COP26 to be held in Glasgow next month and the G20 to be hosted by Italy in December are forums for really fruitful conversations on issues related to climate change, keeping global warming below 1.5°C and climate financing. It needs to be made memorable. The era of ambiguity, lack of strategy and involvement is already long over when it comes to tackling climate change.
In a webinar at the COP26 and G20 meetings, Lawrence Tubiana, architect of the Paris Agreement and CEO of the European Climate Foundation, co-founder of Global Optimism and former UNFCCC Executive Secretary Christiana Figueres, and Climate Vulnerable Forum Adviser Farhana Yamin. He expressed his views on what to expect from the world’s biggest polluting countries and issues related to climate finance, climate justice and regional deals.
Christiana said that it is clear that the first goal of COP26 should be to preserve the maximum limit of global warming, i.e. 1.5 °C, as a ‘temperature ceiling’. I’m addressing this as a ceiling here because we often read that this is a temperature target. Actually the target should be zero degree Celsius but now we would like to go beyond that and know it in terms of temperature range.
He said, “I think this will be discussed specifically at COP26. It can be roughly divided into two parts. First, we are very close to a 1.5°C increase and it reflects the intentions of the countries. Overall, however, there is no absolute guarantee of its implementation. Another reason is that we know that there is no guarantee that we will be able to maintain the limit of one and a half degrees Celsius. How can we get the car back on track by 2023? Brazil, Mexico, Australia and Russia are sadly far behind.”
Christiana added that, however, there is a ray of hope at the last minute. This is the action plan put forward by China, through which it is planning to achieve the goal of net zero by 2060. This is being told from the top level of the government. India has the potential to achieve its goal of renewable energy generation. Nigeria, South Korea and Saudi Arabia have come forward, but none of them are taking steps to keep the rise in global temperature below the 1.5 degree limit.
He said, “I believe that while the government is ignoring the urgency of climate change and science, they are not understanding the full importance of the troubles in the real economy, technology, corporate and financial sectors. Because if She would have felt more comfortable taking the bold step if she understood. The second point is that when it comes to the goal in COP26, the preservation of minimum credibility will be an important issue. It would be 100 billion which was promised long ago which is today not yet completed.
Christiana said that things are very good at the level of promises and claims to tackle climate change, but the steps are not enough. Especially given the time out of hand, I believe a comet is headed towards Earth, which has the potential to wipe out humanity. The science behind its urgency is quite clear. So obviously we don’t have time to make our choice among the options of ways to fight it. Frankly, it’s time for an appropriate response. Work in the right direction according to your capacity and resources. The reality is that from now to 2030, the quick response we need to respond to climate change has not yet been brought to the fore.
Farhana Yameen, advisor to the Climate Vulnerable Forum, said that efforts are being made to tackle climate change, but they are not getting much benefit because we need to make much bigger efforts than this. The Climate Vulnerable Forum is calling for a climate emergency agreement to restore confidence in international cooperation. We have to see where we stand at the moment. We have to act with an emergency approach to live up to the hopes of keeping global temperature rise below 1.5°C.
He said that in the COP15 held in 2009, the Climate Vulnerable Forum and many countries had demanded more stringent rules regarding pollution. The issue was raised once again at the 2015 summit in Paris. Now even after six years scientific and political theory could not be settled on this. We must ask why this delay took place. We have to see the big flaws and the big flaws and find solutions to them. Do not know how many times promises and legal obligations were broken. Now you have to build trust again. We also don’t hear any good things about delivery packages. After the year 2020, the delivery of this package stopped due to the Covid-19 epidemic. By the year 2025, $600 billion will be needed.
Lawrence Tubiana said that if we look at the previous UN assessment, then the emissions of polluting elements are increasing in the world. We can’t be happier with this at all. It is not a normal process everywhere in the world to change the economy by switching from fossil fuels to renewable energy. Honesty, seriousness and clarity are the pre-conditions for this. I believe everyone can understand that there is little clarity in plans and people are tired of the fact that commitments and goals are not tied to a coherent action plan. This diverts the issue of seriousness from its place.
He said that the ability of countries to access capital markets, the ability of public finance to circulate everywhere, requires a serious synergy between all private and public institutions. It is expected that such a mechanism can be put in place at COP26, which is going to be held in Glasgow. We should not wait for 2025. Countries should come out with a revised plan every next year.