COP28 Update: Progress Towards Agreement on Avoidance Under Article 6.4, but Backsliding in 6.2

Steve Zwick

Climate negotiations under Article 6.4 moved fowarward as countries appeared to agree on key language regarding the types of activities recognized under the mechanism, but negotiations under Article 6.2 backslid over disagreement regarding the degree of oversight required at the global level.

9 December 2023 | DUBAI | 15:38 GST | UPDATED 1902 GST | Negotiations around the guidance for implementing Article 6 of the Paris Agreement are entering the final days, with the publication of new draft negotiating texts for Articles 6.4 and 6.8 as well as a continuing late-night session on the current text for 6.2.

The current 6.4 text is just seven pages long, with six pages comprising a negotiating text and one page prescribing an option if no agreement is reached.

Although negotiators made progress on Saturday, they still remain far apart on key issues.

“If there is an agreement at the end of this COP, the text will look a lot different than what we have now,” said Andrea Bonzanni, International Policy Director for the International Emissions Trading Association (IETA).

The highlight of the day came in the Saturday afternoon session, when the Philippines, which had been vociferously pushing for avoidance to be treated as a third category in addition to reductions and removals, said they could live with an option stating that “emission avoidance and conservation enhancement may also result from emission reduction or removal activities that meet the requirements of the rules, modalities and procedures for the mechanism, apply other related rules and guidance and an applicable methodology approved by the Supervisory Body.”

The agreement means that avoidance is not treated as a third category but can rather be treated as either a reduction or a removal, if adopted.

Unfortunately, negotiations under 6.2 have backslid after the European Union (EU), the Independent Association of Latin America and the Caribbean (AILAC), and the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) proposed more prescriptive language, while the United States and most other countries argue that 6.2 is a party-driven approach that should leave more rule-making to participating countries.

The current 6.4 draft also recognizes the transition of afforestation and reforestation project activities and programs from the clean development mechanism (CDM) to the mechanism established under 6.4, provided the transition is requested by June 30, 2024.

Negotiations under Article 6.2 are continuing and are slated to run until 2330 GST.

UPDATED at 1902 GST to include the latest on Article 6.4.

Steve Zwick is a freelance writer and produces the Bionic Planet podcast. Previously, he was Managing Editor of Ecosystem Marketplace, and prior to that he covered European business for Time Magazine and Fortune Magazine and produced the award-winning program Money Talks on Deutsche Welle Radio in Bonn, Germany.

Please see our Reprint Guidelines for details on republishing our articles.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *