Exploring the Paris Agreement Balance

Continuing the joint JPI Climate and DG RTD Workshop series, a 3rd workshop "Practical experiences of carbon neutrality" was organised in Brussels on 12-13 November 2018.  New collaborative activities on future research and innovation initiatives that JPI Climate member countries can consider for funding, including research calls, knowledge hubs, and other initiatives were explored.

Becoming “carbon neutral” or “climate neutral” is rising up in many agendas, in particular since the Paris Agreement requires a balance between greenhouse gas sources and sinks before the end of the century. To achieve this globally, action must be taken at every level – from local communities to cities to countries, from small businesses to large companies to whole industrial sectors.

The main aim of this workshop was to explore how different actors at all levels are motivating and advancing the pledged change. What is their motivation for action? Which methods and indicators are being used to track progress? Are there barriers that are hindering progress? How can we collectively learn from the experiences of the early adopters of net-zero targets? 

This workshop allowed a range of different actors in the field of carbon neutrality to come together to share experiences and knowledge. The participants gained insights into what might work for them, and also was an opportunity to build networks or other structures for future collaboration. There were a range of participants, including researchers and those on the science-policy interface, in addition to actors in government, business and industry, communities who implement carbon or climate neutrality plans. The aim was to bring together people with a mutual interest in the topic, but who usually operate within different networks.

This activity was the third in a series of workshops aimed at exploring the concept of carbon neutrality, and the balance between sources and sinks of greenhouse gases. The first workshop explored scientific and technical aspects related to what a balance between sources and sinks of GHGs means in the Paris Agreement context. The second dealt with issues related to data for assessing progress towards achieving that balance. There will be a report summarising all of the workshops, which will be a record of topics that were discussed and knowledge that was shared.

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JPI Climate Central Secretariat, Sunday 9 December 2018