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Christian Aid expectations for COP25

Christian Aid's key asks for the COP25 climate conference in Madrid, Spain, December 2019. The past 18 months have seen a flurry of new scientific information on the state of the climate. Severe climate impacts are already being experienced, particularly by the poorest and most vulnerable. Communities and ecosystems are already suffering devastation even at the current 1ºC of warming. The fires in the Amazon, Congo and California, the South Asian floods, and other extreme weather events, like cyclones Idai and Fani, point to a climate system already in crisis. The world is in a state of climate emergency. The climate emergency is real and efforts to take action now must be a priority. We call on governments to make a step change in their climate ambition and in the support given to help developing countries achieve it. Key asks Mitigation All countries to recognise the scale of the climate challenge and the need for a fair global effort to achieve the Paris 1.5ºC goal. The Conference of Parties (COP) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change should deliver a mandate for all countries to enhance the mitigation part of their Nationally-determined contributions (NDCs) in line with the 1.5ºC goal. The common time frame should be in five-year cycles. Long-term strategies should include landscape analyses to plan for nature-based solutions, to increase resilience, and to store and sequester carbon. Finance Adequate climate finance is a prerequisite to greater ambition in poor countries. Developed countries need to step up in providing adequate public finance to both help build resilience, but also to allow clean development and fulfillment – and exceedance - of the conditional parts of the NDCs. Loss and damage The Warsaw International Mechanism on Loss and Damage (WIM) should put greater focus on averting loss and damage than on post-event addressing of it. New, additional and adequate sources of climate finance are needed to enhance action. The potential of nature-based solutions for resilience should be given greater consideration and implementation priority. Adaptation Developing countries should be supported to complete and implement country-driven, gender-responsive, participatory and transparent adaptation plans. The overall financial flows, as well as the proportion of finance for adaptation need to be increased to allow vulnerable people, communities and ecosystems to adapt to the changing climate. Article 6 Rather than rely on ‘flexibility’ mechanisms, countries should instead focus on making transformational changes to their economies. Kyoto credits should play no role in any Paris mechanisms. Article 6 provisions should be adopted as a package. The Article 6 mechanisms should explicitly recognise the non-fungibility of fossil and biological carbon and prevent trade between them. Strong social and environmental safeguards are essential to be agreed before use of flexibility mechanisms. Nature-based solutions COP should recognise the potential co-benefits of nature-based solutions, as detailed in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) reports, and agree means to promote their implementation Nature-based solutions for mitigation should not be seen as an alternative to ending the use of fossil fuels. It should be seen as an additional and precautionary approach, with other co-benefits, including for resilience. Appropriate links with the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD)’s provisions should be made, and coherent implementation encouraged. Gender and Climate The revision must ensure that gender balance approaches are adopted under all the bodies of the convention. Download the full briefing here

Trapped in illicit finance

The world faces some of the most serious economic, environmental, social and political challenges it ever has. Across the world, citizens are calling for governments to implement policies to address these issues. Again, and again, governments tell them the same thing: “we don’t have the money”. At the same time, it’s a fact that governments worldwide tolerate widespread tax evasion and avoidance – and that malevolent actors routinely steal from government funds. Indeed, it is estimated that $416bn is lost every year to illicit financial flows (IFFs) – illegal or harmful movements of money or capital from one country to another. In this report, Christian Aid and our partners propose a simple solution for plugging some of this funding gap: we must stop tolerating the abusive, unethical and immoral IFFs that rob the poor to enrich the wealthy.

