COP24: UN Conference on Climate Change begins in Poland

Dec 3, 2018 15:00 IST
COP24: UN Conference on Climate Change begins in Poland

The 24th meeting of Conference of Parties (COP24) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) began on December 3, 2018 at Katowice, Poland.

The Fijian Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama declared the UN COP24 climate summit open and handed over the presidency of the talks to Michal Kurtyka, Poland's Deputy Environment Minister in the presence of UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.

Delegates from nearly 200 nations began talks to tackle deep political. The COP24 will be hosting over 28000 people. They will include CEOs, mayors, governors and other leaders from civil society at large.

Over 100 events will highlight action in transport, water, land-use, energy, the fashion industry, representing the wide spectrum of climate action.

The Conference will continue till December 14, 2018.

COP24: Will the guidelines for implementation of Paris Agreement be finalised?

The COP24 is very significant as it is expected to finalise guidelines for implementation of the Paris Agreement adopted in 2016.

The COP24 climate summit will see nations try to agree on ways of implementing the the 2015 Paris treaty to limit temperature rises and avert global warming.

India to reaffirm its support for Paris Agreement

Union Environment Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan is leading the Indian delegation at the conference. India expects that COP24 frames pragmatic guidelines and gives due consideration to challenges and priorities of developing countries.

India asserts it strong support to the objective of the Paris Agreement to strengthen the global response to the threat of climate change by keeping the global temperature rise well below 2 degrees Celsius from pre- industrial revolution period.

During the COP-24, India is expected to highlight its concern for climate change and reaffirm its commitments for finalisation of the Paris Agreement Work Programme.

India will be setting up a Pavilion to create awareness about India’s positive climate actions in various sectors of the economy. The theme of Pavilion is ‘One World One Sun One Grid’. This theme was highlighted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during the first assembly of the International Solar Alliance in October 2018.

Paris Agreement on Climate Change

In December 2015, 195 countries pledged to slow the process of global warming in Paris by signing the Paris Agreement on Climate Change. 

Objectives

  • The primary objective is to limit the global average temperature to well below 2 °C above pre-industrial levels.
  • Efforts will be made to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels so that it will be possible to reduce the risks and impacts of climate change.
  • Parties should take action to conserve and enhance, as appropriate, sinks and reservoirs of greenhouse gases including forests.
  • With a view to contribute to sustainable development and to achieve the long term temperature goal of 2°C, the COP established the global goal on adaptation of enhancing adaptive capacity, strengthening resilience and reducing vulnerability to climate change.

Mitigation

Parties recognised the importance of averting, minimising and addressing loss and damage associated with the adverse effects of climate change, including extreme weather events and slow onset events, and the role of sustainable development in reducing the risk of loss and damage.

Technology Transfer

Parties share a long-term vision on the importance of fully realising technology development and transfer in order to improve resilience to climate change and to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Financing

Developed countries will raise finances to the tune of 100 billion US dollars per year by 2020 to help developing nations in both mitigation and adaptation activities. And, other nations are encouraged to provide funding voluntarily.

Implementation

A mechanism to facilitate implementation of and promote compliance with the provisions of this Agreement is hereby established.

Review

The Conference of the Parties serving as the meeting of the Parties to the Paris Agreement shall undertake its first global stock take in 2023 and every five years thereafter.

Enforcement

This Agreement shall enter into force on the thirtieth day after the date on which at least 55 Parties to the Convention have deposited their instruments of ratification, acceptance, approval or accession.

Signing & Ratification

As of June 2017, 195 UNFCCC members have signed the agreement, 148 of which have ratified it.

US Withdrawal

On June 1, 2017, US President Donald Trump announced to withdraw the United States from the 2015 Paris agreement, stating that the Paris accord would undermine the U.S. economy, cost U.S. jobs, and weaken American national sovereignty.

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