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The leading role of France in the climate negotiations

France assumed an active role early in the negotiations on the post-2012 regime. The adoption of the energy and climate package in 2008 under the French Presidency of the European Union demonstrates that an entire geographical area, with different economic situations, energy mixes and potentials, can set itself ambitious goals and policies to combat climate change.

From 2009, France and the European Union also adopted a clear stance:

-  obtain an ambitious, balanced agreement that is compatible with the limitation target of +2°C;

-  obtain an agreement that builds on the main achievements of the Kyoto Protocol and includes binding quantified targets, as well as objectives for sectors not covered by the Protocol, such as forestry, aviation and shipping.

Illust: France supports (...), 123.2 ko, 720x300
France supports the adoption of a goal of 40% in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030.

The close involvement of the European Union in these multilateral negotiations allowed it to play a pivotal role in Durban in 2011 after the conferences in Copenhagen and Cancún, to initiate the main compromise that was reached and to be central to a broad alliance for the collective ambition. Beyond the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol, negotiations to reach a global agreement, between all countries of the world, in 2015 were launched.

Doha Conference (COP18)

The Doha Conference in 2012 furthered the implementation of decisions made during the conferences in Cancún and Durban. This involved bringing into operation the instruments established by these decisions (such as the system of monitoring and review of action to reduce emissions, the Green Climate Fund, the Technology Mechanism, cooperation on adaptation, the REDD+ mechanism to combat deforestation, etc.), in order to promote consolidated, concrete action in developed and developing countries.

The Doha Conference also led to the official adoption of the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol. The mobilization of innovative sources of financing, to meet the target of $100 billion per year by 2020, represents another specific challenge, to be tackled alongside the G20 work on climate financing, which progressed under the French Presidency in 2011. Lastly, in the short term, France aims to raise the level of global ambition, which is currently too low to set the international community on a trajectory that is compatible with the global warming limitation target of +2°C.

Increased mobilization of France and the European Union

In March 2013, the European Union began its work to adopt a greenhouse gas emissions reduction target for 2030. The European Commission published a Green Paper on the topic to launch discussions on a legislative framework to replace the energy and climate policies applicable in the European Union until 2020. France is very committed to this work and supports the adoption of a target of -40% by 2030, compared to 1990. Moreover, the European Union intends to remain at the forefront of the combat against climate change and published a Consultative Communication on the 2015 international agreement in March 2013, to gather input from the Member States and from all civil society stakeholders (non-governmental organizations, local authorities, companies, etc.)

Green Paper "A 2030 framework for climate and energy policies"

Consultative Communication "The 2015 International Climate Change Agreement:

A second commitment period under the Kyoto Protocol

As the first commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol drew to a close, the Durban Conference in late 2011 allowed us to preserve what is currently the only legally binding multilateral framework for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.

The final compromise was initiated by the European Union, which linked the extension of its commitment under the Protocol to the adoption of a roadmap for a global agreement. France therefore agreed, along with the European Union, to participate in the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol from 1 January 2013.

Although it is responsible for only a small percentage of world emissions (little more than 10%), the European Union was the first to announce its emissions reduction target of 20% for the second commitment period, in April 2012. At the Doha Conference, the Parties agreed to apply the amendment to the Protocol immediately, pending its official entry into force, in order to ensure the continuity of the commitments and mechanisms during the period of transition leading to a post-2020 global framework. The ratification of this amendment is underway.

October 2013


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