New report: Much more needed to tackle gaps in climate action

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El-Niño20151027BONN, GERMANY: According to a new analysis released recently, National climate pledges submitted to the United Nation (UN) by more than 140 countries—and representing more than 87 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions—fall short of the science-based and equitable global effort needed to avoid the worst effects of climate change.

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A new global climate deal is expected to be agreed in Paris in December, and will form the basis of climate action by countries after 2020.

The analysis, Fair Shares: A Civil Society Equity Review of INDCs, is an independent review supported by World Wide Fund (WWF) for Nature and a diverse group of civil society organizations, social movements, trade unions and faith groups.

The analysis in the report measures the fair share of climate effort that each country should be responsible for against their level of responsibility and capability, and finds that some countries have contributed their fair share of effort, while others have not.

Commenting on the analysis, Tasneem Essop, WWF’s head of delegation to the UNFCCC said, “There is no getting away from the fact that there is a serious gap in climate ambition globally, both in terms of the fairness of contributions—especially from those most responsible—and the inadequacy of the efforts so far to reduce emissions.

“The opportunity for world leaders to change the trajectory of our future is now, and a good starting point to demonstrate this leadership is by ensuring a strong and robust global climate agreement in Paris,” she said.

“Actions can still be taken to address the ambition gap if countries can collectively agree to cooperate through scaled up and collaborative actions and if developed countries set targets for the provision of finance for developing countries to enhance actions to help close the gap. The Paris agreement must also include the institutional mechanisms to allow actions to get stronger and stronger through regular science and equity reviews,” added Essop.

The analysis calls for several actions to close the emissions gap, which should include:

• The Paris Agreement must enshrine a framework that ensures domestic commitments and global targets are set in accordance with science and equity;

• The Paris Agreement must include a strong mechanism to increase the ambition of INDCs;

• Substantial new commitments to finance mitigation, adaptation and loss and damage in developing countries are essential;

• Countries must scale up action for sustainable energy transformation.

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