21.06.2022

Six-Month Update on Progress in Advancing the Just Energy Transition Partnership (JETP)

21 June 2022

Introduction

At the UNFCCC COP26 in November 2021, the governments of South Africa, with France, Germany, the United Kingdom, the United States of America, and the European Union – together forming the International Partners Group (IPG) – announced a new ambitious, long-term Just Energy Transition Partnership (JETP) to support the Republic of South Africa’s (RSA) decarbonization effort in the context of domestic climate policy, including transitioning its economy towards cleaner energy sources. A distinguishing feature of the JETP is its emphasis on the centrality of a just transition in the structuring of the investment plan and financing package.

The JETP is a pathbreaking initiative and the first of its kind. It is long-term and ambitious in its aspiration to support South Africa’s pathway to a low carbon economy and climate resilient society; to accelerate the just transition and the decarbonization of the electricity system (including rehabilitation and repurposing of mines); and to support the development of new economic opportunities such as green hydrogen and electric vehicles amongst other interventions to support RSA’s shift towards a greener future. 

In line with the political declaration issued in November 2021, the IPG undertook to mobilise an initial amount of $8.5 billion over the next 3-5 years to advance the Partnership.  It was determined that the Partners  would within six months provide a leader level progress update.

Given South Africa’s commitment to decarbonise its energy intensive economy as set out in its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC), and the commitment of the IPG to support developing countries in achieving this in ways that are inclusive and equitable, the Partnership has the potential to provide a model that could be replicated across the globe. In particular it has the potential to practically demonstrate how a just transition could be achieved and financed and to serve as a catalyst for a new inclusive development path in which every effort is made to leave no-one behind.   

In addition, given South Africa’s vulnerability to the impacts of climate change, as tragically demonstrated by the recent devastating floods and loss of life and property in KwaZulu-Natal, the urgency of investments in climate-resilient infrastructure is clear. 

As such, the JETP opens the way for long-term, ambitious and systemic climate actions to be funded through a range of instruments that support flexible and rapid implementation in ways that build confidence in a just energy transition. Key to realising the finance and the implementation of the JETP will be the finalisation of a fully approved and actionable Investment Plan (JETP-IP), with the intention of achieving this by November 2022 and COP27. The investment plan will identify the projects and activities required to achieve a just transition, and guide the use of funds.

Key priorities of the Partnership include:

  • Accelerating decarbonisation of South Africa’s electricity sector, including expanding renewable energy sources and strengthening the transmission network to accommodate new investments in renewables; 
  • Protecting vulnerable workers and communities affected by the move away from fossil fuels;
  • Supporting the reform process underway and future reforms essential to strengthen the enabling environment for the just transition;
  • Addressing environmental aspects of the transition, including mine rehabilitation;
  • Supporting the repurposing of mine sites (e.g. for renewable energy and agriculture);
  • Supporting opportunities for technological innovation and both public and private investment to drive the creation of green and quality jobs including in the Green Hydrogen and Electric Vehicles sectors; and In the design of the Partnership, ensuring that the programme gives due consideration to South Africa’s fiscal challenges.

Building an enabling environment

The JETP benefits from, and will be enabled by, policy reforms that have been implemented in South Africa since COP 26 and which affirm the relevance and focus of the JETP. These include, but are not limited to: 

  • An updated Climate Change Bill was tabled in Parliament in early 2022. The legislation would create a regulatory framework that enables the development of an effective climate change response and a long-term, just transition to a low-carbon economy and climate-resilient society. 
  • Similarly draft legislation has been published that proposes significant changes in the regulation of the electricity sector, including to establish an independent transmission operator to enable a competitive electricity market, alongside the restructuring of Eskom.
  • The Presidential Climate Commission (PCC) has just concluded a wide consultation process on a Just Transition Framework released on 23 February 2022 which will be finalised and presented to Cabinet. This is supported by the release of a Just Energy Transition discussion document by the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) that gives further substance to South Africa’s approach to a just transition.
  • A sixth round of bids for renewables under the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP) is underway, consistent with the country’s Integrated Resource Plan. 
  • Notably, the raising of the licensing threshold for new generation capacity from 1MW to 100MW has opened the way for the private sector to invest in renewable energy projects, with approximately 4.5 GW of projects currently in development, and for the domestic banking sector to allocate substantial capital to this. The work to eliminate administrative and regulatory inefficiencies in this regard is progressing. The first two 100MW projects had their registration approved in May 2022 and will soon commence construction. 
  • Positive developments related to green hydrogen are in place, including the development of a Hydrogen Economy Roadmap led by the Department of Science and Innovation. The Industrial Development Corporation, working with KfW, is identifying early-stage project potential, and in the Northern Cape work is underway to develop a port at Boegoebaai that is critical to the development of an export market for green hydrogen.  
  • South Africa launched a South African Green finance taxonomy in April 2022 that outlines assets, projects, and sectors that are eligible to be defined as “green” in line with international best practice and national priorities. It is a voluntary market tool, with regulatory guidance expected later in 2022 followed by the development of a regulatory instrument from 2023.
  • A Sustainability and Climate Change Disclosure Guidance, based on the recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosure (TCFD), was launched by the Johannesburg Stock Exchange 14 June 2022. 
  • The National Treasury has also indicated that the carbon tax rate will progressively increase every year to reach US$20 per tonne of carbon dioxide equivalent by 2026. In the second phase after 2025, the medium-term to long-term path will include more rapid and aggressive annual increases thereafter, to at least US$30 by 2030, accelerating to higher levels by 2035, 2040 and up to US$120 beyond 2050.
  • The DMRE is working to finalise a National Mine Closure Strategy, which will bring policy clarity and provide operational guidance for mine closures.
  • A South African Renewable Energy Master Plan is being developed that will outline a roadmap to support the expansion of renewable energy sources and supply chains in the country.

In addition, significant work on the just transition has been undertaken outside of government that the Partnership can draw from, including:

  • The Congress of South African Trade Unions’ (COSATU) Just Transition Blueprint, which reflects the active engagement of organised labour in developing policy responses for affected workers;
  • The Life After Coal Campaign’s Just Transition Open Agenda, which is one of several inputs that civil society have made on the just transition; 
  • The sustainability and climate disclosure guidance as well as guidance related to sustainable bonds and transition securities listings issued by Johannesburg Stock Exchange; and 
  • Work undertaken by organised business such as the National Business Initiative and Business Unity SA, as well as academic and policy research institutions such as Mistra, the CSIR and TIPS, on the trajectory that South Africa could take to meet the lower end of the NDC target range and move towards a net zero pathway.  

Taken cumulatively, these developments have placed the just energy transition, in all its elements, at the centre of the national policy agenda and action by stakeholders across society. Likewise, the JETP is being debated widely across South African society and is seen as a potential catalyst to enable key interventions in support of more rapid decarbonisation. Specifically, its potential to support the resolution of South Africa’s electricity supply shortfall, contribute to economic recovery and avenues for sustaining and improving the quality of livelihoods affected by the transition through alternative employment opportunities is well recognised, as is the potential for the Programme to leverage significant new private sector investment.

Governance structures

Following the announcement of the Partnership at COP26, the IPG was set up to coordinate amongst its members and with the government of the Republic of South Africa. It is currently chaired by the United Kingdom and co-ordination takes place between respective capitals as well as amongst their Missions in South Africa. The IPG has worked to ensure a common approach to the Partnership from IPG members, engaged with the DFIs and MDBs that are the key entities involved in the delivery of the JETP and had multiple engagements with the South African government.

In February, President Cyril Ramaphosa appointed Mr Daniel Mminele, a former Deputy Governor of the South African Reserve Bank and Group CEO of Absa, to lead a Presidential Climate Finance Task Team (PCFTT) that is the counterpart for the IPG within South Africa. Mr Mminele has moved swiftly to appoint PCFTT members representing key government departments and state-owned entities, as well as leading experts. The PCFTT reports to an Inter-Ministerial Committee that is chaired by President Ramaphosa. Its mandate is to engage with the IPG with a view to advising Cabinet on the composition, affordability, and alignment of the financing package with the South African regulatory environment; coordinate relevant government departments, development finance institutions, and the private sector; and oversee the development of relevant financing mechanisms and facilities to enable the flow of international climate finance to support South Africa’s just transition in the electricity, electric vehicles and green hydrogen sectors.

Mr Mminele’s appointment has created a platform for ongoing engagement between the Partners on the content and shape of the JETP and on the work necessary to implement it. Frequent discussions between the IPG Chair and Mr Mminele, as well as with the IPG more broadly, are underway and are building both consensus and clarity on the scope and nature of the Partnership. 

Support structures: JETP Secretariat

The Partnership’s work is supported by a JETP Secretariat that provides a technical and coordination function to the Partnership, in a neutral and objective manner. The Climate Investment Fund Board has been approached by the IPG and generously agreed to resource and support the work of the Secretariat. All JETP partners have agreed to the appointment of Ms Joanne Yawitch, outgoing Chief Executive Officer of the National Business Initiative in South Africa, as Head of the Secretariat.

The Secretariat conducted a set of engagements in South Africa in early May 2022 to inform its work in supporting the JETP in terms of its scope, structure, and timelines. 

These consultations included the PCFTT, the IPG, relevant government focal points and development finance institutions and formally initiated the process to support the development of the JETP-IP. Key issues discussed included:

  • Consultations on the nature of the financial offer, including its sources, composition, concessionality, conditionalities and how it could be structured for maximum impact, as well as the ways in which it could be leveraged to bring in additional finance;
  • Developing a shared understanding of ambition in relevant priority areas and in relation to South Africa’s NDC range and the investment activities related to this in each of the identified priority areas;
  • Consultations on the JETP IP outline and contents, including how the just transition elements should be centrally embedded as a fundamental element of the programme, as well as critical next steps and timelines for its finalisation; and
  • The scope, roles and responsibility of the JETP Secretariat, including finalising its Terms of Reference.

The above areas for consideration are based on analytical work that includes:

  • Assessment of relevant policies, guidelines and analytical work and the on-going work in the Just Transition area.  
  • A preliminary review of the investment and policy implications of achieving the most ambitious target possible within South Africa’s updated NDC range through 2030 and beyond, including a preliminary costing and related financing needs of achieving the lower end of the range.
  • Mapping the development financiers’ activities and programmes that support the Just Energy Transition, and which are under implementation, preparation, and planned. This includes the following 15 entities: European Commission (EC), IBRD, KfW, GIZ, DEG, AfDB, IFC, AFD, FCDO, BII, EIB, DFC as well as DBSA, IDC and NDB.  The analysis addresses both qualitative and quantitative terms, disaggregated by instrument type (grants, concessional loans as defined by the OECD DAC methodology, and non-concessional loans/guarantee). This will provide an insight into the landscape of activities and associated financing by development banks, which will further complement the JET-IP process.

The JETP Secretariat consultations took place at the same time as the second mission of the Accelerating Coal Transition Investment Programme (ACT-IP) funded by the CIF and led by the WBG and the AfDB were in South Africa. The ACT-IP and its programming will be aligned with and supportive of the broader JETP and that it is be developed as an integral element of the broader programme.

Working Group establishment

The JETP will establish five working groups that will be the vehicle through which key technical expertise and experience can be mobilised to inform the development of the JETP-IP. The PCFTT and the IPG have decided to establish a cross-cutting Finance Working Group, an Implementation Working Group, and three working groups addressing the power sector, green hydrogen and the transport sector. Just transition and environmental considerations will be incorporated into each working group. 

The terms of reference for the working groups are being developed and will focus on the sequencing of investments relative to the NDC, their contribution to a just transition, and South Africa’s ambitions, priorities, and environmental challenges. 

Work is underway by the JETP Secretariat to identify the expertise required for the working groups, including representatives from governments, bilateral and multilateral institutions, and the private sector.

Financing package

Discussions are underway between the PCFTT and the IPG regarding the nature of funding to be provided through the partnership. The IPG has provided the PCFTT with further detail on the financing instruments that may be offered. This information from the IPG has opened the way for more detailed engagement, including with key DFIs and MDBs.  The PCFTT is presently analysing this material together with South Africa’s National Treasury with a view to ensuring that these instruments meet South Africa’s investment needs and fiscal realities.

