The Point of No Return

How the world is adapting to climate change

Human influence on the climate system is clear and growing. If left unchecked, climate change will increase the likelihood of pervasive and irreversible impacts for people and ecosystems.

Thomas Stocker, IPCC Working Group I co-president

Carbon
Dioxide
404.42
ppm
Global
Temperature
0.87°C
since 1880
Arctic
Ice
13.3%
per decade
Sea
Level
3.4
mm per year

CO2 emissions from 1995 to 2015



Source: NASA Vital signs

Annual mean temperature variation from 1995 to 2015



Source: NASA Vital signs

Iced mass variation from 2002 to 2015



Source: NASA Vital signs

Mean sea level from 1995 to 2015



Source: NASA Vital signs

Meeting

When we started, where we arrived

The ever more rapid climate change that is occurring in these years prompted an immediate response from all the main socio-economic actor in the world. International cooperation has become a recognized tool to act before a point of no return is reached.
The Conference of Parties is one of the most important moments each year, in which countries from all around the world discuss how to cope with climate change, always in a different location.

One step after the other: what happened

1989 1990 1991 FOUNDATIONS COPs - UNFCCC SUMMITS CMPs - KYOTO PROTOCOL PARTIES IPCCFOUNDATION UNFCCFOUNDATION KYOTO PROTOCOLINTO FORCE KYOTO PROTOCOL PARISAGREEMENTINTO FORCE PARISAGREEMENT 2016 2015 2014 2012 2013 2011 2010 2008 2009 2006 2007 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 2000 1999 1998 1997 1996 1995 1994 1992 1990 1988
1988, November

IPCC Foundation


The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is a scientific and intergovernmental body under the auspices of the United Nations.
1990, November

Second International Conference about Climate Change.


Parties recognise human influence on climate change.
1992, June

Rio Summit


Parties extended the concept of multilateral negotiation.
1994, March

Unfcc foundation


UNFCC is an international (almost universal) environmental treaty whose parties discuss annually the problems related to climate change, with the aim of taking multilateral agreements.
1995, March-April

Cop 1


Berlino, Germany
The first UNFCC Conference of the Parties.
1996, July

Cop 2


Geneva, Switzerland
1997, December

Cop 3


Kyoto, Japan
After intensive negotiations Parties adopted the Kyoto Protocol that commits State Parties to reduce GHG emissions, based on the premise that global warming exists and human-made Co2 emissions have caused it.
1998, November

Cop 4


Buenos Aires, Argentina
1999, October-November

Cop 5


Bonn, Germany
2000, November

Cop 6


The Hague, Nederlands
Parties discussed about difficulties in meeting emission reduction targets and in resolving how developing countries could obtain financial assistance to deal with adverse effects of climate change. The COP was suspended without agreement.
2001

COP 6 BIS

Bonn, Germany

COP 7

Marrakech, Morocco
Parties finalized most of the operational details and setting the stage for nations to ratify the Kyoto Protocol.
2002

Cop 8


New Delhi, India
The Delhi Ministerial Declaration called for efforts by developed countries to transfer technology and minimize the impact of climate change on developing countries.
2003, December

Cop 9


Milan, Italy
Parties agreed on the Adaptation Fund.
2004, December

Cop 10


Buenos Aires, Argentina
2005, November-December

Cop 11 - CMP 1


Montreal, Canada
It was one of the largest intergovernmental conferences on climate change ever. The event marked the entry into force of the Kyoto Protocol.
2006, November

Cop 12 - CMP 2


Nairobi, Kenia
The parties adopted a plan of work to support climate change adaptation by developing countries, and agreed on the procedures and modalities for the Adaptation Fund.
2007, November

Cop 13 - CMP 3


Bali, Indonesia
2008, December

Cop 14 - CMP 4


Poznan, Poland
Parties agreed on principles for the financing of a fund to help the poorest nations.
2009, December

Cop 15 - CMP 5


Copenaghen, Denmark
Developed countries made 30$ BN available for mitigation and adaptation.
2010, December

