Day 1: 7 November 2022
Pic courtesy of the UNFCCC Photo Desk/Flickr
“We are on a highway to climate hell with our foot on the accelerator.”
UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres didn’t mince his words in his address to the COP this morning.
“The Global North borrows at interest rates between 1-4%: the global south borrows at the rate of 14%. And we wonder why the Just Energy partnerships are not working.”
And nor did Barbados Prime Minister Mia Mottley, who has acted as the conscience of the COP in previous years.
While world leaders made and echoed calls for action and results, #COP27 got underway properly on Monday, and some important initiatives were unveiled.
You may have already seen headlines in the Financial Times and on Reuters concerning an initiative by the United States to establish the “Energy Transition Accelerator”, a mechanism that would set up a baseline-and-crediting system that would issue emissions reductions for non-fossil energy corporates to offset part of their Scope 3 emissions.
Our CEO Dirk Forrister gave a cautious welcome to the initiative in his comments to the press today, and we’re keen to see more details on the proposal tomorrow.
South Africa, together with France, Germany, the UK and the United States, launched a plan – originally hatched in Glasgow last year – to shift from coal to green energy. The Just Energy Transition Investment Plan will see $8.5 billion spent on moving away from coal towards renewable energy and upgrading the country’s grid to accommodate more renewable generation.
Additionally, a group of 25 countries held the first meeting of the Forest and Climate Leaders' Partnership after the initiative was launched in Glasgow.
Statements by members said that around 22% of the $12 billion in public money pledged to protect forests by 2025 had so far been disbursed.
And while these and other high-level statements and initiatives were being announced, delegates began the task of turning the “Implementation COP” into reality.
Article 6 update
However, it is often on the smallest details that grand ambitions can flounder. Such was the case for the Article 6.2 informal consultations, which were abandoned on Monday after UN staff declined to allow the large number of participants that could not find a seat to stand in the room.
These talks will resume tomorrow at 10am.
Negotiators working on Article 6.4 issues were luckier, and successfully held a two-hour session to work on further guidance to operationalise the transition of Kyoto Protocol CDM projects into the new mechanism.
The other main item today was rules governing use of Certified Emission Reductions towards Parties’ first Nationally Determined Contributions.
There is a constituency within these talks – mostly developed countries, we understand – that, despite decisions reached in Glasgow last year, are still not happy with the idea of using CERs to meet goals agreed under the Paris Agreement.
The discussions also covered reporting requirements for host parties under Article 6.4. The proposed draft text by the SBSTA chair includes important options on the timing of authorisation (when Parties may authorise the issuance of Article 6.4 Emission Reduction credits).
Issuance and authorisation are being viewed by some Parties as distinct elements of the process, and this critically leaves the option open for the issuance of Article 6.4 credits without a formal authorisation by the Supervisory Body, and these credits could flow to the voluntary market.
We’ll keep tracking this discussion as it evolves.
Business Hub goes live
While heads of state will continue delivering their national statements in the plenary, Tuesday also sees the start of our programme of more than 80 side events at the #COP27BizHub.
Please check out our full programme of events for the coming fortnight on the IETA website. For those wanting to participate virtually, the connection details are also in the programme.
On behalf of the IETA team, we look forward to welcoming many of you to the Business Hub and catching up.
IETA COP27 Business Hub news
IETA’s Business Hub is located in Area C, Zone 5, Pavilion 123 – our neighbouring pavilions at this year’s event are the International Chamber of Commerce, the GEF, the Coalition of Rainforest Nations and the Republic of Guinea.
IETA’s #COP27BizHub programme kicks off at 0930 hrs, when Germany’s federal climate ministry and the Wuppertal Institute will host a discussion on carbon neutrality claims, and how government regulations may impact these and the voluntary carbon market.
The Global Carbon Council presents a discussion at 1100 hrs on how offsets could be traded under Article 6.2 and how this might impact the voluntary market. IETA CEO Dirk Forrister will moderate this discussion.
Our colleagues at EPRI take the stage at 1200 hrs, with CEO Arshad Mansoor chairing a roundtable of CEOs from energy companies, who will share their experiences of helping to drive the energy transition.
In the afternoon, we’ll be hearing from UK utility Drax on large scale carbon removals, and what’s needed to drive CDR technologies at speed with the correct standards and certainty. The session begins at 1330 hrs.
At 1500 hrs, Carbon Finance Labs will host an investigation into how Africa can become a leader in carbon removal and negative emissions technologies.
Tuesday’s final event at 1630 hrs is the COP27 Blockchain Summit, and gathers representatives of leaders in the field to discuss tokenisation, supply chain and on-chain financing of projects using blockchain technology. Flowcarbon will host a networking reception after the event.
You can find the full programme of events for the coming fortnight on the IETA website.
We’d like to thank all our main partners, supporting partners and sponsors who are making IETA’s programme at COP27 possible. Your help and participation is appreciated!