These discussions are taking place in the context of the JETP’s assessment of the total financing needs for the full period of transition. They are cognisant of the need to consider all forms of finance, including grants, concessional and non-concessional and public and private finance, as well as to ensure that the total package of financing is appropriately structured to support South Africa’s climate ambitions.

In addition, there is considerable interest in the JETP from other potential financiers and donors.

JETP linked initiatives in progress

Importantly, and central to the JETP, South Africa is conducting a countrywide consultation process on the just transition as a core element of its climate response. The JETP will build on existing work relevant to the Partnership, including the financing and architecture that would allow for the just transition to be realised in ways that open up opportunities for affected workers and communities. 

The JETP recognizes that there are a number of bilateral and multilateral initiatives at different degrees of readiness that will seek to support South Africa in meeting its short and long-term goals. The Eskom Just Energy Transition Project at Komati is under development and will likely be presented to the World Bank Board for approval before COP27. This project addresses the repowering and repurposing of the Komati Power Station and has a substantial social and just transition component.  In addition, project preparation for the Accelerating Coal Transition (ACT) Investment Programme run under the auspices of the CIF is underway. The proposed support involves an indicative allocation of $200-500 million linked to country needs and ambition. This Programme, supported by the IBRD, IFC and the African Development Bank, is to be submitted for approval by October 2022. In addition, work is in progress regarding transmission network strengthening and the private sector pipeline of renewables projects all create the basis for the JETP Investment Plan within an environment that is aligned to and supportive of its aims.

There is also ongoing work related to both green hydrogen and electric vehicles, including a partnership between KfW and South Africa’s Industrial Development Corporation to support potential green hydrogen-related investments and UK support for the development of the Hydrogen Roadmap. In addition, a policy-based operation is already under preparation by AFD and KfW to support South Africa’s priorities.

Focus for the next six months

The Political Declaration determined the JETP’s foundation, its principles and basis for engagement. The declaration emphasizes the long-term nature of the Partnership and ensuring that the financing package supports and meets country needs and catalyses the necessary action.  

The Principals are strongly focused on mobilising investment in the short term, within the context of a longer-term plan, and are using the JETP-IP to compile an emerging portfolio in the priority sectors set out in the Political Declaration.   

While momentum has built up in relation to the JETP, there is much work to be done both to refine the financing package and to develop the JETP-IP. These two objectives will be the focus of the forthcoming period, with significant work already underway.

Work plan with milestones leading up to COP27

The indicative work plan to December 2022 contains the following priority deliverables and targets: 

  • Establishment of Working Groups by June 2022
  • Draft JETP-IP by July 2022
  • Second draft JETP-IP by September 2022
  • Final JETP-IP by October 2022
  • IPG and PCFTT sign-off by early November 2022

PRESIDENTIAL CLIMATE FINANCE TASK TEAM AND THE INTERNATIONAL PARTNERS GROUP

31.05.2022

May Ministerial Meeting on Implementation Co-Chairs’ Summary

10 minute read

Chairs’ summary from COP President Alok Sharma and COP President Designate and Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry, for the May Ministerial on Implementation held on 12-13 May 2022 in Copenhagen.

Introduction

On 12-13 May 2022, Ministers and high-level representatives from over 40 countries met in Copenhagen, Denmark, to follow up, promote and accelerate the implementation of key climate commitments and pledges, and assess the practical steps needed for progress this year. The meeting was co-chaired by the COP President from the UK, H.E Alok Sharma, and the COP President Designate from Egypt, H.E. Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry. The co-chairs wish to express their deep gratitude to Minister Dan Jørgensen and the Danish Government for hosting the meeting.

The agenda consisted of four sessions, covering implementation and action for: (i) adapting to climate impacts; (ii) averting, minimising and addressing loss and damage; (iii) reducing emissions and keeping 1.5C alive; and (iv) mobilising finance. Discussions took place through a combination of plenary and breakout groups. The co-chairs wish to thank all participants for their frank and constructive engagement during each session. They are also very grateful to all colleagues who moderated the break out group discussions and reported back afterwards.

In addition to country representatives, the UNFCCC Executive Secretary, the UN Secretary General’s Special Advisor on Climate Action and Just Transition, the UN High Level Champions, and representatives from UNFCCC observer constituencies participated in the discussions. To promote transparency and inclusivity, ahead of the meeting the co-chairs published an open letter, with the discussion questions for the meeting annexed.

High-level summary

All Ministers recognised the urgency of responding to the findings of the IPCC Working Group II and III Reports this year through immediate action at scale to implement key individual and collective commitments under the UNFCCC, Paris Agreement and previous decisions, declarations and pledges, including most recently at COP26 and its Glasgow Climate Pact. Although participants noted the uniquely challenging global context, many also recognised that these challenges strengthen the need to accelerate practical action and support for the just transition to low GHG emissions and climate-resilient economies now and through this crucial decade. To achieve the goals of the UNFCCC and the Paris Agreement, many welcomed the meeting’s role in bringing refreshed and refocused attention on the steps needed to keep 1.5C alive, ensure effective adaptation, support the most vulnerable and ensure that finance flows at the necessary scale. Across the four sessions, Ministers highlighted the clear links and synergies between these issues.

Adapting to climate impacts

Recognising the alarming findings of the IPCC Working Group II Report, many Ministers called for a more focused drive to deliver “transformational adaptation”, with sustained attention needed to address gaps across policies, planning, implementation and finance. Ministers pointed to several elements as essential for this, including effective adaptation planning and additional National Adaptation Plans, national leadership and enhanced and adequate climate finance and investment. Ministers emphasised the importance of making progress at COP27 through the Glasgow-Sharm el-Sheikh Work Programme on the Global Goal on Adaptation.

Ministers recognised the need for adaptation action to be better integrated into development planning and programmes in order to deliver a whole-of-society approach and catalyse more public and private investment in adaptation action. Many also highlighted current efforts and aims to mainstream adaptation across sectors, such as agriculture, water, forestry and infrastructure. Many Ministers called for more work to ensure adaptation planning is inclusive including through the involvement of youth and indigenous peoples and gender sensitive approaches, and driven by local needs and priorities and to better identify opportunities for cross-border regional collaboration, including on issues like ecosystems, water resources and mangrove forests.

Ministers underlined the need for a transformative agenda on adaptation at COP27, including to scale up, and improve timely access to, adaptation finance to help developing countries implement national and local adaptation plans. Many stressed the centrality of concessional and grant-based public finance, particularly for the poorest and most vulnerable. There were clear requests for transparency at COP27 on the delivery of the doubling of adaptation finance by 2025 and expressions of support for more balanced adaptation finance. Some also recognised that substantial private investment will be needed to adequately address the finance gap. Several participants highlighted the importance of translating national and local adaptation plans into investable pipelines of programmes and activities, and were hopeful of progress that could be made through enhanced collaboration between countries, Multilateral Development Banks and the private sector, including through improvements in local capacity and technology. The role of the Adaptation Fund and the Green Climate Fund were highlighted as important vehicles to channel adaptation finance. Multilateral Development Banks and the private sector have a role in providing and mobilising support to developing countries’ adaptation efforts, including through improvements in local capacity and technology.

Averting, minimising and addressing loss and damage

Ministers recognised that loss and damage is happening now, and the clear need for practical, shared solutions to scale up action and support. They also welcomed that parties are becoming more open and constructive in approaching this issue. Many highlighted examples of the devastating impacts that climate change is already having on communities on the front line or progressively developing due to slow onset events. There was recognition of the particular predicament of countries that are vulnerable to impacts affecting their whole economy, driving indebtedness and incurring substantial economic and non-economic loss and damage. Several highlighted the need to build back better from losses and damages, in order to ensure communities and infrastructure become greener, more resilient and “future-proof” in the face of recurrent and worsening impacts. The Ministers and high level representatives underlined that further ambition and action on mitigation and adaptation can contribute to less loss and damage and thus the effort and costs associated with averting, minimising and addressing it.

Many stressed the importance of existing practical work being undertaken at national and local levels, including on prevention through early warning systems, such as through the UN Secretary General’s initiative to protect everyone on Earth with such systems within the next five years, comprehensive risk management and reduction, and insurance. Several stressed the need to enhance local capacity to plan and deliver effective action, including through sound needs assessment. To support this, many Ministers called for the Santiago Network to be fully operationalised and funded by COP27.

There were strong calls for delivering on scaling up resources for loss and damage, building on the Glasgow Climate Pact. Delivery mechanisms for enhanced finance were discussed, with some emphasising the need for a new fund and others noting the opportunity to scale up and coordinate action better through existing climate, disaster risk reduction and humanitarian channels. Ministers looked forward to practical ideas for progress being identified through the Glasgow Dialogue next month.

Reducing emissions and keeping 1.5C alive

Ministers underlined their alarm at the findings of the recent IPCC WGIII Report, which highlights the closing window for action to keep 1.5C alive and the need for accelerated action before 2030. Ministers recognised that every fraction of a degree of warming worsens impacts greatly, so the faster emissions are reduced, the greater our capacity to successfully adapt to these impacts and avert, minimise and address loss and damage. Recognising the challenging geopolitical context, there was a clear collective determination to tackle the current energy crisis alongside the climate crisis, and to seize the opportunity for a clean energy transition. Several highlighted the importance of scaling up international cooperation and support to maximise ambition and ensure just transitions and equity, taking into account the needs of the poorest and most vulnerable. Participants highlighted appropriate finance as a main enabler for ambition and further action in developing countries.

Several Ministers made a clear call for a substantive outcome on mitigation at COP27, and there was a lot of attention on the expectation that all Parties revisit the 2030 emission reduction targets in their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC), and strengthen them as necessary to align with the Paris temperature goal. Some set out the work they are already doing to deliver on this and others made clear their plans to do so this year. Many pointed to the need for developed countries and G20 major emitters to lead the way in these efforts, and to consider equity and common but differentiated responsibilities in accordance with the principles of the UNFCCC and Paris Agreement; many also highlighted the role for all Parties to make an active response and some highlighted their concerns regarding perceived burden shifting from developed to developing countries. There were also clear expectations for Parties to respond to the request to communicate long-term low greenhouse gas emission development strategies (LT-LEDS) this year, with a number signalling the work that is already going on to develop these, and the importance of engaging the private sector. Several Ministers stressed that success this year would depend in part on seeing progress in NDC and LT-LEDS ambition in the mandated Synthesis Reports, the deadline for which is 23 September.

Many Ministers highlighted the need for headline ambition to be backed up by credible and worked-up plans to reduce emissions across key sectors, including to implement Glasgow commitments on phasing down unabated coal power, phasing out inefficient fossil fuel subsidies, and a number highlighted the importance of the Global Methane Pledge. Many outlined what is already being done, such as responding to the positive market signals for renewables, progressing nature-based solutions, reducing deforestation and enhancing REDD+, developing new technologies like green hydrogen and carbon capture, utilisation and storage, and deploying zero emission vehicles. The need to keep track of progress in these areas was highlighted. To assist domestic decision-making, several called for work to set out clear policy options for innovation and decarbonisation in key sectors, identification of impactful interventions and creation of appropriate financing vehicles to mobilise large scale funding. Some saw the high-level ministerial roundtable on pre-2030 ambition at COP27 and the work programme to urgently scale up mitigation ambition and implementation as enablers for this. Some also highlighted the importance of considering social and economic impacts of actions and policies.

Mobilising finance

Ministers recognised that progress was made on finance at COP26, but were clear on the need for further progress and accountability this year, including for the new collective quantified goal on finance. There was recognition that financial support and climate-aligned investment are fundamental for ambitious climate action, both overall and for specific sectors.

Ministers reiterated the importance of developed countries delivering as soon as possible, and by 2023 at the latest on the $100bn per year goal. Many stressed the need for developed countries to further demonstrate progress on this agenda, including by assessing lessons learned from previous years, barriers to the scale up of flows and how these were being addressed, to ensure transparency and credibility. The commitment by developed countries to double adaptation finance by 2025 and the importance of a credible plan for how this would be achieved were also highlighted by many. In this context, Canada and Germany announced that they will lead a follow-up on the $100bn Delivery Plan this year to promote predictability and transparency. This will focus on progress being made on the ten collective actions in the Plan, including increasing finance for adaptation.

