Why can’t COP27 just be a virtual meeting? Your questions answered


This story concept got here from viewers members, such as you, who received in contact with us. Send us all your questions about COP27 or local weather change. We are listening: ask@cbc.ca.

As world leaders and high-profile delegates talk about and debate the query of how one can clear up local weather change at COP27 in Egypt, we listened to your questions in regards to the local weather convention.

Let’s begin with the fundamentals. 

What is COP27?

Every yr the United Nations holds these conferences to get governments to agree on steps to restrict world warming as nations wrestle to chop down on greenhouse fuel emissions.

COP stands for “Conference of the Parties” and 27 just means it is the twenty seventh such occasion because the first COP assembly was held in Berlin in March 1995. This yr it’s happening in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, till Nov. 18.

What is the aim for COP27?

According to opening remarks by UN Secretary-General António Guterres the final word aim is to encourage motion in the direction of the world’s collective local weather targets dedicated to with the Paris Agreement in 2015.

So primarily, the overarching aim is limiting the worldwide common temperature rise this century to lower than 2 C, ideally nearer to 1.5 C above pre-industrial ranges. Guterres mentioned that aim will solely be potential if the world can obtain net-zero emissions by 2050. 

Julie Segal, a local weather finance professional from Environmental Defence, who’s attending the convention says “the litmus take a look at for this COP to be a success is to maneuver ahead with what’s known as a loss and harm fund mechanism.”

She says loss and harm funding would guarantee rich nations are offering funds to the nations bearing the heaviest burden of local weather change but have contributed much less to the local weather disaster itself.

World leaders must take heed to what the Global South wants by way of financing after which ship on the mitigation efforts, Segal mentioned.

WATCH | Who the Global South says ought to pay for the results of local weather change: 

Will wealthy nations pay for world local weather disasters?

Vulnerable nations are bearing the brunt of local weather change, although they aren’t those driving it. At COP27, leaders from the Global South will inform wealthy nations — the world’s highest greenhouse fuel emitters — that it is time to pay for damages.

Alden Meyer — a senior affiliate at E3G, a local weather change think-tank — who has been attending COP because it first began, says that slicing down on emissions globally and getting growing nations to adapt to local weather change are additionally fundamental problems with focus this yr, together with loss and harm funding. 

“Cross slicing all of them is finance [and] the necessity to mobilize considerably extra finance to do all three of these issues,” he mentioned.

What is at stake in these negotiations?

“The way forward for the planet is at stake,” mentioned Meyer.

The UN secretary-general delivered a comparable message when the convention started. 

“Humanity has a selection: co-operate or perish,” Guterres instructed delegates. He urged them to speed up the transition from fossil fuels and velocity up funding to poorer nations struggling beneath the results of local weather change to this point.

Despite many years of local weather talks, nations have failed to cut back world greenhouse fuel emissions, and their pledges to take action sooner or later are inadequate to maintain the local weather from warming to a stage scientists say will be catastrophic.

Guterres even went on to make the grim declaration that the shortage of progress to this point had the world rushing down a “freeway to hell.”

Has there been any progress since COP26?

At final yr’s assembly, world leaders agreed to transition away from fossil fuels and lower greenhouse fuel emissions quicker than up to now. All 193 nations concerned within the Paris Agreement agreed to revisit their nationally decided contributions (NDCs).

Most nations, together with Canada, haven’t submitted an up to date NDC since COP26. Here is the place you may see which nations have made submissions and the way strong their new commitments are.

Although world progress has been gradual, Meyer mentioned some has been made since COP26 in Glasgow final yr. 

According to present commitments, world emissions will improve by about 10 per cent by 2030, in comparison with 2010 ranges, Meyer mentioned. He notes that represents an enchancment over final yr’s evaluation, which discovered nations have been on a path to extend emissions by about 14 per cent.

“So sure, we’re making progress however nowhere close to the tempo that we have to, and we do not have sufficient time,” he mentioned.

Who is Canada sending to COP27? 

According to Environment and Climate Change Canada, this nation’s core delegation is round 335 members. 

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau just isn’t attending, as a substitute Environment and Climate Change Minister Steven Guilbeault is main the delegation. It consists of politicians and representatives from the enterprise and labour sectors, from most provinces and territories and there are additionally youth and Indigenous representatives.

Who pays for Canada’s attendees?

The federal authorities is paying for the participation of federal officers, Environment and Climate Change Canada mentioned to CBC News in an e-mail. 

It can also be serving to pay for as much as six representatives from every group: Indigenous Leaders, help workers, parliamentarians, youth representatives, and environmental non-governmental organizations.

All different members, whereas accredited to the Canadian delegation, have lined their very own prices.

Ottawa additionally says they’re working with all delegates to make sure that all carbon emissions from journey to the convention are offset.

Why can’t it be a virtual convention?

It would be inequitable, mentioned Eddy Pérez, worldwide local weather diplomacy director at advocacy group Climate Action Network Canada.

“This assembly is for world illustration. And in terms of world illustration, for many who are, are 12,13,14 hours away — the place the time zones are fully completely different, it is inequitable to drive them to align to our time zones,” he mentioned.

Segal agrees, saying it is necessary for delegations from the nations most weak to the local weather disaster to be capable of meet in particular person as equals.

“What’s actually necessary right here is for everybody to come back collectively, for all of these voices to be invited to the identical desk in order that individuals are held accountable for the guarantees that they made, individuals have their ears open to those that are on the entrance traces of the local weather disaster,” she mentioned.


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