Cop 16 - CMP 6


Cancun, Mexico
Parties recognised that climate change represents an urgent and potentially irreversible threat to human societies and the planet, and thus requires to be urgently addressed by all of them.
2011, November-December

Cop 17 - CMP 7


Durban, South Africa
Parties agreed to a start negotiations on a legally binding deal comprising all countries, to be adopted in 2015, governing the period post 2020.
2012, November-December

Cop 18 - CMP 8


Doha, Qatar
The Doha Amendment to the Kyoto Protocol featuring a second commitment period running from 2012 until 2020.
2013, November

Cop 19 - CMP 9


Warsaw, Poland
Delegates are to focus on the potential conditions of a final global climate change agreement expected to be ratified in 2015.
2014, December

Cop 20 - CMP 10


Lima, Perù
Parties pledged to sign international agreement during the UNFCC Convention in Paris.
2015, November-December

Cop 21 - CMP 11


Paris, France
Negotiations resulted in the adoption of the Paris Agreement which will enter into force on November 4th 2016.
2016, November

Cop 22 - CMP 12


Marrakech, Morocco

Talking

An evolving conversation: main themes at COPs

After each COP, a report is redacted with all the themes, programs and duties that the countries discussed and accepted.
They are the reflection of each meeting and it’s possible to see in them the path that the countries have agreed to follow.
The report analysis selected a set of recurring themes at each COP, after counting all the words collected in the documents. This quantitative approach allows to draw the evolving conversation and how each theme shifted during all the conferences.

negotiation emissions REDUCTIONs GREENHOUSE GAS Mitigation Kyoto protocol UNFCC adaptation Cop 1 Cop 2 Cop 3 Cop 4 Cop 5 Cop 6 Cop 7 Cop 8 Cop 9 Cop 10 Cop 11 Cop 12 Cop 13 Cop 14 Cop 15 Cop 16 Cop 17 Cop 18 Cop 19 Cop 20 Cop 21

Source: COP Conference reports | Documents analyzed by Voyant Tools

Adaptation refers to adjustments in ecological, social, or economic systems in response to climatic stimuli.
It refers to changes in processes to moderate damages or to benefit from opportunities associated with climate change.

United Nation Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)

Adaptation programs founded during and after COPs

The growing interest around adaptation allowed the birth of international programs during and after COPs with the aim of helping specific areas. From 2002, five programs have been established and here is shown the increasing amount of funds that they have received from the international community.

2003 2002 0 100 200 300 400 500 600 700 800 USD millions 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2008 PPCR Pilot Program for Climate Change was officialy made operational 2009 AF Adaptation Found was officialy made operational 2012 ASAP Adaptation for Smallholder Agriculture Program was officialy made operational 2002 LDCF, SCCF Least Developed Country Fund and Special Climate Change Fund were officialy made operational

Source: Climate Fund Update | 2002-2015

Acting

Approaching the point of no return

The awareness of an increasingly irreversible framework has prompted the international community to take concrete action through the allocation of funds dedicated to climate change adaptation and mitigation. The focus is on multilateral funds and programs.

Adaptation and mitigation funds from 2002 to 2016

0 1000 2000 3000 4000 5000 7000 8000 6000 ADAPTATION 3.363 $ Million SSCF351 $ mln PPCR1.117 $ mln LDCF964 $ mln AF565 $ mln ASAP366 $ mln MITIGATION 7.741 $ Million sscf - Special Climate Change Fund ldcf - least developed countries fund PPCR - Pilot Program for Climate Resilience ASAP - Adaptation for Smallholder Agriculture Program AF - Adaptation Fund

Source: Climate Fund Update

The found journey: from donors to recipients

Adaptation programs create a relationship between countries who allocate funds, and the countries who receive them. These funds are the result of international treaties, and before they reach the countries who need them, they follow a four-step road.

First, each donating country pledges a sum of money, that gets deposited in a specific fund. Second, money is approved from the funds, and only then it is disbursed to the receiving countries.
In the following section, it will be analyzed the distribution of deposited and approved funds between countries.

