After two weeks of deliberation and several overtime sessions, COP24 in Katowice ended on Saturday with the adoption of a general ‘rulebook’ for the implementation of the Paris Agreement. While the conference delivered on this, its key target, other issues remain to be solved and were postponed to future conferences.

The rulebook adopted by the delegates provides the framework on how to implement the Paris Agreement in 2020. It puts together a set of guidelines to provide countries with a common framework for reporting and reviewing progress towards their climate targets. Furthermore, the rule book explains how the Global Stocktake to measure the effectiveness of the international climate protection efforts shall be carried out. In addition to this, it contains regulations on finance mechanisms with the aim of establishing funds to support developing countries and also various other guidelines. The rulebook was mandated in 2015 at COP21 and its adoption was an essential prerequisite for putting the Paris Goals into action.

Despite adoption of the general rulebook, there are still gaps. For example, disagreements over Article 6 of the Paris Agreement remain unsolved. Article 6, focuses on countries’ plans for climate action through the market mechanism. It authorises the creation of international carbon markets to use offsets to accelerate the reduction of emissions.

The climate talks hit a stumbling block when Brazil contested the accounting rules on corresponding adjustments. These rules aim to prevent double counting of emissions reductions by the buyer and seller of offsets. In the end, differences could not be overcome and the delegates postponed the matter to COP25 in Chile next year. In the meantime, this means that states may develop domestic markets and pilots for international cooperation but the development of the overall market remains uncertain.

“Measured against the expectations, it is fair to say that COP24 was a success. The adoption of the rule book is a big step. Yet, it is also clear, that even if all parties to the Paris Agreement achieve their Nationally Determined Contributions, it will still not be enough to keep climate change at bay. Against this background, it is a pity that the Conference couldn’t agree on rules for the use of the market to help raise ambition and deliver on the Paris Agreement. It would have been important to have clarity about the system as soon as possible.”

– Jochen Gassner, CEO of First Climate Markets AG –

Upcoming event:

Digesting the COP Katowice outcome
9th January at 05:00 pm – 07:00 pm (CET)

Join this post COP Workshop of Zurich Carbon Market Association for an in-depth discussion of the Conference outcomes and the way forward. First Climate’s Harald Diaz-Bone will be among the panellists of the session.

For further information here >>

(limited admission)