During the first week of negotiations, delegates cut and restructured the draft global climate agreement. Sub-groups have now been set up to deal with the most difficult points. Headed by government ministers, these groups are to achieve compromises.
These issues include:
Ambition, with a special focus on the long-term goal of decarbonising the economy and regular reviews of emissions savings.
Differentiation, which focuses on bridging the gap between industrialised countries and developing countries. Every country is to contribution to climate change mitigation to the best of its ability.
Financing, where the matter of whether countries apart from the industrialised countries are to contribute to climate financing in future, and if so how is controversial. There is still no agreement on how to reach the level of financing pledged as of 2020, and what form future review cycles for climate financing should take.
The initiative for Africa was uncontroversial. A group of industrialised countries has pledged around ten billion US dollars to promote the use of renewable energy in Africa. Germany is to put up three billion euros towards the total. The initiative aims to achieve an installed capacity of an additional ten GW (Gigawatts), generated from renewables in Africa by 2020.
The German government is thus helping realise the initiative launched by the heads of state and government of the leading industrialised nations (G7) and their African partners in summer at Schloss Elmau. The installed capacity is to be raised to a target of 300 GW by 2030, all powered by renewable energy.
Federal Environment Minister Barbara Hendricks sees this initiative as enormously important for global climate change mitigation. "Africa is thirstiest for energy. We must act to ensure that this thirst is not quenched with coal, oil and gas. Renewables are a better solution," said the minister with conviction.