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Progress Urged As May-June Climate Change Conference Opens In Preparation For COP26

UN Climate Change News, 31 May 2021 –
Against the backdrop of a new international warning that the
world is dangerously close to exceeding the Paris
goal of limiting global temperature rise at
1.5C, governments today began three weeks (May 31 to June
17, 2021) of virtual discussions designed to pave the way
for a successful UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) this
November in Glasgow.

Following a year of limited and
informal virtual meetings in 2020 due to COVID-19, these
subsidiary body meetings provide governments with
opportunities to make progress on several outstanding
technical issues that are key to achieving success at COP26,
implementing the Paris Agreement and ultimately limiting
global temperatures to 1.5C.

The need for urgent
progress was underlined by a new
, published by the World Meteorological
Organisation (WMO) last week, indicating there is now about
a 40% chance that the annual average global temperature will
reach the 1.5C mark in at least one of the next five years.
Exceeding this goal will likely impact food security and
lead to more frequent and severe climate impacts such as
heat waves, storms and sea level increases.

time to wrap up outstanding negotiations and implement the
Paris Agreement,” said Patricia Espinosa, Executive
Secretary of UN Climate Change. “The WMO’s assessment is
a clear warning that time is running out for the world to
achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement. Unleashing its
full potential will not only address climate change but help
the world build forward from COVID-19 and drive the
transformation towards a cleaner, greener and more
sustainable future. We stand at a unique and unprecedented
moment in time and we cannot afford to miss this

“This is the time for leadership.
This is the time for decisions. These May-June sessions must
maximize progress and limit delays. They are a critical
milestone in preparing the ambitious and balanced outcome
that we need in Glasgow.”

Key items for discussion
include fulfilling pre-2020 commitments; support to
developing countries; finalizing the details that will allow
all countries to communicate their climate actions
transparently under the Paris Agreement; finalizing the
details of how the agreement’s carbon market and
non-market mechanisms will work; and raising ambition on
both resilience-building and emission

“With just over five months to go until
COP, the message is clear – we must step up our global
response to the climate crisis. It is vital we make this
session count, by moving past positional statements and
making tangible progress within the UNFCCC process. Working
together, we must consolidate options and draft text that we
can bring to COP26 for finalization and adoption, so that we
arrive in Glasgow having done our homework and ready to
deliver against the goals of the Paris Agreement,” said
Alok Sharma, the incoming President of COP26.

reiterate our firm commitment to working extremely closely
together to guide the UNFCCC intergovernmental process in a
transparent and inclusive manner towards a successful
outcome at COP26 in Glasgow this November. We count on
Parties’ and non-Party Stakeholders’ understanding,
support and collaboration in this matter,” said Carolina
Schmidt, President of COP25.

Convening a session of
the subsidiary bodies virtually is new to the process.
However, last year’s virtual meetings provided the
countries and non-Party Stakeholders the opportunity to
continue discussions on climate action.

“Last year,
countries managed to continue their exchanges on various
topics and to maintain momentum of the process through their
active participation in several virtual events. They
have gained experience on how to use the virtual tools and
platforms provided by UN Climate Change to support their
work,” said Tosi Mpanu Mpanu, Chair of the
Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological
Advice (SBSTA)

Marianne Karlsen, Chair of the
Subsidiary Body for Implementation (SBI) said: “I am
confident that the outcome that will be captured in informal
notes under Tosi’s and my authority will bring the
reassurance needed by Parties that what we will be doing in
June will bear fruits that can be picked up at a subsequent
sessional period and be brought to maturation at the end of

The virtual venue is open to registered
participants. The SBSTA and SBI sessions will start on
Monday 31 May.

The secretariat will continue to
provide support – including logistical and connectivity
needs – to ensure the full and effective participation of

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