The current emission reduction pledges that governments have put put forward are inadequate to keep global warming below the 2°C threshold agreed. What is currently on the table will lead to a world that is going to be at least 2.7°C degrees warmer. In such a world, frequent floods and droughts, water and food scarcity, increasing numbers of refugees, conflicts, and irreversible damage to ecosystems, economies and livelihoods will become a daily reality.
The Paris summit will not alone be able to provide a full answer to the climate crisis, but it has to increase our chances to limit climate change to below 1.5°C and 2°C. The EU needs to be instrumental in that progress. It should advocate for a meaningful Paris agreement, which will provide us with a much-needed action plan to speed up the decarbonisation of the global economy.
IN ORDER TO BE A REAL DEAL MAKER IN PARIS, THE EU NEEDS TO:
ESTABLISH A LONG TERM GOAL
- Advocate for a goal to phase-out fossil fuel emissions and phase-in 100% renewables globally by 2050 to be included in the Paris agreement.
BOOST THE EU’S EMISSION REDUCTION PLEDGE
- Advocate for an upward revision of all current, inadequate pledges to start immediately after the summit and be finalised before 2018. Read our briefing on the need to review countries’ commitments
- Increase the target of at least 40% emission reduction by 2030, which forms the EU’s Intended Nationally Determined Contribution (INDC) to the Paris agreement, to at least 55%. Read our policy briefing on the inadequacy of the 40% target here
- Provide further details about the INDC, including specifying total amount of greenhouse gases the EU will emit in the period from 2021 to 2030. Read our report on the gaps in the current EU INDC
- Translate the 2030 target into a commitment for 2025 as well, because short, five-year commitment periods are the best tool to regularly increase ambition.
TAKE IMMEDIATE ACTION
- Boost ambition of its climate efforts already before 2020, when the Paris agreement will enter into force, including a phase out of fossil fuel subsidies, cancellation of surplus allowances in the EU ETS and implementation of existing legislation on energy efficiency and renewable energy
- The EU’s domestic emissions have already last year fell to -23% below 1990 level, and will most likely go down to -30% by 2020. The EU should be able to easily show leadership in Paris by committing to a -30% target by 2020.
TACKLE CLIMATE FINANCE
Deliver the EU’s fair share of the $100 billion a year in climate finance promised by 2020. The EU and its Member States should ensure that financial contributions are providing additional benefits for impacted developing countries, and not a mere accounting exercise for existing flows of finance.
Advocate for a strong climate finance package that guarantees to continue and scale up the provision of new and additional public climate finance, for both adaptation and mitigation after 2020.
Ensure that the Paris agreement stimulates a shift in all financial flows and investments away from fossil fuels and into renewable energy, e.g. by providing impetus to a phase out of fossil fuel subsidies already before 2020. Read our briefing on ending fossil fuel subsidies
ADDRESS OTHER ISSUES
Ensure that the Paris agreement tackles emissions from international shipping and aviation. More information: http://www.transportenvironment.org/
Ensure that possible use of carbon market mechanisms to reduce emissions is allowed only if they deliver real, additional, internationally verifiable and permanent cuts. More information: http://carbonmarketwatch.org/
Firmly support a human rights based approach in the Paris climate agreement. Check out www.cidse.org
Advocate for an inclusion of a long term adaptation goal, which would link levels of emissions to levels of adaptation actions, and the issue of loss and damage in the Paris agreement; advocate for allocating specific public funding for adaptation and loss and damage. More information: http://www.care.org/
Make use of synergies between international climate negotiations and other global processes, such as Sustainable Development Goals or Montreal Protocol negotiations. See also this report by WWF and CARE.