COP26: UK proposes to adopt emissions reduction by 2022

COP26: UK proposes to adopt emissions reduction by 2022

British sponsors of the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) in Glasgow, Scotland, are proposing that countries show greater ambition in reducing greenhouse gas emissions within the next year, in a draft resolution to be negotiated over the next three days.

The proposal highlights the fears of climate experts and activists that there is a wide difference between the current national commitments and the rapid emissions cuts needed to prevent the world from sinking in the right climate crisis.

The first draft of the political resolution adopted at the United Nations (UN) conference on Wednesday (10) called on countries to “review and strengthen the goals of nationally determined contributions to 2030”. With the Paris Agreement on the temperature target by the end of 2022.

This will force countries to pursue tougher climate goals next year, which is a fundamental demand of countries most vulnerable to the effects of climate change.

Under the Paris Agreement, countries agreed to control global warming below 2 degrees Celsius and to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.

Scientists say that exceeding the 1.5ºC level will worsen sea levels, floods, droughts, wildfires and storms, and that some of the damage will become irreversible.

The draft calls on countries to step up efforts to phase out coal burning and fossil fuel subsidies, targeting coal, oil and gas, which directly produce carbon dioxide, the main cause of man-made climate change.

The text does not set a date for the gradual end of the use of these fuels, but the emphasis on them could lead to reactions from large energy producers.

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Helen Mountford, vice president of the World Resource Organization, said the explicit reference to coal, oil and gas was an improvement over the previous climate summit. “The real question is whether it can be maintained.”

Diplomats discuss the final speech to conclude the conference today, Friday (12). Compliance with the political decision will not be mandatory, but will weigh in on the nearly 200 countries that signed the Paris Agreement in 2015.

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About the Author: Morton Obrien

"Reader. Infuriatingly humble travel enthusiast. Extreme food scholar. Writer. Communicator."

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