The UN Climate Change Conference, COP 19 in Warsaw ended on November 23, trying to keep governments on a track towards a universal climate agreement in 2015, including decisions that will cut emissions from deforestation and on loss and damage. “Warsaw has set a pathway for governments to work on a draft text of a new universal climate agreement so it appears on the table at the next UN Climate change conference in Peru. This is an essential step to reach a final agreement in Paris, in 2015,” said Marcin Korolec, President of the COP19 conference, the Polish minister of Environment who has been dismissed as minister by the Polish government during the conference.
In the context of 2015, countries decided to initiate or intensify domestic preparation for their intended national contributions towards that agreement, which will come into force from 2020. Parties ready to do this will submit clear and transparent plans well in advance of COP 21, in Paris, and by the first quarter of 2015.

In addition, governments provided more clarity on mobilizing finance to support developing country actions to curb emissions and adapt to climate change. This includes requesting developed countries to prepare biennial submissions on their updated strategies and approaches for scaling up finance between 2014 and 2020. The Warsaw meeting also resulted in concrete announcements of forthcoming contributions of public  climate finance to support developing nation action, including from Norway, the UK, EU, US, Republic of Korea, Japan, Sweden, Germany and Finland. Meanwhile, the Green Climate Fund Board is to commence its initial resource mobilization process as soon as possible and developed countries were asked for ambitious, timely contributions by COP 20, in December, next year, to enable an effective operationalization.
 Countries also resolved to close the pre-2020 ambition gap by intensifying technical work and more frequent engagement of Ministers. The Climate Technology Centre and Network, CTCN in Copenhagen, at whose first  Expert dialogue also the EHA participated last month, has been declared open for business to  handle requests from developing countries for advice and assistance on the transfer of technology to reduce emissions.

Transport is still under represented at the COP’s and the nonprofit Shanghai-based SLoCaT Partnership is seeking endorsements of the Warsaw Statement on Low Carbon Transport and Sustainable Development, which was adopted on Transport Day 2013 November 17 in Warsaw. The Warsaw Statement will be circulated to the wider international community as a contribution to the creation of a Sustainable Development Goal and SLoCaT’s input into the Open Working Group next January
PHOTO: Electric cars waiting to transport tourists in Krakow, Poland (Photo by Colleen)