COP25 Newsletter EN – summarized!

COP25 Newsletter EN – summarized!

Everything you need to know about the newsletter!

Climate policy concerns us all! That’s why we provide you with information from the 25th UN Climate Change Conference. The Austrian youth delegates are in Madrid and make the voice of the youth heard and keep you up to date at the same time!

Here we summarize all the daily updates, in case you missed some.

WhatsApp Channel Link

Telegram Channel Link

November 28th, 2019: 4 days to COP25

Welcome to our COP25 newsletter!
Thank you for your interest in climate policy!
💪 We are the team of the Austrian youth delegation in cooperation with CliMates Austria. Together we explain the UN Climate Change Conference (COP25) and represent the voice of the Austrian youth in the international negotiations.

⚖ Our declaration: „Climate Justice!“
It includes youth demands from the Local Conference of Youth in Vienna, Fridays for Future, the Austrian Federal Youth Council and our online survey.
At COP we hand this declaration to Austrian politicians, business representatives and other NGOs!
➡ German:
(We are currently working on a translation)

❓ If you have questions, you can always send us a private message. We’ll send you updates daily!

🚞 By the way: we travel climate friendly by train from Vienna to Madrid! #railtothecop

November 29th, 2019: 3 days to COP25

So you won‘t get lost in the jungle of abbreviations, we’ll explain you the most important ones.

UNFCCC (pronounced „U-N-F-tripple C)
United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change
is an international environmental agreement of the United Nations, founded in 1992, with the aim of fighting the climate crisis. Consisting of 197 parties, located in Bonn, Germany.

Conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC Process
The annual meeting of the parties and the decision-making body of the UNFCCC. The negotiations go on for 2 weeks. This year it’s happening for the 25th time, therefore COP25.

Conference of Youth
In the run-up to the COP, the youth of the world mingle in the same city and come together in working groups such as Mitigation, Gender, Oceans, Loss & Damage etc. for press conferences and the closing statement in the big plenary, where all nations are present.

Local Conference of Youth
Since not everyone can come to COY / COP, there happen LCOYs all around the world. The outputs flow into the COY. In Austria it took place for the second time in Vienna this year.

Youth NGO (Children and Youth Constituency to the UNFCCC)
It brings together children and youth NGOs as well as all young people in the process. It publishes statements on numerous topics. It organizes the COY with the help of volunteers and coordinates the LCOYs. YOUNGO has official speaking time at COP and seeks to increase the influence of our generation.

➡ other relevant abbreviations of climate policy (unfortunately mostly in German)

📅 What else happened today:
The world has gathered for the 4th climate strike (thanks a lot!), Day 1 of the COY15 is over.

November 30th,  2019: 2 days to COP25

What is being negotiated at COP25?
In 2015, the Paris Agreement answered the „What?“: the goal is to increase the warming from pre-industrial temperatures to max. 2 or 1.5 degrees Celsius limit.
In 2018 the Katowice climate package decided the „How?“ for most topics. At this year’s COP25, the outstanding ones are being negotiated:

Loss and Damage
Damages caused by the climate crisis are not co-financed. Vulnerable states want a kind of insurance, covering for example infrastructure construction and relocations. Problem here is the predictability of the costs.

Market mechanisms
1. Global emissions trading (between countries): Biggest problem: already reduced emissions, by the Clean Development Mechanism, should not be double counted. Brazil is blocking the negotiations on this regard.
2. Project-based investments (between public and private investors): who pays how much for what?
3. „Non-market“ mechanisms: financial flows and knowledge exchange without trade

Gender Action Plan
The increased effects of the climate crisis on women should be recognized. Additionally the delegations should be gender balanced. Some countries, mainly in the Arab world, are blocking.

December 1st, 2019: 1 day to COP25

Tomorrow COP25 starts!
In other news:
COY came to an end
The three-day event took place at the Universidad Politecnica de Madrid and brought together young people from 86 countries. Numerous working groups presented their outcomes , including on Adaptation, Mitigation, Agriculture and Action for Climate Empowerment.
At the closing ceremony, high-level speakers underlined the importance of youth:
– Antonio Guterres, UN Secretary General
– Patricia Espinosa, UNFCCC Secretary General
– Carolina Schmidt, COP25 President and Chilean Environment Minister

Don’t give up, be loud and relentless. We count on you to lead today for a better tomorrow!“ – A. Guterres

Some COP facts & figures
Approximately 25,000 attendees are expected. Almost 1,500 different NGOs participate in the COP, 68 of them are youth organisations, of which only 30% come from the global South. Civil society organisations applied for 21,000 accreditations, but the UNFCCC secretariat issued just under 6,000.

