“Putting together the Paris agreement work programme is a big responsibility,” Conference of Parties 24 President Michal Kurtyka said. “It has been a long road. We did our best to leave no one behind.”
The agreement signed in Katowice, Poland aims to keep global temperature rise to below 2° Celsius.
The common rule book allows for flexibility for poorer countries in regulations for cutting carbon emissions, BBC reported. The rule book determines the regulations which govern the details of how countries are supposed to cut carbon emissions, how finance will be provided to poorer nations, and ensure the regulations are being followed.
Negotiations were delayed by a day over some contentious matters, including funding and carbon markets. The “loss and damage measures” included in the agreement will see rich countries paying poorer ones to help them fight the effects of climate change which they are already experiencing.
The integrity of carbon markets was another debate which held up negotiations. The Paris Agreement calls for setting up a mechanism to guard against practices like double counting emissions savings, that could undermine a future global carbon market. However, the delegates at COP24 decided to postpone discussions on the matter till next year.
However, India expressed its reservations over the lack of equity in the rules. “India wishes to express its strong reservation regarding the treatment of equity in the global stocktake decision,” India’s lead negotiator Ravi Shankar Prasad said at the plenary, according to The Indian Express. “Equity is specifically mentioned in Article 14 of the Paris Agreement. It is the basic principle of the Convention and the Paris Agreement…The entire global stocktake exercise will be lopsided if the process, input, the technical assessment and output of the stocktake does not fully address equity.”
International non-governmental organisation Greenpeace expressed disappointment at the deal. “We continue to witness an irresponsible divide between the vulnerable island states and impoverished countries pitted against those who would block climate action or who are immorally failing to act fast enough,” Greenpeace Executive Director Jennifer Morgan said.
Egyptian ambassador Wael Aboulmagd, who was the chairperson of the G-77 and China negotiating bloc, claimed that “urgent adaptation needs of developing countries [were] relegated to a second-class status” during the COP24 negotiations.
On December 4, Union minister Harsh Vardhan had said that India will achieve all targets set at the 2015 Paris conference to combat climate change, ahead of the deadlines. Vardhan led the Indian delegation to Poland.