C’est comme toutes les autres COP pratiquement. C’est à Bonn où se trouve le siège de la Convention-Cadre des Nations-Unies sur les Changements Climatiques (CCNUCC), que se dessinent chaque fois, les premiers schémas de la COP de l’année en cours. Experts, Scientifiques, points focaux, qui constituent les organes de mise en œuvre, sont à Bonn depuis lundi dans le cadre de la 56ème Session de l’Organe Subsidiaire du Conseil Scientifique et Technologique, et réfléchissent, à tout ce qu’il faut, pour faire avancer les négociations relatives à l’aggravation de la crise climatique. Après la COP22 en 2016 au Maroc, la prochaine COP, la COP27 se tient sur la terre africaine. C’est Charm El-Cheikh en Égypte qui accueille cette rencontre aux enjeux multiples.
Didier Hubert MADAFIME, Envoyé Spécial, l’ Alliance Pan-Africaine de Média pour les Changement Climatiques (PAMACC)
En-tête de ces enjeux, il y a les problèmes qui ont voyagé de COP en COP, soit, avec une demi-solution, soit, pas du tout de solution. Figure dans la première catégorie, les pertes et dommages. Si la COP 19 en 2013 à Varsovie a approuvé la mise en place d’un mécanisme international de Varsovie sur les pertes et dommages, les pays, dont les Etats-Unis en tête, bloquent toujours la mise en place d’une facilité financière.
Elle a été sollicitée par le G77, un regroupement des pays les plus pauvres, victimes du réchauffement climatique, en guise de compensation aux effets des changements climatiques. Refus catégorique aussi à Glasgow à la COP26. Les pays qui font front à cette proposition préfèrent laisser les assurances s’occuper, cette question.
Mais qui dit assurance, sait, qu’il faut, au préalable, payer une prime. Enfin, tel qu’il est imaginé, on a l’impression d’être en face d’une fuite de responsabilité de la part des pays riches, qui, selon ce qu’ils avancent, ne sont pas prêts à porter au dos toute la misère du monde. Il appartient donc, aux pays pauvres de mettre, eux aussi, la main à la poche pour assurer les dommages causés par le mauvais choix de développement des pays riches. Mais, tout le monde en convient, les grandes sociétés d’assurances, souvent des appendices des pays riches ne regarderait pas ça d’un mauvais œil.
De la part des pays pauvres, c’est un niet catégorique qu’il y oppose. Il n’est pas pour autant ranger à cause de ces divergences. Il sera le principal dossier à la COP 27, c’est pourquoi, ils figurent bel et bien sur l’agenda des négociations à Bonn.
Les pertes et dommages, en quoi, soient-ils si importants pour les pays pauvres ?
A l’origine, les changements climatiques, qui ont rendu vulnérables tous les secteurs d’activités des pays pauvres et leurs populations. Ceux qui sont responsables de cette fragilité du système se connaissent aussi bien. Et pourtant, ils sont toujours dans le déni et estiment qu’on veut leur mettre sur le dos toute la misère du monde.
A ceux qui sont à Bonn, la Secrétaire Exécutive sortante de l’ONU sur les changements climatiques, Patricia Espinosa, a envoyé ce message, on ne peut plus clair. "Il n'est pas acceptable de dire que nous traversons une période difficile, même si nous le sommes. « Le changements climatique n'est pas un programme que nous pouvons nous permettre de repousser dans notre calendrier mondial ». Nous avons besoin de décisions et d'actions maintenant, et il incombe à toutes les nations de faire des progrès ici à Bonn dans les deux semaines à venir."
Elle a souligné ensuite l'urgence des interventions et des décisions au niveau politique requises dans chacun des domaines d'intervention pour que les négociations parviennent à un ensemble équilibré. Ces domaines, selon elle, comprennent l'atténuation, l'adaptation, les pertes et dommages, ainsi que le financement et les moyens de mise en œuvre. Elle n’est pas la seule dans ce cas.
Madeleine Diouf Sar, Présidente du groupe des 46 pays les moins avancés (PMA) dans ces discussions, n’a pas mâché ses mots. « La crise climatique s'aggrave : nos populations et nos communautés souffrent des impacts dévastateurs du changement climatique, alors que les émissions continuent d'augmenter. À Bonn, les gouvernements doivent s'engager à prendre des mesures équitables et ambitieuses pour réduire les émissions et apporter un soutien adéquat aux plus pauvres et aux plus vulnérables, afin que nous puissions nous adapter aux impacts du changement climatique et remédier aux pertes et préjudices qu'il engendre. »
Les principales questions abordées à Bonn portent sur : un nouvel objectif en matière de financement climatique afin d'aider les pays en développement à faire face au dérèglement climatique ; un programme de travail visant à relever les objectifs de réduction des émissions des pays afin qu'ils atteignent le niveau nécessaire pour limiter le réchauffement à 1,5°C ; le financement de la lutte contre les pertes et les dommages causés par le changement climatique ; et le lancement d'un « bilan mondial » destiné à évaluer les progrès réalisés dans la mise en œuvre de l'accord de Paris.
Mme Sarr, n’a pas manqué d’ajouter ceci, « Les effets du changement climatique frappent déjà nos pays, et nous ne pouvons pas y faire face seuls. Des fonds doivent être octroyés pour aider nos communautés à s'adapter aux conséquences du changement climatique. Lors de
la COP26, les pays développés se sont engagés à doubler le financement de l'adaptation, mais on ne sait toujours pas comment et quand ces fonds parviendront aux communautés qui en ont le plus besoin. »
Adaptation, atténuation : des problèmes aussi sérieux
Comment ne pas mettre juste derrière les pertes et dommages, les questions liées à l’adaptation et à l’atténuation. Ce sont, en fait, des questions de survie pour les plus pauvres. Dans un climat qui change, il n’y a pas autre chose à faire que de trouver des moyens et d’élaborer des stratégies pour résister aux chocs climatiques. Cela ne peut se faire les mains vides.
Néanmoins, la caisse des 100 milliards de dollars par an proposé aux pays pauvres, à la COP 15 à Copenhague, peine à se remplir. C’est pour cette raison que les africains insistent sur le financement climat pour leur permettre de disposer de moyens suffisants en vue de faire face aux effets des changements climatiques.
L’atténuation, qui apparait aux yeux du monde comme la question qui intéresse, beaucoup plus, les pays riches reste aussi moins lotie. Or, l’avenir de l’humanité y dépend sérieusement. Quant à la mise en œuvre, elle est aussi une question essentielle.
Toutes fois, ça devrait pouvoir se faire normalement, quand tout ceci sera mis sur les rails. La COP 27 en Égypte, apparait donc comme un rendez-vous, que les africains doivent savoir négocier pour éviter un Glasgo II. Bonn apparait, dans ce cas, est comme un tournant qu’il faut bien négocier.
In aggregate dollar terms, the report estimates that these vulnerable economies have lost approximately US$ 525 billion over the two decades due to climate change's temperature and precipitation patterns.
Commissioned by the Vulnerable Twenty (V20), a group of Finance Ministers from the Climate Vulnerable Forum, the report establishes that Climate change has eliminated one-fifth of the wealth of the V20 countries with primary evidence.
It indicates that the V20 would have been 20% wealthier today if not for climate change and the losses it incurred for poor and vulnerable economies.
"The Economic losses cut GDP growth in the V20 by one per cent each year on average, which averaged 3.67% in 2019 across the vulnerable economies," the report said.
A setback for two decades
From 2000 to 2019, the report estimated economic losses due to hydro-meteorological extreme events are higher than in the previous two decades, and the world's most vulnerable economies are also not adapting fast enough to cope with the changing climate as it currently stands.
The report was presented on June 8th at an event that saw Ghana assume the leadership of the V20 at the ongoing Bonn climate talks holding in Germany.
This report, according to Kenneth Nana Yaw Ofori-Atta, Ghana's Finance Minister, "should sound alarm bells for the world economy, since V20 are fast-growing engines of global economic growth, whereas the climate crisis has the potential to bring that phase to an end if the world fails to act."
