The 93rd Meeting of the Executive Committee of the Multilateral Fund (ExCom 93) comes at a critical juncture. The meeting follows record-breaking monthly temperatures from June through November, with 2023 set to be the warmest year on record at a global mean near- surface temperature around 1.4°C above pre-industrial levels. The disastrous impacts of climate change are felt around the world on a daily basis.
This is the critical decade for action on climate. The historic US$ 985 million replenishment of the Multilateral Fund at MOP35 sets the scene for bold and ambitious decisions to be taken by the ExCom. It is therefore extremely disappointing that, of 23 KIPs submitted to this meeting, nine envision an actual increase in HFC consumption by 2029, compared to 2022. This is in direct contrast to the necessary “deep, rapid and sustained reductions in global greenhouse gas emissions of 43% per cent by 2030 and 60 per cent by 2035 relative to the 2019 level,” recently endorsed at the UN Climate Change Conference in Dubai (COP28).
COP28 also witnessed the launch of the Global Cooling Pledge, which aims to reduce cooling- related emissions across all sectors by at least 68% globally relative to 2022 levels by 2050. The Pledge commits signatories to “support robust action through the Montreal Protocol Multilateral Fund for early action to reduce HFC consumption and to promote improved energy efficiency for the HCFC phase-out and HFC phase-down”. EIA urges Parties to the Montreal Protocol to join the Pledge and ensure that the Protocol and the MLF are central to its implementation. With the first control measure for Article 5 (A5) Group 1 Parties starting next year, the HFC cost guidelines must be agreed to at this meeting. EIA urges ExCom to adopt flexible and generous HFC cost guidelines that will maximise opportunities for A5 Parties to accelerate actions under the HFC phase-down, improve energy efficiency, address stockpiles and banks and, wherever possible, avoid the uptake of environmentally damaging alternatives, namely hydrofluoroolefins (HFOs).