Crib notes: As COP22 opens, Paris deal passes 100 nation mark

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Patricia Espinosa is not commenting on Donald Trump's threat to pull 15% of her organisation's funding (Pic: UNFCCC/Flickr)


The 2016 UN climate summit officially opens at 10am Morocco time: watch the launch here.

100 countries have now ratified the Paris climate deal, with the Philippines one of the latest to sign up.

In a press conference on Monday France environment minister Segolene Royal urged other governments to use the COP22 summit in Marrakech to join.

On Sunday afternoon UNFCCC executive secretary Patricia Espinosa laid out plans for this year’s negotiations and beyond.

“The ambitions set out in Paris cannot be scaled down, so from now on countries can only increase their commitment,” she said.

Preview: US election result to dominate COP22 UN climate summit

There is much on the plate, from the need for better adaptation worldwide, and increased support for developing countries, to enabling a push towards cleaning up the global economy and embrace renewables.

“Investors are seeing a lot of opportunities in Africa” she said. But the elephant in the room of this year’s COP are the coming US presidential elections. When asked whether she was concerned about their outcome, Espinosa tried to reassure the audience – highlighting the binding nature of the Paris Agreement, which entered into force last week.

But while the US would have a hard time formally pulling out of the agreement, it’s clear a climate change denier in charge of one of the world’s major emitters would be a serious and unpredictable threat to the global climate response.

WRI’s Eliza Northrop:
“Recognizing the urgency of setting their sights higher, countries agreed at COP21 to come back in 2018 to take stock of initial progress and most importantly to use 2018 as a springboard for countries to enhance their national climate plans in 2020. To put us on track for 2018 to become that springboard moment, at COP22 negotiators need to indicate they will decide on rule and processes for the Paris Agreement by that year.”

Locals say Marrakech has received a facelift to honour the thousands of delegates, with Moroccan flags and COP22 stickers everywhere to be seen: even on knackered Mercedes taxis belching black smoke.

To make the launch Mustapha Bakkoury, chairman of Masen (Moroccan Agency of Sustainable Energy S.A.) has announced a 1 billion dirham (USD 272 million) climate bond, a first for Africa.

Christian Aid’s International Climate Lead, Mohamed Adow:
“The Paris Agreement demanded a rapid decarbonisation of the global energy system so it’s fitting that in the sun-drenched nation of Morocco we should see this shift really start to shine. The costs of solar and wind energy continue to fall and as the market volatility of polluting fossil fuels causes havoc for investors now is the time to see governments really giving renewables clear political backing.”

Finance review

Prepare your inboxes and twitter feeds for a tsunami of studies – but if you just have time for one make it this:

Today UN will launch an important report offering an overview of climate finance flows. This comes out biennially and is widely regarded as the best analysis of how much money is flowing to developing countries.

Read our primer below:

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