Tomorrow we start
Spanish President Pedro Sánchez invites heads of state or government to the High Level Opening. 30 presidents accepted the invitation, including Austrian Federal President Alexander Van der Bellen.

December 2nd, 2019: COP25 Day 1

Chile’s Environment Minister ceremonially opened the COP25 in Madrid with the slogan „Time to Act“. UN Secretary General Guterres and Spanish Prime Minister Sanchez also stressed that there is no time left to wait for emissions to be reduced. However, no specific measures or recommendations for action were mentioned.

Van der Bellen for climate justice
At a meeting with the Austrian youth, the Federal President Van der Bellen was handed the position paper „Just Climate“ with collected demands of Austrian youth NGOs. He affirmed the importance of committed young people and that the motivation of youth is transferred to his generation and gives hope to many negotiators at the COP.

Our children will think of us. To what we have done. And what we didn’t do.„– Alexander Van der Bellen

The agenda was adopted and tomorrow the negotiations really start.

Climate Vulnerable Forum
The developing countries most affected by the climate crisis joined forces in this loose format. The chairmanship was handed over by the President of the Marshall Islands to the Prime Minister of Bangladesh. Today they warned of the catastrophic consequences of the climate crisis for their peoples and invoked the political will to adapt. Nancy Pelosi, speaker of the House, also said:
„Many forces in the US are committed to addressing the climate crisis with economic and environmental justice for all.“

December 3rd, 2019: COP25 Day 2

Today negotiations started on the COP25 issues. These include the Gender Action Plan, Loss & Damage, Adaptation, and market mechanisms. The negotiations take place either in plenary, in informal, in informal-informals, or as Huddle. Depending on the setting, negotiations take place with 300 people in the room or only 2-5 people in the corridor.
To avoid 193 countries taking the floor, there are negotiating groups such as the EU, the Arab Group, the Alliance of Small Island Developing States or the G77+China.

With „Action for Climate Empowerment“, the UNFCCC works to empower young people. The aim is to raise their voices about the climate crisis. Young people should also be better represented in the legislative process.

Fossil of the Day
This daily „honourable award“ is awarded by an NGO network to the states that are trying hardest to do the least in climate action. Today 3 „winners“ were selected: Japan, Brazil and Australia.
While Japan is supporting producing coal, Brazil is accusing NGOs of igniting the rainforest and Australia’s prime minister is denying the climate crisis while its country is on fire.

„Who is bad? Who is worse?
All the blame! All the shame!
Fossil of Day!“

Day 1 of COP25 incl. the interview with Austrian Federal President Van der Bellen is here:

December 4th, 2019: COP25 Day 3

The negotiations are still in the warm-up stage and the negotiators are still discussing mainly the formalities. Beside the exception of the Gender Action Plan, there is almost no new content.

Gender & Climate Change
At the COP22 parties decided to create a Gender Action Plan. This should guarantee the involvement of women in the implementation of already taken decisions and that gender mainstreaming is carried out in the UN system. An important concept is Capacity Building – women should be provided with tools that enable empowerment and self-determination.
This year the implementation will be evaluated and the need for improvement identified. The Gender Action Plan can be expected to be the most solid result from the COP.

We need more women taking decisions for our climate!“ – Teresa Ribera, Spanish Minister of Environment

COP location
The COP is taking place in Europe for the third time in a row. Although the COP should be rotated through the global regions, so that no groups of countries are disadvantaged, it will again take place in Europe, precisely in Scotland, next year. High travel costs and obstacles to visas make the access more difficult for the Global South.
Even though the COP takes place in Madrid, the presidency is run by Chile: this means that they define the main themes and chair the conference.

Emissions Gap Report
According to this year’s Emission Gap Report of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), countries must reduce their emissions by 7.6% per year (!) from 2020 in order to meet the 1.5°C target. The later we reach the peak (maximum emissions), the more we have to save per year. The pressure on the negotiating states is therefore great.

You can find news as a video is here: