COP27-A success or failure?

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Climate change in recent years has hit the earth with many natural disasters including floods, droughts, etc. COP has been organized by the UN for nearly three decades. Every year, the UN invites a country to the summit COP making climate a global priority. We will look into whether was COP27 a success or a failure.

COP stands for Conference of Parties under the UN. It was organized in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt. This year’s agenda included implementing the outcomes of COP26 on the climate emergency.

This year the head of the key negotiating Group of 77 – 134 developing countries – was Pakistan. Pakistan has been dealing with the worst floods in its history, which resulted in 1717 people dead and dealing an estimated $US40 billion in damage. Having very low carbon emissions, Pakistan has found itself on the front lines of climate disasters. Carbon Brief’s analysis of disaster records in Africa indicates that “extreme weather events have killed at least 4,000 people and affected a further 19 million since the start of 2022.”

Five-Year Work Programme Launched

A new five-year work program at COP27 today to promote climate technology solutions in developing countries was launched by the UN Environment Program (UNEP) and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The Technology Executive Committee (TEC) and Climate Technology Centre and Network (CTCN) – the two bodies of the Technology Mechanism under the UNFCCC and Paris Agreement are part of this program.

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Simon Stiell, UNFCCC Executive Secretary said, “Time is running out to achieve the key goals of the Paris Agreement. The rapid scaling up and effective transfer of climate technologies are imperative to limit the global average temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius and to build resilience to climate change. Unlocking appropriate climate technologies worldwide requires a revitalized Technology Mechanism, and that’s the goal of this new work program.”

Loss and Damage Fund

After extensive debate on reducing carbon emissions and the fund, stakeholders reached an agreement to establish the Loss and Damage Fund. This fund aims to provide financial assistance to developing and vulnerable countries affected by the climate crisis.  

Sherry Rehman, Pakistan’s minister for climate change, appreciated the decision, saying, “It gives some credibility to the COP process.” “The announcement offers hope to vulnerable communities all over the world who are fighting for their survival from climate stress. Now it’s up to the transitional committee to move it forward by December 2023 as decided.”

Yet, there has been a failure at committing to phasing out the use of fossil fuels.

Climate scientists and experts have cautioned that limiting global warming requires taking strict and strong action.

Oil-producing countries expressed reservations about restricting fossil fuels; last year’s agreement had limited it to coal power.

U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres said, “A fund for loss and damage is essential—but it’s not an answer if the climate crisis washes a small island state off the map—or turns an entire African country to desert. The world still needs a giant leap on climate ambition.”

Conclusion

It takes a team effort to make a difference. All countries must come together to take charge of the earth. To ensure a better future, countries must let go of vested economic interests; otherwise, irreversible consequences like depleted ozone layers, rising temperatures, floods, and drought await.

Controlling all those actions that harm nature can collectively make a difference.

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