Climate Change

January 25, 2019

The 24th session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP 24), the 14th session of the Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (CMP14), and the 3rd part of the 1st session of the Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Paris Agreement (CMA1-3) took place from December 2 to 15 in Katowice, Poland. Mr. Yoshiaki Harada, Minister of the Environment, Mr. Kenichi Suganuma, Ambassador, Representative of the Government of Japan for Climate Change, and officials from relevant Ministries including the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, the Ministry of the Environment, the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, and the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism participated in the conferences.
The Paris Agreement Work Programme (PAWP) was adopted at the COP24, which enables the full implementation of the Paris Agreement from 2020 onwards. Overview of the conferences, outreach of Japan's climate change actions, and assessment of the conferences are as follows.

1. Overview of the conferences

(1) PAWP

The PAWP related agendas were discussed at the meetings during the conferences toward the full implementation of the Paris Agreement from 2020 onwards. In the 1st week of the COP24, the 7th Part of the 1st Session of the Ad Hoc Working Group of the Paris Agreement (APA1-7), the 49th Session of the Subsidiary Body for Implementation (SBI49), and the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA49) were convened. The textual proposals on mitigation, adaptation, transparency framework, market mechanisms, finance, and other issues prepared by APA and SB chairs were revised reflecting the discussions focusing on the technical issues. In the second week, based on the outcomes of the discussions at APA and SB, the Parties continued technical discussions at the Conference of the Parties, while ministerial negotiations were held on the issues that should be agreed at political level.

(2) Climate Finance

OECD published an analysis report on provision of the public climate finance by developed countries to developing counties during 2013-2017. The report indicates that the public climate finance has been steadily increasing in line with the 2016 Roadmap Trajectory toward the USD 100 billion goal by 2020.
In the course of the discussions related to the PAWP, the Parties decided to establish a transparent reporting system while securing the discretion of each country for reporting ex-ante information on climate finance (Article 9 Paragraph 5 of the Paris Agreement) as well as the ex-post information (Article 9 Paragraph 7). In addition, it was decided to organize biennial in-session workshops and convene biennial high-level ministerial dialogue on climate finance focusing on ex-ante information. In deliberation on setting a new quantified goal 2025 and onwards, it was decided to consider the importance of making finance flows consistent with a pathway towards low greenhouse gas emissions and climate-resilient development, taking into account the needs and priorities of developing countries and the achievement of 2020 goal of jointly mobilizing USD 100 billion per year.

(3) Talanoa Dialogue

To achieve the long-term goal of the Paris Agreement, the political phase of "Talanoa Dialogue" was held during the COP24 for taking stock of the collective efforts of the Parties to reduce GHG emissions and enhancing ambition. ("Talanoa" is a traditional Fijian word that was proposed by Fiji (COP23 Presidency), to convey the idea of transparency, inclusiveness and harmony)
Minister of the Environment Harada participated in the ministerial round table discussion to share Japan's experiences and visions. He expressed Japan's strong determination that Japan will take the lead in achieving the virtuous cycle between the environment and growth, introducing a successful launch of GHG observing satellite "GOSAT-2" contributing to improvement in the accuracy of GHG inventory, a successful commercial operation of a floating offshore wind farm, as well as successful transfers of decarbonized technologies to developing countries through the Joint Crediting Mechanism (JCM).

(4) Other high-level events

High-level events including "The third biennial High-Level Ministerial Dialogue", "The stock takes of pre-2020 implementation and ambition", and "Talanoa Dialogue" took place during High-level segment. Poland, as COP24 Presidency, proposed to launch three political declarations on "Just Transition", "E-Mobility" and "Forests". The Government of Japan has endorsed these declarations.

(5) COP24 Decision

The COP decisions were successfully adopted on December 15, including the draft of the PAWP, the outcomes obtained through "Talanoa Dialogue" ,"The stock takes of pre-2020 implementation and ambition" and the reference to the IPCC Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5℃. The decisions by the CMA, including the PAWP, were adopted subsequently.
Japan's head of delegation and experts actively participated in the negotiations of the technical issues and Minister of the Environment Harada participated in the Ministerial negotiations. Japan proactively contributed to the discussions toward adoption of the PAWP throughout the conferences. The COP25 will be convened in Chile in 2019.

2. Outreach for Japan's climate change actions

(1) Bilateral meetings

Minister of the Environment Harada met with his counterparts including the United States, EU, Maldives, China, Ethiopia, and Poland (COP24 President). He worked for the adoption of the PAWP and also exchanged views on cooperation in the areas of climate change issues.

(2) Statement by Minister of the Environment Harada at the high-level segment

Minister of the Environment Harada expressed Japan's strong determination that Japan would actively contribute to the adoption of the PAWP at the COP24. He mentioned that Japan would lead the global decarbonization promoting the model of the virtuous cycle between the environment and the growth as chair of the G20 in 2019. He also emphasized that Japan has developed the future vision of "Circular and Ecological Economies - localizing SDGs" to decarbonize the society and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.
Furthermore, he expressed his commitment to continue supports for the implementation of the Paris Agreement through finance, capacity-building, and technology development and transfer. He further referred to steady implementation of support of 1.3 trillion yen in 2020 and further promotion of the JCM. He also presented Japan's contribution to providing scientific knowledge thorough GHG Observing Satellite "IBUKI-2" (GOSAT-2) and announced that Japan will host the 49th Session of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in Kyoto. In addition, he referred to the nomination of Ambassador Suganuma as a candidate for the next Executive Director of Green Climate Fund (GCF).

(3) Japan Pavilion

Japan set up an official event booth called "Japan Pavilion" in the venue of COP24. Many events were held at the Pavilion so as to promote climate actions of the government, institutions and researchers introducing advanced technologies and contributions to climate change actions including "Japan's Assistance Initiatives to Address Climate Change 2018" released on December 7.

(4) Market Mechanisms

Japan held the 6th JCM Partner Countries' Meeting where the representatives of the 17 partner countries of the JCM gathered. Japan and the partner countries welcomed the progress of the JCM and agreed to support the further formation and implementation of JCM projects.

3. Assessment

Japan participated in the COP24 with three main objectives: (1) adoption of the PAWP, (2) contribution to the Talanoa Dialogue and (3) further promotion of Japan's climate change actions with high level events. These objectives were largely attained through the various events during the COP24.
The adoption of the PAWP was the most significant outcome of the COP24. This gave momentum for the full implementation of the Paris Agreement from 2020 onwards and further promotion of the global climate change actions. Japan highly appreciates that the Parties agreed to establish a common, transparent, and effective rule applying to all Parties in line with the spirit of the Paris Agreement. Japan actively participated in negotiations including concrete text proposals and contributed to the adoption of the PAWP. Negotiations on the market mechanisms will continue so as to adopt the related guidelines at the CMA2 next year, taking into consideration of the draft decision texts elaborated during the COP24.
In addition, Japan sent out strong messages that (1) Japan will lead the world in achieving the virtuous cycle between the environment and growth through innovations, and (2) Japan will further promote international cooperation so that all Parties could implement the Paris Agreement effectively.

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