Indian-Based Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), is urging the UN climate talks in Bonn to prioritise increased climate finance ambition ahead of the 29th Conference of Parties (CoP) later this year.

The mid-year climate conference, also known as the 60th meeting of the Subsidiary Bodies (SB60), will take place in Bonn, Germany from June 3-13, 2024, bringing together countries that are signatories to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).

The meeting will serve as a crucial midpoint between the 28th CoP in Dubai and CoP29 in Azerbaijan, and its outcomes will set the stage for the next phase of global climate negotiations.

Speaking during a virtual talk show on May 17, Programme Manager for CSE Avantika Goswami, said this year is poised to be a pivotal year for climate finance.

He said it is expected to be a year of significant negotiations, as the global community works towards agreeing on a new collective quantified goal for climate finance, a crucial step forward in addressing the climate crisis.

“And the Bonn climate talks, scheduled to begin on June 3, are expected to lead up to that goal,” Mr Goswami said.

According to CSE, the recent discussions on the New Collective Quantified Goal (NCQG) in Cartagena in April revealed significant disagreements between developed and developing country groups.

Programme Officer for Climate Change at CSE Sehr Raheja stated that developing countries emphasised the numerous challenges that hinder their access to climate finance, including exorbitant capital costs for transitioning to low-carbon economies, crushing debt burdens, and the existing uneven distribution of climate finance resources, which disproportionately favor certain regions. These challenges create a disabling environment that impedes their ability to address climate change effectively.

“Developed countries called for an expansion of the contributor base, and some even suggested that the NCQG may be “voluntary” for contributors”, Mr Raheja said.

Climate finance and global stocktake Talks in Bonn, aims to bridge the gaps and finds common ground on the contentious issues. The ultimate objective is to produce a draft negotiating text, which will serve as the foundation for further deliberations at the 29th Conference of Parties (CoP29), where countries will work towards reaching a consensus on the New Collective Quantified Goal (NCQG) for climate finance.

Raheja stresses that developing countries must present a united front and clearly articulate their demands for a substantial and adequate amount of climate finance that aligns with their needs, specific targets for different climate objectives, and financing mechanisms that don't lead to debt accumulation. He states that, this unity and clarity are vital to ensure their demands are heard and met.

“It is crucial that developing countries remain united and clear in their demands for an ambitious quantum of money in line with needs, clear sub-goals for various climate purposes and a focus on non-debt creating finance flows”.

The upcoming SB60 meeting will feature the inaugural Annual Global Stocktake (GST) Dialogue, building on the momentum from CoP28, which concluded with a historic first-ever GST assessment urging countries to phase out fossil fuels.

According to Avantika, the GST Dialogue aims to foster a sharing of effective strategies and lessons learned on how countries are incorporating the GST outcomes into their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), promoting collaborative learning and progress towards achieving the Paris Agreement's goals.

Bonn to tackle outstanding carbon market questions Unresolved issues from CoP28, specifically regarding carbon market mechanisms (Articles 6.2 and 6.4), will be revisited in Bonn. The outstanding matters include: Dual eligibility for emission reduction projects in Article 6.2 and 6.4 markets, Streamlining the authorization process and clarification on corresponding adjustments for Article 6.2. These lingering issues, CSE says, will be re-examined in Bonn to reach a consensus and drive progress in carbon market mechanisms.

According to Programme Officer for Climate Change at CSE, Trishant Dev, as countries gather to establish guidelines, it's crucial that any agreement on implementation avoids repeating the mistakes of the past, such as those seen in the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) or voluntary carbon market. Instead, it should prioritize essential values like integrity, transparency, and robust safeguards to protect impacted communities.

“As Parties come together to agree on specific guidelines, it is important to ensure that any agreement on operationalisation must steer clear of replicating the pitfalls observed in the past in the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) or the voluntary carbon market. It must also prioritise integrity, transparency, and appropriate safeguards for affected communities.”

Developed Countries Must Lead in Climate Action  According to Avantika, developed countries must engage in the Mitigation Work Programme (MWP) with sincerity, recognizing their role in historical emissions and their obligation to lead in reducing emissions and transitioning to a low-carbon economy.

He says they must prioritize providing support to developing countries through concrete channels and partnerships, enabling them to benefit from the MWP and receive assistance for their domestic emission reduction efforts, including access to non-debt-creating finance, technology transfer, and capacity building."

“Developed countries must participate in MWP in good faith, acknowledging their responsibility for historical emissions and their duty to take the lead in mitigation and decarbonisation. Means of implementation from developed to developing countries must be prioritised, with specific channels and partnerships determined for developing countries to benefit from the MWP and receive support for their domestic mitigation pathways, whether in the form of non-debt creating finance, technology, or capacity building.”

The upcoming SB60 meeting will feature the third edition of the Mitigation Work Programme's (MWP) global dialogue and investment-focused event, with a fresh focus on 'Cities, buildings, and urban systems'.

The event aims to create a productive platform for countries to explore ways to boost their climate action plans (NDCs) and address the challenges and opportunities in scaling up their mitigation efforts.

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