The world’s five largest CO2 emitters – China, United States, Russia, India and Japan – are responsible for 57% of global CO2 Emissions (2006-2010) and 58% of the Climate Contributions (climate debt) in ClimatePositions 2010 (see the front diagram). Add to the group the populous Contribution Free countries Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nigeria, Philippines and Ethiopia and the total share would almost reflect the world average of Population (56%), CO2 Emissions (59%) and Climate Contributions (58%). Leaders of these ten countries sitting around an imaginary negotiating table should be able to create a global climate agreement with binding CO2 reductions and full financing – but it will not happen!
The following depicts the submissions, basic statistics and negotiating positions at COP19 in Warsaw of the five largest CO2 emitters. See the five countries’ Contributions over time ‘here‘, the Contributions as a percentage of GDP ‘here‘ and read about the COP19 country groups ‘here‘.
Today, China is the world’s largest CO2 emitter, but in the first decade of the millennium their emissions were one-fifth less than in the United States, and in the 1990s it was only half. See the development of China’s CO2 Emissions per capita compared to the world average in the diagram by this section. In the period 1850-2007 China’s CO2 Emissions were 9.0% of the global emissions (ranked 2nd). As it clearly shows in the quotes below from the COP19 submissions, China is of the view that the responsibility for the Climate Financing incumbent upon the historically large CO2 emitters, headed by the United States. China sees itself as a developing country without historical responsibility for the climate change and therefore without any moral obligation for global leadership and climate financing.
- “The major sources of long-term finance shall be public sources, mainly from direct budget contribution of developed country Parties and additional to the existing ODA [Official Development Assistance]. The direct and facilitated access to these financial resources shall be guaranteed. Private sources and carbon market revenue could play a supplementary role. All the financial resources shall be subject to measurement, reporting and verification procedures.”
- From G77 (country group including China): “Stressing the urgent need for developed country Parties to provide scaled-up, adequate, sustainable, predictable, new and additional support, mainly from public sources, to developing countries.”
- From Like-Minded Developing Countries (country group including China): “The historical responsibilities of developed countries for causing climate change remain unchanged.” And: “Therefore, it is still of great significance and necessity that developed countries demonstrate their leadership in combating climate change.”
Read the submission: ‘CHI-1‘.
Read more about the climate performance: ‘here‘.
According to ClimatePositions 2010 a fair share of the Global Climate Change Financing for China would be 6.5% = $185 billion out of $2,834 billion. In 2013 the actual Chinese Climate Financing was $8 million = 0.004% of the national Climate Contribution (climate debt).
2) United States
Today, the United States is the second largest CO2 emitter in the world. See the development of the United States’ CO2 Emissions per capita in the diagram. In the period 1850-2007 the United States’ CO2 Emissions were 28.8% of the global emissions (ranked 1st by far). As the quotes from the COP19 submissions below illustrates United States rejects financial compensation for the historical CO2 Emissions that have caused climate change because other policies are thought to be more conducive in mobilizing climate finance and reducing CO2 Emissions. In short, the U.S. wants to create a global commercial market for climate investments. This new market must involve both developed and developing countries, in terms of funding (with a core of public finance) and participation. The U.S. proposes that all countries determine their own national commitments in accordance with their circumstances and capabilities. They promote a concise global agreement although the financing is described as inherently complex.
Submission quotes from the United States:
- “If countries build robust investment plans and supportive domestic policies, international and domestic finance will flow to those countries. We also expect that countries’ status as recipients of– and contributors to – different forms of climate finance will evolve over time.”
- “Successfully mobilizing financing for abroad range of climate friendly infrastructure requires combining a limited but robust core of public money with smart policies – supported by both developed and developing countries alike – to catalyze maximum private investment where possible.”
- “While public finance is essential, there are several reasons why an exclusive focus on public funds is not sufficient. First the scale of the climate challenge means that public funds alone will never be sufficient to adequately and efficiently address climate change.”
- “Crafting a robust set of strategies and approaches for mobilizing climate finance is an ongoing effort that will require creativity, flexibility, and political will on the part of all countries as well as private sector and civil society stakeholders.”
- “Although the challenge of mobilizing climate finance is inherently complex, the barriers and solutions are relatively well understood.”
- “The agreement should, all things being equal, be concise. The more concise the agreement is, the easier it will be to negotiate and complete, and the more understandable it will be for domestic decision makers and constituencies.”
- “In our earlier submission, we advocated an approach to mitigation that relies on nationally determined commitments, and we continue to think that is the approach most likely to lead to greater ambition and participation.”
- “We do not see an approach based on formulas or involving categories of Parties, particularly categories designed thirty years before this agreement becomes effective.”
- “We suggest that each Party submit a commitment together with clarifying information, including the ex ante information described below, in a simple format that is easy for a reader to understand.”
- “We think ambition and participation will be maximized if each Party can put forward a commitment it deems appropriate and fair for its circumstances and is in a position to implement. Parties are much more likely to participate in the agreement, and to implement their commitments, if they have designed their own commitments to be consistent with their circumstances and capabilities.”
- “Public finance will continue to be important for adaptation and for supporting mitigation efforts in less developed markets, while mobilizing private investment through efficient use of public resources and effective public policies will continue to be a key focus of post-2020 cooperative efforts among middle and higher income countries.”
- “We are using the full range of public institutions – bilateral, multilateral, development finance, and export credit finance –to mobilize finance and invest strategically in building lasting resilience to unavoidable climate impacts; to reduce emissions from deforestation and land degradation; and to support low-carbon development strategies and investment in the transition to a sustainable, clean energy economy.”
