Paris  Agreement  leaves  transparency  hanging  in  midair  
 
Lima,  Dec.  17th  of  2015  -­‐  After  two  weeks  of  negotiations  in  Paris,  the  Conference  of  the  Parties  
(COP  21)  adopted  on  December  11th  the  Paris  Agreement,  a  binding  agreement  that  will  guide  the  
fight  against  climate  change  globally  and  will  come  into  effect  in  2020.  
In  the  Agreement  we  can  find  the  "common  but  differentiated  responsibilities"  principle  adopted  
by  the  195  member  countries  of  the  convention,  as  well  as  the  goal  of  “holding  the  increase  in  the  
global   average   temperature   to   well   below   2   °C   above   pre-­‐industrial   levels   and   to   pursue   efforts   to  
limit   the   temperature   increase   to   1.5   °C   above   pre-­‐industrial   levels”.   However,   transparency   is  
pending.  
The  Convention  members  must  take  stock  of  their  Intended  Nationally  Determined  Contributions  
(INDC)  by  2018  in  order  to  know  the  progress  made,  and  starting  2020,  every  five  years,  they  must  
update   these   contributions.   Nevertheless,   the   Ad   Hoc   Working   Group   on   the   Paris   Agreement   has  
yet   to   formulate   guidelines   to   promote   transparency   and   the   accountability   mechanism   the  
Parties  will  follow  to  report  these  INDC's.  
While   the   agreement   mentions   a   transparency   framework   to   be   applied   "in   a   facilitative,   non-­‐
intrusive   and   non-­‐punitive   manner,   respectful   of   national   sovereignty,   and   avoid   placing   undue  
burden  on  Parties",  the  functionality  of  this  framework  is  unknown.  
Funding   is   also   an   issue   that   is   pending.   The   amount   to   be   provided   as   aid   to   developing   countries  
was   not   given,   only   the   need   to   continue   with   further   financial   contributions   up   to   2020   and   to  
establish  prior  2025  "a  new  collective  quantified  goal  from  a  floor  of  USD  100  billion  per  year".  Like  
the  previous  case,  a  mechanism  of  accountability  of  financial  resources  mobilized  and  provided  is  
waiting  to  be  developed.  
Transparency   in   the   Paris   Agreement   has   been   put   on   hold   because   of   the   lack   of   a   concrete  
commitment   and   effective   action,   and   the   absence   of   citizen   participation   in   the   text   for   the  
different  processes  of  monitoring  and  accountability  is  source  of  concern.  Magaly  Avila,  Proética  
specialist,   noted   that   "the   need   to   create   mechanisms   of   public   participation   as   well   as   devices  
that   provide   accurate   and   timely   information   is   vital   to   ensure   the   effective   use   of   climate  
resources.   Likewise   we   should   promote   a   mechanism   with   sanctions   against   Parties   that   do   not  
comply  with  their  commitments;  a  possibility  may  be  to  establish  rules  to  cut  the  flow  of  climate  
funds".  

We  must  remember  that  when  we  talk  about  climate  change,  we  are  not  just  taking  into  account  
the   environmental   dimension,   its   complexity   and   impact   reach   economic,   social   and   cultural  
dimensions  too,  furthermore  we  are  talking  about  development  and  therein  lies  the  importance  of  
the  agreement.  
 
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