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The Parliamentary Observatory on Climate Change and Just Transition (OPCC) is a cooperation network carried out jointly by parliamentary leaders from various countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, with the main purpose of building up a regional agenda on climate ambition and just transition. This platform developed by the OPCC constitutes a shared information tool on the state of parliamentary procedures related to environmental bills and proposals as well as environmental legislation in the region.

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Background

The Parliamentary Observatory on Climate Change and Just Transition (OPCC, from the acronyms in Spanish) is an initiative carried out jointly by parliamentary leaders from various countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, with the aim of constituting a shared information tool on the status of legislation and the environmental parliamentary treatment in the region.

With the collaboration of ECLAC and the support of the Open Society Foundations (OSF), the Observatory hopes to contribute to the strengthening of inter-parliamentary cooperation so that those responsible for formulating policies can review and approve legislations relevant to the just transition to sustainable and low carbon economies. Likewise, the OPCC platform -available in Spanish, English and Portuguese- aims to promote the exchange of experiences and legislative proposals, the monitoring and analysis of legislative discussions, and to create a space for political and social dialogue.

Dialogues on just transition were held with parliamentarians to mobilize actors and map issues of interest for the construction of the Parliamentary Observatory. These dialogues included two high-level international seminars with political leaders from the region and the world, two parliamentary meetings, as well as a series of technical meetings. In parallel, letters were sent to the presidents of the environment commissions (or equivalents) of Latin America and the Caribbean’s parliaments with invitations to the construction process of the Parliamentary Observatory.

Within the framework of the 26th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP26) held in November 2021, fifteen parliamentarians from twelve countries in Latin America and the Caribbean signed a joint statement marking the announcement of the OPCC. Legislators from Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Curaçao, Guatemala, the Turks and Caicos Islands, the British Virgin Islands, Montserrat and Uruguay signed the joint statement.

Likewise, in November 2022, the OPCC participants signed a second joint statement, this time within the framework of COP27, reaffirming the commitment to co-construct a specific agenda of actions to promote access to information, transparency and mutual understanding of urgency, as well as the need to design and monitor climate policies. By reaffirming this commitment, the OPCC participants demonstrate the capabilities and objectives of the initiative to continue promoting the exchange of experiences and proposals, follow-up with legislators on climate policies, and the dissemination of government actions on just transition. In April 2023, twenty-five LAC legislators signed a new joint statement agreeing to promote actions on ecosystem conservation; financing framework and green and sustainable taxonomy; budgeting for sustainability; and sustainable and climate-resilient development and green industrialization towards a new economic model.

As one of the greatest contributions to this agenda, the OPCC launches the present data platform. This is is a transparent and for free instrument that provides a new way of seeing the legislative activity of countries, presenting indicators through a strong visual approach, with interactive graphs, action panels and comparable data in dashboard format. The platform is innovative not only for identifying and classifying data on environmental laws and decrees (current or repealed), but also for collecting data on environmental bills in progress in recent years in various LAC countries. The data is constantly updated to offer complete and reliable information to the user. For this reason, the free and creative use of available resources and tools is encouraged, which were designed to enable and facilitate broad and in-depth analysis of legislative activities in climate and just transition in LAC. In this sense, the expectation is that the OPCC data platform is a useful tool that highlights progress, opportunities for collaboration, and ways to advance on these issues in the region.


 

Parliamentary representatives

OPCC is an initiative that welcomes parliamentarians interested and active in the topics of climate change and just transition in countries of the Latin American and the Caribbean region. It is part of the continuous effort of the OPCC to search for new parliamentarian participants in order to increase the data collection of data in the OPCC Legislative Monitor, to exchange of good practices and to strengthen climate ambitions in the region. 


 

Goals

The general objective of the OPCC is to constitute a shared information tool on the state of environmental legislation and parliamentary procedures in the Latin America and the Caribbean region.

Its specific objectives are to:

  • Identify and classify the environmental legislation sanctioned (in force) by the Legislative Power of the participating States;
  • Identify and classify the parliamentary procedures under consideration (advanced legislative proposals) during the current legislative period in the specific commissions on environmental matters of the parliaments of the participating States;
  • Identify, analyze and comparatively summarize the status of the climate change framework legislation of the participating States.


 

Working structure

The Parliamentary Observatory gathers information from the participating States on environmental legislation sanctioned by the Legislative Power (in force), parliamentary procedures under consideration (advanced legislative proposals) and a comparative summary analysis on framework legislation on climate change. Information collected by the technical teams of the participating parliamentarians is included. The platform will be continuously updated voluntarily by teams of parliamentary advisors and ministerial focal points designated by the countries represented in the Platform, with the aim of providing a complete view of environmental legislation in Latin American and the Caribbean.


 

Background documentation

Within the framework of the 26th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP26) held in November 2021, fifteen parliamentarians from twelve countries in Latin America and the Caribbean signed a joint declaration that marked the announcement of the OPCC.    

In November 2022, the OPCC participants signed a second joint statement, this time in the framework of COP27, reaffirming the commitment to co-construct a concrete agenda of actions to promote access to information, the transparency, as well as the need to design and monitor climate policies, and which also communicates, among other initiatives, the beginning of the development process of the Observatory platform.    

In a third Joint Statement, signed at the first Parliamentary Summit on Climate Change and Just Transition in Latin America and the Caribbean , the legislators agreed, especially, to promote actions related to the conservation of ecosystems, financing framework and green and sustainable taxonomy; budgets for sustainability; and sustainable and climate-resilient development and green industrialization towards a new economic model.


 

How to navigate the platform?

This platform brings together various information resources developed by the OPCC, such as case studies of good legislative practices on just transition; Policy briefs, with comparative analyzes of legislation regarding strategic issues; joint declarations on issues of regional interest; as well as documents from workshops, meetings and conferences, addressed to parliamentary representatives and their teams. The main information resource of the OPCC lies in the Legislative Monitor, which includes innovative visualizations on the legislative activity of vairous countries, presenting key indicators, interactive graphics, action panels; and integrated and comparable data from a database built with the active and leading participation of the parliamentary representatives participating in the OPCC and their advisory teams, who contribute to the provision of updated legislative information from their countries.