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'Transitional COP' to finalise Paris accord

Lice Movono In Bonn, Germany
Friday, November 10, 2017

COP23 is a technical conference, different from COP21 in Paris where the negotiations led to concrete landmark decisions.

UNFCCC executive director Patricia Espinosa said while this was a "transitional COP", its intended output would make the world's first agreement in the response to climate change practical.

Ms Espinosa said after from the Paris Agreement in 2015, they had made the pledge to take climate action.

"However, once we have the general framework, we need to do two things — guidelines — how will we make this operational," she said.

"We need an operating manual for the Paris Agreement — how exactly will the different features of the PA be applied to the different realities throughout the world."

The second goal of COP23 was what many were calling enhanced ambitions which recognised fact confirmed recently by science that even when the Paris Agreement was fully operational in its goal to reduce global warming to 2 degrees Celsius, this may not be enough.

"This conference has to be the launch pad for next level of ambition on the side of the countries for climate action," said Ms Espinosa.

"Because we know that the pledges that have been made so far under the Paris Agreement are not enough to take us to the objectives set by the Paris Agreement.

"That's why we have to think about ways to enhance ambitions; we speak about it as enhancing ambitions, it really means making higher goals in all areas — adaptation and mitigation."

The talanoa concept, currently the catch word in both zones of the conference, is critically important because it is the mode that countries use to discuss the way forward.

"It's going to be the first time where countries come together, have a joint assessment of where we start and hopefully that will bring us a new level of ambition and that will guide the revision by different countries of where they want to go so that we are hopefully within what is needed to reach the objectives," Ms Espinosa said.

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