Climate Change Negotiations – UNFCCC, COP, Other Conventions and Protocols

A Stocktake before the Global Stocktake


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: Climate finance mechanism, COP's etc

Mains level: Importance of Climate Finance, challenges and way forward

Central Idea

  • The recently concluded Bonn Climate Change Conference marked a significant milestone in global climate negotiations, setting the stage for the upcoming Global Stocktake at COP28 in Dubai. The outcomes of the Global Stocktake will guide countries in updating and enhancing their climate action plans

Relevance of the topic

  • Mobilizing climate finance is crucial to support climate mitigation and adaptation measures.
  • Developing countries, particularly those most vulnerable to climate impacts, require financial resources to implement projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, build resilience, and adapt to changing climatic conditions.
  • Questions on Climate change mitigation efforts, conferences and outcomes have been asked multiple times. Negotiations on Climate finance is often in the headlines.

What is The Global Stocktake?

  • The Global Stocktake mandated under Article 14(1) of the Paris Agreement, aims to assess collective progress towards long-term global climate goals, including greenhouse gas reduction, building climate resilience, and securing adequate finance.

key aspects of the Global Stocktake under the Paris Agreement

  • Assessment of Progress: The primary purpose of the Global Stocktake is to assess collective progress made by countries in achieving the long-term goals of the Paris Agreement. This includes evaluating the implementation of countries’ nationally determined contributions (NDCs) and assessing the overall effectiveness of global climate actions.
  • Review of Mitigation Efforts: The Stocktake examines the mitigation efforts undertaken by countries to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. It evaluates the adequacy and ambition of these efforts limiting global temperature rise to well below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit the increase to 1.5 degrees Celsius.
  • Assessment of Adaptation Measures: The Stocktake also considers the progress and effectiveness of adaptation measures implemented by countries to address the impacts of climate change. It assesses the extent to which countries are building resilience and adapting to the changing climate conditions.
  • Evaluation of Climate Finance: It examines the mobilization and allocation of financial resources to support climate actions, particularly from developed to developing countries. The Stocktake reviews progress towards the commitment of developed countries to jointly mobilize $100 billion annually by 2020 to support climate mitigation and adaptation efforts in developing nations.
  • Technology Transfer and Capacity Building: The Stocktake reviews the efforts made in technology transfer and capacity-building activities to support developing countries in their climate actions. It assesses the provision of technology, knowledge, and technical assistance to enhance the capabilities of developing nations in implementing climate solutions.
  • Transparency and Reporting: Transparency and accountability are integral components of the Stocktake process. The Stocktake ensures that countries provide accurate and reliable information to facilitate an objective assessment of global progress.
  • Informing Future Climate Action: It provides guidance for countries to set more ambitious targets in their subsequent rounds of NDCs. The Stocktake also identifies areas where additional efforts and support are required to bridge the emissions gap and accelerate progress towards the Paris Agreement goals.

Outcomes of the Bonn Conference

  • Progress on Just Transition Pathways: Negotiators at the Bonn Conference made advancements in the development of ‘just transition pathways.’ The pathways will be further refined and finalized at COP28, with a focus on sectors such as energy and transport.
  • Emphasis on Ambitious Emission Reduction Efforts: The Bonn Conference highlighted the need for developing countries to enhance their emission reduction efforts. It emphasized that ambitious actions are crucial for achieving the goal of limiting global temperature rise.
  • Integration of Socio-economic Considerations: The conference underscored the importance of integrating socio-economic components into climate strategies. This approach recognizes the specific needs and priorities of each country, allowing for the alignment of low-carbon development pathways with broader sustainable development objectives.
  • Review of Climate Finance: The Bonn Conference brought attention to the issue of climate finance. The conference emphasized the need for improved accounting mechanisms and universal metrics to accurately track and allocate climate finance. It also highlighted the importance of involving institutions like the World Bank in climate finance discussions to enhance transparency and accountability.
  • Advancement of Mitigation Work Programme: The conference discussed the Mitigation Work Programme, which aims to scale up mitigation efforts in this decade. The work programme aligns with the goals of the Global Stocktake and aims to accelerate global mitigation actions

Challenges in Mobilizing Climate Finance

  • Insufficient Funds: One of the main challenges is the insufficiency of funds dedicated to climate finance. The commitment made by developed countries to mobilize $100 billion annually by 2020 for climate finance has not been fully met. Many observers argue that only a fraction of this target has been realized.
  • Accounting and Transparency: There is a need for improved accounting mechanisms and transparency in climate finance. Ensuring accurate tracking, reporting, and verification of financial flows for climate action is essential.
  • Adaptation Finance Gap: Adaptation finance, which supports efforts to adapt to the impacts of climate change, lags behind mitigation finance. While there is a growing recognition of the importance of adaptation, the provision of financial resources for adaptation projects and programs remains limited
  • Complexity of International Financial Flows: The complexity of international financial flows poses a challenge in effectively channeling climate finance to where it is needed most.
  • Accountability and Conditionality: The conditionality of climate finance can also be a challenge, as the terms and conditions attached to financial assistance may not always align with the priorities and circumstances of the receiving countries.

Way forward

  • Fulfilling Financial Commitments: Developed countries must fulfill their commitment to jointly mobilize $100 billion annually for climate finance, as agreed upon at the 2009 Copenhagen Climate Change Conference. Efforts should be made to ensure that the committed funds are effectively mobilized and channeled.
  • Improving Accounting and Transparency: There is a need for improved accounting mechanisms and transparency in climate finance. Developing universally agreed-upon metrics for tracking climate finance will enhance transparency and ensure that financial resources are allocated and utilized effectively.
  • Bridging the Finance Gap: While mitigation finance has received significant attention, adaptation finance needs to be prioritized. Developing countries, particularly those vulnerable to climate impacts, require increased financial support to build resilience and adapt to changing climate conditions.
  • Mobilizing Public and Private Finance: Mobilizing climate finance requires a combination of public and private sector involvement. Governments should create an enabling environment for private investment in climate-friendly projects by providing policy certainty, risk reduction mechanisms, and incentives.
  • Enhancing Technology Transfer: Facilitating the transfer of climate-friendly technologies from developed to developing countries is essential. Developed countries should support technology transfer through financial and technical assistance, capacity building, and knowledge sharing.
  • Strengthening International Cooperation: Strengthening international cooperation and collaboration is crucial to mobilize climate finance effectively. Collaboration between governments, international financial institutions, and stakeholders is essential for scaling up climate finance.
  • Prioritizing Climate Finance in Global Agendas: Climate finance should be prioritized in global agendas and discussions. Ensuring adequate financial resources for climate action should be a key consideration in international negotiations, such as the Global Stocktake and COP meetings.


  • The Bonn Climate Change Conference served as a critical milestone in climate negotiations, setting the stage for the Global Stocktake at COP28. The integration of socio-economic components in climate strategies and the involvement of the World Bank were also highlighted as essential elements in addressing the climate crisis. Moving forward, it is imperative to prioritize equity, justice, and fairness in climate action to ensure a sustainable and resilient future for all


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