Asian Peoples' Movement on Debt and Development

A regional alliance of peoples’ movements, community organizations, coalitions, NGOs and networks


Ecological Debt, Environmental Justice & Climate Change

Women and the crisis of land, food, water, and climate change (Issue brief)


FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS | Fair Shares: A Civil Society Equity Review of INDCs

1.       What is the review about?

The review compares the initial climate action pledges, called Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs), of countries to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to their actual fair share of climate action.

2.       Which civil society groups conducted the review?

The review was initiated by the following civil society organizations: ActionAid International, Asian Peoples' Movement on Debt and Development, Climate Action Network South Asia, CARE International, Center for International Environmental Law, Christian Aid, CIDSE, Climate Action Network Latin America, Friends of the Earth International, International Trade Union Confederation, LDC Watch International, Oxfam, Pan African Climate Justice Alliance, SUSWATCH Latin America, Third World Network, What Next Forum, and WWF International.

The Climate Equity Reference Project, an initiative of EcoEquity and the Stockholm Environment Institute, provided analytical support.

It is also supported by numerous social movements, networks, and other civil society groups in the international, regional, and national levels; a full list is included in the full report.

3.       When was this review done?

The review started in June 2015. The summary report was released last October 19, while the full report will be released on November 4.

4.       What are INDCs?

INDCs refer to Intended Nationally Determined Contributions, the official name of the UNFCCC for the climate targets and actions which a majority of countries submitted on or before October 1, the deadline set by the UNFCCC. They are commonly referred to as “national climate targets/actions” or “pledges”.

They are referred to as the initial offers of countries in terms of responding to climate change, and as the building blocks of the new global climate agreement, which is set to be finalized at the upcoming Paris climate conference. The current INDCs will be implemented from 2020 to 2025 or 2030.

5.       How many INDCs were analyzed in the review?

This assessment includes INDCs covering 145 countries and some 80 percent of current global emissions.

The review covers the same set of INDCs compiled and synthesized by the UNFCCC for its own report published on October 30, with the sole exception of Andorra (because it is excluded from most of the data sets upon which our analysis draws for consistent national information). Note that the single INDC of the European Union represents 28 countries.

6.       What makes this review different from other reviews on the INDCs?

This review is different because it uses not only a science-based assessment of the necessary global level of climate action, but also uses widely accepted notions of equity to present fair shares of the necessary effort for each country. The equity and fair shares standards are anchored on the UNFCCC’s core principles of “common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities” and the “right to sustainable development”. The equity and fair shares standards used in this review take into account a range of interpretations of these principles.

We believe that the principles of equity and fair shares can be defined and quantified robustly, rigorously, transparently and scientifically, while accounting for differences of perspectives.

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Towards an Asian Platform on Transforming Energy Systems

Based on Asian Conference on Energy and Asian Climate Justice Assembly Discussions

A. The Right to Energy

  1. We believe in peoples’ right to energy to be able meet their basic needs and the realization of their basic human rights -- right to a life of dignity and well-being, the rights to food and water, to livelihoods, to education, health, housing, the right to safety and security, the right to reproductive justice, the equal treatment and non-discrimination, the right to information, to the right to political participation and civil and political liberties among others

  2. The right to energy goes hand in hand with the right of communities and people -- women and men -- to democratic stewardship and management of the commons, of energy systems, regardless of geographic location and without prejudice to class, caste, ethnicity/race, gender, sexual orientation and gender identity expressions. Religion, age, being differently-abled.

  3. The state has the duty and obligation to its citizens to ensure the fulfillment of the right to energy.

  4. The right to energy should be realized in a just and sustainable manner that is compatible with the limits of the planet, the environment and ecosystems.

  5. The right to energy must be exercised in a manner that recognizes and upholds energy sources are part of the “commons” which should not be owned and controlled by a few nor used and abused for private gain and accumulation of private profit.

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The World Bank’s Culpability in Climate Change

coal-fired-power-generation-plantThe World Bank further elbowed its way into the climate change negotiations and infrastructure when in 2010, the 16th Conference of Parties of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) invited the World Bank to serve as the interim trustee of its Green Climate Fund, the operating entity that will manage the financial mechanisms of the Convention.

Peoples' movements and organizations in many countries of the world, especially in the global South opposed this move, and justifiably so.

