At COP24 in Katowice. Poland, world leaders were urged to take action and listen to the wake-up call in the IPCC’s 1.5°C report. At the end of two intense weeks of climate negotiations, governments adopted a set of guidelines for implementing the landmark 2015 Paris Climate Change Agreement, which will enter into force in 2020.
With its strong presence in a wide-range of events and echoing the 1.5°C report core message, Mission Innovation (MI) contributed to keeping innovation high on the political agenda, stressing the importance of clean energy innovation in achieving the Paris Agreement’s goals.
This year MI celebrates its third anniversary since its launch at COP21 in Paris. To mark this anniversary MI, in collaboration with the UK, organised a side event at COP24 called Mission Innovation and the role of clean energy innovation in pursuing efforts towards 1.5°C.
- Professor John Loughhead – Chief Scientific Advisor for the UK’s Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy & Vice Chair of the Steering Committee of Mission Innovation
- Dr Julia Knights, Strategic Adviser to the Mission Innovation Secretariat, Deputy Director & Head of Energy and Climate Science at UK’s Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy
- Patrick Child – Deputy Director General, DG Research and Innovation, European Commission
- Dr Kirsten Dunlop – CEO, Climate-KIC
- Jan M. Petzel – Chairman, Carbon Clean Solutions
- Dr Rebecca Heaton – Head of Sustainability and Policy, Drax Group
- Lawrence Orsini – CEO & Co-Founder, LO3 Energy
- Dr Tamaryn Napp – Research Fellow, Grantham Institute, Imperial College
- Dr Martin Porter, Executive Chair of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership
The panel discussion focused on the role of international clean energy innovation in pursuing efforts towards 1.5°C. It also highlighted achievements and progress of the public sector through MI, exploring how to support disruptive solutions and catalyse new business models that have the potential to significantly reduce and avoid carbon emissions.
In addition to contributing to this discussion, Patrick Child represented MI at a range of high-level side events. At the World Climate Summit – The investment COP he emphasised the importance of public-private partnerships and the EU’s growing portfolio of instruments to support clean energy innovation, including the recent agreement with Bill Gates on the intention to launch the Breakthrough Energy Europe fund.
The growing importance of the role of cites in the debate on climate change and of place-based research and innovation emerged during COP24. Patrick Child participated in the CitiesIPCC event and the European Green Capital Network to celebrate the success of the European Green Capital Award and the decision by the city of Katowice to join the Global Covenant of Mayors. This was a natural follow-up to the collaboration started at MI-3 in Malmo, where for the first time the city dimension of clean energy innovation was recognised. One of the COP24 major announcements was from the C40 Cities coalition, which includes cities across the globe. They announced the intention to work with the IPCC to identify how the 1.5°C report can apply to climate actions in cities.
MI members’ initiatives at COP24
Several MI members and representatives of the Innovation Challenges were active in promoting MI initiatives at COP24, including:
- Austrian Flagship Regions Energy
- Sweden – launch of the Avoided Emission Framework at the 2018 SIF Sustainable Innovation Forum, where this year MI was platinum sponsor
- Scaling up the sustainable bioeconomy: A new chapter for the Biofuture Platform – Launch of the New Biofuture Report
- France – Innovative solutions for off-grid access to energy
In addition, the UK announced that it is bidding to host the 2020 UN Climate Summit (COP26), which is due to be held in late 2020 and is expected to see the Paris Agreement come into full effect.
Outcome of COP24
The “Katowice package” includes guidelines on how countries can provide information about domestic actions, the so-called Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). This information includes mitigation and adaptation measures as well as details of financial support for climate action in developing countries.
Specifically, the guidelines relate to:
- The process for establishing new targets on finance from 2025 onwards to follow-on from the current target of mobilizing USD 100 billion per year from 2020 to support developing countries
- How to conduct the Global Stocktake of the effectiveness of climate action in 2023
- How to assess progress on the development and transfer of technology
More information about COP24 can be found here https://unfccc.int/