Stages and results since 2005
2005: COP11/MOP1: Montreal
COP11, which also marked the first conference of the signatories to the Kyoto Protocol (MOP1), adopts all modalities for the implementation of the Protocol - in particular the Marrakesh Accords (cf. COP7, 2001). This means that all conditions for the implementation of the Protocol are fulfilled. The rules for international emissions trading are also defined.
With regard to the longer-term perspective, a process is initiated at the conference that was intended to define the commitments of the individual states on completion of the first commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol (2008-2012). It is also intended to initiate discussions on the further development of the international climate protection strategy in the context of the Convention on Climate Change.
It is also decided at the conference to tackle the topic of deforestation in developing countries and the associated emissions.
2005: First report on demonstrable progress under the Kyoto Protocol
In accordance with article 3.2 of the Kyoto Protocol, the industrialised countries had to demonstrate that they had made progress in the implementation of their commitments arising from the Kyoto Protocol by the end of 2005. Switzerland submitted its corresponding intermediate report in December 2005. The country reports provide the subject matter of COP12/MOP2 in November 2006.
2006: COP12/MOP2: Nairobi
At COP12/MOP2 the participating countries agree on a division of labour for the definition of the emission reduction targets of the industrialised countries for the post-2012 period.
The measures that would have to be taken for the adaptation to the threatened changes arising from climate change are also discussed. In particular, it is decided to provide financial support for adaptation projects carried out in developing countries. This would make it possible to help countries that only emit small quantities of greenhouse gases but are severely affected by the consequences of climate change.
In his address to the plenary, Moritz Leuenberger, a member of the Swiss Federal Council from 1995 to 2010, demands that the countries undertake a comprehensive commitment to reduce emissions and proposes the adoption of a global CO2 levy for the financing of adaptation measures in developing countries.
2007: IPCC Fourth Assessment Report
According to the IPCC's scenarios, average global temperatures could rise by between 1.8 and 4 degrees Celsius by 2100. The report demonstrates that the climate policy measures currently being implemented are not sufficient to achieve the necessary reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. However, according to the report, the possibilities and means (e.g. economic instruments) for achieving the necessary reduction in greenhouse gas emissions exist throughout the world
2007: COP13: Bali
The discussions held at COP13 aim to reach agreement on the Bali Roadmap, which was intended to provide a schedule for the negotiations on the international climate policy regime after 2012 (post-Kyoto).
With the roadmap adopted in Bali, the states define the topics and schedule for future negotiations. This is intended to ensure a seamless transition between the current and future climate regimes, which is crucial to the efficient combating of climate change.
2008: COP14: Poznan
The delegates pursue two objectives in Poznan. First, they investigate ways of improving the integration of the USA and the newly industrialised countries, China Brazil and India into the international climate regime. Second, negotiations on the further development of the Kyoto Protocol are also held in Poznan.
The delegates agree on an ambitious programme of work so that an effective new climate agreement could be passed in Copenhagen at the end of 2009.
2009: COP 15: Copenhagen
The aim of the Copenhagen conference is to adopt an international climate regime for the post-2012 period. The following results were achieved:
- In the "Copenhagen Accord" the international community committed to the goal of limiting the increase in the global temperature to less than 2 degrees Celsius.
- The big newly-industrialised countries presented ambitious targets for the reduction of their emissions and the industrialised countries confirmed their reduction targets.
- The negotiations for a comprehensive international climate regime were continued.
- The industrialised countries pledged to make approximately CHF 10 billion available to the developing countries to enable them to adapt to the consequences of climate change and reduce their emissions.
2010: COP 16: Cancun
The signatories to the UN Conference on Climate Change, which had now increased to 194, agree to intensify their efforts for the avoidance of greenhouse gas emissions through the establishment of a pledge and review system, which would involve all countries being called on to submit voluntary non-binding emission reduction targets and to subject these targets to an improved reporting and monitoring process. The recognition of the 2 degree goal is also confirmed. The Parties aim to prevent a gap arising on completion of the Kyoto Protocol (i.e. after 2013). In addition, COP 16 decides on the establishment of a climate fund and mechanisms for the prevention of harmful harvesting of forests in developing countries, in particular slash-and-burn.
2011: COP 17: Durban
The 194 signatories to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change agree on the development of a new agreement that would be binding for all Parties by 2015. The new agreement would enter into force in 2020 at the latest. A second commitment period under the Kyoto Protocol is also decided on, which would cover the gap between 2013 and 2020.
2012: COP 18: Doha
The 18th UN climate conference decides to extend the Kyoto Protocol to 2020. However, far from all industrialised countries commit to reducing their emissions in the context of Kyoto 2. While the EU, Australia, Norway, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Croatia and Iceland remain within the regime, major emitters like the USA, China, Japan, Brazil, South Africa, India and Canada are outside.
Nevertheless, all states confirm the decision made at the Durban climate conference in 2011 to pass a climate agreement by 2015 that would oblige all countries - and not only the industrialised countries - to reduce emissions. The continuation of the financial support for developing countries for the mitigation of climate change is also approved.
2013: COP 19: Warsaw
Following the decision taken in Durban in 2011 to negotiate a new agreement for the period after 2020, the negotiations focus on concrete measures to be implemented up to 2020, on the one hand, and on the design of a new climate regime for the post-2020 period, on the other. The results of the conference in relation to the regime up to 2020 involve resolutions on rules for the implementation of the second Kyoto period, a system for the measuring, reporting and verification (MRV) of voluntary commitments on the part of the developing countries (Cancun Pledges), and methods for the calculation of the emissions and sink effect generated by the forestry sector in developing countries. Further preconditions are also established for the capitalisation of the Green Climate Fund (GCF) and a mechanism is decided on for risk management and adaptation to the consequences of climate change (Warsaw Mechanism for Loss and Damage).
In relation to the climate agreement to be implemented from 2020, all countries are invited to initiate preparatory work on their contributions to the new agreement and, if possible, to communicate them in a clear, transparent and understandable way at international level in the first quarter of 2015. Whether these contributions would be voluntary or binding in nature and whether they could concentrate on emissions reductions or on measures in the area of adaptation to climate change remains open.
2014: COP 20: Lima
At the climate conference in Lima it was possible to clarify which information the countries would be obliged to substantiate when they submit their Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) to the post-2020 climate regime to the UNFCCC Secretariat. This information increases transparency and helps to provide a better understanding of the individual contributions. The countries shall i.a. specify the base year for the calculation of the emissions reductions, the implementation period and the scope of the efforts undertaken, and indicate the extent to which their targets represent a fair and ambitious contribution to the attainment of the 2 degree goal.
It was also possible to continue work in Lima on the draft of the new climate agreement to be adopted the following year in Paris.
2015: COP 21: Paris
It was possible to agree a new climate agreement for the period after 2020, which obliges all countries to reduce greenhouse gas emissions for the first time, at the climate conference in Paris at the end of 2015. The previous distinction between industrialised and developing countries is largely eliminated as a result.
The Paris Agreement is a legally binding instrument under the Climate Change Convention. It contains elements for the successive reduction of global greenhouse gas emissions and is based on common principles that apply to all countries for the first time: