The Energy and Climate Weekly: Devastating results of a climate conference, minimal improvements in the climate package and dangers for the world’s food supply
The outcome of the 25. World Climate Conference (COP25) can be commented in more or less chosen words, from: "Governments have screwed up" (Mohamed Ado, Power Shift Africa) to: "I am disappointed by the results of COP25" (Antonio Guterres, UN Secretary General). However it is printed, the COP25 represents a total failure of the world community, as it has already been commented here (Adjourned without results).
At best, the fact that there was no agreement on emissions trading instead of a bad deal can be seen as positive. Because a bad regulation, in which CO2 certificates could possibly be double counted, could further fuel CO2 emissions. Instead of protecting the climate in their own countries, countries were able to buy their way out through global certificates. There was also the danger that old certificates from the Clean Development Mechanism were being taken over and thus too many pollution rights were in circulation.
Christoph Bals, political director of Germanwatch therefore assesses the failure to reach an agreement thus: "Postponing the conclusion of negotiations for another year was the only acceptable solution. The negotiating text still contained significant risks to the environmental integrity of the Paris Agreement."
More dramatic than the disagreement on an emissions trading system is the failure to agree on a fund for damage and losses caused by the consequences of climate change. Once again, major industrialized nations such as the United States have refused to stand up for damage and loss in the global sword.
These talks end with a strong sense of deja vu. The USA once again got its way through chicanery and trickery. They came here with the bad intention of protecting their interests and those of the polluting industries that caused the climate emergency. While fires rage and hurricanes grow stronger, rich countries have locked arms and refuse to offer much-needed new financing models and money to countries that must rebuild from disasters.
Harjeet Singh from ActionAid
The failure of Madrid, for those most affected by the climate crisis and for younger generations completely disappointing, will probably also lead to an increase in climate protests worldwide. The process of climate conferences, which is based on consensus among governments and from which the critical public has been increasingly excluded again this year, is currently slowing down climate protection. The call for radical systemic change, which has been made by parts of the climate movement from the beginning and is again expressed in initial comments on the failure of the COP, seems all too justified in this context.
CO2 entry price of 25 euros per tonne
When the disenchantment is at its worst and expectations are low, small successes can be celebrated. That may have been the thinking of federal and state representatives who reported a breakthrough in the climate package on Monday. According to press reports, the CO2 entry price is set to rise to 1. January 2021, instead of the previously planned 10 euros, will be 25 euros per ton. The way is also clear for a lower value-added tax on rail tickets.
Both are better than nothing, but no reason to cheer. It is worth remembering that scientists consider a CO2 entry price of at least 50 euros per tonne to be reasonable. It should also be remembered that although the railroads run some of their trains on eco-electricity, they are bound by a supply contract concluded years ago with the Uniper company to supply the coal-fired power plant that is expected to be connected to the grid in the near future "Dates 4" 40 percent of the electricity produced there. The German government was able to avoid this disaster with the coal phase-out law, but so far it is signaling the opposite.