Many stressed the need to improve access to finance for implementation of national and local plans and projects, particularly for adaptation, with calls for a system that is simpler, quicker, fairer, more coordinated and more transparent. Ministers recognised the work needed to address barriers and build capacity, with some highlighting a potential role for initiatives such as the Taskforce on Access to Finance. Some noted that greater alignment of processes among multilateral institutions represented low-hanging fruit in this area.

There was a strong expectation from many that COP27 should aim to accelerate the alignment of financial flows from all sources with the goals of the Paris Agreement, with some calling for a dedicated space to discuss this at COP27. Ministers recognised the need to mainstream climate goals into national policies and financial and economic plans to create the enabling environments, incentives and transparency to achieve this aim. Many highlighted the need to ensure commitments from the private sector are credible and actionable. Alongside this, scaling-up grant finance will remain vital, especially for certain geographies and interventions. In this context, the COP President, the COP President Designate and the High Level Champions were pleased to announce a new Independent High Level Expert Group on scaling up investment and finance to deliver on climate ambition and development goals, to be co-chaired by Dr Vera Songwe and Lord Nicholas Stern. The incoming COP27 Presidency also announced the launch of a series of five regional forums on “Projectalization of Climate Finance”, in cooperation with the High Level Champions and the UN Regional Economic Commissions.

01.04.2022

COP President Alok Sharma visits Brazil to press for implementation of the Glasgow Climate Pact, urging for action ahead of COP27

COP President Alok Sharma visited Brazil this week to maintain momentum on delivering commitments made in the landmark Glasgow Climate Pact agreed at COP26 and discuss how the UK can work with Brazil on climate change.

  • COP President Alok Sharma visited São Paulo and Brasilia to discuss implementation of climate commitments made in the Glasgow Climate Pact
  • Mr Sharma met the Vice President, Ministers for Environment, Energy, Justice and Vice Minister of Agriculture, along with representatives from state and city governments, members of civil society and business to discuss the transition to a low carbon global economy
  • Tackling deforestation is crucial in meeting climate targets in Brazil, with emissions linked to deforestation and agriculture making Brazil the 7th highest emitter globally

COP President Alok Sharma visited Brazil this week to maintain momentum on delivering commitments made in the landmark Glasgow Climate Pact signed at COP26 and discuss how the UK can work with Brazil on climate change.

Starting his visit in the city of Sao Paulo, Mr Sharma met with Brazilian Environment Minister, Joaquim Leite where he thanked Brazil for its collaborative approach at COP26 and the announcement of its 2030 climate action plan, long-term strategy for net zero by 2050 and commitment to zero illegal deforestation by 2030.

Mr Sharma set out the UK’s priorities as COP Presidency to work with countries in 2022 to implement their climate action plans, and the key role that Brazil has to play as a G20 member and the custodians of around 60% of the Amazon rainforest. Managing emissions from deforestation, agriculture and related supply chains, including growing soy for livestock feed, will be crucial to keep the goals of limiting global temperature warming to 1.5 degrees.

Mr Sharma discussed in meetings with the Vice President, Hamilton Mourão, Ministers of Energy, Bento Albuquerque, of Justice, Anderson Torres, and vice minister of Agriculture, Marcos Montes as well as with the President of Senate Rodrigo Pacheco, the pledges already made, including tackling deforestation, and the advantages a transition to a low carbon economy would bring to the country.

At the launch of the Glasgow Finance Alliance for Net Zero (GFANZ) campaign in Brazil, Mr Sharma set out the vital role finance has in the transition to net zero emissions by the middle of the century. Financial institutions and asset managers came together to commit to net zero at this event, with Mr Sharma urging even more Brazilian Private Finance Institutions to join the campaign.

Momentum is building in Brazil for an economy-wide shift towards net zero. In a meeting with Brazilian states, municipalities and businesses, Mr Sharma thanked the leadership of these actors so far and encouraged those who have not yet done so to join the Race to Zero campaign. Mr Sharma also spoke with businesses including CEOs from Klabin and Suzano, and members of civil society to discuss the benefits that a net zero future offers.

On his second day of the visit, Mr Sharma spoke in Brasilia at the Brazil Energy Prosperity Programme, with Brazilian Mines and Energy Minister Bento de Albuquerque. The Programme is a crucial example of UK-Brazil cooperation and Mr Sharma said that it is a vital part of Brazil’s transition to clean energy, supporting work on offshore wind, waste to energy, biofuels and others.

I have been pleased to be back in Brazil to speak with Ministers on the delivery of their COP26 commitments, which include halving emissions by 2030 on the path to net zero by 2050 and annual targets to reduce deforestation.

2022 is the year to turn commitments made in Glasgow into action and Brazil has an important role in delivering these commitments, as custodians of large parts of the Amazon rainforest and as a member of the G20. Setting out a long term strategy and implementation plan to get to net zero will be important on the road to COP27.

The transition to clean, resilient net zero economies is accelerating around the world and private sector innovation, expertise and finance is critical to help us plug the gap to meet this challenge.

It is encouraging to see the increasing number of net zero pledges being made by Brazilian businesses and I urge all companies in Brazil, and around the world, to join the Race to Zero campaign and the Glasgow Finance Alliance for Net Zero to demonstrate their commitment to green growth.

COP26 President Alok Sharma
A person walking along a ruined flooded road leading to an island in the Gulf of Mexico

28.02.2022

Joint Statement UK-Egypt-UNFCCC

Response to IPCC Working Group 2 Report

We thank the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and its authors for the latest volume of their 6th Assessment Report published today – Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability.

Today’s report shows that the impacts of climate change are already with us  and will affect us more severely than previously thought, with the most vulnerable being hardest hit. Human health and livelihoods are being devastated, unique ecosystems are being irreparably damaged, and many species have  become extinct. Although the report indicates that adaptation action is taking place in all regions of the world, our attempts at adapting to climate change impacts have fallen short. Adaptation limits have already been reached in places across the globe and more will emerge as temperatures rise especially if 1.5°C of global warming is exceeded. Yet, despite a narrowing window for action, the report gives cause for hope.  With a decisive and immediate response, bringing transformational adaptation together with rapid mitigation led by countries’ plans, we can create a climate resilient society, with benefits for all. 

As the COP26 and COP27 Presidencies and UNFCCC secretariat, we are committed to furthering climate action which responds to the science.  We must collectively deliver on the Paris Agreement including through the Glasgow Climate Pact, and countries must further strengthen their pledges and urgently implement them at scale in Sharm el-Sheikh and beyond.  Developed countries must follow through on their commitment to at least double their climate finance for adaptation to developing countries by 2025 aiming at achieving balance between funding for adaptation and mitigation.  The world must make concrete and substantive progress on the Glasgow-Sharm el-Sheikh work programme to implement the Global Goal on Adaptation. We must also act with urgency to put in place the technical and financial support to deal with loss and damage, including through the Santiago Network and Glasgow Dialogue. We must urgently accelerate our efforts to keep 1.5 in reach through revisiting and strengthening 2030 targets, delivering support, investment and employment opportunities. 

We all must respond to this report by collectively honouring the commitments made under the UNFCCC and the Paris Agreement, delivering on the Glasgow Climate Pact now and through COP27 and beyond to ensure we can build a sustainable, climate resilient world.

Signed:

Alok Sharma, COP President

Sameh Shoukry, COP 27 President Designate

Patricia Espinosa, UNFCCC Executive Secretary

Image of COP President Alok Sharma

24.01.2022

COP President Alok Sharma outlines Presidency aims for the coming year

10 minute read

Mr Sharma’s speech at Chatham House as we build on the success and commitments made in Glasgow.

Thank you Professor Benton for that kind introduction, and thank you to Chatham House for hosting me today.

Around the world, 2021 saw troops mobilise, violence erupt, and relations between old friends and allies strained.

Wars, dragged mercilessly on, and tensions mounted between some of the world’s great powers.

All around us we saw a fractured and fractious world, as the pandemic continued to cause devastation across the globe.

Yet, in a temporary structure on the banks of the River Clyde, 197 countries came together, at COP26.

They committed to take action on climate.

And they forged the Glasgow Climate Pact.

They did this because they broadly recognised three truths.

Truths which impact every country on earth.

Truths which should be uncontroversial, though some still seek to undermine them.

First, that this planet is our only home and we are in danger of destroying it.

The science is clear, human activity is responsible for our changing climate.

Second, that inaction or delayed action on climate will create immense risks and costs,and populations across the world demand leaders to respond – and to respond now.

And third, alongside the invaluable environmental dividend, there is an economic dividend to be reaped from tackling climate change, a fact recognised by global business and finance.

In short, climate is a space where national and global interests align.

And as a result, leaders recognised that despite other differences, cooperation at COP26 was in our collective self-interest.

Twelve weeks on from the start of that summit, those same leaders who came to Glasgow have a choice to make.

And it is one made in full knowledge of its consequences.

Do they match the powerful rhetoric we heard, with concrete action?

Do they honour the promises made in Glasgow?

Or do they allow our success to wither on the vine?

I believe the collective self-interest that helped COP26 to succeed must now drive us to nurture the spirit of global cooperation forged in Glasgow, and honour the Glasgow Climate Pact.

That is the essence of the argument I want to make today.

And I want to set out how the UK will work over our COP26 Presidency year to keep the world on course.

First however, I want to unpack that central idea, that collective self-interest led to success at Glasgow.

In 2015, countries came together and formed the Paris Agreement.

And in it they agreed to limit global heating to well below 2 degrees above pre-industrial levels by the end of this century, pursuing efforts to limit this rise to 1.5 degrees.

Yet in August last year, the IPCC published its sixth Assessment Report on the physical science of climate change, the findings of which are based on the distillation of 14,000 scientific papers and agreed by 195 countries.

That report concluded that we have already reached average global warming of 1.1 degrees, that human activity is unequivocally to blame, and that we were on track to breach the 1.5 degrees limit within two decades.

So when we arrived in Glasgow, it was clear that COP26 was our last best hope of keeping that 1.5 degree limit within reach.

Leaders understood that.

And they could see the effects of our warming world around them.

Last year we saw devastating floods across Asia and Europe.

Wildfires rage in the USA and Australia.

And reports of storms, cyclones and record-breaking temperatures were everywhere.

And the science is very clear, the higher temperatures rise the worse the situation will become, and every country will suffer the consequences.

Climate change does not recognise borders.

At 1.5 degrees warming 700 million people across the world will experience extreme heat.

At 2 degrees, it will be 2 billion.

We also know that there are what our hosts, Chatham House, call the “systemic cascading risks” of global heating.

These are the knock-on-effects resulting from climate impacts, such as food and water insecurity, pests and diseases, and the loss of lives, livelihoods and infrastructure.

Indeed in one of its recent reports, Chatham House makes the case that such factors could, ultimately, displace people, disrupt markets, undermine political stability, and exacerbate conflict.

Where people’s ability to feed their families becomes precarious and extreme weather and diseases wipe out livelihoods, people may be forced from their homes, and civil unrest may ferment, events that can undermine fragile government, and reverberate around the globe.

It is because climate is central to geopolitics, that the UK’s Integrated Review established tackling climate change and biodiversity loss as the UK’s top international priority.

But this is as much a question of economics as security.

Climate change also threatens catastrophic economic damage, just as we are repairing the harm inflicted by the pandemic.

Lord Stern and others have described how climate change will damage the productive capacity of the world economy, harming natural, human, and physical capital.

And ultimately it will disrupt the trade that criss-crosses the planet and restrain the global economy’s ability to grow.

Back in 2006, the Stern Review estimated that unmitigated climate change could incur costs equivalent to wiping as much as 20 percent off global GDP every year.

And here in the UK, last year, the Office for Budget Responsibility projected that unchecked climate change could lead to public debt reaching a staggering 289 percent of GDP by the end of the century.

This is a result of coping with extreme weather at home and the knock-on effects of even greater damage in hotter countries.

Anyone who believes in fiscal responsibility should baulk at the idea that we would laden future generations with such unsustainable levels of avoidable debt.

