September 30, 2022

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COP26 closes with a “compromise” climate deal, but not enough, says Antonio Guterres – Switzerland

Closing talks on the United Nations Climate Change Conference, COP26, in Glasgow (Scotland) on October 31. (UN Photo / Laura Quinones)

Although small and large advances have been made in the fight against global warming, many problems remain unresolved, despite the Paris Agreement remaining aimed at controlling global warming by 1.5 degrees. Commitments are ambitious to achieve that goal.

Climate change and the nearly 200 nations meeting in Glasgow (Scotland) on Saturday adopted a final document after the COP26 conference talks extended for another day, reflecting the interests, contradictions and government, according to the UN Secretary-General. Political preference in the world today.

“This is an important step, but it is not enough. The goal of controlling global warming to 1.5 degrees is to accelerate climate action to keep it alive,” Antonio Guterres said in a video statement released at the end of the two-week meeting.

He added that it was time to end fossil fuel subsidies, eliminate carbon, fix carbon, protect vulnerable communities and implement the $ 100,000 million climate aid commitment to the “emergency” system.

“We did not achieve these goals at this conference. But we have some elements to move forward with, ”he said.

Guterres had a message for young people, tribal communities, women leaders and all those leading the climate movement.

I know they are disappointed. But the path of progress is not always straight. Sometimes there are detours. Sometimes there are grooves. But I knew I could do it. We are in the struggle of our lives and this struggle must be won. Do not give up. Never back down. Push forward.

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Snapshot of the deal

The final document, this UN. As the results of the meetings are known, 197 countries are being asked to report on COP27 to be held in Egypt next year, moving towards a more climate ambition.

The last-minute amendment by China and India softened the language previously spread in the draft text on “the gradual elimination of unstable carbon energy and inefficient fossil fuel subsidies.” As adopted on Saturday, the text cites the “gradual elimination” of coal use.

The agreement calls for tougher deadlines for governments to renew their emissions reduction plans.

On the thorny issue of developing countries’ financial support to mitigate the impact of climate change, the text underscores the need to mobilize climate funding from all sources to achieve the objectives of the Paris Agreement, including significantly increasing support for developing countries, exceeding $ 100 billion a year.

Less bad results

During the last full reserve session, many countries regretted that the agreed results were not sufficient. Some called this a “disappointment”, but at this point it was generally recognized that it gave symmetry to what nations could admit and their differences.

Countries like Nigeria, Palau, the Philippines, Chile and Turkey, despite their shortcomings, support the text broadly.

“This is a step forward, but it is not in line with the progress required. It will be too late for the Maldives. This agreement does not give us hope in our hearts,” the Maldives’ chief negotiator said in a bitter speech.

U.S. Climate Ambassador John Kerry described the speech as “a powerful statement” and assured delegates that his country would engage creatively in a dialogue on two issues that are the most difficult to acknowledge, loss and damage and adaptation.

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New Zealand’s top negotiator concludes.

Other key achievements of COP26

Beyond talks and political leaders, COP26 shared 50,000 participants online and in person with innovative ideas, solutions to global warming, participation in cultural events and the formation of partnerships and alliances.

Several encouraging announcements were made during the conference. One of the most important is that the leaders of more than 120 countries, which represent 90% of the world’s forests, have pledged to stop and reforest deforestation by 2030.

The United States and the European Union have also pledged to reduce methane emissions by more than 100 countries by 2030.

On the other hand, more than 40 countries – including major coal consumers such as Poland, Vietnam and Chile – have agreed to abandon coal, one of the largest producers of CO2 emissions.

The private sector has shown strong commitment to nearly 500 global financial services companies.

Moreover, to the surprise of many, the United States and China have pledged to push for climate cooperation over the next decade. In the joint statement, they agreed to take action on a number of issues, including methane emissions, conversion to clean energy and carbonation. They reaffirmed their commitment to stick with the 1.5 degree target.

With regard to green transportation, more than 100 national governments, cities, states and large corporations have signed the Glasgow Declaration calling for an end to the sale of fossil fuel heavy vehicles by 2040.

Over the past two weeks, there have been a number of “small” but equally motivating responsibilities, such as those of the 11 countries created beyond the Oil and Gas Alliance (BOGA). The governments of Ireland, France, Denmark and Costa Rica, as well as some sub-national governments, have begun the first such alliance to determine the completion date for national oil and gas exploration and extraction.

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A quick review of how we got here

In 1992, the United Nations hosted a major event in Rio de Janeiro called the Earth Summit, which adopted the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

Under the agreement, the countries agreed to “ensure greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere” to prevent hazardous interference from human activities in the climate system. Currently, 197 people have signed the agreement.

Since the agreement came into force in 1994, the UN has convened every year a conference on climate change or “COP” that brings together all the nations of the planet, the “Conference of the Parties”.

This year should have been the 27th annual summit, but due to Covit-19, the conference had to be delayed by a year due to postponement last year, hence COP26.

Switzerland / ONU Notices (16.11.2021)