UN Climate Change News, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 29 November 2023 – The world braces for opening the United Nations Climate Change Conference COP28 in Dubai, urging global leaders to accelerate collective climate action. 

As the conference kicks off during the hottest recorded year, it aims to address the unprecedented impacts of the climate crisis on human life and livelihoods worldwide.

Participating countries collectively pledged $420 million to a historic fund supporting regions affected by global warming. COP28 President Sultan al-Jaber hails this commitment as a “unique, unprecedented achievement” and a promising start for the summit.

Decisive Moment in Dubai

group of people clapping together

Image credit: gulfnews.com

Presided over by Dr. Sultan Al Jaber, COP28 marks the conclusion of the “global stocktake,” evaluating progress in implementing the 2015 Paris Agreement. The findings indicate that the world is falling short of limiting the temperature rise to 1.5°C by the end of this century.

Global Stocktake Findings and Climate Action Plans

A recent report from UN Climate Change reveals that national climate action plans, known as nationally determined contributions (NDCs), collectively project a 2% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, significantly below the needed 43% reduction. 

The global stocktake is positioned as a catalyst for increased ambition in meeting the Paris Agreement’s goals, prompting nations to submit revised climate action plans by 2025.

COP28: A Turning Point for Climate Finance

Climate finance is at the forefront of the transformation needed. Replenishing the Green Climate Fund, doubling financial resources for adaptation, and operationalizing the loss and damage fund are crucial steps to achieve the 1.5°C target while ensuring inclusivity. 

COP28 aims to secure progress in climate finance, establishing a foundation for a more ambitious “New Collective Quantified Goal” next year.

Financial Contributions Despite Concerns

Amid concerns about the host country, the UAE, a major oil-producing nation, commits £79 million ($100 million) to the fund. The UK and the US also contribute significantly, with pledges of £60 million ($76 million) and £13.8 million ($17.5 million), respectively. This financial backing marks a crucial initiative despite the host nation’s ties to the fossil fuel industry.

Urgency and Stark Warnings

UN Chief António Guterres sets a serious tone for the summit, declaring, “We are living through climate collapse in real-time.” Confirming projections that 2023 will be the hottest year on record, Guterres emphasizes the urgent need for global action to address climate change.

Critical Juncture and Scientific Imperatives

The summit occurs at a critical juncture, with rising greenhouse gas emissions. Scientists stress the imperative to nearly halve these emissions within the next seven years, underscoring the urgency of practical and immediate climate action.

Call for Unity and Collective Action

Sultan al-Jaber, the head of the UAE’s state oil company, delivers a passionate speech calling for unity among summit participants. He asserts that the world has “reached a crossroads” and urges collective action to address the challenges of climate change.

Key Events and Summit Highlights

Key events include the World Climate Action Summit (WCAS), hosted by His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, on December 1-2. The summit allows Heads of State or Government to set the stage, raise climate commitments, and promote coordinated action.

Hope for Meaningful Progress

As COP28 progresses, the international community closely monitors outcomes and commitments made by world leaders. The urgency emphasized by Guterres and the initial success of the climate fund offer hope for meaningful progress in addressing the pressing challenges posed by climate collapse.

King Charles III’s Expected Contribution

Stay tuned for more updates from COP28, where King Charles III is anticipated to contribute significantly to the ongoing climate discussions. His involvement adds to the collective efforts to address the global climate crisis. 

Anticipated Outcomes and Stakeholder Engagement

COP28 anticipates over 70,000 delegates, including member states, business leaders, young people, climate scientists, Indigenous Peoples, journalists, and experts. The thematic program invites open consultations, fostering stakeholder engagement and diverse perspectives.

As the COP28 summit unfolds, the world awaits concrete actions and commitments that will define the trajectory of global efforts to combat climate change and secure a sustainable future. Stay tuned for updates on this critical international gathering. 

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