International Negotiations

Policy Update #22: Climate Countdown: What Can Be Expected in the Lead Up to Paris? [viewed]

The UN negotiations being undertaken by the Ad Hoc Working Group on the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action (ADP) are expected to culminate at the 21st session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 21) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), which will be held in December 2015 in Paris, France, with the adoption of a protocol, another legal instrument or an agreed outcome with legal force under the UNFCCC.

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Event: 21st Senior Officials Meeting of the EMG [viewed]

The 21st senior officials meeting of the Environmental Management Group (EMG) (SOM-21) will be held in conjunction with the 70th Session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA) and the UN Sustainable Development Summit 2015. The meeting is intended to provide an opportunity to strategize and come up with a common message on how the UN system intends to support countries in achieving the environmental sustainability dimension of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which are expected to be adopted at the Summit. In a note regarding the Meeting, Achim Steiner, UNEP Executive Director and EMG Chair, proposed that the EMG discuss, among other things: UN system wide strategies so that the UN system can contribute to the environmental sustainability dimension of the SDGs; maximizing the EMG's effectiveness to be fit for purpose in the context of the post-2015 development agenda; and the EMG's role in coordinating UN system wide support for implementing the SDGs, including monitoring and reviewing progress of the environmental dimension. He also proposed the following modalities for the meeting's organization, including a technical preparatory segment and a senior officials segment, with the technical segment expected to meet twice prior to SOM-21 on 9 September by audio conference and on 21 September in person in New York.

Also in preparation for SOM-21, the second mid-term technical segment meeting of senior EMG officials convened on 6 May 2015, with the aim of providing an update on progress made by the EMG since SOM20, and initiating a discussion on strategic and possible future issues for consideration and inclusion in the EMG 2016-2017 Programme of Work. SOM-21 will be hosted by the UN Development Programme (UNDP).  

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UN Secretary-General Calls for Climate Change Action, SD Implementation [viewed]

ban_ki_moonAugust 2015: In his report on the 'Work of the Organization,' UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon expresses optimism that “we will soon arrive at a new vision for sustainable development, new directions for the maintenance of peace and security, a renewed embrace of human rights, and a stronger United Nations to help bring our goals to life.” He calls on all countries to submit ambitious national contributions that detail how they will address climate change in the post-2020 period.

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UNGA President Circulates Amended 2030 Agenda [viewed]

post201512 August 2015: The President of the UN General Assembly (UNGA), Sam Kutesa, circulated the outcome document of the UN Summit for the adoption of the post-2015 development agenda, agreed by consensus at the conclusion of the intergovernmental negotiation process on 2 August 2015. Kutesa informed Member States that he will convene a plenary meeting of the Assembly in early September to take action on a draft resolution that will transmit the outcome document to the UNGA's 70th session for consideration and adoption during the Summit.

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French, Peruvian UNFCCC COP Presidencies Release Aide-Mémoire [viewed]

france-peru31 July 2015: During an informal ministerial meeting held in preparation for the 21st session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 21) to the UNFCCC, ministers discussed characteristics of the anticipated Paris agreement, differentiation and ambition, according to an aide-mémoire released by the Peruvian COP 20 Presidency and incoming French COP 21 Presidency. In addition, Parties discussed next steps in the lead-up to COP 21.

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2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development Being Prepared for UNGA Consideration [viewed]

post20152 August 2015: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which was adopted at the conclusion of the post-2015 development agenda negotiations on 2 August 2015, contains five sections, including the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and 169 targets proposed by the Open Working Group (OWG) in 2014, with several revisions for specificity and consistency with international ambition. The document for consideration by the 69th UN General Assembly (UNGA) is expected to be finalized and made available ahead of the UN summit for the adoption of the agenda, which will take place from 25-27 September 2015.

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UN Finalizes 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development [viewed]

post2015-in82 August 2015: The final version of the draft post-2015 development agenda, titled ‘Transforming our World: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,' was adopted by acclamation at the conclusion of an informal plenary of intergovernmental negotiations. The adoption came at the end of a two-week session and concluded a seven-month process to agree on the UN's development agenda to follow up on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and seek to achieve sustainable development.

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Policy Update #21: Cracking the Climate Code in Time for the Paris Agreement [viewed]

At the end of 2015, the world's attention will be focused on Paris, France, where countries are due to finalize the development of a new “protocol, another legal instrument or an agreed outcome with legal force under the Convention applicable to all Parties.” This new agreement is due to be completed in 2015, and to take effect in 2020. Many recognize that action in the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is only a fraction of the subnational, national and regional efforts by governments, companies and citizens to address climate change. In the lead up to the 21st session of the Conference of the Parties (COP21) to the UNFCCC, it is important to understand what has come before, in order to put the future climate agreement and efforts by others into context.

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Montreal Protocol Inches Closer to Negotiations on HFC Phase-down [viewed]

iisdrs-oewg3624 July 2015: The 36th meeting of the Open-Ended Working Group (OEWG 36) of the parties to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer (MP) devoted most of its time to addressing hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), a group of greenhouse gases (GHG) widely used in the refrigeration, air conditioning, foam and aerosol sector as a substitute for ozone-depleting substances (ODS).

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ADP Co-Chairs Issue Streamlined Geneva Negotiating Text [viewed]

UNFCCC24 July 2015: The Co-Chairs of the Ad Hoc Working Group on the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action (ADP) have issued a scenario note for the tenth part of the second session of ADP (ADP 2-10) that includes a consolidated version of the formal Geneva negotiating text. The Co-Chairs also released a document containing elements for a draft decision on ADP workstream 2 (pre-2020 ambition).

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