By contrast the OBR estimates that if we act now, the transition to net zero could add around 21% of GDP to government debt by mid-century.

Though policy choices could reduce this figure, and I would add that it includes investments with long term benefits.

Given the impacts of global heating, it is not surprising that people around the world are demanding action, as I have heard first-hand from civil society and young people across the globe.

Last year, a survey of over a million people in 50 countries found that almost two-thirds described climate change as an “emergency”.

Research published last September found that almost 60% of young people globally felt that governments were, and I quote, “betraying me and future generations.”

And I am certain that the unrelenting calls from civil society for leaders to act, helped to focus minds in Glasgow.

Just as the science has become starker, the risks have become clearer, and the calls to action have grown louder, the opportunities presented by tackling climate change are increasingly evident.

Net zero is one of the clearest economic trends there has ever been.

It is vast in scope, encompassing every country and every sector.

And it represents an enormous economic opportunity.

One that is being seized by companies, by countries and by financial institutions around the world.

I have travelled on a prototype hydrogen bus in India.

I have witnessed agricultural innovation, to reduce emissions and boost productivity, in Brazil.

I have met communities in Kenya connected to reliable power for the first time, thanks to solar.

And around the world, markets are on the move.

The amount of power generated by solar and wind has increased close to seven-fold in a decade.

Internationally, the coal power pipeline has reduced over 75 percent since 2015.

And, domestically the answer to cutting emissions, keeping bills under control and ensuring security of supply, is to continue to build out our world-leading offshore wind sector and invest in nuclear and hydrogen, as the government is doing.

Major car manufacturers such as General Motors, Volvo and JLR have committed all of their new car sales being zero-emissions by 2035 or earlier.

Financial institutions with over $130 trillion dollars of assets on their balance sheets have committed to stringent net zero targets through the Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero.

And over 60% of the UK FTSE100 companies have done the same through the Race to Zero campaign.

As the CEO of a major multi-national said to me recently: a few years ago a corporate was considered an outlier if it was setting out plans to go to net zero, now they are an outlier if they’re not.

An explanation for this was set out clearly in a letter last week from Larry Fink, to the Chief Executives of companies in which Blackrock invests.

He wrote, and I quote:

“It’s been two years since I wrote that climate risk is investment risk.

And in that short period, we have seen a tectonic shift of capital.

Sustainable investments have now reached 4 trillion dollars.

Actions and ambitions towards de-carbonization have also increased.

This is just the beginning – the tectonic shift towards sustainable investing is still accelerating.

Every company and every industry will be transformed by the transition to a net zero world.

The question is, will you lead, or will you be led?”

I agree – that is indeed the question for business.

Clean is competitive.

And the global race to supply the technologies and solutions a net-zero world needs is on.

The train is pulling out of the station and countries and companies that want to remain competitive need to leap on now.

We know too that the move to green economies creates good green jobs.

The International Energy Agency has estimated that about 30 million new workers are needed by 2030 to meet increased demand in the clean economy.

The International Labour Organisation has projected that, in the transition to a low-carbon economy, some sectors could see four times more jobs created than there are lost.

And there is a clear economic case to adapt to climate change, to protect people and nature from its effects.

The UN Environment Programme, for example, estimates that investing in measures like early warning systems and flood defences, could yield over four times the return in avoided costs and social and environmental benefits.

What I came to understand from the numerous conversations I held with leaders and ministers over the past two years, is that countries recognise all of this.

They can see domestically what is happening to their climate and its consequences.

The science has hit home.

The risks have resonated.

And the opportunities are increasingly clear.

And as a result, a collective self-interest emerged.

All countries saw that it was in their interests to come to Glasgow, to cooperate and to keep the 1.5 limit alive.

And we did keep 1.5 alive, thanks to what we achieved both in and outside the negotiating rooms.

Ahead of the summit a number of countries, though not enough, came forward with enhanced emissions reduction commitments, or NDCs, showing the Paris Agreement is working.

And at COP26 itself almost 200 countries came together and agreed the historic Glasgow Climate Pact.

In doing so they demonstrated that climate can create a space for co-operation amidst a splintered global politics, that the world can work together to improve our common future, to address major global challenges and to seize opportunities.

The Glasgow Climate Pact recognises the science.

It calls on countries to phase-down unabated coal power and phase-out inefficient fossil fuel subsidies.

It requests countries to revisit and strengthen their 2030 emissions reduction targets, as necessary, to align with the Paris temperature goal by the end of this year.

And it contains ambitious text on loss and damage.

It commits us to rapidly scale up climate finance and to double finance for adaptation by 2025.

And of course, we finalised the Paris Rulebook, the rules governing the Paris Agreement, the thorniest issues of which had remained unresolved since 2015.

Outside the negotiations, we heard commitments from countries, business and finance to clean up sectors like power and road transport, to put an end to deforestation, to accelerate the pace of new technologies, and to support developing countries.

For example, 34 countries and five public finance institutions committed to stop international support for the fossil fuel energy sector by the end of 2022.

I thank all the CEOs and business owners, from the FTSE 100 to the SMEs, whose firms came forward with commitments, as well as our COP partners, some of whom are here with us today.

What we achieved together in Glasgow was significant.

When my team and I established priorities in 2020, with the support of our Friends of COP group, we questioned whether we were setting ourselves up to fail.

And indeed, some thought we were.

I have to tell you, I was advised that the chances of completing the Paris Rulebook were pretty slim; after all, completion had eluded the world for a full six years.

When my team and I were deliberating on whether we should aim to consign coal power to history, I was warned we would never get the word “coal” in a COP text.

Yet every country at COP has agreed to phase-down coal power.

And we can confidently say that 2021 was the year that killed-off international public financing of coal power.

Under the UK and Italy’s G7 and G20, respective presidencies, we committed to end new international coal power financing by the end of 2021.

And a transformation is now afoot around the world.

Last week I spoke with a Minister from a country that wasn’t even talking about coal a year ago.

Now they are saying no to new coal power.

Many doubted we would see a shift of this sort.

Yet we delivered on our Glasgow goals.

And we were able to do so because of the trust between countries that we had worked so hard to build, as a presidency.

I spent much of last year building relationships.

We held meetings in person ahead of COP, despite the pandemic.

And to ensure this was a truly shared endeavour, we asked individual Ministers from governments around the world to lead on critical negotiating issues.

The Glasgow Climate Pact is a product of international cooperation and a practical demonstration of Global Britain in action.

And the climate attaches in the UK diplomatic network played a vital role, just as they will throughout this year.

All in all, there is no doubt that the commitments we secured at COP26 were historic.

Yet, at the moment they are just words on a page.

And unless we honour the promises made, to turn the commitments in the Glasgow Climate Pact into action, they will wither on the vine.

We will have mitigated no risks.

We will have seized no opportunities.

Instead, we will have fractured the trust built between nations.

And 1.5 degrees will slip from our grasp.

So my absolute focus for the UK Presidency year is delivery.

I am under no illusions as to the scale of the task we face, the difficult choices which countries must make, and the challenge we have as a presidency, now that the lights have faded on the global stage in Glasgow.

Working with Egypt, we must maintain the urgency and the energy as we approach COP27 in Sharm-el-Sheikh.

Just as leaders understood that it was in our collective self-interests to come together and forge the Glasgow Climate Pact, so that same collective interest should spur us to deliver at COP27.

That will become increasingly clear over 2022 and beyond, as renewable prices fall further, the risks and opportunities become more apparent, and the science grows starker.

And new reports from the IPCC this year will show the monumental risk that we face.

So action must begin now.

It is precisely 12 weeks since world leaders held their summit in Glasgow.

Where they listened as Prime Minister Mia Mottley of Barbados told us that a 2 degrees world is “a death sentence”.

Where leaders sat in compassionate silence at the request of youth activist Elizabeth Wathuti, who asked them to think of those whose stories are not heard and whose suffering is not felt.

Where Sir David Attenborough inspired the world with his message that “our motivation should not be fear, but hope.”

It is now time to honour our promises.

To build on the trust and consensus generated in Glasgow and deliver, with integrity.

That requires action on both a domestic and international level.

We need every country to play its part, and honour the promises they have made.

But we must also work together.

By aligning efforts internationally countries can accelerate the pace of technological change, increase incentives for investment, and innovate faster.

Working in partnership, we can support a truly global transition.

At COP26, for instance, we launched the South Africa Just Energy Transition Partnership, through which countries have come together to mobilise an initial $8.5 billion dollars.

And through international fora, we can set direction and spur action, as we did ahead of Glasgow, at the G7 and the G20.

So the UK presidency will both urge countries to act individually, and encourage cooperation.

And we will do so around four key priorities.

First, to ensure that countries reduce emissions, as promised, and go further, to keep 1.5 alive.

That means encouraging countries with a net zero target to make a plan to get there if they haven’t already done so.

It means urging all governments to honour the Glasgow Climate Pact and revisit and strengthen their 2030 emissions reductions targets as necessary.

The G20 is my personal priority here given that they are responsible for 80 percent of global emissions.

And it means asking all countries to turn their NDCs into policies and plans to deliver.

Second, we aim to progress work on adaptation and loss and damage.

We will work with donor countries towards the commitment to double adaptation finance,and with all parties to make progress towards the Global Goal on Adaptation.

We aim to progress the Glasgow Dialogue on loss and damage, and will further operationalise the Santiago Network, including its funding, by COP27.

Third, we want to deliver finance to support these efforts.

We will urge developed countries to implement the delivery plan on the $100billion a year in international climate finance for developing countries.

By COP27 we must be able to show that we are on a trajectory to meet that $100billion goal.

And we will work with all parties to make progress on the post-2025 climate finance goal.

We will also encourage the financial firms and development finance institutions that have made commitments, to deliver with integrity.

And, with others, we will build on our work with South Africa, to unleash private and public money to fund the transition from fossil fuels to clean energy in other high-emitting countries, supporting their national plans.

Our fourth and final goal is to push for further action across critical sectors, such as coal, cars and ending deforestation.

We will urge countries to act.

And we will work with partners to turn promises into clear delivery plans: through the Energy Transition Council, the Zero Emissions Vehicle Transition Council, the FACT Dialogue and the Breakthrough Agenda.

In all of this we will work hand-in-hand with our COP27 Partner, Egypt and support the holder of COP28, the UAE, both of which I visited earlier in the month.

And we will learn from the success of Glasgow, continuing to build trust and relationships, working through international fora, and continuing to engage with civil society and young people.

These are ambitious plans for our presidency year. And rightly so.

Because as Margaret Thatcher, one of the first major international leaders to sound the alarm on climate change, argued in 1989:

“The environmental challenge which confronts the whole world demands an equivalent response from the whole world. Every country will be affected and no one can opt out.”

Her words are as true today as they were then, more than thirty years ago.

What has changed in that time, is the extent of our knowledge and the urgency of our task.

Such awareness has given rise to a collective self-interest, powerful enough to deliver international consensus in a fractured world.

The question now is whether, in full knowledge of the consequences, we chose to squander or realise that gain.

The answer should be obvious.

After what was, frankly an exhausting year, I settled down to catch-up on some popular culture over Christmas.

Like many others, I watched ‘Don’t Look Up’.

The final line has stayed with me:

“We really did have everything, didn’t we?”

We do have everything.

And we must not throw it away.

There is no more time to: ‘sit tight and assess’.

We must deliver.

Together.

Now.

Thank you.


Ends.

16.01.2022

COP President visits Egypt and United Arab Emirates to build on momentum from COP26 for global climate action

In his first visits as COP President, Alok Sharma has today [Sunday 16 January 2022] concluded a constructive visit to Egypt and will now travel to the United Arab Emirates, with the countries hosts of COP27 and COP28 respectively.

  • COP President Alok Sharma visits Egypt and UAE, hosts of COP27 and COP28
  • First in series of engagements between countries to build on momentum from COP26
  • Expansion of initiative to support promising climate projects also announced by Mr Sharma in Egypt

COP President Alok Sharma has today concluded a constructive visit to Egypt and will now travel to the United Arab Emirates, with the countries hosting the next two UN Climate Summits.

