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Highlights from the Bonn Climate Change Conference

Negotiations towards a new global agreement on climate change under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) continued the first week of June in Bonn, where the Parties resumed deliberation of text in preparation for COP-21. Many had high hopes for these meetings, as Parties aimed to reduce the 80+ page Geneva negotiating text into a text that is manageable, readable and concise. However, the negotiations in Bonn provided mixed progress, with limited advancement in reducing the text, but there was a sense of optimism amongst Parties. The Co-Chairs of the negotiating bodies, now tasked with developing a revised, streamlined version of the texts, emphasised the success of the meeting in terms of trust building, transparency and inclusivity.

The aim now is to develop a protocol, legal instrument or an agreed outcome with legal force, applicable to all Parties, to be adopted at COP-21, and coming into effect and implemented from 2020. Looking ahead, the text not only needs substantial editing and streamlining, but the legality of the text also needs to be developed further, with many Parties calling for as much time as possible to consider the text before the next meetings take place in August/September 2015.