Press releases

UN climate talks in Bonn leave a steep road to COP29

E3G press release

Foyer of World Conference Centre in Bonn. Photo by UNclimatechange on Flickr.
  • Diplomats met in Bonn (3-13 June) for the annual mid-year UN climate change talks. 
  • With 5 months to COP29, negotiations were a key opportunity to set high expectations and prepare for what governments must agree on in Baku this November.  
  • Overall progress has been limited on the core issues – especially negotiations on the new climate finance goal – and hard work lies ahead to pave the way for success at COP29. 


At the end of two weeks of negotiations, there remain significant speedbumps on the road to COP29. Progress on the centrepiece of COP29 – the new climate finance goal (new collective quantified goal, NCQG) – remains slow, and there are still significant divisions among Parties. When these negotiations pick up again in the autumn, Parties will need to move forward from their entrenched positions to finding common ground to deliver a satisfactory outcome in Baku.  

Bonn has also raised many questions about whether Parties are serious about implementing the outcomes from COP28’s Global Stocktake, especially its headline agreement to ‘transition away from fossil fuels’. COP29 marks the beginning of the deadline for all countries to submit new Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). These climate targets should be the natural home for governments to show how they’re accelerating their energy transition – yet currently, few countries seem to be on track to bring forward an ambitious NDC. Meanwhile, there has been pushback against possible routes to discuss its implementation at the UNFCCC – including the UAE Dialogue and the Mitigation Work Programme. 

The Bonn talks were also a key test of leadership for the Azerbaijan COP29 Presidency to steer Parties towards convergence across topics and intensify the mode of work to elevate political dialogue towards COP29. However, the Presidency kept a relatively low profile during the talks, offering very little new information on its vision and plans to achieve an ambitious outcome at Baku.  

All of this leaves a very steep pathway ahead for governments. An escalation of political dialogue will be vital if a breakthrough on negotiations is to be achieved, with key staging posts on the road to Baku including next month’s COP29 Presidency-hosted Heads of Delegation retreat, the China-hosted Ministerial on Climate Action in July, the UN General Assembly in September, and Pre-COP, the final set of NCQG negotiations, and the IMF-World Bank Annual Meetings in October. 


Alden Meyer, Senior Associate at E3G said: 

“The Bonn negotiations underscored how challenging it will be to live into the agreement by countries at COP28 on the need to cut global emissions by 43% by 2030, to help vulnerable communities cope with the mounting impacts of climate change, and to align the international financial system with achievement of both of these goals. As in past years, it will take hard work by ministers and leaders over the next several months to lay the groundwork for the political agreements that will make COP29 in Baku a success. We must create the conditions that will drive high ambition in the next round of national emissions reduction pledges due by early next year to give us a fighting chance to keep the 1.5C Paris temperature limitation goal in reach as is needed to avert even more devastating climate impacts than those people are already experiencing all across the world.” 

Tom Evans, Senior Policy Advisor, E3G said: 

“COP29 fires the starting gun on the race for countries to come forward with ambitious new 2035 climate targets. These will be make-or-break for efforts to limit global warming to 1.5C. But with just months to go, we’re still not hearing much enthusiasm from governments around the opportunity this offers for countries to carve clean development pathways. It’s time for a group of leading countries to step out of the shadows and set the bar for ambition, with plans showing how they will transition away from fossil fuels and help triple renewable energy this decade, as agreed at COP28. All eyes are on the G7, COP Troika and other major emitters to take the reins, starting at this September’s UN General Assembly.” 

Ana Mulio Alvarez, Researcher at E3G said: 

“Given the complexity and tensions around agreeing on this new climate finance goal, it is not surprising that without a sense of urgency, governments were not able to achieve much progress on the NCQG in Bonn. In the fall, when countries meet again to negotiate a new shorter streamlined text at Pre-COP, they will need to move beyond their entrenched positions to find each other. After all, if there is political will, there is a way. The new goal must be agreed on at COP29 to send a strong signal that the Paris Agreement is still alive, and that Parties are ready to address the gravity of the climate crisis.” 

–  ENDS – 

Available for comment 

Alden Meyer (EN), Senior Associate, (UNFCCC and G7/G20 dynamics, multilateral climate and clean energy diplomacy, mitigation ambition, climate finance, US policy and politics)   
m: +1-202-378-8619 |  

Tom Evans (EN), E3G Senior Policy Advisor, (climate ambition, the Global Stocktake, UNFCCC processes and COP29, climate diplomacy & geopolitics)   
m: +44 (0) 7931 317 327 |  

Pieter de Pous (EN, NL, DE), E3G Programme Lead, (Fossil Fuel Transition, NDCs)  
m: +49 160 6573414 |    

Ana Mulio Alvarez (EN, ES), E3G Researcher, (UNFCCC, loss and damage, adaptation, NCQG)  
m: +32 490 000 514 |   

Kate Levick (EN), E3G Associate Director and Co-Head of the Transition Plan Taskforce Secretariat, (International and UK sustainable finance, public and private sector finance, financial initiatives, climate disclosure, transition planning, financial regulation, non state actor accountability)   
m: +44 (0) 7860 861225 |  

Marc Weissgerber (EN, DE), E3G Berlin Country Director, (Finance, Energy, Diplomacy)  
m: +49  175 1974404 |   

Laura Sabogal Reyes (EN, ES, DE), E3G Senior Policy Advisor, (Public development banks, Paris Alignment and E3G Public Bank Climate Tracker Matrix, climate finance, nature finance, innovative financial mechanisms, country platforms)  
m: +49 160 96466368 |     

Notes to Editors 

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