Make earth cleaner
China’s role as climate cooperation facilitator increasing
The Chinese delegates to the UN climate talks in Bonn, Germany on Friday voiced their concerns on behalf of developing countries and called for more focused discussions on pre-2020 actions.
The first week of the 23rd Conference of Parties (COP23) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is drawing to an end focusing on technical issues.
“There has been a heated debate on pre-2020 ambitions in Bonn. Actually, it’s not a new issue, but rather, unfinished business,” Chen Zhihua, a member of the delegation told a press briefing, while calling for the issue to be put on the conference agenda.
“There are only two years left to 2020 so we don’t have the luxury of time, and we really need to accelerate the process to ratify the Doha amendment to put it into effect as soon as possible,” Chen added.
He went on to say that, as the countries agreed in the Bali process that developed countries should be more ambitious in supporting developing countries, and, “It is time to take stock of what they ey have done and where the gap is s and how to close the gap.”
The global fight against climate mate change, which started in 1992 with the UNFCCC, can be divided into a pre-2020 phase, which was guided by the Kyoto Protocol, and the period afterwards, to be directed by the Paris Agreement.
However, the Doha amendment, establishing the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol (2013-2020), including quantified emissions limitation or reduction commitments by several developed countries, was just ratified by some countries.
“If we cannot close the gaps pre2020, they will ultimately continue into the post-2020 period,” Chen pointed out.
Gu Zihua, another Chinese negotiator, added that China believed that pre-2020 was “trust-building” for developing countries and if the pledges already made could not be fulfilled, faith in future pledges
would be dampened.
“We’re not asking the developed countries to make unrealistic pledges, we’re just asking them to fulfill the promises that were made,” Gu said, calling for a clear decision on the timeline of fulfilling the Doha amendment.
Developing countries also called for a ceremony to celebrate the adoption of the Kyoto Protocol as this year marks the 20th anniversary of the historical event, according to Chen, noting that, “We need to do something to memorialize this very important historical moment, and action is the best way to commemorate the adoption.”
Chen also mentioned financing as a matter of concern for not only China but all developing countries, “because of the gap”.
He explained, “If the US is going to contribute less, the gap is just going to get bigger,” in answer to a question about whether the US’s withdrawal had implications for climate financing. G Gu tried to clarify the notion tha that the financial obligation was a collective one among th the developed countries. “So, if one developed co country withdraws, we hope tha that other developed countries can increase their contribution butions to fill that gap, and we also belie believe that local government, corporations corporatio and non-state parties in the U.S. c can do their part to fill that gap,” Gu pointed out. He also said that China would continue to contribute on a voluntary basis and through south-south cooperation by helping other developing countries address the climate change issue.
China has played an active role in the first week’s COP meeting, Gu said in an interview with Xinhua, and, “We’ve really been engaged in talks on each agenda, and have offered proposals.”
China has also acted as a mediator for developing countries to coordinate their efforts and has had close consultations on how to facilitate dialogues, Gu said.
He concluded by saying that China also organized many side events at its pavilion to introduce the country’s best climate protection practices and has held exchanges with other countries or climate actors. Xinhua
The 23rd Conference of Parties (COP 23) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) has garnered worldwide attention as it is crucial to the implementation of the Paris Agreement which will direct the global efforts in climate protection after 2020.