"The failure on the $100 billion of international climate finance delivery, particularly the failure to ensure a 50:50 balance for adaptation, has left us highly exposed," Ofoi-Atta said.
Represented by Prof Seth Ofaso, Ofori-Atta called for "an international financing mechanism for climate change loss and damage as a matter of pragmatism and justice."
The V20 and Climate Vulnerable Forum, he said, are calling on COP27 to establish this financing facility in solidarity with victims least responsible for, and least equipped to withstand, the increasingly extreme physical shocks driven by climate change."
Prof Osafo told PAMACC News that it is untenable that the world's rich and responsible nations continue to refuse the poor, vulnerable and least responsible nations, support for the crushing costs that they bear because of inaction on the climate crisis.
"It should fall on COP27 to decisively act on the void of finance for loss and damage in a clear litmus test for whether those fueling the climate crisis can truly begin to take responsibility for the breath of damage that has been unleashed by it," Osafo added.
The litmus test
The midyear technical Bonn climate talks began on a feverish note on Monday with widespread calls to consider a dedicated financing facility for loss and damage as an agenda item for the Sharm el-Sheik climate talks scheduled for November 2022 in Egypt.
The call became necessary, analysts say, following the failure to balance the insistence for the finance facility by poor nations and the veiled opposition from rich nations led by the USA and some European nations at last year's Glasgow climate talks.
From G77 countries to the African Group of Negotiators (AGN), from Least Developed Countries (LDC) to green advocacy groups, the groundswell of support for the financing facility has been massive, proving to be a litmus test for the talks.
Green groups, however, are wary of a fair outcome for the Bonn talks as ominous signs of goalpost-shifting tactics and empty talk shops appear on the horizon despite assurances of an "open, transparent process for all and a great appetite to make progress" made by Tosi Mpanu Mpanu, the chair of the Bonn climate talks.
Charles Mwangi of the Pan African Climate Justice Alliance (PACJA) urged negotiators in Bonn to be alive to the differentiated impacts of losses and damages to men, women, youth and the disabled and act following the established evidence.
"In the spirit of the urgency of the times we now live in, we call on parties to the UN framework convention on climate change (UNFCCC) to consider the role and capacity of Civil Society Organizations in loss and damage response and fast track mechanisms for easing access to climate finance to CSOs," Mwangi told PAMACC.
Keeping 1.5°C alive
Equally of concern to the V20 report is the need for more stringent mitigation action to keep the global mean temperature increase below 1.5°C.
Given that warming is set to progress to within 1.5ºC in the next decade regardless of further mitigation action, it is believed that economic losses would continue to increase except adaptation accelerates at a phenomenal rate both to prevent loss and damage at current levels, as well as to offset the growth in economic losses and damage that will be generated as temperatures continue to rise.
Nearly all V20 economies have already warmed to mean temperatures that are far beyond what would be optimal for generating economic growth, and thereby instead incur economic losses – additional warming will only carry V20 economies further from the optimum, greatly increasing the risks of losses in the future.
The V20 Group of Finance Ministers of the Climate Vulnerable Forum is a dedicated cooperation initiative of economies systemically vulnerable to climate change. The V20 works through dialogue and action to tackle global climate change.
About 25 countries in Africa and the middle-east are members of the V20. These include Benin, Ghana, Rwanda, Kenya, DR Congo and Malawi. Others are Eswatini, Palestine, Tunisia and Yemen while 19 Asia-pacific countries such as Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and the island nations alongside 11 Latin America and the Caribbean countries of Haiti and Honduras make up the rest.
BONN, Germany (PAMACC Newa) - Today, delegates from close to 200 countries in Bonn began negotiations that will shape the agenda for the 27th Conference of Parties (COP27) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) scheduled for November 2022 in Sharm el-Sheik, Egypt.
