UN Global Climate Action
15 June 2022
High Level Climate Champions
Non-State Actors Prepare for
the Global Stocktake
Plenary Bonn SB56
Climate action from businesses, investors, cities and regions can dramatically scale up government ambition ahead of COP27 – as demonstrated by the High-Level Champions’ programme of events at the Bonn Climate Conference this month.
The Champions convened their first public dialogue with businesses, investors, cities, regions and national governments to talk about the breadth of work underway in the real economy. It set the stage for the Global Stocktake’s first technical dialogue in Bonn from 9-14 June. Data and analytical experts spoke to governments about the metrics and information they would like to see from non-State actors to help inform the Stocktake, as well as the enhancement of Nationally Determined Contributions.

The Champions will work with the Marrakech Partnership and broader community to feed into the Stocktake, offering solutions to challenges faced by governments in particular by highlighting sectoral progress towards the Glasgow Breakthroughs.

“We welcome ideas on how we can best exercise our mandate to help ensure that non-State actors meaningfully contribute to the Global Stocktake and so support governments in implementing the Paris Agreement,” said COP26 High-Level Champion Nigel Topping.

COP27 High-Level Champion Mahmoud Mohieldin added, “We are hearing repeated requests from non-State actors to ensure that the Global Stocktake must be forward-looking and solutions-oriented, generating clear signals for domestic policymakers to help close the 2030 ambition gap and driven by reliable data essential for effective climate action.”

The Global Stocktake is a two-year assessment of progress towards meeting the Paris Agreement’s goals, concluding at COP28 in 2023. It’s crucial in ensuring the accountability of climate commitments from businesses, investors, cities and regions. The first technical dialogue was designed by the co-facilitators using innovative formats, working with the UNFCCC secretariat and High-Level Champions to bring in an unprecedented proportion of non-State actors engaging with technical experts from national governments.

However, many still seek to effectively engage with the process, how their progress can be taken into account, or how their actions can help achieve NDCs, according to CDP’s new brief on the Global Stocktake. Some 14,000 companies are now disclosing their carbon impact through CDP, and 10,000 companies, investors, cities and regions have joined the UN-backed Race to Zero campaign.
This shows both the progress afoot and the importance of ensuring that non-State actors take part to make it a truly global and cross-economy stocktake.
Action on Losses and Damages
The Champions also initiated a dialogue on addressing losses and damages from climate change impacts during the Bonn Climate Conference, with an event in which people from the frontlines explored how businesses, investors, cities and regions can boost action.

“As the climate crisis escalates people are losing their lives, people are losing their livelihoods, people are losing their cultures – so there is really a need to put the people on the agenda,” Ugandan climate activist Vanessa Nakate said.

Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announced at the sessions that Scotland will host a global conference on climate losses and damages later this year, and unveiled new initiatives including to address post-disaster relief in Malawi and research to further understand how to address losses and damages. This comes after Scotland pledged £2 million to address losses and damages during COP26.

“At [COP27], we still need to see developed countries stepping up – and showing a much greater commitment to address loss and damage,” Nicola Sturgeon said. “However, action from devolved, state and regional governments – as well as civil society – will also be vital, in driving progress.”

This followed two workshops held by the Champions in May to facilitate an open discussion on scaling up concrete action by businesses, investors, cities and regions to address climate losses and damages.

The workshops had three objectives: 1) share best practices and challenges on how non-Party stakeholders can advance and scale-up action on climate losses and damages; 2) discover how to elevate and amplify what non-Party stakeholders are already doing on climate losses and damages; 3) identify how the Champions and Marrakech Partnership can meaningfully advance this issue.

The workshops had around 110 participants from 25 countries, including Marrakech Partnership stakeholders. Voices from communities on the frontline from developing countries demonstrated the urgency for action. These workshops have started a critical part of the Champions’ work this year to identify action after impacts by businesses, investors, cities and regions. It will continue during the UNFCCC Regional Climate Weeks, New York Climate Week and COP 27.
Spotlight on our Youth Fellows
The High-Level Champions have appointed eight youth fellows to work with the team over 2022, and will spotlight one in each of the following newsletters.

Working on the Champions’ resilience team, Lamia Mohsin often thinks back to the words of a 33-year-old Bangladeshi housewife, Maloti, she recently met who had just lost her home to a cyclone.
“We have made our peace with the fact that the forces of nature may turn against us anytime, and yet we want to survive; live our lives to the fullest. To Maloti, the word ‘development’ referred to the certainty of food and basic needs.

In Lamia’s home country of Bangladesh, the climate impacts reported by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change have been a daily reality for at least a decade – rising sea levels, increased salinity, droughts, floods, stronger cyclones. Adaptation and resilience is a lifeline.