World in disunion: Climate change and the Rugby World Cup

  The effects of climate change are being felt around the world and the Pacific islands are among the worst affected. But unless greenhouse gas emissions fall, the consequences in the coming decades will be far worse than anything seen so far. Fiji, Samoa and Tonga face an onslaught as the world warms. Hotter and more acidic oceans, due to higher levels of carbon dioxide, kill coral reefs upon which fish populations depend, while rising sea levels will swallow land, increase flooding and salinate water supplies. The region is also likely to experience more category 3 to 5 storms, such as last year’s Cyclone Gita which was the strongest tropical cyclone to hit Tonga since records began. Together these climate change impacts threaten to undermine the islands’ economies, deter tourists, making life increasingly tough and driving young people away, putting strain on the countries’ ability to field competitive rugby teams. Researchers warn of mass migration from the islands as a result of climate change in the coming decades. Alongside the Pacific island countries at the Rugby World Cup are some of the countries most responsible for the climate crisis. Major greenhouse gas polluters like the US, Australia, the hosts Japan, Russia, Canada, South Africa and the European nations will play at the tournament, to the tune of a world in union. But few, if any, of the most polluting competitors have credible plans to cut their emissions to safe levels - suggesting the World Cup’s theme song is just an empty promise. It is not too late to prevent dangerous climate change and to save the future for the Pacific islands, and the rest of the world. But it requires immediate action to cut emissions.

Hunger Strike: The climate and food vulnerability index

The Climate and Food Vulnerability Index shows how the countries most impacted by food insecurity are the least responsible for the climate change which drives it.   The top 10 most insecure countries combined generate just 0.08% of global CO2 emissions. Burundi is both the most food insecure country in the world and has the smallest carbon footprint per person.

Generando Empresas y Derechos Humanos

Las prácticas corporativas irresponsables representan graves riesgos para los derechos humanos. A menudo, tienen impactos que afectan a las personas de manera diferente debido a su género, haciendo que las desigualdades que ya experimentan sean aún mayores. En este informe, identificamos estudios de casos, destacamos temas clave sobre el impacto de género de las prácticas corporativas y exploramos su relación con el derecho internacional de los derechos humanos y los marcos relacionados. Creemos que las empresas, en particular las empresas transnacionales, deben hacer valer los derechos humanos y deben ser responsabilizadas por el derecho internacional de los derechos humanos. También creemos que el Marco de Negocios y Derechos Humanos de la ONU, sus mecanismos de implementación, y los estados y entidades comerciales a los que se aplica, deben responder mejor a los impactos negativos de las empresas en los derechos de las mujeres y los géneros marginados.

Engendering Business and Human Rights

Irresponsible corporate practices pose serious human rights risks. Often, they have impacts which affect people differently because of their gender, making the inequalities that they already experience even greater. In this report, we identify case studies, highlight key issues on the gendered impact of corporate practices, and explore their relationship with international human rights law and related frameworks. We believe that businesses, in particular transnational corporations, must bring human rights to bear and must be held to account under international human rights law. We also believe that the UN Business and Human Rights Framework, its implementation mechanisms, and the states and business entities to which it applies, must respond better to the negative impacts of business on the rights of women and marginalised genders.

World Bank & IMF briefings

Read our briefing papers ahead of the World Bank Group's 2019 Spring Meetings The Big Shift Needed for Climate Justice A Just Global Economy Leave No One Behind? From Violence to Peace

Financing Injustice

We need a radically different and rebalanced financial system which ensures that the very poorest are included and actively supported to thrive, and in which developing countries have an equal say in making the rules governing the global economy. This briefing looks at progress towards the Sustainable Development goals (SDGs), financing for development, private finance and alternatives, and good investment.  Download a Spanish version here

No Exceptions: Why HSBC's new coal policy could fuel climate change

In order to stop climate change from hurting the world’s poor, we need to stop new fossil fuel infrastructure, especially coal, from being built. Finance from banks has helped build new coal plants, when it should be going to underfunded renewable projects. This report looks at the new energy policy from HSBC. It asks why the bank has omitted Vietnam, Bangladesh and Indonesia from its ban on coal financing, when other banks like Standard Chartered have ruled out coal financing in all countries.

Integrated Conflict Prevention and Resilience Field Guide

This is a field guide for staff implementing the guidance laid out in the Integrated Conflict Prevention and Resilience Handbook. It summarises key points from the handbook and lays out a series of top tips and guiding questions for project and programme staff working in conflict-affected contexts. It aims to help staff to integrate a conflict-sensitive approach into key stages of programme design and implementation.

