COP21 is a United Nations Conference hosted on national territory. The presidency and organization of this Conference have been entrusted to an interministerial team by the President of the French Republic, François Hollande. The whole government is committed to the success of this event. The role of presiding over COP21 has been delegated to Laurent Fabius, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Development.
The framing of strategy and support of civil society are decided by a ministerial “Steering Committee” made up of the following key figures:
The COP21 interministerial negotiating team consists of experts from several ministries: Foreign Affairs and International Development; Ecology, Sustainable Development and Energy; Finance and Public Accounts; and Agriculture, Agrifood and Forestry. It collaborates with an extensive network of correspondents in France and abroad. It is a team of around forty people, headed by the ambassador responsible for climate change negotiations, Ms Laurence Tubiana. She is supported by roving climate ambassadors.
The negotiating team is divided into four units:
– A “Paris agreement” unit, which includes legal experts, specialists in public policies on greenhouse gas emissions reduction and specialists in programmes on adaptation to climate change. It also includes experts in agriculture, forestry, and monitoring and evaluation mechanisms.
– A “bilateral and multilateral relations” unit which, in liaison with the French diplomatic network, keeps track of countries’ initiatives and in particular, their national energy and climate policies. These are presented in plans or “national contributions”, which set targets for reducing emissions and building adaptation capacities. This unit also monitors the various programmes led by regional and international organizations.
– A “finance” unit works on the ways and means of mobilizing public and private financial resources to support international action against climate change. This unit also handles training and national capacity building.
– An “Agenda of Solutions” unit keeps track of international partnership initiatives aiming to implement a transition towards climate-resilient, low-carbon economies. It monitors and encourages coalitions between local authorities or companies, as well as projects to develop new technologies.
The General Secretariat for the preparation and organization of COP21 is an interministerial team of around twenty people on secondment, mainly from the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Ecology and the Interior. It is led by Ambassador Pierre Henri Guignard and works in close liaison with the negotiating team.
The General Secretariat is divided into six units:
– An “event logistics and sustainable development” unit is responsible for planning the facilities, reception and transport of participants on the Paris-Le Bourget site, in liaison with the secretariat of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). It liaises with the various service providers, registers the needs of the delegations of the 196 Parties to the Convention and the accredited observers, and oversees the delegations’ accommodation.
– A “safety and security” unit is charged with ensuring the safety and security of people and property during the Conference and the Pre-Sessional Meetings, until the end of COP21, in the area around the conference centre, on transport and accommodation sites, etc. This unit is managed by a prefect, works closely with the UNFCCC secretariat and is responsible for managing the accreditation of people authorized to access the Conference.
– The “civil security relations” unit is responsible for planning, setting up and running a civil society area, which will be located on the Paris-Le Bourget site, near COP21. This debate and dialogue area will host conferences, side events, cultural exhibitions and stands. This unit is a key interlocutor of the UNFCCC civil society team and the civil society focal points working within the framework of the negotiations.
– The “communication and press” team is setting up a communication system, taking into account the political targets set by the ministers and the needs of the United Nations. This unit focuses on two main areas: media and the press, and digital communication; it aims to promote COP21 as widely as possible and raise public awareness of this major event.
– The “public-private partnerships” unit is responsible for approaching businesses and requesting financial contributions or contributions in kind, involving their products, expertise and skills (contributions eligible for the corporate sponsorship tax regime).
– An “administration and finance” unit monitors the specific budget programme for the 2015 Paris Climate Conference, created under the budget act for 2015 to cover spending linked to the preparation and organization of the Conference.