Known as the 56th session of the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA), the Bonn talks hold from 6-16 June 2022 as Russia's invasion of Ukraine overshadows the threat of rising emissions. This year's SBSTA meeting, analysts say, provides an opportunity to gauge the resolve of nations facing a catalogue of crises, including escalating climate impacts, geopolitical tensions, bloodshed in Ukraine and the threat of a devastating global food crisis.
The SBSTA Chair, Tosi Mpanu Mpanu, expressed confidence that despite the challenging geopolitical context this year, climate change remains very high on the agenda of governments.
"Climate change is the biggest threat to life and livelihoods we face. We need to underline that climate change is the biggest issue of our time. In the last months, we have seen a lot of eagerness from governments to get down to work in Bonn. We have seen a lot of work at workshops and other events. There is a great appetite to make progress," Mpanu Mpanu added.
Imperative of progress
Outgoing UN Climate Change Executive Secretary, Patricia Espinosa called on governments not to be deterred as the meeting in Bonn is holding against the backdrop of accelerating climate impacts and geopolitical tension.
Espinosa underscored the urgency of political-level interventions and decisions required in each of the focal areas for negotiations to achieve a balanced package. These areas according to her, include mitigation, adaptation, loss and damage, and finance and means of implementation.
"It is not acceptable to say that we are in challenging times, even though we are. But they know that climate change is not an agenda we can afford to push back on our global schedule.
We need decisions and actions now, and it is incumbent on all nations to make progress here in Bonn in the coming two weeks."
"And we must understand that climate change is moving exponentially -- we can no longer afford to move incrementally. We can no longer afford to make just incremental progress. We must move these negotiations along more quickly. The world expects it," she added.
According to the UN climate chief, doing so will send a clear message that "we are headed in the right direction.
Because the world will have one question in Sharm El-Sheikh: what progress have you made since Glasgow?"
At COP 26 in Glasglow last year, countries agreed to submit stronger 2030 emission reduction targets to close the gap to limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees C (2.7 degrees F).
Glasglow talks also agreed that developed countries should urgently deliver more resources to help climate-vulnerable countries adapt to the dangerous and costly consequences of climate change that they are feeling already — from dwindling crop yields to devastating storms.
Through the Glasgow Climate Pact, countries made bold collective commitments to curb methane emissions, halt and reverse forest loss, align the finance sector with net-zero by 2050, ditch the internal combustion engine, accelerate the phase-out of coal, and end international financing for fossil fuels. Net-zero means total emissions are equal to or less than the emissions removed from the environment.
Espinosa's poser on what has been achieved since Glasgow is expected to propel negotiators towards accelerating real progress towards climate action as COP27 beckons.
Non-state actors on board
In addition to the efforts of governments to increase ambition to tackle climate change, COP26 in Glasgow marked a significant shift towards stronger non-Party stakeholder involvement, which is expected to continue in Bonn.
The SBSTA Chair has asked negotiators to ensure openness and transparency as Non-Party stakeholders are to provide input to several streams of work launched in Glasgow.
One of these streams relate to the Global stock take – a process that will assess progress on the implementation of the Paris Agreement – as well as the Glasgow Dialogue on loss and damage.
However, African non-party stakeholders under the aegis of the Pan African Climate Justice Alliance (PACJA) have expressed deep concerns on the continued push by the global north for scientific attribution and quantification of loss and damage in total disregard of the science of climate change and evidence on loss and damage is already well-established.
Charles Mwangi, PACJA's Head of Programmes, in a statement, reminded negotiators that the 1.5C Report of 2018 issued by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) asserts that "residual risks" will rise as temperatures increase. The report further ranks Africa as the most vulnerable continent, with foreseeable catastrophes like those seen in Malawi, South Africa, Mozambique, and Chad, amongst other African nations.
Based on these risks, African civil society leaders are in Bonn to demand, as a basic minimum, that loss and damage become a permanent priority agenda in climate negotiation processes right from SBSTAs to COPs.
The African non-party actors equally lent their voice to the call for the establishment of a dedicated "Loss and Damage Finance Facility" and relaxation of several complexities barring access to the Green Climate Fund (GCF) made earlier today by Developing countries under the banner of G-77.