These are Mr Sharma’s first visits following COP26 in Glasgow, underlining the importance of building strong partnerships with the COP27 and COP28 hosts. This will culminate in a meeting between Egypt, UAE and UK in Abu Dhabi, the first of a series of engagements between the countries ahead of COP27 and COP28.

Whilst in Cairo, Mr Sharma met a wide range of Government Ministers, including Prime Minister Madbouly and Egypt’s COP President-Designate, Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry. Together they issued a UK-Egypt Joint Statement which affirms their joint commitment to accelerating the fight against climate change during this critical decade.

They also agreed to continue building a partnership in 2022 that aligns priorities and plans, secures the legacy of the Glasgow Climate Pact and delivers impact and progress on the Paris Agreement goals, in Sharm el Sheikh at COP27. This means ensuring all parties meet their commitments across mitigation, adaptation, loss and damage, and finance.

The COP President also announced the expansion of the UK Government’s ‘Climate Finance Accelerator’ Programme to Egypt. Already successfully operating in six countries, the initiative will provide capacity-building support to promising climate projects in Egypt so that they become more bankable and appealing to investors, and can secure funding more readily.

On his final day in Egypt, Mr Sharma discussed the role of the private sector in building on COP26 to achieve success at COP27, meeting with business leaders pursuing green initiatives in Egypt.

COP President Alok Sharma said:

COP26 was a historic, collective achievement. We kept the goal of limiting average global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees in reach and made progress on finance for climate action, adaptation and loss and damage, which will benefit countries across both Africa and the MENA region.

I look forward to working with Egypt and UAE as hosts of COP27 and COP28 respectively on the climate agenda. The UK will give its full support to Egypt in delivering an ambitious COP this November which ensures urgently delivering for those most vulnerable to climate change.

We all need to make further progress in 2022 and especially on delivering the $100 billion of finance and addressing investment needs in the most climate vulnerable countries. This will build on the Glasgow Climate Pact and secure a better future for us all.

An important focus for COP27 and COP28 will be the completion of the first Global Stocktake. This will be a key part of assessing progress made by nations in implementing the Paris Agreement and setting out a clear roadmap towards achieving it. This formally began at COP26 and will conclude at COP28

The UK is keen to share experiences of hosting a large international summit with Egypt and the UAE and the COP President has highlighted the COVID-19 testing procedures for providing a safe experience for all delegates at the recent COP26 gathering and collaboration with civil society.

The COP President will now travel to the United Arab Emirates to see preparations for COP28 that will be staged in 2023 and will meet key government ministers, including the recently appointed Minister of Climate Change and Environment, HE Mariam Al Mheiri and UAE’s Special Envoy for Climate Change HE Dr. Sultan Al Jaber.

Mr Sharma has been invited to take part in Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week, which gets underway tomorrow (Monday 17 January). The COP President will be involved in helping the UAE to illustrate its intentions for hosting COP28 and delivering on their climate commitments made over the last 12 months.

Hosting the next two COPs in the Middle East and North Africa will enable the region to showcase to the world their innovative and profitable solutions which include renewable and low carbon energy, zero emissions transport, the role of nature based solutions and the role of smart agriculture.

For example, the UAE continues to break records by reducing the costs of solar energy year after year and is delivering energy security through nuclear energy, all of which makes clean energy a more affordable option than fossil fuels.

British Ambassador to Egypt, Gareth Bayley said:

I am delighted that Mr Sharma has visited Egypt so soon after COP26. The strong bilateral relationship between the UK and Egypt will help sustain global momentum on climate change. I am particularly pleased that Mr Sharma launched our ‘Climate Finance Accelerator’ programme, which I hope will generate a series of inspiring low carbon investment opportunities in Egypt. It is this combination of public and private sector action which will help us avert a climate disaster.I look forward to working with Egypt and UAE as hosts of COP27 and COP28 respectively on the climate agenda. The UK will give its full support to Egypt in delivering an ambitious COP this November which ensures urgently delivering for those most vulnerable to climate change.

Local delivery is central to the CFA approach and the Embassy team is looking forward to working with the local delivery partners once they have been appointed.

British Ambassador to the UAE, Patrick Moody said:

I am delighted that Mr Sharma has visited Egypt so soon after COP26. The strong bilateral relationship between the UK and Egypt will help sustain global momentum on climate change. I am particularly pleased that Mr Sharma launched our ‘Climate Finance Accelerator’ programme, which I hope will generate a series of inspiring low carbon investment opportunities in Egypt. It is this combination of public and private sector action which will help us avert a climate disaster.I look forward to working with Egypt and UAE as hosts of COP27 and COP28 respectively on the climate agenda. The UK will give its full support to Egypt in delivering an ambitious COP this November which ensures urgently delivering for those most vulnerable to climate change.

Local delivery is central to the CFA approach and the Embassy team is looking forward to working with the local delivery partners once they have been appointed.

Notes to Editors

Egypt-UK Joint Statement

  • The Egypt-UK Joint Statement following the meeting between Egypt’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and COP27 President Designate H.E. Sameh Shoukry, Dr. Yasmine Fouad, Egypt’s Minister of Environment and COP27 Ministerial Coordinator and Envoy, and COP26 President Minister Alok Sharma can be found on GOV.UK.

UK International Climate Finance (ICF)

  • Mobilising finance to support the low-carbon transition is one of the four key goals for the UK’s COP26 Presidency this year.
  • Through International Climate Finance (ICF) the UK supports developing countries as they seek to mitigate against and adapt to the impacts of climate change, while reducing their emissions. It is a vital tool in the Government’s commitment to tackle climate change internationally and has committed to spend at least £11.6 billion of climate finance between 2021 and 2025.
  • Through ICF, the UK is committed to work in partnership and support the development of a high-performing and climate-resilient economy in Egypt. Further information about UK ICF can be found in this booklet.

Climate Finance Accelerator (CFA)

  • The CFA is a technical assistance programme funded by the UK Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS). Following a pilot in Colombia, Mexico and Nigeria it launched in November 2020. The programme will work closely with eight countries, which are eligible for UK Official Development Assistance (ODA) and support them to develop a sustainable pipeline of bankable, low-carbon projects and identify suitable financing options.
  • The programme will also contribute to embedding a permanent process in each country to identify financing for low-carbon projects. This will support countries’ efforts to implement their NDCs, raise their overall climate ambition, and contribute to equity and social inclusion.
  • The CFA programme is managed by local partners in each country. It works by building the skills of project developers and potential investors to respectively attract and supply funding for low-carbon development projects.
  • By enabling the funding of low-carbon projects, the CFA can play a part in supporting a greener recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. The CFA will promote sustainable growth and green development and support those most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change.

Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week

  • ADSW is hosted by Masdar annually. In 2022, ADSW intends to explore, through a series of high-level virtual events, opportunities for accelerating global collaboration and leadership, economic development, and technology and innovation.
  • ADSW 2022 intends to follow the outcomes of COP26, where the world will reevaluate the roadmaps required to meet the binding targets required to mitigate climate change. The week is the first global event of the year, where policy makers, business leaders and technology pioneers can come together to turn ambition into action.
  • UK participation demonstrates our commitment to work with and support future COP Presidencies to progress the historic commitments made at COP26. This reinforces the intent of the Memorandum of Understanding Rt Hon James Cleverly MP signed with HE Dr Sultan Al Jaber on UK-UAE Climate and Environment Collaboration in September 2021.

13.11.2021

COP26 President remarks at closing plenary

5 minute read

Alok Sharma’s remarks at the COP26 Closing Plenary.

Dear Friends,

After two years of incredibly hard work we have our Glasgow Climate Pact.

This is down to each and every one of you and your teams.

Your hard work, your dedication, your willingness to build consensus.

I thank you all, and your teams, for your extraordinary and heroic efforts. 

I also want to thank my own incredible team for the past two years, and all the work that has gone into making this conference happen.

I also thank our Observers, civil society and young people, for keeping up the pressure,

for constantly reminding us,

that communities around the world expected us to deliver here in Glasgow. 

And I thank those most climate vulnerable Parties who never let us forget what is at stake. 

Parties whose people are already suffering the worst effects of climate change and whose moral authority has powered this process forward. 

Together, over these two weeks, Parties have demonstrated what the world had come to doubt, 

that countries can rise above their differences to unite against a common challenge, 

that this multilateral process can deliver. 

I know that some Parties have sacrificed wording they held dear for the sake of a balanced outcome. 

I thank them for doing so. 

Just as I thank Parties that have held their nerve under pressure so we can deliver a strong final text. 

I think we can all be proud of what, collectively, we have delivered. 

The decisions we have adopted are part of a broader package, which includes what we have achieved together outside these negotiating halls, 

on nationally determined contributions, adaptation plans, and finance pledges. 

Not to mention our coalitions on coals and forests and cars  and the work of the High Level Champions. 

Taken together this Package charts a course for the world to deliver on the promises made in Paris. 

This Glasgow Climate Pact drives action on adaptation. 

It emphasises the need to act, 

it sets a clear way forward on the Global Goal on Adaptation, 

and it urges developed countries to at least double their collective climate finance for adaptation by 2025.

It operationalises the Santiago Network on Loss and Damage, finally giving that issue the focus and attention it deserves. 

It commits to urgently scale up finance, which is the foundation for faster action and confidence we can go further.

And it sets out actions to empower and engage all of society in driving forward this transition. 

Collectively, we have acknowledged that a gulf remains between short term targets, and what is needed to meet the Paris temperature goal. 

And so our Pact brings Parties back to the table next year to improve their commitments, to drive up ambition across this vital decade. 

And it emphasises the urgent need to accelerate our efforts to turn targets into action to keep 1.5 within reach. 

That work must start now. 

We have also, for the first time, adopted text to scale up clean power and phase down dirty coal.  

And after no less than six years of discussions, we have concluded on those final parts of the Paris Agreement Rulebook, on Article 6, on Common Timeframes, and on transparency.

These put in place the rules and systems to keep us accountable and support increased ambition. 

Their resolution will unleash the full force of what was agreed in Paris.

This is real progress in keeping 1.5 degrees within reach. 

Progress we have made together. 

But the need for continual action and implementation, to match ambition, must continue throughout the decade. 

Today, we can say with credibility that we have kept 1.5 degrees within reach. 

But, its pulse is weak. 

And it will only survive if we keep our promises. If we translate commitments into rapid action. 

If we deliver on the expectations set out in this  Glasgow Climate Pact to increase ambition to 2030 and beyond. 

And if we close the vast gap that remains, as we must. 

Because as Prime Minister Mia Mottley told us at the start of this conference, for Barbados and other small island states, “two degrees is a death sentence”.

Friends, it is up to all of us to sustain our lodestar of keeping 1.5 degrees within reach.  

To continue our efforts to get finance flowing and boost adaptation. 

After the collective dedication which has delivered the Glasgow Climate Pact,

our work here cannot be wasted. 

The drive towards 1.5, for a cleaner, healthier, more prosperous and more resilient world must continue. 

And we must continue that together.

At the start of this summit the world was asking,

Do the parties assembled here in Glasgow have the courage to rise to the scale of the challenge?

My friends, you have responded.

We have responded.

History has been made here in Glasgow.

We must now ensure that the next chapter charts the success of the commitments we have solemnly made together in the Glasgow Climate Pact.

Thank you. 

ENDS 

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11.11.2021

Zero Emission Vehicles Transition Council: 2022 action plan

Background

A rapid global transition to zero emission vehicles (ZEV) is vital to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement. Road transport accounts for over 10% of global greenhouse gas emissions, and the total emissions are rising faster than any other sector. We need to dramatically increase the pace of the global transition to meet our Paris Agreement goals, and to keep the limit of 1.5 degrees warming in reach. This will also offer huge opportunities for jobs and growth, cleaner air, improved public health, and could furthermore boost energy security and help balance electricity grids as we make the transition to clean power.

The Zero Emission Vehicles Transition Council was formed in November 2020, as the world’s first political forum through which ministers and representatives from governments from most of the world’s largest and most progressive automotive markets – that collectively account for more than half of all new car sales globally – meet to discuss how to accelerate the pace of the global transition to zero emission vehicles.

