A look at what to expect as the latest UN climate talks begin in the oil-rich United Arab Emirates


DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — The Middle East is hosting a second consecutive U.N. climate conference over the next two weeks, with countries expected to agree on new ways to keep the planet from getting too hot by the end of the century. are doing. Distractions abound, most notably the war between Israel and Hamas.

Dubai in the United Arab Emirates will welcome thousands of attendees to the 28th “Conference of the Parties” to the UN climate summit from Thursday to December 12, raising doubts over how far the oil-rich country will go to help end climate change. Will go. This crisis is largely driven by fossil fuel use.

Here’s a look at the background, stakes and challenges ahead of COP28.

What’s happened since the last one?

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“Practically the entire world is experiencing heat waves,” Petteri Taalas, the head of the U.N. weather agency, said earlier this month.

Signs are growing that the world – especially developing countries – is increasingly unprepared for this year’s monsoon season Nearly $1.5 billion worth of property was damaged in India. tropical storm daniel Deadly floods hit Libya in September. Last month, Hurricane Otis beat mexicoThis has raised fears that the government will spend more money on reconstruction rather than helping people cope.

Even if extreme cold returns – as is currently happening in northern Europe – the overall trend lines point towards rising average global temperatures.

What is this cop’s stake?

Some experts and policy makers expect a major breakthrough this year.

The 2015 Paris climate agreement set a goal of limiting global temperature increases to 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 Fahrenheit) since the beginning of the industrial age – and the world is very little is happening so far,

Many experts say that to meet that goal, carbon output in the atmosphere must peak next year and fall by about half by 2030.

Western countries are among those promoting the ambition to triple renewable energy capacity and double energy efficiency by that year. Advocacy groups say this is trimming around the edges and avoiding the main issue: reducing the burning of coal, oil and gas.

One debate will be about “down” or “out”: whether countries agree to phase out the use of fossil fuels, as some want, or eliminate them altogether – climate campaigners say. A lofty goal that is unlikely to be seriously considered in the Gulf country. ,

Global warming has wide-ranging implications: it could upend local economies, upset weather patterns, drive people to migrate, and cause devastation to those indigenous peoples, along with many other effects. who want to maintain their traditional cultures.

There will be another challenge in Dubai raise money To help poor countries prepare for, respond to, and respond to climate-related disasters. Last year, “the construction of” loss and damage fund “Was a huge accomplishment – ​​but figuring out how to fill it has been difficult.

Organizers say it is the largest COP ever and King Charles will join Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, US climate czar John Kerry and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz. Pope Francis had planned to attend, but canceled on doctor’s orders as he recovered from respiratory problems.

Sultan al-Jaber, head of Abu Dhabi National Oil Co. who is chairing COP28, will be scrutinized over his country’s apparent interest in oil and his call for a renewable-energy transition. Many want to know whether the oil-rich Gulf countries will spend more money to help developing countries adapt to climate change and switch to green technologies.

Governments of developing countries want help to combat the ill effects of heat, which has a particularly severe impact on them and has arisen through little or no fault of their own.

Rich world countries will try to score political points in the global community in an increasingly polarized world, whether by providing aid to needy countries or by sharing information from their economic engines – without forgetting their constituencies.

Climate campaigners want to hold those wealthy nation’s decision makers accountable for any lofty but unfulfilled past promises they have made – and press for greater ambitions to change the way we live from Tokyo to Tegucigalpa to Timbuktu. Are.

Every police officer’s hopes turn into reality.

Like last year, when Russia’s war in Ukraine was the backdrop to efforts to fight climate change, this year many eyes are elsewhere in the Middle East — Israel’s military in Gaza following Hamas’ devastating attack on Israel last month. On campaign.

One challenge will be to refocus attention on climate matters, which often subside after heat waves subside.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres traveled to Antarctica in recent days to highlight concerns about melting ice. Many companies bow out of COP28: For example, US agribusiness company Cargill this week announced an “accelerated commitment” to end deforestation – critic Said it didn’t work enough – In Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay.

Developing countries want to benefit from luxuries that the rich world has long enjoyed – often by emitting huge amounts of carbon. buying of gas guzzling suv And larger cars are on the rise around the world, even as electric vehicles are making more and more inroads.

Inflation pressures have pushed up the cost of living in recent months, making the purchase of cleaner – often expensive – technologies less attractive, and many consumers seeking lower gasoline prices. Many countries continue to subsidize fuel costs to limit the pressure on the pocketbook.

Associated Press climate and environmental coverage receives support from several private foundations. See more about AP’s climate initiative Here, AP is solely responsible for all content.

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