Parties.
Youth 4 Climate (Milan, 28-30 September): where almost 400 youth delegates will outline ideas and concrete actions to address climate change and serve as a basis for a dialogue between the youth delegates and ministers at Pre-COP.
G20 Leaders (Rome, 30-31 October): where we hope the major economies will agree action that keeps 1.5C within reach, including: commitment to net zero by mid-century with aligned NDCs, more climate finance, and accelerated action in the 2020s, including ending unabated coal power and reversing deforestation.
Alongside these moments the UK, together with Chile, will continue to consult Parties at all levels in support of effective negotiations at COP26. With the provisional agendas for the conference now published by the Secretariat, we have also initiated a series of discussions on how to ensure their smooth adoption and enable timely initiation of the negotiations. Early next month, my team and I will publish a dedicated note on procedural matters ahead of a final meeting with all Heads of Delegation before COP26, to ensure negotiators hit the ground running in Glasgow. The UNFCCC website lists consultations held to date and will be updated to reflect the full schedule of presidencies-led events, as plans are finalised.
I am committed to delivering a safe and inclusive COP26. I am grateful for the way in which your teams have continued to work flexibly and creatively to drive progress whilst dealing with the impacts of COVID-19, and for your continued guidance – through key meetings, extensive bilateral engagement and the informal work led by pairs of ministers on my behalf.
The eyes of the world are on all of us to translate political will and positive intentions into concrete commitments and practical action, commensurate with keeping 1.5°C alive. The time is now to come together and deliver, for present and future generations.
The Rt Hon Alok Sharma MP
COP President Designate
Annex – Emerging elements of the COP26 negotiated outcome
Set out below are a range of negotiated outcomes and deliverables raised by Parties and non-state actors I have spoken to in recent months as important for the success of COP26. This list is not intended to be exhaustive, and does not include the suite of commitments, initiatives and actions expected from Glasgow that fall outside the formal UN climate change process. However, I hope it serves to support further conversations on the overall set of outcomes from COP26 over the coming weeks, including at the Pre-COP in Milan. Elements raised include:
Critical importance of meeting the $100bn goal and agreement on how the UNFCCC process will take forward work on climate finance, including finance for adaptation, developing country needs, aligning finance flows with Paris, as well as reviewing and giving guidance to multilateral climate funds.
Agreement of a forward approach for how the new collective quantified finance goal (post-2025) will be set prior to 2025.
Addressing the gap that exists between NDCs and emissions reductions required by science to keep 1.5 in reach; including a roadmap for strengthening 2030 NDCs as necessary ahead of, and through, the Global Stocktake in 2023.
Strengthened expectations of all Parties to produce long-term strategies pointing the way to net zero, regularly updated in light of the best available science.
Political prioritisation of adaptation, including launch of work to drive progress towards the Global Goal on Adaptation (GGA).
Agreement on the development of the Santiago Network on Loss & Damage.
Agreement on Article 6 rules which uphold environmental integrity, including guidance for cooperation under Article 6.2, a new UN mechanism under Article 6.4 and a work programme on non-market approaches under Article 6.8.
Adoption of further operational guidance for the Enhanced Transparency Framework to give confidence, legitimacy, clarity and enable comparison, and the importance of support for developing countries to undertake enhanced reporting.
Agreement on common time frames for NDCs to promote consistency and comparability and support the functioning of the Paris system/architecture.
Agreement of a new work programme for climate empowerment, education, training, and public awareness, participation and access to information.
Agreement of a new work programme on local communities and indigenous peoples.
Outcomes ensuring the institutional architecture is fit for purpose by agreeing the UNFCCC budget, taking forward work on a range of issues from agriculture to response measures, and concluding a large number of reviews of key bodies.
An improved Marrakesh Partnership that strengthens links with non-state actors, driven by the High Level Champions.
For a comprehensive summary of discussions between the representative group of Ministers participating in the July Ministerial on the Glasgow outcomes, I invite you to read my chair’s summary.