This global transition is underway, and it is accelerating. There are now 8.5 million zero emission passenger vehicles on the roads, and combined national zero emission vehicle targets now represent 41% of the global passenger vehicle market. In parallel, through the ZEV Transition Council (ZEVTC), we have discussed the need to align the pace of the global transition to zero emission vehicles with the goals of the Paris agreement; the role of different technologies in achieving this; effective policy measures governments can take to support the transition; and ensuring a global transition where no country or community is left behind.

In 2022 and beyond, we want to work to continue to accelerate this transition and implement our respective commitments to keep the Paris Agreement goals within reach. We have identified priority areas through which the ZEV Transition Council can collaborate to build on this progress to continue to support a global transition.

Beyond these areas, we recognise the importance of ensuring the transition to zero emission vehicles is just and sustainable so that no community is left behind. The transition to ZEVs will create new jobs and require new competence in the transport and energy sectors. We recognise that competitiveness in the automotive industry and decent work conditions need to be assured in the new economy. We will also work to promote sustainable and circular production of ZEVs.

While our national contexts and policy approaches may differ, the transition will be faster, easier, and at a lower cost for all if we work together. We have agreed that our shared aim is to make zero emission vehicles the new normal by making them accessible, affordable, and sustainable in all regions by 2030.

2020 priorities

In 2022, we will work together on the following high priority areas to overcome shared challenges to support the transition to zero emission vehicles.

1: Charging infrastructure

Rapid progress is being made in the deployment of zero emission vehicle charging infrastructure, but more investment is needed in all regions. We will set out our collective vision for global charging infrastructure for light and heavy-duty vehicles, working closely with the private sector. We will launch a taskforce of automotive manufacturers, energy network providers and chargepoint operators to consider actions needed to facilitate deployment. We will discuss how to ensure electricity grids are prepared to support the increased demands of electric vehicles charging, and work together to explore how increased electric vehicle uptake can support balancing our grids with the greater levels of green power.

2. CO2 or fuel efficiency standards and regulations

CO2 or fuel efficiency standards and regulations are a vital measure to support the deployment of both light and heavy duty zero emission vehicles. We will work to develop a shared understanding on the pace of the transition, and will share best practice on effective standards and regulations, with the aims of accelerating deployment of zero emission vehicles, mobilising investment, and bringing down costs.

3. Pace of the transition and technology choices for zero emission heavy duty vehicles

We will aim to reach a stronger consensus on the pace of the transition that is consistent with the goals of the Paris Agreement. We will develop a deeper understanding of the different technology options and role of CO2 and fuel efficiency standards to support this trajectory. We will work with and explore options for enhancing support for developing countries in the global transition to zero emission heavy good vehicles.

4. Ensure the ZEV transition is truly global

As agreed at the third ZEVTC Ministerial meeting, to help ensure the ZEV transition is truly global, we will launch a new strategic pillar to our work so that no country or community is left behind. We will:

  • continue our engagement with developing countries through Regional Dialogues to consider how practical collaboration can overcome region- specific barriers to an accelerated transition to zero emission vehicles
  • bring together a taskforce of government officials, multilateral development banks, international organisations and other stakeholders, as required, to:
    • coordinate a more tailored, impactful, and effective offer of development assistance, including via existing programmes / initiatives, to support the deployment of zero-emission vehicles and relevant infrastructure in developing countries; and
    • provide evidence-based and action-focused recommendations to the ZEVTC on how and where the international offer can be strengthened. Recommendations will be based on experiences and outputs from the Regional Dialogues and wider programmes / initiatives

We will continue to exchange best practice on areas of mutual interest, including, where appropriate:

  • ensuring fair consumer access to zero emission vehicles. In addition to ensuring equitable deployment and access to affordable charging, we will explore measures we can take to develop a second-hand market for zero emission vehicles, exploring actions we can take to help it develop, and standards, for example related to vehicle battery health, that could be set to help it function efficiently, sustainably, and fairly, with the aim of adopting these as appropriate for our markets.
  • the transition to ZEVs will create new jobs and require new competence in the transport and energy sectors. Competitiveness for the automotive industry and decent work conditions need to be assured in the new economy. The existing workforce may need reskilling and training. We will work to supporting the transition of our industrial bases, including through stakeholder meetings, dialogues with trade unions and those employed in the automotive industry.
  • whilst technology is already available to enable this transition, further innovation can help us make this transition quicker and easier. Through our work in 2022 we will also identify areas for coordinated action on innovation
  • ensuring that Electric Vehicle (EV) battery supply chains are sustainable and ethical as the transition accelerates. Collaboration – across countries and industry – will be needed in a range of areas to ensure this is possible, including on data, due diligence frameworks, policy to instil circular economy principles and the development of the ecosystem for battery end-of-life. Through our work in 2022, we intend to identify opportunities for coordinated action on supply chains.

We recognise the value of the various international initiatives to support the global transition to zero emission vehicles. The ZEV Transition Council secretariat will convene a coordination group to support the alignment of action between these initiatives, particularly on the priority areas of interest for the ZEVTC as set out above.

SEC Armadillo Building

11.11.2021

COP President daily media statement and latest announcements – 11 November

List of announcements: Cities, Regions and Built Environment Day, 11 November

  • The UK today pledged £27.5m of new funding for the new Urban Climate Action Programme (UCAP) to support cities targeting net zero. The programme, funded through International Climate Finance, will support cities across Africa, Asia and Latin America to take climate action and create a sustainable future, by helping them implement innovative climate action plans to become carbon neutral by 2050 and prepare low-carbon infrastructure projects to reduce emissions. 
  • UCAP will help cities to implement projects like low-emission public transport systems, renewable energy generation, sustainable waste management, new climate-smart buildings codes and climate risk planning. By showcasing what is possible, city and regional authorities can demonstrate to other cities and national governments the opportunities available to drive action.
  • The programme will be delivered in partnership with the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group, a global network of cities focused on climate action, and GIZ, the German development agency.
  • UCAP will build on the flagship Climate Leadership in Cities programme, which successfully supported megacities in Latin America and Asia to develop ambitious climate action plans consistent with the Paris Agreement; including developing pathways to net zero by 2050 and committing to ambitious interim targets by 2030 to keep 1.5 degrees within reach.

Press conference opening statement from COP President Alok Sharma, 11 November:

Thank you very much indeed and good afternoon to everyone.

I want to start by noting that today is Remembrance Day, which was marked this morning in the UK Pavilion, and my grateful thanks to all colleagues who joined us to mark our respects for the fallen.

I want to turn now to the negotiations.

Detailed discussions have continued across a whole range of issues over the past 24 hours.

Archie Young chaired a meeting with Heads of Delegations yesterday to hear views on the draft cover decisions.

I held a range of bilateral meetings with parties and groups, and also received comprehensive briefings last night from my team of co-facilitating Ministers.

A tranche of draft decision texts were published early this morning.

These include draft texts on Adaptation; on Loss and Damage; on Finance; on the Enhanced Transparency Framework and Article 6.

I am pleased to say that yesterday, we concluded the discussions on the Global Goal on Adaptation, confirming the forward work programme, and I hope that this will be adopted.

Text was also finalised on Response Measures and on the Santiago Network.

As you’ll know, I held a Stocktaking Plenary this morning with all parties and observers to set out the collective work programme over the next 24 hours.

Now whilst we have made progress, and I want to acknowledge the spirit of cooperation and civility that’s been demonstrated throughout the negotiations, by negotiators and Ministers, we are not there yet on the most critical issues.

There is still a lot more work to be done. And COP26 is scheduled to close at the end of tomorrow. So time is running out.

As I speak, my Ministerial co-facilitators, other Ministers and negotiators are rolling up their sleeves and working hard to find solutions to some of the most intractable issues.

Solutions which have so far evaded us for six years.

I’ll be holding meetings later today with all parties to find ways forward on matters specifically related to Finance and Article 6.

As I noted at the Plenary, negotiations on finance really need to accelerate. And they need to accelerate now.

A further iteration of texts, across a range of issues, will be issued overnight.

Having engaged extensively with parties over the past year, and at COP, I know everyone understands what is at stake for the future of our planet here in Glasgow.

We still have a monumental challenge ahead of us. Collectively we have no choice but to rise to that challenge.

And strain every sinew to achieve a timely outcome that we can all be proud of, because ultimately this outcome, whatever it is, will belong to all of us.

Ends.

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10.11.2021

COP26 declaration on accelerating the transition to 100% zero emission cars and vans

Declaration

As representatives of governments, businesses, and other organisations with an influence over the future of the automotive industry and road transport, we commit to rapidly accelerating the transition to zero emission vehicles to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement. (We will make clear this declaration is not legally binding and focused on a global level)

Together, we will work towards all sales of new cars and vans being zero emission (For the avoidance of doubt, within the context of this declaration a zero emission car and van is one that produces zero greenhouse gas emissions at the tailpipe.) globally by 2040, and by no later than 2035 in leading markets

A. As governments, we will work towards all sales of new cars and vans being zero emission by 2040 or earlier, or by no later than 2035 in leading markets.

B. As governments in emerging markets and developing economies, we will work intensely towards accelerated proliferation and adoption of zero emission vehicles. We call on all developed countries to strengthen the collaboration and international support offer to facilitate a global, equitable and just transition.

C. As cities, states, and regional governments, we will work towards converting our owned or leased car and van fleets to zero emission vehicles by 2035 at the latest, as well as putting in place policies that will enable, accelerate, or otherwise incentivise the transition to zero emission vehicles as soon as possible, to the extent possible given our jurisdictional powers.

D. As automotive manufacturers, we will work towards reaching 100% zero emission new car and van sales in leading markets by 2035 or earlier, supported by a business strategy that is in line with achieving this ambition, as we help build customer demand.

E. As business fleet owners and operators, or shared mobility platforms, we will work towards 100% of our car and van fleets being zero emission vehicles by 2030, or earlier where markets allow.

F. As investors with significant shareholdings in automotive manufacturers, we will support an accelerated transition to zero emission vehicles in line with achieving 100% new car and van sales being zero emission in leading markets by 2035. We will provide proactive engagement and escalation of these issues with investees, coupled with encouraging all our holdings to decarbonise their fleets in line with science-based targets.

G. As financial institutions, we confirm our support for an accelerated transition to zero emission vehicles in line with achieving 100% new car and van sales being zero emission in leading markets by 2035, supported by making capital and financial products available to enable this transition for consumers, businesses, charging infrastructure and manufacturers.

H. As other signatories, we support an accelerated transition to zero emission vehicles in line with achieving 100% of new car and van sales being zero emission in leading markets by 2035.

We will support efforts to achieve the road transport breakthrough announced by world leaders, which aims to make zero emission vehicles the new normal by making them accessible, affordable and sustainable in all regions by 2030.

Together, we welcome the new opportunities for clean growth, green jobs and public health benefits from improving air quality; and that this transition could also boost energy security and help balance electricity grids as we make the transition to clean power.

Collectively, we commit to supporting a global, equitable and just transition so that no country or community is left behind. Where we represent leading markets, we will work to strengthen our international support offer for developing countries, emerging markets, and transitional economies – including, where applicable, through technical assistance, finance, and capacity building.

We welcome strong policy and bold commitments, alongside greater levels of investment into research, manufacturing, supply chains, infrastructure and – where applicable – development assistance, that will all be required to make an accelerated global transition a reality.

We will work together to overcome strategic, political, and technical barriers, accelerate the production of zero emission vehicles and increase economies of scale, to make the transition faster, lower cost, and easier for everyone. We will also work together to boost investment, bring down costs and increase the uptake of zero emission vehicles and the many economic, social and environmental benefits it brings.

We recognise that alongside the shift to zero emission vehicles, a sustainable future for road transport will require wider system transformation, including support for active travel, public and shared transport, as well as addressing the full value chain impacts from vehicle production, use and disposal.