The Race to Resilience therefore needs to call on businesses, investors, cities and regions to do more and deliver on their promises, Lamia says.

Meanwhile, the Race to Zero must deliver on climate mitigation where the Glasgow Pact fell short – pushing all actors to decarbonize and promote green jobs and sustainable economies, she says. And the COP27 must show concrete action on adaptation, mitigation and finance – including boosting the finance for adaptation to equal mitigation.
Keeping Up With The Champions
  • Both Champions took part in the Marrakech Partnership workshop in Bonn, talking about how to supercharge the implementation of Climate Action Pathways. Nigel Topping asked stakeholders what they can bring to the table between now and COP27 and how they can step up to deliver on the Champions’ 2030 Breakthroughs.

  • Mahmoud Mohieldin took part in a roundtable discussion with the Federation of Banks and Industries in Egypt and the UN Economic Commission for Africa.

  • Mahmoud Mohieldin attended the introductory meeting of the Council of Engineers for the Energy Transition, launched by UNIDO and SDSN last September. This Council will constitute a global, high level body of engineers and energy systems experts to contribute to the UN Secretary-General's call to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050 and advance the Sustainable Development Goals.

  • Mahmoud Mohieldin participated in the Islamic Development Bank Annual Meetings in Sharm El-Sheikh and delivered a keynote speech at a session titled “The Road to COP27: Transitioning to a Green Economy” alongside COP27 President Sameh Shokry and Dr. Hala El Said of Egypt’s Ministry of Planning and Economic Development.

  • Mahmoud Mohieldin took part in the launch of the African Business Leaders Coalition on 31 May.

  • Mahmoud Mohieldin met with German and Egyptian private sector leaders in Egypt to tell them about their role in the global climate action over a dinner hosted by the German Chamber of Commerce on 29 May.

  • Mahmoud Mohieldin took part in a roundtable on the sidelines of the Bonn conference with climate finance policymakers and the private sector to discuss the engagement of the private sector to accelerate climate action through UNFCCC finance activities. 
In Case You Missed It
  • Queen Elizabeth awarded Nigel Topping and Chile’s COP25 Champion Gonzalo Muñoz the Companion of the Most Distinguished Order of Saint Michael and Saint George for services to tackling climate change.

  • The 2021 UN Climate Change Annual Report is out, highlighting the work undertaken by the secretariat during the difficult circumstances of the pandemic and explaining the outcomes of COP26 in Glasgow, which set the scene for full Paris Agreement implementation.

  • The number of national net zero targets set in legislation or policies has surged to 65% of total greenhouse gas emission coverage, from just 10% in December 2020, according to the Net Zero Stocktake 2022. The increase and strengthening of national commitments adds pressure on the companies, regions and cities that have yet to pledge to reach net zero.

  • Net-zero targets by 25 major global companies aim to reduce aggregate emissions by 40% at most, not 100% as suggested by the term “net-zero”, according to the NewClimate Institute. Only three companies – Maersk, Vodafone and Deutsche Telekom – clearly commit to cut over 90% of emissions from their full value chains.

  • More than one-third, or 702, of the world’s largest publicly traded companies have net-zero targets, up from 417 in December 2020. However, 65% of those corporate targets do not yet meet minimum procedural reporting standards, according to the Energy & Climate Intelligence Unit’s latest Net Zero Tracker.

  • Accelerated action on energy efficiency can help avoid around 95 EJ of final energy demand in 2030 compared to existing policies and measures, according to the International Energy Agency.

  • WBCSD sets out three practical action priorities that businesses and other stakeholders can take to quickly improve sustainability across the value chains in sectors such as mobility, buildings, fashion and textiles, food and agriculture, and travel and tourism.

  • G7 climate and environment ministers confirmed their commitment to phase out inefficient fossil fuel subsidies by 2025 and align international financing with Paris Agreement goals. 

  • Project developers, communities and governments can generate 90 million tonnes of verified emission reductions per year, and over 800 million tonnes by 2030, by following Everland’s new Forest Plan. It aims to facilitate the development of up to 75 forest conservation projects.

  • Climate change exacerbates social, environmental and economic risks for mental health and psychological wellbeing, but there is still a gap in the availability of mental health systems in many countries, according to the World Health Organization’s new policy brief.

  • The Global Center on Adaptation is accepting applications for its Local Adaptation Champions Awards by 11 July. The awards spotlight innovative, exemplary, inspiring, and scalable locally-led efforts.

For more news from across the Race to Resilience and Race to Zero community, check out climatechampions.unfccc.int.
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