Global Warming Talks Sidelined At COP27?

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by Aaroshi Rathor
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COP27 is a raging topic among climate activists, business owners, government state heads, and all around the international media. While it has started on a slightly positive note with the announcement of ‘Loss and Damage’ climate finance funding, along with making health a topmost priority for all, the conference has been surrounded by a lot of critics and activists who have termed the event as ‘greenwashing.’ Various funds like OPEC’s multimillion-dollar fund have been launched at COP27 to combat the global climate crisis by providing opportunities for sustainable growth and slowly aiming towards a decarbonised economy. However, the atmosphere at the climate conference has taken a turn for the worse. 

Fossil fuel delegates and business owners from various industries are trying to hijack the climate conference for their own personal motivations. This year, 636 lobbyists from the oil and gas industries are attending the COP27 summit in Sharm-el-Sheikh in Egypt, as compared to 503 attendants at the previous COP held in Glasgow last year. Talking about the increase in fossil fuel personnel at the conference, Kwami Kpondzo from Friends of the Earth Togo said, “The explosion in the number of industry delegates attending the negotiations reinforces the conviction of the climate justice community that the industry views the COP as a carnival of sorts, and not a space to address the ongoing and imminent climate crisis.” 

Along with the lobbying, rich and poor nations have still not come to terms with how to deal with global warming together. While the announcement of ‘Loss and Damage’ finance funding is a first step towards taking accountability for the impact of climate change on the affected nations, it is still in the early stages, and with the climate crisis accelerating, one can only hope for some relief the fund could provide. Presently, it is tough to decipher the overall outcome of the funds and how ‘impactful’ they will be in combating climate change. Climate activists have time and again urged all countries to collaborate and come together to keep the global temperatures to a limit of 1.5 degrees Celsius, to avoid the horrendous consequences that come with climate change such as floods, drought, and food crises. 

However, with nations trying to sideline the importance of the 1.5 degrees Celsius mark for their own personal and political agendas, it is too big a cost for the planet to take on. At the previous COP26 in Glasgow, all countries had agreed to cut down global emissions by 45% by 2030 and to limit the average global temperature to 1.5 degrees Celsius. But, at this year's COP27, developed nations tried to push developing countries like India and China to revise their climate targets without providing any sort of supply of technology or finance. It is important to note that the rich nations wanted to change the goalposts set by the Paris Agreement that  all countries had initially agreed on. The battle for the famous blame game between developed and developing countries over the highest polluter has not been conceded and this poses a significant challenge in making any kind of progress towards combating climate change at the global level. 

At the G20 summit in Indonesia, some developing countries were of the opinion that at the current rate at which climate change is proceeding, limiting the global temperature to 1.5 degrees Celsius seems an impossible task. Climate talks failed as countries were unable to agree on a joint communiqué regarding climate targets. All these actions point to countries sidelining the topic of global warming and ignoring the brutal reality of climate change that is continuously wreaking havoc on our planet. 

COP27 is being seen as more of a business lobbying conference instead of a climate change conference. With countries focussing on the oil and gas industry narratives and pushing forward enormous funds for supposedly green financing for developing countries to tackle climate problems, the real goal of limiting the global temperature to 1.5 degrees Celsius has been unfortunately sidelined, and this will result in a climate catastrophe that might lead to more worldwide disasters that nations might not be fully prepared to deal with in the future. 

Visit our COP27 page for further news and developments.

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