Top ten donors and top twenty recipients

Adaptation funds and their exchange cover almost all countries in the world, however only thirty countries contribute to 86% of all money. These ten countries deposited this amount of money from 2002 to 2015.
After being deposited, the money then needs to be approved. When approved, money is already allocated by each fund between the countries who need them.

legenda flussi sccf asap af ldcf ppcr Sweden Canada United States Belgium Japan Netherland Norway Spain Germany United Kingdom Cambodia Niger Tajikistan Mozambique Jamaica Djibouti Papua New Guinea Samoa Benin Bolivia Nepal Tanzania Yemen Zambia Sudan Rwanda Mali Malawi Gambia Bangladesh

Source: Climate Fund Update | 2002-2015

The funds and their target area

The money that each country receives targets five different key action areas about climate change adaptation. International agreements set the destination areas of funds to each country.
Multisector programs operate on multiple destination areas simultaneously in those countries whose condition can be improved on different fields.

All
Agricolture
Civil Society
Water
Multisector
Humanitarian Aid
bangladesh ZAMBIA SUDAN MALAWI GAMBIA MALI niger TAjIKISTAN SAMOA YEMEN JAMAICA RWANDA djIBoUTI cambodia nepal mozambique bolivia benin TANZANIA PAPUA N. Guinea 37,5 $ MLN 83,4 $ MLN 34,4 $ MLN 23,9 $ MLN 29,9 $ MLN 10 $ MLN 13 $ MLN 16,5 $ MLN 5 $ MLN 10 $ MLN 10 $ MLN 21 $ MLN 23 $ MLN 17 $ MLN 10,3 $ MLN 11,4 $ MLN 15 $ MLN 10 $ MLN 24,2 $ MLN 10,7 $ MLN 33 $ MLN 17,8 $ MLN 26 $ MLN 16,8 $ MLN 6 $ MLN 8 $ MLN 23,5 $ MLN 15 $ MLN 23,5 $ MLN 88 $ MLN 2,7 $ MLN 1 $ MLN 5 $ MLN 40,4 $ MLN 19,9 $ MLN 14,5 $ MLN 42,36 $ MLN 1 $ MLN 4,1 $ MLN 12,5 $ MLN 3,3 $ MLN 5,8 $ MLN 9 $ MLN 4,1 $ MLN 9,1 $ MLN 8,6 $ MLN 4,1 $ MLN 76,7 $ MLN 35,7 $ MLN 37,6 $ MLN 35,7 $ MLN 25,2 $ MLN 10 $ MLN 4,6 $ MLN 5,8 $ MLN 15,8 $ MLN 9,3 $ MLN 16,1 $ MLN 6,9 $ MLN 14,8 $ MLN 66,5 $ MLN 4 $ MLN 27,6 $ MLN 30,7 $ MLN 52,8 $ MLN 1,5 $ MLN 94,7 $ MLN 80,9 $ MLN 71,5 $ MLN 45,8 $ MLN 40,9 $ MLN 34,9 $ MLN 33,5 $ MLN 32,4 $ MLN 32,1 $ MLN 30,2 $ MLN 29,8 $ MLN 31,2 $ MLN 31,2 $ MLN 30,9 $ MLN 144,5 $ MLN 130 $ MLN 124 $ MLN 119 $ MLN 101,4 $ MLN 99,5 $ MLN

Source: Climate Fund Update | 2002-2015

Who needs help, who is helping

Understanding the need for help and support

The relationship between vulnerability index and readiness index, each one composed of a set of different categories, states a country’s ability to adapt to climate change.
This ratio can be used to define a matrix aiming to identify the countries’ most critical situation.

Vulnerability Index

Propensity or predisposition of human societies to be negatively impacted by climate hazards.
Health + Habitat + Ecosystem + Water + Infrastructure + Food

Readiness Index

Readiness to make effective use of investments for adaptation actions thanks to a safe business environment.
Social + Economic + Governance

Source: ND Gain

The world's ability to adapt

Less vulnerable More ready 0 1 Readiness-vulnerability matrix Top 20 funds recipients Highlighted countries Top 10 funds contributors -1 * The selected area refers to the countries showed on the map.