Read the submissions: ‘US-1‘, ‘US-2‘, ‘US-3‘ and ‘US-4‘.
Read more about the climate performance: ‘here‘ and ‘here‘.
According to ClimatePositions 2010 a fair share of the Global Climate Change Financing for United States would be 42.5% = $1,203 billion out of $2,834 billion. In 2013 the actual national Climate Financing was $2.4 billion = 0.20% of the national Climate Contribution (climate debt).
Today, India is the world’s third largest CO2 emitter but in the first decade of the millennium and in the 1990s emissions were considerably smaller. See the development of India’s CO2 Emissions per capita in the diagram. In the period 1850-2007 India’s CO2 Emissions were 2.4% of the global emissions (ranked 8th). India is a developing country and as it shows in the quotes from the COP19 submissions the country sees itself as a natural future recipient of public climate funds from the developed countries.
Submission quotes of India:
- “Long-term financing, including for the transfer of technology, shall be new and additional, and adequate and predictable. The major source of new and additional resources shall be public finance, which shall comprise primarily the assessed budget contributions of developed countries and may also comprise supplementary alternative sources in developed countries of public finance consistent with the principles of the Convention.”
- “India reiterates that the scope of ADP [Durban Platform for Enhanced Action] for developing a protocol, another legal instrument or an agreed outcome with legal force under the Convention applicable to all Parties must include the following elements: mitigation, adaptation, finance, technology development and transfer, transparency of action, and support and capacity-building.”
Read the submissions: ‘IND-1‘, ‘IND-2‘ and ‘IND-3‘.
Read more about the climate performance: ‘here‘.
According to ClimatePositions 2010 India is Contribution Free, but if the current trends continue, India will have to pay Climate Contribution by 2020.
Russia is the world’s fourth largest CO2 emitter, recently overtaken by India. See the development of the national CO2 Emissions per capita in the diagram. In the period 1850-2007 Russia’s CO2 Emissions were 8.0% of the global emissions (ranked 3rd). As the quotes from the COP19 submission illustrate, Russia advocates a legally binding commitment, with differentiated responsibilities for all major emitters, both developed and developing countries.
Submission quote of Russia (in Google translation from Russian):
- “A new comprehensive agreement shall conform to the realities of the 21st century and bring together all the major emitters of greenhouse gases. The principle of common but differentiated responsibilities should not be treated as a ground for refusal of adopting a legally binding commitment by all Parties to the UNFCCC, especially among the major emitters of greenhouse gases. It is crucial that the future agreement is expressed in the single contract obligations not only developed countries, but also measures that could be taken by developing countries.”
Read the submission (in Russian and in Google translation): ‘RUS-1‘.
Read more about the climate performance: ‘here‘.
According to ClimatePositions 2010 a fair share of the Global Climate Change Financing for Russia would be 3.1% = $88 billion out of $2,834 billion. In 2013 the actual national Climate Financing was $4 million = 0.004% of the national Climate Contribution (climate debt).
Japan is the fifth largest CO2 emitter in the world. See the development of the national CO2 Emissions per capita in the diagram. In the period 1850-2007 Japan’s CO2 Emissions were 3.9% of the global emissions (ranked 6th). As the quotes from the COP19 submissions illustrate, Japan’s views are similar to the United States’ in terms of voluntary national designed commitments and the creation of a global market for climate investments. However, Japan is more candid with regard to the extent of barriers.
- “It is important that each Party should be able to determine the mode and source of its contributions toward the goal of mobilizing jointly USD 100 billion per year by 2020 from public, private and alternative sources (..)”
- “Public finance should play the primary role as a catalyst in leveraging private finance effectively, for example, by providing political risk.”
- “In this aspect, it is important to design a business model that can effectively attract private investment to the maximum extent and with a limited amount of public finance as a catalyst.”
- “(..) it has become clear that lack of private investors’ incentives for risk taking, and limited enabling environments in developing countries including hard and soft infrastructure are the main barriers for scaling up of private finance in climate change mitigation and adaptation. In addition, it has become clear that adaptation projects tend to generate relatively little financial return to private sector compared to mitigation projects.”
- “It has become clear that private financial institutions, such as banks, are highly limited in the amount of risk they can accept.”
- “Private investors, such as trading companies, are also limited in the level of risk acceptance. They consider the volatility and low credibility of regulatory frameworks such as feed-in tariffs in developing countries as a significant disincentive to invest in renewable energy projects in these countries.”
- “We believe that the definition of climate finance should not be restrictive. In addition, we should be cautious so as not to create disincentive for private investments to develop new technologies and businesses.”
Read the submissions: ‘JAP-1‘, ‘JAP-2‘, ‘JAP-3 (Annex)‘, ‘JAP-4‘, ‘JAP-5‘ and ‘JAP-6‘.
According to ClimatePositions 2010 a fair share of the Global Climate Change Financing for Japan would be 6.4% = $181 billion out of $2,834 billion. In 2013 the actual national Climate Financing was $16.6 billion = 9.2% of the national Climate Contribution (climate debt).
Information on national GDP(ppp-$) per capita: Worldbank (links in the menu “Calculations”). Data on CO2 emissions 1850-2007 is from ‘Wikipedia’.
Source on CO2 emissions: EIA, U.S. Energy Information Administration (links in the menu “Calculations”).
Data on national and global populations: EIA, U.S. Energy Information Administration (links in the menu “Calculations”).
Data sources on climate change funding is from Climate Funds Update (links in the menu “Calculations”).