Clear skies and fresh wind blowing from Mont Blanc set the tone for another round of negotiations at the Palais des Nations in Geneva where 196 parties convened to pave the way for a global deal at the end of the year in Paris. The aim of this session in Switzerland was to pick up from the Lima Call for Action and develop the text that will serve as a basis for the new international agreement. It also coincided with the first mandate of the newly elected chairs Ahmed Djoghlaf from Algeria and Daniel Reifsnyder from the USA, who wanted to open the negotiations with a renewed spirit. They did so by inviting parties to contribute to the text with their own proposals and avoid the criticism from developing countries who had previously claimed they were excluded from the process. As a result, the text quickly doubled in size with an explosion of additions coming from every direction. Some parties have made proposals knowing they may not get through to the final text but to serve as a leverage when negotiating on other fronts. The final text can be found here.
BusinessEurope will be following the process in the upcoming session in June when tough negotiations on the Geneva text will resume.
For BusinessEurope it is crucial that the parties do their homework and come forward with their intended nationally determined contributions (INDCs) as soon as possible in order to help provide predictability and enable longer-term planning and investment for business. Major economies governments in particular should present their INDCs in a transparent manner and be as clear and detailed as possible to allow businesses that are operating across the globe to be able to evaluate the impacts on their current and future operations and trade.
BusinessEurope would ask that INDCs include the following minimum information: quantifiable information on the reference point (including, as appropriate, a base year), time frames and/or periods for implementation, scope and coverage, planning processes, assumptions and methodological approaches including those for estimating and accounting for anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions and, as appropriate, removals.
(Photo © IISD/Earth Negotiations Bulletin)