Bonn Climate Change Conference – updates

By Adessou Kossivi
6 June 2024


The June UN Climate Change Meetings, SB60, are underway in Bonn, Germany. Adessou Kossivi, GNDR Regional Lead Africa, and Climate Change Risk Driver Lead, is representing GNDR in Bonn, and is sharing his reflections here throughout the conference.

New Collective Quantified Goal & Nationally Determined Contributions

The first day at the Bonn Climate Change Conference focussed on the New Collective Quantified Goal (NCQG) and preparation of the next generation of the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). There is a major need for an increase in public financing for disaster risk reduction (DRR) in the Global South and support of locally-led DRR policies. The NCQG must respond to these needs.

We also considered how the IPCC continues to contribute to and influence actions that will reduce the impact of climate change and enhance the resilience of the most vulnerable communities.

Parties continued to emphasise the severe impacts of climate change that they face and demanded that the Paris Agreement commitments, especially limiting the increase of global temperatures to 1.5C, remain on track.   

Effective climate finance

Day two continued with technical assessments of the first phase of the NCQG – and planning for the next steps. Each country must contribute to ensuring the Paris Agreement objectives are met. They will make this contribution via the NDCs, which must serve as the entry point for commitments on loss and damage, mitigation, and adaptation.

Importantly, it is not only the quantity of contributions that should increase, but also the quality too. So today, countries have called for a commitment that financial resources make a genuine impact on the ground. For example, in Colombia, loans make up most of the climate funds, while exploiting the country’s fossil fuels could represent 60% of their GDP. Climate financing must incentivise meaningful climate action. According to the latest GAR Report, the global expenditure on fossil-fuel energy subsidies was $5.9 trillion (2023). Redirecting this finance to climate finance is one place to begin.

Countries called for a more transparent and detailed finance system, alongside a robust commitment to understanding that, although climate change is a threat, countries in the global majority must be given the opportunity to continue their development so they can support their most vulnerable communities.

High income countries must understand that the vulnerability of lower and middle income countries is increasing because the necessary resources needed to support those most at risk, are not available.

Adessou Kossivi speaking at the Bonn Climte Conference 2024
Adessou Kossivi speaking at the Bonn Climate Conference 2024. Photo: IISD/ENB – Kiara Worth

National Adaptation Plans & inclusive planning

Today’s focus was to review the documentation around adaptation. Lower income countries consider National Adaptation Plans as the main strategies to withstand the impacts of climate change and need sufficient financial resources to implement them.

Separately, a side event supported by UNDRR, demonstrated the impact of disaster on children. They launched a call to promote inclusive plans that ensure children are properly considered and protected during climate-related disasters.

We were also able to join a coordination meeting of the least developed countries, where members insisted on the need to enhance their financial capacity to reduce their vulnerability to climate disaster.

The third Glasgow Dialogue & the Warsaw International Mechanism

The morning of day four saw the start of the third Glasgow Dialogue where representatives of the three loss and damage advisory boards – the Warsaw International Mechanism Board, the Loss and Damage Fund Board, and the Santiago Network Board – shared their progress.  

I joined the subsequent Santiago Network breakout session, where I launched a call inviting those present to recognise that climate change is a key risk driver, an accelerator of threats, and therefore how pivotal it is to provide the resources to mitigate its impact.

I also stressed the importance of quality and accessible data – data for loss and damage assessment and climate/disaster risk reduction must be accessible. Ground-level and community-specific data for preparedness, anticipatory actions (climate and humanitarian), response, and community-based risk retention and transfer is vital. Likewise, I called for investment in advanced monitoring and early warning systems for climate-related threats, especially for exposed populations.

The evening saw discussions around the Warsaw International Mechanism (WIM).

The WIM has promoted loss and damage and supported the installation of the Santiago Network. Now, as the Santiago Network is fully operationalised, it’s time to review the WIM terms of reference so that it can continue to play its role.

There were some convergences, but also divergences. And because of the divergences, countries, parties, groups – including the G77 and China, the European Union, the Americans – decided to organise an informal meeting tomorrow where groups will work to review their position and with hope build consensus.

Representatives from LMICs at the Bonn Climate Conference mark the adoption of the Warsaw International Mechanism terms of reference.
Representatives from LMICs at the Bonn Climate Conference mark the adoption of the Warsaw International Mechanism terms of reference.

Positive news but more progress is required

The last few days of negotiation at the Bonn Climate Conference, ahead of COP 29, have been challenging, but we have seen progress.

A major achievement has been the adoption of the Warsaw International Mechanism (WIM) terms of reference – a vital component when considering the loss and damage funds available to developing countries affected by climate change. 

This will hopefully help us form a decisive text at COP 29 that will set out a path for the next life of the WIM – a real cause for celebration.

We also hope this will pave the way for the real operationalization of loss and damage funds, which are vital for meeting the needs of communities severely exposed to the destructive impacts of climate change.

There is, however, more progress needed on the Global Stocktake. Most urgently, we must prioritize and fully integrate loss and damage financing into the final text.

Alongside these negotiations, GNDR participated in a side event organised by UNDRR on the use of data in disaster risk reduction. We emphasised and demonstrated how important local, indigenous knowledge and data is to the process of developing solutions that address, minimize, or avert issues related to loss and damage.

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