Integrated Conflict Prevention and Resilience Handbook

When communities are affected by conflict, they are more vulnerable to a wide range of other shocks and stresses, including natural hazards. Likewise, the ability of a community to manage tensions and withstand shocks, without a significant increase in conflict, can be seen as a key indicator of that community’s resilience. Poorly planned development or humanitarian interventions can also contribute to an increase in conflict. Therefore it is important that preventing conflict must form a key component of any intervention that genuinely seeks to build community resilience. This guide will support agencies to strengthen community resilience more effectively in conflict-affected contexts. It does so by providing step-by-step guidance on how to integrate a conflict-sensitive approach into pre-existing and commonly-applied resilience-strengthening methodologies. It is, to our knowledge, the first time that specific guidance of this kind has been developed.

Partnership for Change: Christian Aid in Kenya

Christian Aid has been working in Kenya since 1997, in partnership with local civil society agencies, public authorities, private sector actors, churches and other religious organisations. We are working to build community capacities and create enabling environments in which men, women and children can thrive and break out of chronic cycles of poverty.

Out of the Frying Pan, Into the Fire (Part 1)

In this policy briefing, Christian Aid examines the links between climate change and conflict, and begins to elaborate on its argument that the best form of climate security is climate justice.

Virtuous Circle: scaling up investment in low carbon energy

This report demonstrates that the time for rapid deployment of renewable energy technologies is now. It shows that governments, policy makers and investors should realise that clean energy and clean energy investments are reliable, cost effective and scalable, and a solution for delivering clean and sustainable energy for all.

Appendices - Marsabit County Resilience Study

Appendices to the Marsabit County Resilience Study. A fieldwork study carried out over two weeks in May 2017 to assess the value of investing in resilience work within pastoralist communities. 

COP 23: Focus on the most vulnerable, focus on 'loss and damage'

A briefing outlining what Christian Aid are calling for at the United Nations climate change conference (COP23) in November 2017 in Bonn, Germany. What we're calling for at COP23 In 2013, world governments agreed to address the inevitable impacts of climate change that sufficient mitigation or adaptation have not prevented – otherwise known as ‘loss and damage’. Although this promise was reinforced in the 2015 Paris Agreement, they have yet to provide any international finance for this. Christian Aid and ACT Alliance are calling for COP23 to bring the reality of climate impacts into the heart of the climate negotiations and make progress on this crucial issue, to ensure vulnerable communities and countries have the resources to prevent, and respond to loss and damage from climate change.

Maximising the benefits of the global phase-down of hydrofluorocarbons

This paper, published for the 30th Anniversary of the Montreal Protocol, discusses what is at stake in the implementation of the HFCs phase-down and related activities. It describes a suite of measures that, if taken together, will maximise the benefits of the phase-down of HFC refrigerants with high global warming potential, both in terms of the greenhouse gas emissions, and additional, sustainable development co-benefits. Summary The proliferation of household air conditioners and refrigerators across the world, including the rapid growth expected in developing countries, gives us an opportunity, right now, to ensure that the appliances we choose have minimum impact on the global climate and maximise sustainable development.  Last year’s hard-won Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol ensured a commitment to remove HFC refrigerants with high global warming potential, through a global phase-down. Maximising the climate change and related benefits of this phase-down will depend on three elements coming together:  countries choosing refrigerants with the lowest global warming potentials  ensuring promotion of the most energy efficient cooling technologies  a rapid move to renewable energy to power these appliances. The right combination of these three elements will ensure that greenhouse gas emissions over the lifetime of each appliance are minimised.   Minimising greenhouse gas emissions Achieving each of these elements will require a range of actions, including addressing financing and cost issues, supporting capacity building and training, developing energy infrastructure plans and updating safety and energy efficiency standards. These diverse actions will need to be coordinated strategically, often across a number of distinct but critical venues, including the Montreal Protocol, the UNFCCC, various regional groups and domestic policy-making.  As we implement both the Montreal Protocol Kigali Amendment and the Paris Agreement, making the right coordinated and complementary decisions across these issues and venues will be essential to deliver a safe world with below 1.5C of global warming.