The World Bank is tainted by a history of financing projects that produce or heavily use fossil fuels. Over the past 61 years, the Bank financed 745 such projects worth $69.82 billion in 34 na-tions in the Asia Pacific region. Yet, while recog-nizing that using fossil fuels emit up to 70 per-cent of climate-destabilizing greenhouse gases today, the World Bank has never explicitly owned up to its share of the current climate cri-sis and perhaps none is forthcoming.

Photo courtesy of The Mindanao Examiner

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Building on the Bali Mandate

Robust mandates already exist to conclude negotiations covering 100% of global emissions. In Bali, in 2007, the world agreed to a negotiating roadmap that consisted of three essential pillars: a second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol for developed countries; a compromise for the United States; as well as developing country action backed by finance, technology and capacity building.

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At Stake in Durban: A Climate Deal for the 1% or the 99%?

Durban - 28 November 2011
A civil society analysis of mitigation issues in the Durban talks

It’s a planetary and humanitarian emergency… The world is already reeling from major humanitarian emergencies exacerbated by climate change: floods in Thailand and Pakistan, landslides from extreme rains in many Latin American countries, and the multi-year drought in the Horn of Africa that threatens the lives of millions.

Current levels of warming have already begun triggering major “tipping points” in the Earth’s system – such as Arctic methane releases, Amazon dieback, and the loss of icesheets. 2°C of warming, as proposed by some governments, threatens to tip a cascade of events that will cause warming to spin out of control. We have known since 1986 that warming “beyond 1°C may elicit rapid, unpredictable and non-linear responses that could lead to extensive ecosystem damage”, the effects of which we’re seeing already.

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Information taken from UN Data

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Towards a Peoples’ Agenda On Climate Finance: A Part of our Platform for Climate Justice

Climate change is a grave and urgent threat to life on earth on a global scale. The challenge is great, but greater still for countries of the South and the majority of the peoples of the South who stand to bear the brunt of its most harmful consequences because of accumulated economic and social vulnerabilities throughout history till the present.

A critical piece of immediate as well as strategic response to the climate crisis is Finance. The mobilization of unprecedented levels of finance is needed- on the one hand to enable people, communities and nations to deal with present and as well as already unavoidable future impacts of climate change, much of which are irreversible, and on the other hand to make the systemic and technological transformation necessary to prevent worst catastrophes, solve global warming and heal the planet.

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An Open Letter to the Governments of the World Meeting at the UNFCCC in Cancun

People and communities throughout the global South need hundreds of billions of dollars each year to deal with the impacts of climate change, build resiliency and adopt alternative development pathways. The cost of compensation for past, present, and future damages due to climate change will only grow if, in addition, the necessary measures are not taken in the industrialized countries to make a just transition to equitable, non-fossil fuel based economies.

We call on the governments of the world to comply with their obligations to ensure that new and additional public resources for climate finance are made available now in a way that is founded on the principle of historical responsibility, does not add to debt burdens, and is free from policy conditionalities.

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Briefer on the Green Climate Fund (GCF), The World Bank as Trustee & the Transitional Committee

This briefer is drawn from the “Outcome of the work of the Ad Hoc Working Group on long-term Cooperative Action under the Convention (unedited version)” released during the UNFCCC in Cancun.

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Climate Justice Briefs

A wealthy minority of the world’s countries and corporations are the principal!cause of climate change; its adverse effects fall first and foremost on the!majority that is poor. This basic and undeniable truth forms the foundation of!the global climate justice movement.

The climate debt primer


As the starting point for climate justice, those who are the main cause of climate change must embrace and address their responsibilities. Developed countries must address their climate debt in all its dimensions as the basis of a fair, effective and scientifically sound solution to climate change.

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A Platform for Climate Justice of Asian Movements, Organizations and Networks

We believe that solving the climate crisis and injustice – requires basic transformation of the global system -- economic, political, socio-cultural. Given the narrow window of time to prevent catastrophic, irreversible consequences of the climate crisis – we must work even harder to hasten the process of profound social transformation, relying first and foremost on the collective strength, action and solidarity of peoples’ movements within our countries and across borders.

Part of this process is compelling the UN, other inter-governmental institutions and all governments today to take urgent and immediate steps to address the climate crisis. Challenging governments and inter-governmental institutions is important not only for specific gains that may be achieved — it is part of the process of exposing the issues, promoting our alternatives, building movements, gaining political strength, weakening the forces defending the status quo. All of these serve the longer term goal of the fundamental change of the system.

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