The story was written on December 12, 2015 in Paris. More heads of state than ever before in human history have come together under one roof to support negotiations on the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The adoption of the Paris Agreement is an abandonment of the structure adopted by most international climate agreements for more than 20 years. For the first time, more than 180 countries, both industrial and developing, have committed to reducing their emissions. Historically, indeed. However, as with any change, there are probably growing pains. Many details on the implementation measures have yet to be negotiated. The key to the success of the Paris Agreement depends on working out the details in order to put in place a robust transparency mechanism. Entities that do not fall within the scope of the agreement at that date include: private sector bonds, private financing, non-state actors and sub-national authorities.
However, some argue for their inclusion in the negotiation process and in the text. A WRI working paper proposed to allow the private sector and NGOs to submit proposals for five-year intervals for reasons of procedural fairness. Paris Agreement weighs on carbon footprint – Jeff Tollefson, Nature Magazine The backbone of the Paris Agreement will be the transparency mechanism set out in Article 13. Due to the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities (CBDR), the planned national contributions (INDCs) of the parties contain a great variance, not only in ambition, but also in format. It is a nightmare for transparency and accounting. Finally, the objective is for all States to report in a common format. The new transparency mechanism is expected to be negotiated by 2018 and adopted in 2020 – codified in due course to inform the next round of NDDs (in future, contributions previously called INDCs will be called determinated national contributions or NDNCs). The Paris Committee for Capacity Building (PCCB) is expected to use the next two years to seek effective models for the training of carbon accountants.
There is still time. An effective transparency mechanism requires accurate and accurate measurement, reporting and verification (MRV) of all nations` greenhouse gas emissions. The Paris Agreement is great in that it creates the structure, but its capacity to implement is deficient. Over the past two decades, only about forty industrialised countries (Annex I Parties) have been required to report their emissions regularly and in detail to the United Nations. In a few years, all rich and poor nations are expected to report their emissions. This means that about 150 nations, which have little experience with carbon footprint, are suddenly pushed into the confusing world of greenhouse gas balances, with many having little or no technical expertise in this area. 3 reasons why capacity building is essential to the implementation of the Paris Agreement – Yamide Dagnet and Eliza Northrop, IDC Expert Review are requested in Article 13(11) and (12) of the Paris Agreement. This expert assessment would represent the “V” (or verification) in MRV. Expert review is a transparency mechanism and “the review process includes assistance in identifying capacity needs”. In the absence of an effective transparency mechanism, the international community will not be able to do so:  Graetz, Michael J.
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