Signatories

A. Governments

Austria

Azerbaijan

Belgium

Canada

Cape Verde

Chile

Croatia

Cyprus

Denmark

El Salvador

Finland

Greece

Iceland

Ireland

Israel

Liechtenstein

Lithuania

Luxembourg

Malta

Netherlands

New Zealand

Norway

Poland

Slovenia

Sweden

The Holy See

United Kingdom

Uruguay

B. Governments in emerging markets and developing economies

Armenia

Dominican Republic

Ghana

India – two-wheelers and three-wheelers constitute more than 70% of global sales and more than 80% in India. All governments should also support the transition of these light vehicles to zero emission vehicles

Kenya

Mexico

Morocco

Paraguay

Rwanda

Turkey

Ukraine

C. Cities, states and regional governments

Akureyri

Ann Arbor

Atlanta

Australian Capital Territory

Barcelona

Berkeley-Charleston-Dorchester Council of Governments

Secretariat of Mobility, Bogota

Bologna

Bristol

British Columbia

Buenos Aires

California

Catalonia

Catamarca Province

Charleston

Ciudad del Este

Córdoba

Dallas

Florence

Gangwon Province

Genoa 

Jeju Province

Jujuy Province

La Paz

La Plata 

Lagos

Los Angeles

Milan

Miskolc

Naples

New South Wales (Australia)

New York

New York City

Northern Ireland

Palermo

Paks

Quebec

Reykjavik

Rio de Janeiro

Rome

San Diego

San Francisco

Santa Monica

Sao Paolo

Scotland

Seattle

Sejong City

Seoul Metropolitan Government

Government of Sikkim

South Australia

South Chungcheong Province

Turin

Ulsan Metropolitan City

Vancouver

Victoria (Australia)

Villa Elisa

Vitoria-Gasteiz 

Wales

Washington (state)

D. Automotive manufacturers

Avera Electric Vehicles

BYD Auto

Etrio Automobiles Private Limited

Ford Motor Company

Gayam Motor Works

General Motors

Jaguar Land Rover

Mercedes-Benz

MOBI

Quantum Motors

Volt Motors

Volvo Cars

E. Fleet owners and operators or shared mobility platforms

ABB

Astra Zeneca

BT Group

Capgemini

Centrica

Danfoss

E.On

EDP

GlaxoSmithKline

Highland Electric Fleets HP Inc.

Iberdrola

Ingka Group/IKEA

LeasePlan Corporation

Lex Autolease 

National Grid

Nimbee

Novo Nordisk

Openreach

Sainsbury’s

Siemens

SK Networks

Sky UK Limited

SSE

Tesco

TIP Mexico 

Uber Technologies Inc.

Unilever

Vattenfall

Zenith

Zurich

F. Investors with significant shareholdings in automotive manufacturers

Adrian Dominican Sisters – Portfolio Advisory Board

AP7

Arabesque Asset Management

Committee on Mission Responsibility Through Investment of the Presbyterian Church USA

Congregation of St Joseph

Daughters of Charity, Province of St Louise

EOS at Federated Hermes

Impax Asset Management Group

Local Authority Pension Fund Forum

Mercy Investment Services Inc.

NEI Investments

Office of the New York City Comptroller

Seventh Generation Interfaith Coalition for Responsible Investment

G. Financial institutions

Aviva

NatWest

H. Other signatories

ADS-TEC Energy GmbH

AMPLY Power

ASO Move

Autovert Technologies Private Limited

Bengal Chamber of Commerce and Industry

Central & Eastern Europe Green Transport Initiative

Drive Electric Campaign

Enzen Global Solutions Private Limited

FIA Foundation

Global EV Drivers Association

Go With Flo 

Grip Invest Advisors Private Limited

International Council on Clean Transportation

Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change

Indian Chamber of Commerce

International Trade Union Confederation

Ohm Mobility

Polis Network 

Polish Alternative Fuels Association

RMI India

Swiss eMobility

Urban Transport Authority for Lima and Callao

WeaveGrid

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10.11.2021

Clydebank Declaration for green shipping corridors

COP26 Declaration

We, the Clydebank Declaration signatories:

Recall the long-term temperature goal of the Paris Agreement to hold the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels and pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels.

Note the International Maritime Organization (IMO)’s adoption of the Initial IMO Strategy on Reduction of Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Ships, Resolution MEPC.304(72), which aims to align international shipping with the aforementioned temperature target.

Emphasise the importance of pursing efforts to limit the increase in the global average temperature to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels, to have a greater chance of significantly reducing the risks and impacts of climate change on countries, in particular least developed countries and small island developing states.

Recognise the benefits of pursuing synergies between decarbonisation and clean air policies in shipping, and building on existing measures related to the reduction of pollution from ships under the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL).

Express great concern regarding the findings from the Fourth IMO Greenhouse Gas Study 2020, which estimates that if no further action is taken, international shipping emissions are expected to represent 90% to 130% of 2008 emission levels by 2050.

Express great concern also regarding the findings of the IPCC Working Group I contribution to the Sixth Assessment Report (2021), which states that global warming of 1.5°C and 2°C will be exceeded during the 21st century unless deep reductions in carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions occur in the coming decades, and hence, endorse the need for international shipping to keep accelerating its level of action.

Equally recognise that a rapid transition in the coming decade to clean maritime fuels, zero-emission vessels, alternative propulsion systems, and the global availability of landside infrastructure to support these, is imperative for the transition to clean shipping.

The signatories of this Declaration assert the need for the formation of an international coalition between ambitious governments, to act together and demonstrate that maritime decarbonisation is possible, while unlocking new business opportunities and socioeconomic benefits for communities across the globe.

Mission statement

The signatories of the Declaration are to support the establishment of green shipping corridors – zero-emission maritime routes between 2 (or more) ports.

It is our collective aim to support the establishment of at least 6 green corridors by the middle of this decade, while aiming to scale activity up in the following years, by inter alia supporting the establishment of more routes, longer routes and/or having more ships on the same routes. It is our aspiration to see many more corridors in operation by 2030. We will assess these goals by the middle of this decade, with a view to increasing the number of green corridors.

In the pursuit of these goals, with reference to the approach(es) set out in Annex A, signatories pledge to:

  • facilitate the establishment of partnerships, with participation from ports, operators and others along the value chain, to accelerate the decarbonisation of the shipping sector and its fuel supply through green shipping corridor projects
  • identify and explore actions to address barriers to the formation of green corridors. This could cover, for example, regulatory frameworks, incentives, information sharing or infrastructure
  • consider the inclusion of provisions for green corridors in the development or review of National Action Plans
  • work to ensure that wider consideration is taken for environmental impacts and sustainability when pursuing green shipping corridors.

Annex A

Signatories are to facilitate partnerships to establish green shipping corridors, in which:

  1. Two or more signatories to the Declaration identify and take steps with relevant willing ports, operator(s) and others along the value chain to decarbonise a specific shared maritime route
  2. A signatory to the Declaration takes steps with relevant willing ports, operator(s) and others along the value chain to decarbonise a specific domestic maritime route within the jurisdiction and control of a signatory.

Voluntary participation by operators is a significant element for successful green shipping corridors.

For greater clarity, all vessels transiting a green corridor would not be required to be zero emissions or to participate in the partnerships.

In supporting the establishment of green corridors, signatories recognise that fully decarbonised fuels or propulsion technologies should have the capability to not add additional GHGs to the global system through their lifecycle, including production, transport or consumption.

Signatories

Australia

Belgium

Canada

Chile

Costa Rica

Denmark

Fiji

Finland

France

Germany

Ireland

Italy

Japan

Republic of the Marshall Islands

Morocco

Netherlands

New Zealand

Norway

Palau

Singapore

Spain

Sweden

The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

The United States of America

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10.11.2021

International Aviation Climate Ambition Coalition

COP26 Declaration

We, the ministers and representatives of states, participating in the inaugural meeting of the International Aviation Climate Ambition Coalition at the 26th Conference of the Parties (COP26) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, in Glasgow this 10 November 2021.

Being both parties to the Paris Agreement, and contracting states to the Convention on International Civil Aviation 1944 (“the Chicago Convention”).

Recognising international aviation’s material contribution to climate change through its CO2 emissions, along with its additional, but less well-defined, contribution associated with non-CO2 emissions.

Also recognising that despite the impact of COVID-19, the international aviation industry and the number of global air passengers and volume of cargo is expected to increase significantly over the next 30 years.

Acknowledging the impact of COVID-19 on the global aviation sector and the need to develop initiatives that enable the aviation industry to continue to build back better and grow in a sustainable manner.

Emphasising that international action on tackling aviation emissions is essential given the global nature of the sector and that co-operation by states and aviation stakeholders is critical for reducing the aviation sector’s contribution to climate change, including its risks and impacts.

Recalling the Paris Agreement’s temperature goal of holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5°C.

Recognising that achieving net zero global CO2 emissions by 2050 will maximize the possibility of keeping the global average temperature increase below 1.5°C, and the need to align international efforts to reduce emissions from the aviation sector consistent with a pathway towards achieving this temperature limit.

Acknowledging that the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) is the appropriate forum in which to address emissions from international aviation through in-sector and out-of-sector measures to implement short-, medium- and long-term goals, including the development of a global sustainability framework to support the deployment of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) and the Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA).

Commit to:

1. Working together, both through ICAO and other complementary cooperative initiatives, to advance ambitious actions to reduce aviation CO2 emissions at a rate consistent with efforts to limit the global average temperature increase to 1.5°C.

2. Supporting the adoption by ICAO of an ambitious long-term aspirational goal consistent with the above-referenced temperature limit, and in view of the industry’s commitments towards net zero CO2 emissions by 2050.

3. Ensuring the maximum effectiveness of CORSIA, including by:

  • supporting efforts at ICAO and working with other ICAO member states to implement and strengthen CORSIA as an important measure to address aviation emissions, including to expand participation in CORSIA, and participating in CORSIA as soon as possible, if our state has not done so already.
  • taking steps domestically to implement Annex 16 Volume IV of the Chicago Convention as fully as possible and in a timely manner, including with respect to enforcement of domestic regulations, legislation, or Implementation arrangements.
  • advancing the environmental ambition of the scheme in the course of undertaking the CORSIA Periodic Reviews.
  • working to ensure that double counting is avoided through the host state’s application of corresponding adjustments in accounting for its nationally determined contribution under the Paris Agreement for the mitigation underlying all CORSIA Eligible Emissions Units and, where needed, CORSIA Eligible Fuels, used toward CORSIA compliance.

4. Promoting the development and deployment, through international and national measures, of sustainable aviation fuels that reduce lifecycle emissions and contribute to the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), in particular avoiding competition with food production for land use and water supply.

5. Promoting the development and deployment, through international and national measures, of innovative new low- and zero-carbon aircraft technologies that can reduce aviation CO2 emissions.

6. Preparing up-to-date state action plans detailing ambitious and concrete national action to reduce aviation emissions and submitting these plans to ICAO well in advance of the 41st ICAO Assembly, where such plans have not already been updated in line with ICAO Assembly Resolution A40-18, paragraph 11.

7. Promoting capacity building support for the implementation of CORSIA and other ICAO climate measures, including to advance uptake of freely available tools and to expand regional expertise, accreditation and access to markets for sustainable aviation fuels and CORSIA Eligible Emissions Units.

8. Convening periodically at both ministerial and official levels with a view to advancing and reviewing progress on the above commitments.

We invite other states to commit to this declaration and work with us towards our shared objectives.

Signatories

Signed by the ministers and representatives of:

Burkina Faso

Canada

Costa Rica

Denmark

Finland

France

Ireland

Italy

Japan

Kenya

Republic of Korea

Maldives

Malta

Morocco

Netherlands

New Zealand

Norway

Slovenia

Spain

Sweden

Turkey

United Kingdom

United States of America

SEC Armadillo Building

10.11.2021

COP President daily media statement and latest announcements – 10 November

List of announcements, 10 November

  • As one of the Glasgow Breakthroughs at the World Leader Summit, 30 countries have agreed to work together to make zero emission vehicles the new normal by making them accessible, affordable, and sustainable in all regions by 2030 or sooner. 
  • A number of emerging markets are agreeing to accelerate the transition to ZEVs in their markets (including India, Rwanda, Kenya)
  • Launch of a new World Bank trust fund that will mobilise $200 million over the next 10 years to decarbonise road transport in emerging markets and developing economies.
  • This goal is guiding the Zero Emission Vehicle Transition Council (ZEVTC), which will today met with distinguished representatives, including experts on the transition in Emerging Markets and Developing Economies (EMDEs), to discuss how international collaboration can support a global transition. The ZEVTC will launch its first annual Action Plan, which sets out areas for sustained international cooperation to accelerate the transition during 2022. The US has today joined the UK as a co-chair of the ZEVTC.
  • Nineteen governments have also stated their intent to support the establishment of ‘green shipping corridors’ – zero-emission shipping routes between two ports. This will involve deploying zero-emission vessel technologies and putting alternative fuel and charging infrastructure in place in ports to allow for zero emission shipping on key routes across the globe.
  • The UK has pledged to shift to clean trucks by committing to end the sale of most new diesel trucks between 2035 and 2040. 

