Opinion: clarifications needed on climate pledges

Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) are fundamental to the new climate change agreement to be negotiated by governments in Paris in December 2015. IlIari Aragon, LRI’s Programme and Outreach Officer, argues that several key aspects around the role of INDCs need to be clarified if the Paris Summit is to deliver an agreement that can truly protect people and the planet.

See full article published by cdkn.org [here]

Climate negotiations resume on 31 August – 4 September in Bonn, Germany.

A team of LRI lawyers will be there, providing timely legal assistance to representatives from the smallest delegations. For inquiries about our legal support, contact us on:enquiries@legalresponseinitiative.org

New streamlined negotiating text released

Co-Chairs of the Ad Hoc Working Group on the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action (ADP), Ahmed Djoghlaf and Daniel Reifsnyder, released on 24th July a 83-page document titled ‘non-paper illustrating possible elements of the Paris package’. This text is a consolidated version of the Geneva negotiating text. According to UNFCCC officials, this new document presents ‘a clearer picture’ of the possible final outcome without compromising any of the options put forward previously by Parties in the formal Geneva text.

The aim of the consolidated text is to allow governments to advance more effectively in their negotiations when they reconvene in Bonn (31 August – 4 September) for the next meeting of the ADP. The document provides clarity on what could be contained within the Paris agreement and identifies paragraphs that, given their nature, would be appropriate for COP decisions. As noted by the UNFCCC secretariat, ‘this could mean, for example, that new commitments that boost the response to climate change would be enshrined in the agreement, but the details of how these commitments would be implemented as well as the details of any new arrangements to support implementation are captured in an accompanying decision.’

Little time is left for substantive differences to be resolved before COP21 in Paris. While this consolidated document is a tool to help Parties in their negotiations, the array of different textual options there is a reminder of how much work is left when negotiators resume the round of talks in Bonn in late August. As usual, a team of LRI lawyers will be there, providing timely legal assistance to representatives from the smallest delegations.

Road to COP Paris pic small

Follow us on twitter@legalresponse to get negotiation updates during the upcoming ADP session, and for inquiries about our legal support, contact us on: enquiries@legalresponseinitiative.org

Bonn and 10 more days

Audience @ Uni Bonn

Audience @ Uni Bonn

LRI @ Institute for public international law

LRI @ Institute for public international law







The Bonn Climate Change Conference concluded on Thursday, 11 June, at 5 pm. Parties did not go into extra time to negotiate a new agreement on climate. The outputs of their negotiations are reflected in two non-papers, the “Working document” (68 A4 pages) and the Streamlined and consolidated negotiation text (85 A4 pages), both dated 11 June and available online at http://unfccc.int/meetings/bonn_jun_2015/session/8857.php

8 LRI lawyers attended the Bonn meeting and dealt with over 30 requests for legal advice from poor and particularly climate vulnerable developing countries. A new paper on how human rights could be integrated into the 2015 agreement was well received and two events at the university of Bonn on international law and the climate negotiations attended by many students, academics and lawyers.

Volunteers in the 'Situation Room'

Volunteers in the ‘Situation Room’








As an outcome of the Bonn conference, Parties have requested the two co-chairs of the ADP to issue an “additional tool” which should include a fully streamlined, consolidated, clear and concise version of the Geneva negotiating text, as well as suggestions for paragraphs appropriate for a decision versus the agreement, by 24 July 2015.

This is likely to result in further discussions during the next ADP meeting in Bonn from 31 August – 4 September about if and to what extent the co-chairs and the UNFCCC secretariat have accurately represented, summarised and interpreted the Parties’ positions. Unfortunately, there are only 10 more negotiating days scheduled before COP21 in Paris.