Upon assuming the Presidency of COP25, Chile proposed to lead a highly complex multilateral effort, promoting an ambitious agenda with a vision from Latin America and the Caribbean.
By Amb Juan Angulo,
The proximity of the new Conference of the Parties of the UNFCCC, to be held in Glasgow starting on October 31, where Chile will hand over the presidency of the COP to the United Kingdom, is an appropriate moment to summarize the work carried out during the last year in this urgent matter. Upon assuming the Presidency of COP25, Chile proposed to lead a highly complex multilateral effort, promoting an ambitious agenda with a vision from Latin America and the Caribbean.
Among the objectives achieved, the following can be highlighted: Chile revealed in an unprecedented way the importance and need for multi-sectoral climate action, achieving a fundamental change regarding the incorporation, participation and commitment of different sectors for global climate action. At COP25, for the first time, there was an important presence and participation of sectoral ministers of Science, Agriculture, Finance, Transport and Energy from various countries, establishing commitments and concrete actions to face climate change. Indeed, an unprecedented meeting of science ministers was convened with the aim of promoting the link between science and climate action, the Platform for Climate Action for Agriculture (PLACA) was launched and the objective of restoration of 50 million hectares was established by 2030 As a goal, the “Santiago Action Plan for global climate finance action” was established, with the co presidencies of Chile and Finland, and a commitment was established for LAC countries to achieve 70% of renewable energy by 2030. Chile continues to promote cross-cutting action and multi-sectoral vision as the best alternative to face climate change.
In September 2019, Chile launched the Alliance for Climate Ambition, which seeks to commit states and non-state actors to carbon neutrality no later than 2050, as required by science. This Alliance for the first time unites States with the private sector and local governments, with a common goal and incorporates investment funds and financial institutions. To this date the Alliance brings together 122 countries, representing 61% of global emissions, 68% of global GDP, more than 3,000 organizations and more than US $ 88 trillion of investment committed to carbon neutrality by 2050.
In 2019, Chile in an unprecedented way, created the Scientific Committee COP25 that presented the report “Scientific evidence and climate change in Chile: Summary for decision makers” that synthesizes evidence and recommendations on seven key axes to face climate change: Antarctica, oceans, water, biodiversity, cities, adaptation and mitigation and energy, as a concrete contribution to updating the country’s NDC. This committee was formalized by resolution of the Ministry of Science and today it continues to support the Government in the development of instruments such as the Long-Term Climate Strategy.
Upon assuming the presidency of COP25, Chile proposed to make it the Blue COP. So it was. For the first time, it was possible to include the oceans in a COP decision, through a mandated dialogue between the Parties regarding how to develop concrete actions of greater ambition and climate action that allow the ocean to be protected from the adverse consequences of climate change, through nature-based solutions. This dialogue was carried out in 2020 with great success, generating a report that summarizes the great variety of visions and proposals that governments and civil society presented on this crucial issue.
During COP25, under the leadership of the Chilean presidency, the Lima Work Plan on Gender and its Gender Action Plan (GAP) were re-launched. New mandates were agreed that constitute a true conceptual and action framework for this important aspect of climate action. Also, during 2020 and 2021, the UNFCCC Women’s Mentoring Network was established in the negotiation process, and in Chile a gender table and checklist were implemented to incorporate a gender approach in all climate policies and instruments.
During COP25, the Chilean Presidency also promoted the incorporation of young people into the COP. During 2020 and 2021, courses have been developed for 500 young negotiators for the LAC region, 4 Regional Forums for young people on climate action and negotiation and two additional courses for young negotiators.
COP25 also adopted a decision that re-launched the work of the Warsaw Mechanism on Loss and Damage and created new spaces to advance knowledge of loss and damage processes associated with climate change and how to deal with them. One of the results was the creation of the “Santiago Network”, which aims to establish a network of institutions that provide financial and technical support to developing countries to face losses and damages associated with climate change.
Regarding article 6, although substantial progress was made in technical matters and for the first time it was possible to establish negotiation texts with solutions and implementation proposals, no consensus was reached. The work, however, was well under way so that the Parties can reach an agreement in Glasgow. In particular, three issues are still open: 1) the transfer of units and activities from the Kyoto Protocol to the accounting of the NDC; 2) the rules to avoid double accounting for activities under the centralized mechanism (art. 6.4) and 3) the application of a Tax (Share of Proceeds (SoP)) as a contribution to financing for adaptation to transactions under the market bilateral (art. 6.2).
Chile maintains a high level of compromise to the fight against climate change and is fully committed to the progress established in the Paris Agreement. In this way, it presented its updated NDC and in line with a greater ambition to decarbonize the economy by 2050 and increasing the participation of ERNC in its energy matrix by 2030, including the development of the green hydrogen industry.
Along with handing over the presidency of the COP in Glasgow to the United Kingdom, Chile has shown constant leadership consistent with the urgency of the global response to climate change. Science shows us that we have not done enough to be in line with the long-term goals of the Paris Agreement. In Glasgow we will have the opportunity to continue moving in that direction.
(The author is Ambassador of Chile to India. Views expressed are personal and do not reflect the official position or policy of Financial Express Online. Reproducing this content without permission is prohibited)