From 30 November to 12 December 2023, the 28th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP28) took place in Dubai, bringing together stakeholders to discuss strategies, policies and actions to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions. This year’s event was attended by over 80,000 people, including heads of state and government, members of international organizations, representatives of civil society and the private sector.
The meeting provided an opportunity to draw up the first Global Stocktake of the COP21 decisions agreed by nations in Paris in 2015, which were aimed in particular at limiting global temperature warming to +1.5°C above pre-industrial levels. While a recent study warns of the possibility of reaching this limit within 5 years, and developing countries are already suffering disproportionately from the consequences of climate change, this COP28 marked a crucial step towards stepping up climate efforts.
Focus 2030 compiled the major announcements and developments unveiled at COP28 in the areas of climate and development financing, gender equality, and global health, with a focus on France’s commitments. Analysis.
Climate and development financing
- Loss and damage:
- A text for the operationalization of the Loss and Damage Fund, a mechanism developing countries have called for the past 30 years, was adopted by the States Parties. Among other things, it states that the interim Secretariat of the Fund will be hosted by the World Bank for a period of four years, and does not define any financial targets for its funding.
- To date, industrialized countries have pledged US$655 million to the Fund, with a further US$115 million in financing to mobilize additional funds for loss and damage. However, the estimated financial needs for loss and damage are estimated at between $290 and $580 billion a year by 2030.
- In parallel, an agreement was reached on the Santiago network. Created in 2019, this network aims to minimize loss and damage in developing countries at local, national and regional levels. The decisions taken at COP28, in particular its hosting by the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction and the UN Office for Project Services, make it now possible to officially launch the Santiago network.
- France, Kenya, Barbados, Antigua and Barbuda and Spain, supported by the European Climate Foundation, have jointly launched a taskforce dedicated to finding new avenues for international taxation (carbon tax on fossil fuel trade, shipping and aviation, global financial transaction tax, etc.) to finance development and climate action. The taskforce will present a progress report on its work at COP29, and concrete proposals for new sources of international taxation will be put forward at COP30. The creation of this taskforce is the result of a commitment made at the Paris Summit for a new global financial pact.
- Reform of the international financial architecture:
- The World Bank, the African Development Bank, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the Inter-American Development Bank, France and the United Kingdom have announced that they are extending the availability of debt suspension clauses in the event of climate-related disasters in their loan contracts.
- Multilateral development banks have issued a joint statement in which they pledge to develop a joint approach to reporting climate performance. They will launch a program to help stakeholders at national and local levels to develop long-term climate and development strategies, and to increase the amount of private capital devoted to climate investments, notably by working on regulations and developing new instruments.
- The United Arab Emirates has announced the reallocation of US$200 million in Special Drawing Rights (SDRs) to the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) Resilience and Sustainability Trust (RST). This announcement brings total reallocation pledges to $87.1 billion, still short of the G20 countries’ pledge to reach $100 billion by 2021.
- The IMF reaffirmed its support for the reallocation of special drawing rights via multilateral development banks. France and Japan also indicated their support, in particular via the African Development Bank.
- The World Bank Group has pledged to devote 45% of its financing to the climate by 2025, i.e. $40 billion annually, of which 50% for mitigation and 50% for adaptation.
- The Inter-American Development Bank has announced a tripling of its climate investments to $150 billion over the next ten years.
- New commitments were made for the second replenishment of the Green Climate Fund, to reach a record $12.8 billion. Pledges include $3 billion from the United States, €2.2 billion from Germany, $2 billion from the United Kingdom, €1.6 billion from France and $1.2 billion from Japan.
- Thirteen countries, including India, France, Kenya, Barbados, the United States and the United Kingdom, have agreed on a Declaration on a Global Climate Finance Framework, aimed at making climate and development financing more available, accessible and affordable. Collective action, at the heart of this strategy, goes hand in hand with the need to leave no country behind, and to mobilize more public and private financing to meet today’s global challenges. The United Arab Emirates announced it will hold a forum on financing the fight against climate change in 2024.
- A study proposing a new climate finance framework, authored by Vera Songwe, Nicholas Stern, Amar Bhattacharya and Eléonore Soubeyran, has been released to identify new steps to finance the ecological transition. These steps include measures to reform multilateral development banks, promote debt sustainability, optimize tax policies and mobilize more private financing.
- Several multilateral development banks and international organizations have issued a joint statement and launched a working group to stimulate sovereign financing for nature and climate. These mechanisms aim to meet the needs of countries in the global South by providing long-term budgetary solutions for nature and climate.
- The United Arab Emirates has launched Altérra, a fund designed to mobilize $250 billion in private investment in global climate solutions by 2030.
- On the occasion of the COP28 day dedicated to gender equality, 68 countries pledged to implement a partnership aimed at driving gender-sensitive energy transitions and strengthening the leadership and participation of women and girls in their climate actions.
- At the Global Conference on Gender and Environment Data, held in Dubai on the eve of COP28, 200 members of governments, international organizations, civil society organizations and universities issued a call to action to finance, promote and accelerate the production of gender and environment data in an ethical and transparent manner.
- On the first day devoted to health during a COP, 143 countries approved the declaration on climate and health, which aims to strengthen intersectoral collaboration, reduce emissions in the health sector and increase funding for the fight against climate change. Despite requests from health sector groups and experts, the declaration makes no reference to phasing out fossil fuels. The United Arab Emirates announced initial funding of $1 billion to implement the declaration, supported by the Green Climate Fund, the Asian Development Bank, the Global Fund and the Rockefeller Foundation.
- Public donors and foundations announced the mobilization of $777 million to combat neglected tropical diseases, which pose a growing risk due to rising global temperatures.
- The day dedicated to health also saw the adoption of guidelines on financing climate and health solutions. These guidelines include reducing greenhouse gas emissions, supporting the most affected countries and communities, co-constructing appropriate policies with countries, communities and financing institutions, and integrating climate and health objectives into financing strategies.
Focus on France🇫🇷
- At COP28, France pledged a total of 173 million euros to various climate issues:
- Up to 100 million euros will be dedicated to the Loss and Damage Fund, depending on the Fund’s governance arrangements, which have yet to be established, and the targeting of vulnerable countries
- A new 20 million euros commitment to the Global Shield against climate risks
- A 35 million euros contribution to the Least Developed Countries Fund
- 10 million euros for the adaptation fund
- 8 million euros a year for the CREWS (Climate risks and early warning systems) program on early warnings
- In addition, 10 million euros have been pledged to the PREZODE initiative to strengthen the identification and monitoring of zoonoses (diseases transmissible from humans to animals and vice versa) in Mexico, Costa Rica, Haiti, Laos, Thailand, and the Republic of Congo.
- The French Development Agency pledged to include debt suspension clauses in the event of climate-related disasters in its loan contracts starting in 2024.