PACJA believes that the establishment of a special finance facility for loss and damage response is in line with article 8 of the Paris Agreement.
"These finances for loss and damage should be predictable in quality and quality and should be separate from the Adaptation Fund and the GCF," they said.
BONN, Germany (PAMACC News) - Developing countries under the banner of G-77 & China have called for establishment of a dedicated “Loss and Damage Finance Facility,” and relaxation of several complexities barring access to the Green Climate Fund (GCF), as the 56th session of the subsidiary bodies (SB-56) under the United Nations Climate Change Conference (UNFCCC) kick off in Bonn, Germany.
“Full operationalization of the Santiago Network on Loss and Damage at COP-27 is critical,” said Munir Akram, the Pakistan’s ambassador to the UN and the current Chair of the 134 member states that form the G-77 & China.
The ‘Santiago Network on Loss and Damage’ is an initiative launched by the UNFCCC to connect vulnerable developing countries with providers of technical assistance, knowledge, resources they need to address climate risks comprehensively in the context of averting, minimizing and addressing loss and damage.
“The G-77 & China is united in our ask for the establishment of a dedicated “Loss and Damage Finance Facility” as an intended tangible outcome to which the Glasgow Dialogue on Loss and Damage must contribute,” Ambassador Akram told delegates at the ongoing SB-56 conference in Germany.
According to the G – 77 & China, substantial progress must be made at the ongoing conference in terms of agreement on its structure, operating modalities, and other aspects, while doing so in a manner that will ensure that the Santiago Network is fit for purpose in light of its functions as agreed in Warsaw, to catalyze and deliver on the ground the technical assistance and other support needed by developing countries to avert, minimize and address loss and damage arising from climate change.
For example in Africa, several communities in Malawi, Madagascar and Mozambique are yet to recover from different cyclones that bedevilled the region in the recent past. According to a recent study released by the World Weather Attribution (WWA) group, the tropical storms that hit the region earlier this year were made worse by the increase in global temperatures, making such communities eligible for support from the Loss and Damage Finance Facility.
In the same vein, the G-77 & China further said that there is urgent need to bridge the huge gap between adaptation planning and implementations.
“On progress of the National Adaptation Plans (NAPS), there seems to be some disconnect between what is being planned, and what is being implementation on ground. Discussion on adaptation continuum must be connected with a reliable financial mechanism,” said Ambassador Akram noting that it is only implementation that will fulfill the objectives of the NAPs.
However, the G-77 & China noted that main challenges remain in accessing GCF support due to a myriad of complexities surrounding the GCF NAP readiness Support Programme. Procedural complexities, un-standardized formats and long review processes of submitted proposals are but a few examples.
According to the latest report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), vulnerable countries will not be able to adapt to global warming beyond the 1.5°C limit. The Working Group 3 for the report shows that countries are not on track, but also makes it clear that it is still possible to limit warming to 1.5°C.
In the same breath, Ambassador Akram expressed confidence that this year, there is a clear expectation from developing countries to see substantial progress on key deliverables and outcomes on adaptation, including on the Global Goal on Adaptation, at SBs-56 as well as at COP-27, which will be held in Egypt towards the end of the year.
The 56th session of the Subsidiary Body for Implementation (SBI) and the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA) will continue in Bonn until June 16, 2022.
The SBSTA and the SBI are bodies that give advice to the Conference of Parties (COP), and each has a specific mandate. They are both open to participation by any Party, and governments often send representatives who are experts in the fields of the respective bodies.
NAIROBI, Kenya (PAMACC News) - Individuals, communities, civil society, businesses and governments around the world marked World Environment Day under the theme #OnlyOneEarth, with official celebrations held in Stockholm and host country Sweden announcing a ban on issuing new licenses for the extraction of coal, oil, and natural gas from 1 July this year to protect people and planet.
