COP Presidencies Outline Approach to Talanoa Dialogue in First Half of 2018, Welcome New COP 23 Chief Negotiator
Photo by IISD/ENB | Kiara Worth
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The approach suggested by the COP 23 and COP 24 Presidencies includes guidance for submissions, and highlights the opportunity for Parties and non-Party stakeholders to interact and engage in a constructive, facilitative, transparent and solutions oriented Dialogue.

In a statement to the Fijian Parliament, Fijian Prime Minister and COP 23 President Frank Bainimarama underscored the commitment of his Presidency to ensure the Talanoa Dialogue delivers on its mandate, highlighting the urgency and essential need for enhanced ambition required to limit global warming to no more than 1.5ºC above preindustrial levels.

Bainimarama thanked outgoing Chief Negotiator, Ambassador Nazhat Shameem-Khan, for her role in the COP 23 Presidency to date, and welcomed Fiji's new Chief Negotiator, Ambassador Luke Daunivalu.

5 March 2018: The Presidencies of the 23rd and 24th sessions of the Conference of the Parties (COP 23 and COP 24) to the UNFCCC have released a document detailing the way in which the Talanoa Dialogue will be structured in the first half of 2018, highlighting key moments and opportunities for input in the period up to, and including, the Bonn Climate Change Conference. COP 23 Presidency has outlined its priorities, reiterating the importance of the Talanoa Dialogue, following a change in its negotiating team.

Launched at COP 23 and scheduled to be jointly led by the COP 23 and COP 24 Presidencies throughout 2018, the Talanoa Dialogue is a mandated process requested by Parties to take stock of the collective progress towards the long-term goal contained in Article 4.1 of the Paris Agreement on climate change, and to inform the preparation of nationally determined contributions (NDCs). As outlined in the approach contained in an annex to decision 1/CP.23, the Talanoa Dialogue will be conducted in a manner that promotes enhanced ambition, and embodies the Talanoa tradition of inclusive, participatory and transparent dialogue to share stories, build empathy and trust. It will be structured around three key questions: Where are we? Where do we want to go? How do we get there?

The Presidencies encourage actors to reflect on how the Talanoa process can proceed so as to deliver its mandate, highlighting the opportunity for the Talanoa Dialogue to send positive and strong political signals to the international community to increase efforts in order to pursue the objectives of the UNFCCC and the Paris Agreement.

In their 19 February 2018 note, the Presidencies describe the Talanoa Dialogue as “a space for open, constructive and respectful discussions devoid of finger pointing and blame,” highlighting the first half of the year as an opportunity to consider the substance of the three questions of the Dialogue and share views on the key messages that should be highlighted as part of the preparatory phase leading up to COP 24, scheduled to convene in Katowice, Poland, from 3-14 December 2018. In particular, the Presidencies encourage actors to reflect on how the Talanoa process can proceed so as to deliver its mandate, highlighting the opportunity for the Talanoa Dialogue to send positive and strong political signals to the international community to increase efforts in order to pursue the objectives of the UNFCCC and the Paris Agreement.

As detailed in the document, the Presidencies encourage Parties and non-Party stakeholders to convene local, national, regional or global events in support of the Talanoa Dialogue, structured around the three guiding questions. With regard to inputs to the Talanoa Dialogue Platform, the Presidencies encourage Parties and non-Party stakeholders to communicate online submissions to the Platform, including presentations, documents and videos. On the content and structure of these submissions, the Presidencies make suggestions to enable the inputs to be targeted and concise. Among others, they request stakeholders to consider the relevance of their input to the three questions, including identifying which of the three it addresses, and the objective of their input in the context of a multilateral dialogue. The Presidencies also suggest that stakeholders consider joining efforts for their submissions, noting that the deadline for the submission of inputs for inclusion in materials prepared by the UNFCCC Secretariat for the Bonn Climate Change Conference is 2 April 2018. The Bonn Climate Change Conference is scheduled to take place from 30 April to 10 May.

In their document, the Presidencies also outline the format for the Talanoa Dialogue that will take place at the Bonn Climate Change Conference, noting the “opportunity for Parties and non-Party stakeholders to interact and engage in a Dialogue which is constructive, facilitative, transparent and, above all, solutions oriented.” The Presidencies’ note highlights the structure of the Dialogue, which will include: an opening meeting in a plenary setting, where the Presidencies will brief Parties and non-Party stakeholders on the overview of inputs received; an in-depth discussion on 6 May, involving Parties and non-Party stakeholders, that will follow a Talanoa approach of inclusive, participatory and open dialogue, and focus on the three guiding questions; a “report back” meeting in the week of 7 May, which will include an opportunity for Parties and non-Party stakeholders to provide feedback; and a closing meeting in a plenary setting, where the Presidencies will provide an overview of the discussions held under the Talanoa Dialogue during the session.

In their note, the Presidencies invite Parties and non-Party stakeholders to consider, inter alia: views on concrete progress made since the Paris Agreement entered into force; efforts in relation to action and support in the pre-2020 period; initiatives to enhance cooperation on climate change; key transformational solutions in line with the long-term temperature goal of the Paris Agreement; and efforts to address climate change, the vision for the future, and means to achieve these, including any action that could be taken within the UNFCCC.

In a Ministerial Statement delivered to the Fijian Parliament on 5 March, Fijian Prime Minister and COP 23 President Frank Bainimarama underscored the trust placed by the global community in Fiji and Poland to ensure that the Talanoa Dialogue process delivers on its mandate, identifying it as foremost among initiatives spearheaded by his Presidency. He underscored his commitment to working in partnership with Poland at COP 24 to jointly preside over the Dialogue. In this manner, he introduced Ambassador Luke Daunivalu as Fiji’s new Chief Negotiator, expressing thanks to outgoing Chief Negotiator Ambassador Nazhat Shameem-Khan for the role she has played in making the COP 23 Presidency the success it has been so far.

Emphasizing the way in which the global community has embraced the Talanoa concept, Bainimarama said the Dialogue would bring together a Grand Coalition of actors, including governments and non-state actors, for an inclusive dialogue, devoid of finger pointing, to enable progress on the best ways to raise ambition to reduce carbon emissions through Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). Noting the devastating effects of climate change that are becoming more frequent, including sea level rise forcing communities to relocate, threats to agriculture and food security, and the rapid deterioration of coral reefs, he stressed the urgency and essential need for enhanced ambition to enable limiting global warming to no more than 1.5ºC above preindustrial levels, a target he described as the signature of his Presidency of COP 23. [COP Presidencies’ Note on the Talanoa Dialogue] [COP 23 Press Release on Fiji Prime Minister Statement] [COP 23 Press Release on New COP 23 Chief Negotiator] [SDG Knowledge Hub story on Champions Inviting Inputs to Talanoa Dialogue]

 


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