Weekly wrap: Big hitters target HFC phasedown

This week’s top climate politics and policy stories. Sign up to have our Friday briefing and Monday’s crib notes sent to your inbox

European Commissioner Miguel Arias Canete and US secretary of state John Kerry (Pic: State Department/Flickr)

By

Talks to phase out super polluting HFC gases used in fridges and air conditioners have been plodding along for years.

This week, the cavalry arrived in Vienna for the latest round of Montreal Protocol negotiations.

John Kerry from the US was among 40 ministers aiming to get the essentials of deal ready for sign-off this October, in Kigali, Rwanda.

The “high ambition coalition” formed in Paris is playing an active role, Marshall Islands ambassador Tony de Brum told Climate Home.

A shift to cleaner coolants is one of three priorities, along with an aviation pact and swift ratification of the Paris Agreement. If you’re wondering why shipping isn’t on the list, check out our investigation.

EU first?

Rattled by the looming Brexit, the EU is rather more lukewarm on action at home.

The European Commission published plans on Wednesday to carve up its 2030 target, with rich member states doing more than poor ones.

It can seem like a zero-sum game, with all countries pleading for exemptions. Poland complained its allocation – a 7% cut from 2005 levels by 2030 – was still too expensive.

Climate analysts say the bloc can easily overachieve, though, pointing out six countries have already met these 2030 targets.

Making mines great again

Donald Trump did not mention climate change as he accepted the nomination to become the official Republican candidate for US president.

He positioned himself on the side of miners and steelworkers, though, delivering a veiled threat to green regulations.

Ratification refusenik

When it comes to rejecting the Paris Agreement, Trump has been trumped.

Philippines president Rodrigo Duterte this week became the first head of state to say he would not honour the climate pact. It was “nonsense” to expect poor countries to cut emissions, he argued.

Climate policy advocate Francis Dela Cruz urged the president to reconsider, saying the UN deal was in the best interests of citizens vulnerable to climate impacts.

Quick hits

UK: Nick Hurd appointed as climate change minister
WMO: 2016 on track to be hottest year on record
India: Minister links US military to global warming
UN: Ban Ki-moon invites leaders to ratify Paris deal in September
UK: Carbon capture axe casts shadow over energy plans

Read more on: Climate Politics