COP 20 Lima


Confronting the Elephant in the Room: Differentiation of Obligations in the Paris Climate Agreement

, director of strategy & policy

Coming into the Lima climate negotiations on December 1st, the US-China joint climate announcement, the European Union’s political agreement on its 2030 emissions reduction target, and the successful capitalization of the Green Climate Fund had all combined to create a sense of momentum and a positive mood.

But these developments had done little to resolve the sharp disagreements about which countries are responsible for taking which kinds of action on climate change, and these different perspectives on the issue of differentiation nearly derailed the final decision in Lima. As it was, the Lima decision on the Ad Hoc Working Group on the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action (ADP) was a disappointing, minimal outcome. If these conflicts over the issue of differentiation are not resolved, or at least significantly narrowed, they could threaten the prospects for agreement in Paris next December on a new, comprehensive post-2020 climate regime. Read more >

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6 Reasons I Am Optimistic COP 20 in Lima Will Help Avert the Climate Crisis

, Director, Climate & Energy

I have been attending the annual meetings of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) since 2006 and this rarified, diplomatic process has been inspiring, frustrating, and sometimes profoundly depressing. Having stepped back from engaging in the details of the negotiations the past couple of years, I was able to observe them this year in Lima from a new perspective. And I believe we are actually making progress. Read more >

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We’re Number One! – In What Our Land Can Do for the World’s Climate

, scientific adviser, Climate and Energy

You hear the phrase “we’re number one!” from Americans fairly often, usually in relation to sports or politics. Now new research from the Union of Concerned Scientists shows  that there’s another domain where it applies. It’s not as an assertion of superiority, and probably never will lead to a chant at the Olympics, the World Cup or even the UN climate negotiations. Rather, it’s in terms of our potential to use our land sector – that is, agriculture and forests – to reduce our global warming pollution and avoid the worst consequences of climate change.

Read more >

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At COP 20 in Lima: The Buzz about Renewable Energy

, Policy Director and Lead Economist, Climate & Energy

I’m in the beautiful city of Lima, at the annual United Nations climate talks, or COP 20. Even as negotiators labor over “non-papers” and “elements of draft negotiating text,” the real buzz here is about the incredible opportunity to drive down global emissions by investing in renewable energy and energy efficiency. What makes this a particularly exciting time is that the costs of renewable energy are falling dramatically. The clean energy transition has never been more affordable – or, frankly, more urgently needed. Read more >

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Why COP 20 Lima Matters to South American Countries

, former scientist and Kendall Science Fellow

The Conference of Parties (COP20) currently being held in Lima is critically important for South American countries given their exposure to climate change impacts. Land surface changes, fossil fuel extraction, and sea level rise are key concerns for these countries. Read more >

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