The Road to Paris: seventh session of “COP21 Dialogues”
In the lead-up to the Paris Climate Change Conference (COP21) in December this year, the Embassy of France in India is organizing a monthly seminar series, entitled: “The Road to Paris: COP21 Dialogues”.
New Delhi, 6 October 2015
The seminar series provides a platform for addressing a range of themes and issues that are relevant to the upcoming negotiations in Paris and seek to stimulate constructive discussions on these themes from the perspective of Indian stakeholders.
The seventh session of this conference series, entitled “The future of INDCs: how to make national contributions effective in the 2015 Paris agreement?” took place on Tuesday, 06th October, 2015 at the Residence of France.
Organized in partnership with CPR (Centre for Policy Research), the seventh conference of the “COP21 Dialogues” series was inaugurated by H.E. Mr François Richier, Ambassador of France to India, and moderated by Dr. Navroz Dubash, Senior Fellow, CPR.
The speakers for this theme were:
- Dr. Lavanya Rajamani, Professor, Centre for Policy Research
- Mr. J. M. Mauskar, Advisor, Observer Research Foundation
- Mr. Chandra Bhushan, Deputy Director General, Center for Science and Environment
- Dr. Ajay Mathur, director general, BEE (TBC)
The ongoing UNFCCC negotiations are expected to yield a 2015 climate agreement with a hybrid architecture containing ‘bottom-up’ and ’top-down’ elements. Parties are expected to submit ‘intended nationally determined contributions’ in the context of the 2015 climate agreement, and over 60 of them have. These form the ‘bottom up’ part of the 2015 agreement. States have thus far had tremendous discretion in relation to these nationally determined contributions, including in relation to their form and stringency. Such discretion in relation to national contributions has led many to query if a regime so fundamentally premised on national autonomy can deliver the mitigation and adaptation actions needed to address climate change, and do so equitably so as to ensure development space for countries like India.
The answer hinges on ‘top-down’ elements such as the legal character of national contributions, and the review process, if any, these contributions will be subject to. The legal character of national contributions will determine the extent to which states can be held accountable for the national contributions they undertake. And, the design of the review process could determine the extent to which these national contributions add up to what is necessary to reach the agreed temperature goal (2°C), and how equitable contributions are.
This seminar addressed these two critical ‘top down’ elements of the 2015 agreement - legal character of national contributions and the design of the review process that will assess national contributions.
Open to the public and hosted in partnership with various Indian think-tanks and NGOs, this seminar series provides a platform to address a range of themes and issues that are relevant to the upcoming negotiations in Paris: sustainable energy access; adaptation to climate impacts; technology development and transfer; financing mitigation and adaptation; climate change and health, and sustainable architecture.
The seminars seek to facilitate dialogue on these themes from the perspective of Indian stakeholders.
The Embassy of France in India is inviting speakers from various backgrounds and with different opinions to foster debate and dialogue. The conversations from the seminar series will be compiled in a report, which will be released before COP21 so as to provide greater visibility to opinions of Indian stakeholders on issues pertinent to the global climate negotiations.
The maiden session, which took place in Delhi on 23rd March 2015, was entitled “Energy for All: how can India pursue its goal of providing energy to all sustainably?”, and was moderated by Mr J.M. Mauskar, Member, Prime Minister’s Council on Climate Change.
The second session, which took place in Kolkata on 23rd April 2015, was entitled “Supporting climate-resilient development in India”, and was moderated by Dr V. Mathur, Senior Research Fellow, Observer Research Foundation (ORF).
The third session, which took place in Delhi, was entitled “Could Technology Partnerships Catalyse Climate Negotiations?”, and was moderated by Dr Arunabha Ghosh, CEO, Council on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW).
The fourth session, which took place in Delhi, was entitled “How can long-term and sustained financing be structured for mitigation and adaptation?”, and was moderated by Dr Jyoti K Parikh, Executive Director, IRADe.
The fifth session, which took place in Delhi, during the official visit of Official visit of Laurence Tubiana, Ambassador - Climate Change Negotiations & COP21 and Nicolas Hulot, French President’s Special Envoy - Protection of the Planet was entitled “Status of negotiations”, and was chaired by Mr J.M. Mauskar, Advisor, ORF and member of PM’s Climate Change Council.
The sixth session, which took place in Delhi, raised the issue of “Climate Change and Health Risks”. The session was inaugurated by Mr. Jean-Marc Séré-Charlet, Minister Counsellor, French Embassy in India, and moderated by Dr. Arunabha Ghosh, CEO, CEEW (Council on Energy, Environment and Water).
The 21st Conference of the Parties (COP21) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) will take place in Paris in December this year. An effective and equitable international agreement will be critical for reducing greenhouse gas emissions to limit global temperature rise to 2 degrees Celsius and for supporting adaptation to climate change impacts. France, as the host and chair of COP21, is committed to the role of an impartial facilitator for forging an ambitious agreement at COP21.