Climate Change Conference: MCC to organize several events

At the COP23 in Bonn, the MCC is again strongly represented. The researchers are focusing on topics such as carbon prices and sustainable development in Africa.

Photo: Wikimedia

01.11.2017

At the 23rd United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP 23) in Bonn, the countries need to take further steps to implement the ambitious Paris climate targets. The Mercator Research Institute on Global Commons and Climate Change (MCC) will be involved with several researchers. A central element in the transition to a low-carbon economy is carbon pricing. While it is not only an important instrument for climate policy, it also provides the means to finance development. Together with other institutions, the MCC organizes two side events on carbon pricing. It is also a co-organizer of two further events dealing with climate protection and sustainable development in Africa.

What kind of international coordination is needed to successfully implement carbon pricing policies? This is the central question of the side event "Coordinating Carbon Pricing Policies". The event is organized jointly by the environmental organization Germanwatch, the Federation of German Industries (BDI), the Carbon Market Platform of the German Federal Ministry for the Environment and the MCC. At the panel, MCC Director Ottmar Edenhofer will give a brief overview of the carbon pricing systems in the G20 countries.

Carbon pricing as a motor for sustainable development is the topic of another MCC side event entitled "Accelerating Carbon Pricing to Support Sustainable Development". The discussion is co-organized by the German Development Institute (GDI), the Institute for Climate Economics (I4CE) and the International Carbon Action Partnership (ICAP). Ottmar Edenhofer will explain in a keynote how the revenue from carbon pricing can be used to advance the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Africa is also high on the MCC’s COP agenda: So far, the continent is one of the world's regions with the lowest CO2 emissions—but this can change radically in the future. Development and poverty reduction in Africa require a massive expansion of the energy supply. In order to comply with the climate goals, it is enormously important that the African countries rely on renewable energy rather than fossil fuels, as is currently the case. How this can be achieved, Ottmar Edenhofer will discuss with other panelists in two MCC side events—one of them organized in collaboration with the African Development Bank (AfDB), another one co-organized by the GDI.

Furthermore, the MCC is a co-organizer of a side event dealing with the science-policy interface in the context of Climate-Smart Agriculture (CSA)—a way for agriculture to both mitigate and adapt to the impacts of climate change. The panel will discuss lessons learned from the past and aims to identify future challenges in this area. MCC group leader Martin Kowarsch will give a keynote talk at the beginning of the event, which is co-organized by the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR).

At the COP—this year under the presidency of the Republic of Fiji—the new "Gap Report" of the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) will be presented. The report quantifies the “gap” between the emissions reductions necessary to achieve the agreed targets and the likely emissions reductions from full implementation of the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) forming the foundation of the Paris Agreement. Jan Steckel, head of the MCC working group "Climate and Development", is one of the report’s lead authors responsible for the chapter on phasing out coal—he will also participate "Gap Report" panel. 

Moreover, the MCC takes part in the discussion on coal phase-out. Under the title "NRW Lounge", the North Rhine-Westphalian Ministry of Economic Affairs will host a series of events at the COP. On one of the panels, MCC Secretary General Brigitte Knopf is going to discuss how climate policy can succeed in the context of the specific situation in North Rhine-Westphalia. In this German state, there are still particularly many old coal-fired power plants.

As part of the "Berlin Science Week", which also takes place in the first half of November, the MCC will specifically address the issue of coal in an event entitled "Does coal threaten the global energy transition?". There, MCC group leader Jan Steckel is going to discuss the question why many countries continue to rely heavily on coal—despite ambitious climate targets and falling prices for renewables— and show possible solutions. The event will take place at the MCC building in Berlin.

 

Overview of the most important events:

November 7, 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm, German Pavilion (Bonn Zone): Side event of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) on the UNEP "Gap Report", title: The Emissions Gap Report 2017 – the emissions gap and opportunities to bridge it (with Jan Steckel)

November 9, 10:00 am – 11:30 am, German Pavilion (Bonn Zone): Side event of the MCC in collaboration with Germanwatch, the Federation of German Industries (BDI) and the Carbon Market Platform, title: Coordinating Carbon Pricing Policies

November 9, 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm, MCC building (EUREF campus, Berlin-Schöneberg): Presentation by MCC group leader Jan Steckel as a part of the "Berlin Science Week", title: Does coal threaten the global energy transition?

November 10, 9:30 am – 11:30 am, The Crop Trust (Platz der Vereinten Nationen 7, Bonn): Side event of the MCC in collaboration with the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR), title: The science-policy interface for climate-smart agriculture in action: What are the lessons learned?

November 14, 1:15 pm – 2:45 pm: Side event of UNFCCC und and UNEP on the UNEP "Gap Report" 

November 15, 1:15 pm – 2:45 pm, Meeting Room 6 (332 Davos): Side event of the MCC in collaboration with the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the RWI Leibniz Institute for Economic Research, title: Effective implementation of Paris Agreement: Integrating Africa development & climate change agenda

November 15, 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm, Post Tower Bonn: "NRW Lounge" with Brigitte Knopf on carbon pricing and coal phase-out

November 16, 10:00 am – 12:00 pm, Interconnections Zone (at the GDI): Side event of the MCC in collaboration with the German Development Institute (GDI), the Institute for Climate Economics (I4CE), and the International Carbon Action Partnership (ICAP), title: Accelerating Carbon Pricing to Support Sustainable Development (with Ottmar Edenhofer and Brigitte Knopf)

November 16, 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm, Interconnections Zone (at the GDI): Side event of the MCC in collaboration with RWI, the Environment for Development Initiative (EfD) and the German Institute of Gloabal Area Studies (GIGA), title: Climate Change Mitigation in Sub-Sahara Africa

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