Announcing the ban at the official Word Environment Day celebrations in Stockholm, Sweden’s Minister for Climate and the Environment, Annika Strandhäll, said, “Making the green jobs of the future by accelerating the climate transition is one of the top priorities for the Swedish government. As part of our efforts to implement our climate ambitions, we must take actions against activities that have a negative impact on our health and our environment.”
“Our message to the global community is clear. The winners in the global race will be the ones that speed up the transition, not the ones that lag behind and cling to a dependency on fossil fuels,” she added.
Tens of millions of people around the world joined global conversations on social media demanding urgent action to conserve and restore the environment. Tens of thousands organized their own activities, including the planting of millions of trees, cleaning trash and taking actions to highlight that there is #OnlyOneEarth.
2022 marks the 49th time World Environment Day has been celebrated. It was established following the UN Conference on the Human Environment in Stockholm in 1972, and is celebrated annually on 5 June, with a different country hosting it each year. This year’s theme – #OnlyOneEarth – mirrors the theme of the first World Environment Day in 1973. It calls for collective, transformative action on a global scale to celebrate, protect and restore our planet.
“Fifty years ago, the world’s leaders came together at the United Nations Conference on the Human Environment and committed to protecting the planet. But we are far from succeeding. We can no longer ignore the alarm bells that ring louder every day,” UN Secretary-General António Guterres said in his World Environment Day message.
“The recent Stockholm+50 environment meeting reiterated that all 17 Sustainable Development Goals rely on a healthy planet,” he added. “We must all take responsibility to avert the catastrophe being wrought by the triple crises of climate change, pollution and biodiversity loss.”
The official event, held at the Tekniska Museet in Stockholm, included a discussion between Ms. Strandhäll, Inger Andersen, Executive Director of the UN Environment Programme, and young people.
“The triple planetary crisis is accelerating, and why? Because we consume 1.7 planets a year. We have only one Earth. We have to accept that we're not doing enough to protect it,” Inger Andersen, Executive Director of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) said at the event. “I stand before you because we have to do better. We know what to do. The science has told us we have to end fossil fuels. We have to restore nature to its full glory. We have to transform our food systems. We have to make our cities green.”
Around the world, countries and communities acted on World Environment Day to make a real difference to their environments. Religious leaders came together to sign a landmark appeal on climate-responsible finance. These organisations will only engage with financial institutions that are aligned with the Paris Agreement objective of limiting global warming to 1.5° C.
In India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the LiFe initiative to raise awareness about sustainable lifestyles.
New Zealand’s Government announced on World Environment Day that the Styx Living Laboratory and partners will receive $4.12 million of Jobs for Nature funding to protect the Styx River (Pūharakekenui).
Argentina has adopted the exotic invasive species national strategy, including joint management plans with Chile, while Paraguay will launch the Paraguay + Verde project to address climate change after receiving financial support of US$50 million from the Global Environment Facility.
To commence on World Environment Day, Singapore’s Quest Global, one of the world’s fastest growing engineering services firms, announced its Quest Global Pledge – a global reforestation drive. In partnership with One Tree Planted, the firm will plant 500,000 trees globally by 2025.
In conjunction with the United Nations Association Canada, and with funding from Environment and Climate Change Canada, an official event will launch a curriculum on Indigenous Conservation across Canada.
Uruguay announced that it will start participatory processes towards work on its second Nationally Determined Contributions towards the Paris Agreement Goals.
PAMACC News: The world’s largest meat company, JBS, has increased its greenhouse gas emissions by a staggering 51% over the last five years and is now responsible for greater emissions than Italy’s annual climate footprint, new research finds. It is approximately equivalent to fossil fuel giant Total’s 2020 emissions. r
A coalition of campaign groups – including the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy (IATP), Feedback and Mighty Earth – have expressed outrage at JBS’s supersized climate emissions, which place it at odds with its own corporate emissions reduction strategy just one year on from its ‘Net Zero by 2040’ pledge. Ahead of the company’s annual general meeting (AGM) in São Paulo on 22 April, the coalition is urging JBS’s investors and customers to drop the Brazil-based company.
