The clock is ticking at COP27: late night, early morning, a compromise proposal and a weak draft text

Talks resumed early this morning at the COP27 climate summit in Egypt after a series of late-night meetings and a raft of draft deals and proposals.

The draft text of the ‘Protection Decision’, the statement summarizing everything agreed at a COP, was circulated earlier this morning, later than usual and is missing key elements.

It reaffirms commitment to the goal of limiting average global temperature rise to 1.5°C – the pledge made in the landmark 2015 Paris Agreement, which at times over the past two weeks appeared in danger of being abandoned.

But it just “urges countries” to accelerate their efforts to cut greenhouse gas emissions in line with that goal.

It reaffirms the agreement reached last year to phase out the use of coal.

But it does not reflect calls from climate scientists, civil society groups and many governments, including Ireland and the EU, to strengthen this “phase-out” or extend it to all fossil fuels.

It “urges” countries to increase their contributions to existing “adaptation” climate finance funds to help vulnerable nations protect homes, infrastructure, food production and livelihoods from extreme weather conditions.

But even that falls short of calls from a broad base of countries and NGOs for a rapid acceleration of adaptation finance to achieve long-promised goals.

Devastating economic and non-economic losses, including through impacts on cultural heritage, human mobility and forced displacement

On the critical issue of loss and damage, it recognizes the damage climate change is causing to vulnerable countries.

It “notes with great concern … the increasing severity, extent and frequency of casualties and damage in all regions.”

It states: “Loss and damage related to the adverse impacts of climate change take the form of extreme weather events as well as slow-onset events and result in devastating economic and non-economic losses, including through their impact on cultural heritage, human mobility and forced displacement and the life and livelihoods of local communities”.

She adds: “An adequate and effective response to loss and damage is of great importance to the continued credibility and relevance of the UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change) process.”

However, there is a gap in the text at the point where a support scheme is to be described.


Climate Secretary Eamon Ryan is in the middle of the COP27 negotiations. Photo: Julien Behal Photography

The EU last night presented what it hopes will be a compromise formulation to help the G77 group of 134 developing and rich nations agree on a financing agreement.

She agrees to setting up a fund as long as it is “designated to respond to the needs of countries most affected by the adverse effects of climate change” and not open to countries historically considered developing but large economic ones Achievements have made progress in recent years.

She proposes to source the fund from money from governments, multinational development banks and the private sector, and in particular is looking for a new source of funding – taxes on aviation, shipping and fossil fuels.

We have a difficult day ahead of us. It’s not certain we’ll get a deal across the line

The fund would be part of a “mosaic” of financial support that would also include cheap credit, debt relief and easier access to private investment.

Early indications were that the compromise was attractive to some G77 countries, but the bloc is negotiating a consensus position.

Climate Secretary Eamon Ryan, who is representing the EU in the loss and damage negotiations, said around 8.30am Irish time this morning that a response from the G77 was expected.

“There is much to do. There is no certainty as to what the answer will be,” he said.

Australia was quick to back the EU, but there hasn’t been a response from the US yet.

However, Mr Ryan said he would be “surprised if the US didn’t back the EU proposal”.

The Greens leader added that the EU was not happy with the wording of the draft title text on fossil fuels and would seek strengthening, as would the section on adaptation finance.

COP27 is scheduled to end tonight but many COPs have been postponed to Saturday and some to Sunday.

On the prospects of finishing today, Mr Ryan said: “We have a difficult day ahead of us. It’s not certain we’ll get a deal across the line.” The clock is ticking at COP27: late night, early morning, a compromise proposal and a weak draft text

Fry Electronics Team

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