Marrakech climate talks accelerate Paris Accord, says UNFCCC
Marrakech, Nov 18 (IANS) A high-level summit on climate action in this Moroccan city has brought together global leaders to make a range of announcements, which are accelerating action to fast-track the implementation of the Paris Climate Change Agreement, the UNFCCC said on Friday.
Governments, international organisations, cooperative initiatives and non-government stakeholders clearly demonstrated how their commitments to addressing climate change are maturing into concrete actions, the UNFCCC said on the concluding day of the two-week-long summit that was mostly overshadowed by US President-elect Donald Trump’s comments to cut off funding to climate change programmes.
At the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change yearly summit, climate champions Laurence Tubiana of France and Hakima El Hait of Morocco jointly launched Marrakech Partnership for Global Climate Action.
It aims to provide a strong roadmap for how the UNFCCC process will catalyse and support climate action by parties (government) and non-party (non-government) stakeholders in the period from 2017-2020, giving effect to the existing arrangements as agreed at Conference of Parities (COP21) in Paris, it said.
The Marrakech Investment Committee for Adaptation (MICA) Fund is the first ever private adaptation and resilience investment vehicle with a $500 million blended finance fund, combining concessional finance and private investment capital.
On renewable island energy, the Maldives will be partnering with the International Renewable Energy Agency to increase political momentum behind rapidly scaling up renewable energy and energy efficiency in Small Island Developing States.
Over 20 countries signed the framework agreement of the International Solar Alliance (ISA) — India’s ambitious programme of bringing 120 countries closer.
ISA was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi last year along with French President Francois Hollande at COP21, the Paris climate summit.
The Framework will be kept open as many more countries are expected to join in the coming days. It will enter into force with ratification by 15 countries.
At this summit named COP22, 19 African capital markets authorities and exchanges, accounting for 26 African countries, have signed and endorsed the Marrakech Pledge for Fostering Green Capital Markets in Africa.
Under Global Environmental Facility, 47 projects were approved, totalling $390 mn for mitigation and leveraging almost $4 billion, not counting Convention obligation projects. For adaptation, mobilisation of $87 mn for 13 projects, leveraging $332 mn in co-financing.
On forests, Indonesia announced it is implementing a moratorium on clearing super-high-carbon intact peatlands. The action builds on Indonesian President Joko Widodo’s announcement at last year’s Forest Action Day in Paris, to end new and review existing peat concessions.
Colombia has announced plans to close the forest frontier as a key component of a post-conflict future. Efforts include focusing development on non-forest lands, implementing strong tenure reform, and placing very large areas of forest under indigenous peoples’ control.
Indian company Dalmia Cement and Helvetia insurance group committed to use 100 percent renewable power across their operations and join RE100.
Nearly 200 nations have also reaffirmed their political commitment to a global climate momentum that they say is “urgent” and “irreversible” at the climate talks.
“We call for the highest political commitment to combat climate change, as a matter of urgent priority,” 197 parties to the UN’s climate convention stated in the Marrakech Action Proclamation, issued on the penultimate day of the climate talks.
“Our climate is warming at an alarming and unprecedented rate, and we have an urgent duty to respond,” it said.
“This climate summit — held after the Paris one — has been more successful in moving ahead. There were many attempts to drag it for various reasons. That did not happen and it has moved forward on its track. This (Marrakesh) I consider as a success. For us, we completed our ISA (International Solar Alliance), a major achievement. We should not see this as a standalone,” Indian Environment Minister Anil Madhav Dave told reporters here on Friday.
This yearly summit saw 25,000 people from all over the world, for all sectors to showcase their commitment to climate action and to discuss ways to expand shared efforts.
(Vishal Gulati is in Marrakech at the invitation of the Global Editors Network to cover COP 22. He can be contacted at email@example.com)