Climate injustice in Glasgow Cop-Out-a global problem

  • View Authors: Jomo Kwame Sundaram, Anis Chowdhury (Sydney and Kuala Lumpur)
  • International news agency

Even if countries fulfill their commitments in the Paris Agreement, global warming is now expected to be 2.7°C higher than pre-industrial levels by the end of this century. Authoritative prediction It implies that if all the long-term commitments and goals of COP26 are met, the earth will still warm up 2.1? By 2100.

The United Nations Environment Programme says it is very likely Global warming catastrophically rises by more than 1.5°C In the next two decades. Earlier policy goal-to halve global carbon emissions by 2030 and achieve “Net zero‘Emissions by 2050-are now considered insufficient.

The 26th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in Glasgow (COP26) was touted as the world’s “last best hope” for saving the planet. Many speeches mentioned disturbing trends, but the leaders of the countries most responsible for greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions offered little help.

As a result, the developing countries were betrayed again. Although their contribution to accelerating global warming is small, they are suffering the most serious consequences. They have to pay most of the costs for “loss and damage”, adaptation and mitigation.

Glasgow’s frustration
Glasgow’s two biggest hopes have not been fulfilled: update the 2030 target and limit the temperature rise to 1.5? , And a clear strategy to mobilize the severely insufficient US$100 billion annually (the leaders of rich countries pledged before the 2009 Copenhagen Conference of the Parties) to help fund development efforts.

At the same time, there are still too many loopholes that can be easily abused, undermining efforts to reduce emissions.In addition, there is no commitment to end fossil fuel subsidies globally-in $11 million per minuteComing soon, that is, about 6 trillion US dollars per year.

New oil and gas fields should not be developed to give the world a chance to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. Nevertheless, the government is still approving such projects, usually involving multinational giants.

Various measures-such as “carbon capture and storage” and “offset”-have been touted as solutions. However, carbon capture and storage technologies are still controversial, have not been verified on a large scale, are expensive and rarely cost-competitive.

The results in Glasgow do not include any commitment to completely phase out oil and gas. At the same time, the language about coal has been watered down and becomes almost meaningless: coal-fired power plants will now be “phasing out” instead of “phasing out.”

Offset market advocates claim to reduce emissions or remove greenhouse gases from the atmosphere to “offset” the emissions of others. Therefore, offsetting usually means paying the poor to reduce greenhouse gas emissions or forcing them to pay others to do so.With more means, large companies can more easily afford it

Carbon offset market The promise has been too high for a long time, but it has not been fulfilled. Since they usually exaggerate greenhouse gas emission reduction claims, offsets are a bad substitute for actually reducing the use of fossil fuels. at the same time, Disagreement The over-offset rule has long caused a deadlock in international climate change negotiations.

Buying compensation allows greenhouse gas emitters to “Continue to pollute“Although it is charged. Therefore, the high-greenhouse gas emission activities of wealthier individuals, companies and countries can be used in “Transfer the burden of action and sacrifice to others“-Usually for people in poorer countries-through the market.

For Tariq Fancy, which manages “sustainable investments” at BlackRock, the world’s largest fund management company, the offset market is a “Fatal distraction“,”Leading the world into a dangerous mirage,…Burn precious time”.

At the same time, most of the established offset plans—for example, the United Nations’ REDD+ plan Or the Kyoto Protocol Clean development mechanism – Obviously failed to meaningfully reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

More than 130 countries have pledged to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. But the net-zero goal actually keeps the world on the road, rather than taking decisive and urgent action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions verifiably.

Therefore, it is considered cynical”scam“, “It’s just an expensive cover for continued toxic emissions.” Trading unverifiable offsets — purportedly to achieve net zero — allows companies that are almost as usual to continue greenhouse gas emissions.

Lost and damaged?
For decades, fragile and poor countries have believed that Rich countries owe them compensation Irreversible damage caused by global warming. In fact, the United Nations Climate Conference did not provide any funding for the loss and damage of the affected countries.

Rich countries agreed to start a “dialogue” to discuss “arrangements for the provision of funds for activities to avoid, minimize and resolve losses and damages.” On behalf of the developing countries, Guinea stated “Extremely disappointed“In this trick, postpone the progress of financing for post-climate disaster recovery and reconstruction.

Developed countries account for two-thirds of cumulative emissions In contrast, Africa only has 3%. Carbon emissions of the world’s richest 1% of the population More than twice The second half between 1990 and 2015!

Small, low-lying island nations — from the Marshall Islands to Fiji and Antigua — fear that they will lose most of their land due to rising sea levels. But their long-standing call to establish a “loss and damage” fund was once again rejected.

South Pacific Island Country Representative Expressed disappointment at the lack of funds to compensate for losses and damages and the downplaying language about coal. For them, COP26 is a “huge failure” that puts them in danger of survival.

Although the historical responsibility for greenhouse gas emissions lies mainly with rich countries, especially the United States and the European Union, they have once again successfully evaded serious commitments to solve long-standing problems due to global warming.

Unfair climatefor The Secretary-General of the United Nations pointed out that “in the past 25 years, the world’s richest 10% of the population has emitted more than half of carbon emissions, while the poorest 50% have only emitted 7%.”

World Bank estimate If left unchecked, climate change will plunge 132 million people into poverty in the next ten years, and more than 216 million people will be displaced by 2050.

At the same time, poorer countries that contribute the least to cumulative greenhouse gas emissions continue to suffer the most. In order to solve the problem of climate injustice, the rich countries that are most responsible for greenhouse gas emissions and global warming must do more.

Their funding for developing countries should be more ambitious than 100 billion US dollars a year. Financing conditions should be much more generous than now. In addition, funding should prioritize adaptation, especially for the poorest countries at greatest risk.

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© Inter Press Service (2021) — All rights reservedOriginal source: International News Service


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