COP28 opens in Dubai with calls for accelerated action and higher ambition against escalating climate crisis

by MMC
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The United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP28) will open on Thursday, November 30, with a resounding call to accelerate collective climate action.

The conference takes place during what is already known to be the hottest year on record in human history and as the impacts of the climate crisis wreak unprecedented havoc on human life and livelihoods around the world.

“It’s no longer about going around the world. If anyone in this climate movement feels that way, they better change,” said Henry Opondo Juma, advocacy manager at Pragmatic Social Action, Kenya, adding that as someone from Africa, I expect concrete steps towards a mechanism for financing losses and damages. a motion for increased funding for adaptation and recognition of special status for Africa in the context of climate change.

According to Juma, the recent report published by the UN Climate Change has clearly told us what needs to be done. “We need to raise our ambitions for national climate action plans (known as nationally determined contributions, or “NDCs”). If we succeed, these measures will collectively reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 2% below 2019 levels by 2030, when the science clearly shows that a 43% reduction is needed. he declared.

This year’s COP marks the conclusion of the “global stocktake,” the first assessment of global progress in implementing the 2015 Paris Agreement. The conclusions are grim: the world is not on track to limit the rise in temperatures to 1.5°C by the end of this century. It acknowledges that countries are developing plans for a net-zero emissions future and that the transition to clean energy is accelerating, but it makes clear that the transition is still far from fast enough to limit warming within ambitions current.

The global stocktake should be a catalyst for greater ambition in achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement as nations prepare to submit revised national climate action plans by 2025. It outlines actions on how to accelerate emissions reductions, build resilience to climate impacts and provide the support and financing needed for transformation.

“More than 160 world leaders are traveling to Dubai because only cooperation between nations can put humanity back in this race. But COP28 cannot be just a photo opportunity. Leaders must act – the message is clear,” said UN Climate Change Executive Secretary Simon Stiell. “And as leaders leave Dubai after the opening summit, their message to their negotiators must be just as clear: don’t return home without a deal that will make a real difference.”

Climate finance is at the heart of this transformation. Replenishing the Green Climate Fund, doubling financial resources for adaptation and operationalizing the loss and damage fund are essential to keeping 1.5°C warming within reach without leaving anyone behind.

“The reality is that without more funding to developing countries, a renewable energy revolution will remain a mirage in the desert. COP28 must make this a reality,” added Stiell.

Progress on climate finance at COP28 will be crucial to building confidence in other areas of negotiation and laying the foundations for an even more ambitious “new collective quantified target” for climate finance, which must be put in place next year. It will also pave the way for a just and inclusive transition to renewable energy and the phasing out of fossil fuels.

With conflicts and tensions rising around the world, Stiell highlighted the need for collaborative efforts to combat climate change, an area where nations can work together effectively to ensure a sustainable future for both people and people. the planet.

” We do not have time to lose. We must take urgent action now to reduce emissions. At COP28, every country and every company will be held accountable, guided by the north star: keeping 1.5°C within reach,” said COP28 President Dr Sultan Al Jaber.

“All parties must be prepared to make a very ambitious decision in response to the global record that reduces emissions while protecting people, lives and livelihoods,” Al Jaber added.

Egyptian Foreign Minister and COP27 President Sameh Shoukry said: “It is of crucial importance to continue to build on previous achievements, but more importantly to implement what we have already agreed. We cannot achieve our common goals without the participation of everyone, especially the countries of the South. We must start implementing climate justice and provide the necessary tools we already agreed in Sharm el-Sheikh to finance loss and damage, including the creation of a fund. One of the main outcomes of COP28 is that the fund is fully operational and financed.

Key events at COP28

THE Global Climate Action Summit (WCAS), hosted by His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the United Arab Emirates, will bring together heads of state or government on December 1 and 2, when the first part of the high-level segment of the COP28. A replay of the high-level segment will take place on December 9 and 10.

The WCAS provides Heads of State or Government with the opportunity to prepare the ground for COP28, build on decisions from previous Conferences of the Parties, increase climate commitments and promote coordinated action to combat climate change. climate change.

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