“JBS is one of the world’s worst climate offenders and that’s why we’re urging its key customers like giant supermarkets Carrefour, Costco and Tesco to drop JBS urgently,” said Alex Wijeratna, Campaign Director at Mighty Earth. “No company that buys meat from JBS can claim to be serious about climate change. JBS could easily implement systems that would end its links to deforestation and radically reduce its methane pollution. The fact that a single meat company can cause more pollution than an entire G7 member country should be a wake up call that we need a massive scale up of plant-based and cultivated protein, and we need it now.”
JBS’s top investors include Brazilian development bank BNDES, asset manager BlackRock, and Barclays and Santander banks. Its major customers in the retail sector include supermarket giants Carrefour, Costco, Tesco, Walmart and Ahold Delhaize. In the fast food sector, its customers include McDonald’s, Burger King and KFC.
Using a UN-approved methodology, new research contained in a media brief by IATP, Feedback and investigative website DeSmog, found that JBS – which processed 26.8 million cattle, 46.7 million pigs and 4.9 billion chickens last year – increased its annual GHG emissions by 51% in five years from 280 million metric tonnes (mmts) in 2016 to around 421.6 mmts in 2021. This is more than the annual climate footprint of Italy or Spain and close to that of France (at 443 mmt) and the UK (at 453 mmt).
The latest UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) assessment report has singled out livestock-related methane emissions, recommending they be slashed by a third by 2030 in order to hold global temperature rise to 1.5ºC. Instead, JBS’s emissions are set to jump even higher as it pursues aggressive expansion plans and seeks access to increased financing through a possible listing on an American stock exchange.
“It’s mind blowing that JBS can continue to make climate claims to investors, even as the company massively increases its emissions,” said Shefali Sharma, Europe director of the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy, which estimated in 2018 that JBS’s emissions were roughly half that of oil majors such as BP, Shell or ExxonMobil. “Our updated emissions estimates show clearly the harm being done by empty net-zero announcements. Investors gathering at today's AGM shouldn't be fooled by this greenwash. We need public, independent and accountable systems for monitoring these companies’ emissions. Governments need to step up and regulate these companies and support a transition out of this destructive model of industrial livestock production.”
With operations in 20 countries ranging from Brazil to the US and record annual revenues of $76 billion, JBS last year promised to achieve net zero emissions by 2040. However, its net-zero plans provide little detail and have been panned by campaigners for omitting so-called ‘Scope 3’ emissions – which represent up to 97% of JBS’s contribution to climate change. Scope 3 emissions encompass pollution from its entire supply chain: potent greenhouse gases such as methane emitted from livestock, as well as emissions from deforestation, forest fires, and land conversion, plus the production of animal feed, enteric fermentation, and the use of agrochemicals.
Carina Millstone, Executive Director of campaign group Feedback, said: “It's high time that banks and investors, many of whom have adopted their own 'net-zero’ targets and committed to end deforestation, ceased to bankroll climate chaos and the destruction of nature, by pulling the plug on their financial backing to toxic JBS and its subsidiaries.”
Hazel Healy, UK Editor of climate investigative news outlet DeSmog, said: “JBS is using the same greenwashing tactics we’ve seen employed by oil and gas majors for decades. It presents itself as a company with genuine climate ambition but fails to disclose its full emissions so they can be compared with the company’s public communications. And as this research shows, JBS’s emissions are increasing substantially, not decreasing.”
Launched alongside IATP’s JBS emissions revelations, a new report about the company by Mighty Earth – called The Boys From Brazil – highlights how JBS used corruption and massive government subsidies to finance the enormous international growth that put it into the climate super-polluter category in which it finds itself today.
The report highlights that JBS was responsible for an estimated 1.5 million hectares of deforestation in its indirect supply chains in Brazil since 2008 and warns that scandal-hit JBS has repeatedly broken its promises to stamp out deforestation in the Amazon or conserve other key ecosystems such as the Cerrado and the Pantanal. It also chronicles a long history of links to elite bribery, price-fixing, invasion of Indigenous lands, worker exploitation, modern-day slavery, and environmental pollution.