What does Content Coms hope the Bonn Climate Conference delivers?


The Bonn Climate Conference is due to end on November 17. When it does, will the future for low carbon have changed forever?

Right now, we just can’t be sure…

Bonn’s overarching purpose is to start developing a new rule book, which will transform the top level aims of the Paris Agreement into a more cohesive and useful form.

This rule book is meant to be ready by next year at the latest, when it will be needed at the next round of climate talks.

So, for a start, Content Coms wants to see concrete progress on this rule book. It need not be completed, nor necessarily topped and tailed, but at the very least we’re keen to see a start.

This is vital, because the US has gone to Bonn with the intent of scuppering the C02 reduction process further, following its withdrawal from the Paris accord.

This unfathomably stupid act mustn’t be allowed to succeed. The Guardian writes that the Trump team was heckled and interrupted by a protest song at the summit on Monday November 13, after using its only official appearance to say fossil fuels were vital to reducing poverty around the world and to saving jobs in the US.

Donald Trump’s Special Adviser on Energy and Environment, David Banks, said cutting emissions was a US priority, [but] energy security [and] economic prosperity are higher priorities.

“The president has a responsibility to protect jobs and industry across the country,” he said.

“Promoting coal at a climate summit is like promoting tobacco at a cancer summit,” replied Michael Bloomberg, the former New York mayor and a UN Special Envoy for Cities and Climate Change.

But no matter how undignified the US has become, it still wields power and influence, though arguably this is waning. A firm start to the rule book is essential to prove to the US just how isolated it is becoming.

What might be in the rule book?

So if we get a rule book, what should be in it? A good example surrounds Article 6 of the Paris Agreement. Among other provisions, this lays out the possibility of countries choosing ‘voluntary cooperation’ for meeting their national commitments, including through ‘internationally transferred mitigation outcomes.’

The point is; experts say this existing text could have implications, potentially negative, for linking sub-national, national, and regional carbon markets.

Effective and transparent carbon markets are something we need for C02 mitigation and low carbon to really run. So something more binding and arguably more stringent than simply ‘voluntary cooperation’ would really help.

Getting consensus on something like this is tough, especially with a recalcitrant US blocking progress left, right and centre.

“What we really need are more concrete definitions and progress on the mechanisms that will help deliver a global low carbon shift,” comments Jo Watchman, Managing Director, Content Coms.

“These would stymie the US stance and show how the rest of the world is ready to leave the naysayers behind.”

Only days remain before we discover what we will get. Content Coms will provide a complete analysis of what comes from Bonn shortly after the conference closes.


Content Coms is one of the UK’s leading B2B communications consultancies specialising in the environmental and technology sectors. If you’ve enjoyed our article, how about reading more of our news and analysis?


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