The official negotiations at COP 23 will have the important mission of advancing to devise the rulebook for the implementation of the Paris Agreement, which will standardize the NDCs (climate targets) to ensure that the commitments of the countries are comparable. Brazil, as well as the majority of the signatory countries, is at this stage, and to make the Agreement a reality, needs to rely on a strategic plan for implementation of its NDC.
Although it is ambitious, the Brazilian NDC is a feasible target for the country, which has already proved to be able to reduce its GHG emissions, through the fall in the rates of deforestation in the Amazon region between 2004 and 2012, simultaneously with a period of extraordinary sustainable productivity jumps in Brazilian farming.
However, currently, Brazil has faced a period of environmental setbacks and of increase in its CO2 emissions by around 9%. Even though the most recent data from INPE indicates a decline of 16% in the deforestation of the Amazon in the last year, the country is still far from achieving its climate target. Therefore, COP 23 will be an important moment for Brazil to align discourse and practice, proving that it will redirect its actions and public policies toward a low-carbon economy and following its leadership in international discussions, stimulating greater ambition in both the Brazilian NDC and in the Paris Agreement.
For this reason, the Brazilian Coalition on Climate, Forests and Agriculture believes that the implementation of the NDC should be seen as an agenda for a low-carbon development for Brazil, which will bring economic opportunities, achieving positive results in agricultural production and in environmental conservation, concomitantly, and not only as the fulfillment of a public commitment. To this end, it is important that the discussions on the implementation of the NDC in COP 23 consider various aspects, which are detailed below.
The low-carbon economy should bring fundamental social impacts, such as the creation of quality jobs, generation and distribution of wealth, improvements in people’s health, greater recognition and protection of indigenous peoples and traditional communities, and other benefits to society as a whole.
For the transition toward this economy, national and international economic mechanisms will be required, in order to build new standards of production and consumption. If it is not regulated by public policies and instruments capable of inducing new vectors of demand and supply, the action of the strength of the market alone will not suffice to achieve the climate targets and an economic turnaround. Among these instruments there are the carbon pricing, payment for environmental services, REDD+, etc.
In addition, actions of monitoring are crucial to measure the effectiveness of investments and understand the best way of guiding them. Allied to governance, wide transparency should also be observed, which will allow society to monitor and evaluate the progress of climate targets and, therefore, it is also necessary to ensure mechanisms for the participation and involvement of different players.
Finally, the development, availability, access and dissemination of technologies for new economic models must complete the transition to low-carbon development. Whether in agriculture and cattle raising production or in the forestry business, innovation is the inducer of a new economy, which must be accompanied by actions of training and technical assistance to workers.
Brazilian Coalition hopes that COP 23 can enhance the discussions on the implementation of the Paris Agreement, considering all the points addressed here as essential in a national strategy. Several members of the movement will be present at the conference, contributing and monitoring the international negotiations and will be at the disposal of players on the agenda of climate, forests and agriculture interested in joining efforts.