Learn Everything From the Significance of the Egypt Climate Conference to its Agenda and History in #ClassesWithNews18

Learn Everything From the Significance of the Egypt Climate Conference to its Agenda and History in #ClassesWithNews18

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Egypt will host the 27th session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in Sharm El-Sheikh in November 2022. The summit popularly called COP is a conference to discuss future roadmaps for sustainability and managing climate changes.

The COP 27 was originally expected to take place from 8-20 November 2021. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, COP 26 was rescheduled from November 2020 to November 2021. As a result, COP 27 is taking place from November 6-18.

While World leaders are discussing action to tackle climate change, let us understand more about the UN climate summit:

What is the UN climate summit?

The United Nations Climate Change Conferences are yearly conferences held in the framework of the UNFCCC. The summits are held for governments to agree on steps to limit global temperature rises. They are referred to as COPs, which stands for “Conference of the Parties”.

These formal meetings majorly assess progress in dealing with climate change. Ever since the conference’s first iteration in Berlin in 1995, the UN climate summit continues to rotate annually among the five UN classified regions: Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean, central and eastern Europe, and western Europe

History and Significance of COPs

In 1992, the UN organised the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in which the UNFCCC was adopted and its coordinating agency – what we know now as the UN Climate Change secretariat – was put into place.

During these meetings, nations have negotiated various extensions of the original treaty to establish legally binding limits on emissions, for example, the Kyoto Protocol in 1997 and the Paris Agreement adopted in 2015, in which all countries of the world agreed to step up efforts to try and limit global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial temperatures, and boost climate action financing.

In this treaty, nations agreed to “stabilize greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere to prevent dangerous interference from human activity on the climate system”. So far, 197 different parties have signed it.

Since 1994, when the treaty entered into force, every year the UN has been bringing together almost every country on earth for global climate summits. During these meetings, nations have negotiated various extensions of the original treaty to establish legally binding limits on emissions

COP27 Agenda

COP27 will build on the outcomes of COP26 to deliver action on an array of issues critical to tackling the climate emergency – from urgently reducing greenhouse gas emissions, building resilience, and adapting to the inevitable impacts of climate change, to delivering on the commitments to finance climate action in developing countries.

Faced with a growing energy crisis, record greenhouse gas concentrations, and increasing extreme weather events, COP 27 seeks renewed solidarity between countries, to deliver on the landmark Paris Agreement, for people and the planet.

While COP 26 in Glasgow saw many pledges made inside and outside the negotiation rooms regarding net-zero commitments, forests protection, and climate finance, among many other issues. According to the Presidential vision statement, COP 27 will be about moving from negotiations, and “planning for implementation” for all these promises and pledges made.

Ahead of the meeting, countries were asked to submit ambitious national climate plans. COP 27 will focus on three main areas: reducing emissions, helping countries to prepare for and deal with climate change, and securing technical support and funding for developing countries for climate activities.

Some areas not fully resolved or covered at COP 26 will be picked up. This includes loss and damage finance which is basically the money to help countries recover from the effects of climate change, rather than just prepare for it.

Other issues which could be covered include the establishment of a global carbon market to price the effects of emissions into products and services globally and also the strengthening of commitments to reduce coal use. There will also be themed days on issues including gender, agriculture, and biodiversity.

About 45,000 registered COP27 participants representing parties, UN and regional organizations, businesses, and the scientific community are expected to arrive for the summit.

Egypt Hosting COP 27

While this will be the fifth time a COP has been hosted in Africa, the selection of Egypt as a host country attracted controversy ahead of the summit due to the country’s human rights record.

The region’s governments hope it will draw attention to the severe impacts of climate change on the continent. Africa is one of the most vulnerable regions in the world as per the IPCC. Currently, 20 million people are estimated to be facing food insecurity in east Africa because of drought.

However, some human rights and climate campaigners say the government has stopped them attending because they have criticised its rights record.

India at COP 27

India has said that it will stress the action in climate finance, technology transfer, and capacity building at the summit. The Indian delegation to COP27 will be led by Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change Bhupender Yadav.

India will support a plan of action that answers the needs of developing countries. Adaptation and loss and damage are two issues at the center of attention, and progress on these two issues will complement each other.

There will be an India pavilion in Sharm-El-Sheikh themed on LIFE (Lifestyle for Environment), a theme frequently articulated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The pavilion will showcase India’s leadership and achievements on climate action and will have at least 50 organisations hosting side events.

Who will attend COP27?

More than 200 governments have been invited. Having previously announced he would not go, UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak tweeted that he would attend the summit. However, it is unclear if Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi will attend.

Former UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson is also going, but King Charles will not be there, following government advice. Vladimir Putin is not due to go, although Russian delegates are still expected to take part.

Other countries, including China, have not confirmed whether their leaders will attend. Environmental charities, community groups, think tanks, businesses, and faith groups will also take part.

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