Press conference opening statement from COP President Alok Sharma, 10 November:

As you’re aware, the first draft of the cover decision texts were published this morning.

And earlier this afternoon I hosted a stocktaking plenary, at which the Ministers I have requested to co-facilitate negotiations on some of the key outstanding issues presented their views on progress.

The science and citizens across the world demand that we are unapologetically high ambitions as a Presidency and the cover decision texts, in our opinion are high ambition and balanced.

Of course, texts will change and evolve as countries begin to engage on the details, but our shared commitment to accelerate action this decade must be unwavering.

And science must be our compass, and this should spur us on to the highest ambition consensus we can achieve.

I also want to be clear.

We are not seeking to reopen the Paris Agreement.

The Paris Agreement clearly sets out the temperature goal. Well below 2 degrees and pursuing efforts to 1.5 degrees.

That is why our overarching goal of “keeping 1.5 degrees within reach” has been our lodestar.

We seek to chart a path that is balanced across the three pillars of the Paris Agreement: finance, adaptation and mitigation.

I will continue to champion finance, as I have done throughout my time in this role, and I have asked developed countries to be flexible in their positions.

The task of finalising all texts, including the cover decisions, will be challenging. 

But we all know what is at risk if we do not reach an ambitious outcome.

Climate vulnerable countries on the front line of the climate crisis will continue to bear the brunt. 

Before it engulfs us all.

The text on adaptation aims to build our shared capacity to act. 

Climate change is affecting all of us. 

Needs are growing and we must respond.

We have also included a section on loss and damage. 

This is a first for this process and I hope that countries will engage constructively. 

Discussions on the Santiago Network in Glasgow suggest that Parties will engage in the right spirit.

On mitigation, we know we have made progress on the journey to Glasgow, but the science shows that we can and must go further.

The text gives countries the opportunity to agree how they will accelerate action and return to the table with stronger commitments.

In addition to the cover decision, texts are still evolving on the rulebook items and finance. 

On Article 6 the text has narrowed and the choices are clear. 

It will be a matter of political will now to close this outcome.

On Transparency, negotiators are moving through the technical work. 

Transparency underpins the Paris Agreement and is absolutely crucial to delivering on our commitments.  

On common timeframes we are down to two options. 

And across the board, Ministers are identifying landing grounds.

On finance, there remains a lot of work to do but we have seen positive announcements.

Such as the $350m in contributions to the adaptation fund and $413m to the LDC Fund. 

I hope this supports a good atmosphere in negotiations.

Let me talk a little bit about the process going forward, 

My head negotiator, Archie Young will convene a Heads of Delegations meeting this afternoon to take stock of parties detailed views on draft texts.

My team and I then intend to review progress across all issues from 7pm this evening.

I will meet with co-facilitating Ministers before ministerial and technical co-facilitators publish what I expect to be near-final texts overnight.

I will then convene all groups, parties and observers again at 11am tomorrow in plenary to hear views.

As a presidency we are fully committed to transparency and openness and I have invited parties to reach out to me if they wish to meet outside the formal sessions.

As I told the plenary earlier, we have seen a spirit of cooperation and consensus at the summit thus far.

It is a can-do spirit that I hope all parties will want to continue to foster over the coming critical days.

I still have the intention for us to be able to close COP 26 at the end of Friday. 

Everyone must come armed with the clarity of compromise. We all know what is at stake in these negotiations and indeed the urgency of our task.

In very human terms, what we agree in Glasgow will set the tone of the future for our children and grandchildren and I know that no world leader or country will want to fail them. 

COP26 Logo 'UN Climate Change Conference UK 2021 In partnership with Italy'

09.11.2021

Breakthrough Agenda – Launching an annual Global Checkpoint Process in 2022

The Breakthrough Agenda launched at the World Leaders Summit commits countries to work together to make clean technologies and sustainable solutions the most affordable, accessible and attractive option in each emitting sector globally before 2030.

Leaders committed to review progress annually, starting in 2022, supported by a report led by the IEA, working with IRENA and the UN High Level Action Champions, and Ministerial review around the annual MI and CEM Ministerials. Leaders also launched the ‘Glasgow Breakthroughs’ – a first set of global goals in high emitting sectors underneath this agenda.

To take this Agenda forward the UK underlines its steadfast commitment to working with all signatories and interested countries to accelerate progress under this Agenda.

As such, in 2022, as COP Presidency, the UK will take forward the following four key priorities – collectively known as the ‘Global Checkpoint Process’ – working in close collaboration with partners:

  1. Report on the State of the Transition: leaders have invited the International Energy Agency, working in collaboration with IRENA, the United Nations High Level Climate Action Champions, and other institutions, bodies and industry leaders as appropriate to assess progress against the objectives of the Breakthrough Agenda in high-emitting sectors, including towards the Glasgow Breakthroughs goals, and report on the state of the transition together with an assessment of the opportunities for and benefits from enhanced cooperation through the Breakthrough Agenda;
  2. Convene leading initiatives in each sector: we will bring together the government, non-state actor and international organisation representatives convening the leading initiatives within each major emitting sector, in particular those set out under the Glasgow Breakthroughs. These discussions will explore how initiatives can best support the Breakthroughs, and the potential for improved co-ordination between initiatives
  3. Co-convene Ministerial discussions on the State of the Transition: we will work with partners to invite supporters of the Breakthrough Agenda to meet alongside the Mission Innovation and Clean Energy Ministerial meetings hosted by the US in 2022 to discuss the State of the Transition report, to review proposals for enhanced collaborative action and to agree to strengthen and reinforce the urgency, ambition and coordination of international efforts under the Breakthrough Agenda;
  4. Encourage new leaders-level commitments: working with partners, at Leader-level fora we will welcome new signatories to the Breakthroughs and seek to launch new Breakthroughs in areas not currently covered, such as in land use, aviation, shipping, buildings and other industrial sectors. We will reach out in the spirit of collaboration to the next COP Presidency to discuss progress of the Breakthrough Agenda at COP27.

Our ambition is to sustain and continually strengthen international cooperative action in high emitting sectors and keep this at the top of the international political agenda throughout this decade. To this end, and working with partners, we will seek to shape and establish the Global Checkpoint Process as an annual cycle of tracking and reviewing global progress in the transition, and of implementing further cooperative actions commensurate with the scale and urgency of the challenge we face, and the ambition set out by leaders under the Breakthrough Agenda. We will work with all Breakthrough Agenda signatories to implement these actions beyond COP26 and through to 2030.

This diagram shows The Breakthrough Agenda's Annual Global Checkpoint Process. Text below the image describes what the flowchart covers.

The above flowchart covers actions that governments and institutions will take from Q4 2021 to Q4 2022 as part of the Global Checkpoint Process for the Breakthrough Agenda.

Q4 2021: Breakthrough Agenda launched at COP26 including the Glasgow Breakthroughs.

Q1 2022 to Q2 2022: Report on the State of Transition. Analysis of progress against the objectives and the opportunities for and benefits from enhanced cooperation; led by IEA with IRENA and HLAC and broader engagement.

Q1 2022 to Q2 2022: Convene leading initiatives in each sector. Exploring better coordination, gaps and enhanced actions to achieve each Breakthrough goal; informing and being informed by the draft State of Transition Report.

Q3 2022: State of the Transition Ministerial. Ministers meet alongside MI & CEM Ministierals to discuss the State of the Transition report’s findings, and review and agree proposals for enhanced collaborative action.

Q4 2022: New leaders-level commitments. New and enhanced commitments from existing and new participating countries, for enhanced ambition and action and for new sectoral Breakthroughs.

The process is replicated in subsequent years.

Woman Harvesting Seaweed on Zanzibar

08.11.2021

UK COP Presidency – COP President daily media statement and latest announcements 8th November

List of announcements, 8th November: 

  • Global leaders commit to a shift towards locally-led adaptation through over 70 endorsements to the  Principles for Locally Led Adaptation and over $450m mobilised for initiatives and programmes enhancing locally-led approaches [including LIFE-AR, FLLoCA, CRPP and the Taskforce on Access to Climate Finance].
  • Race to Resilience campaign brings together initiatives that are strengthening the urban, coastal and rural resilience of 2 billion people worldwide.
  • Australia, New Zealand, Italy and the African Development Bank (AfDB) have committed to a balanced approach to climate finance and joined the Champions Group on Adaptation Finance.
  • $232 million has been committed to the Adaptation Fund, the highest single mobilisation to the Fund and more than double the previous highest collective mobilisation with a $20m contribution from the UK. Commitments came from the USA, Canada, Sweden, Finland, Ireland, Germany, Norway, Qatar, Spain, Switzerland, the UK and the Quebec and Flanders governments.
  • The UK has announced £290 million in new funding for adaptation today, including £274 million for the Climate Action for a Resilient Asia (CARA) programme.
  • 88 countries are now covered by Adaptation Communications or National Adaptation Plans (NAPs) to increase preparedness to climate risks, with 38 published in the last year.

Press conference opening statement from COP President Alok Sharma:

Welcome everyone to Week Two of COP26. 

Today is, as you know, Adaptation and Loss and Damage Day. And these topics, of course, are more important than ever. 

As we know, over the last year we have seen extreme weather changes across the world. 

From floods in Central Europe and China, wildfires in North America and Australia, 

to what some have described as the world’s first climate induced drought in Southern Madagascar.

Nowhere is immune to climate change and this is precisely why we must come together to forge global agreement here in Glasgow,  responding to adaptation needs which is vital. 

Today Ministers are starting their work on the negotiations.

Together we face the arduous task of building political consensus between almost 200 countries.

Finding consensus is not going to be straightforward. 

But the progress made last week demonstrates that a constructive spirit amongst negotiators exists.

And here in Glasgow we have a unique opportunity to reach an historic outcome and I am committed to bringing countries together, 

We want to forge an agreement that means we see more action this decade to help keep the limit of 1.5 degree global temperature rise in reach.

Now during the Informal Stocktaking Plenary which was held this morning, I outlined how we will work during this week.

I also announced ministerial pairings on key topics. 

These include: adaptation; loss and damage; finance; keeping 1.5 alive; and of course the key rulebook issues of: Common Time Frames; Article 6 on carbon markets; and transparency.

My priority now is pace. 

There needs to be a sense of urgency in all our negotiations. 

The science is clear, we have no time to lose, and I will ensure that negotiations proceed in a timely manner. Whilst of course ensuring transparency and inclusivity.

Last week countries made commitments which will all help to protect our planet but they must be delivered on and accounted for.

Today, on Adaptation and Loss and Damage Day, the spotlight will be on those nations and communities which are most vulnerable to climate change. 

Those whose voices are too often left unheard.

And we know that even if we stopped polluting our world tomorrow, there will be negative consequences for many millions.

And that is why issues such as adaptation are so important.

Now I am pleased to see progress on these topics today and particularly welcome the commitments to the Adaptation Fund which will be made in the next few hours, 

Including from the UK, to support vulnerable communities to respond to climate change. 

Developed countries and development banks recognise they need to increase levels of finance for adaptation,

and I hope we will be able to capture this renewed commitment in the COP26 negotiated outcome.

Those of you who have followed this process will know that loss and damage has historically been seen as a polarising issue. 

But I am encouraged that the mood music has changed somewhat, and there is now a practical recognition that action is needed on this topic, in the face of growing impacts.

The conclusion of discussions within the Subsidiary Bodies on the Santiago Network is a testament to that,

and paves the way for greater resources to avert, minimise and address loss and damage.

Climate vulnerable communities are particularly at the forefront of my mind, and will be so throughout these negotiations. 

They, and the generations to come, will not forgive us if we fail to deliver in Glasgow.