Podcast’s Essential Bites:
[3:59] VC: "COP27 we expected and indeed was very different [...] [from] COP26. [...] We expected more [...] detailed discussions of how they were actually going to achieve all of those commitments and initiatives that were announced in Glasgow. Hence, why the host Egypt has framed it as implementation COP."
[5:00] VC: "The number one [optimistic] thing is that parties agreed to set up [...] a loss and damage fund. So that's a specific kind of funding mechanism, dedicated support for developing countries to address loss and damage from unavoidable climate change. And this issue has been discussed for many years with no progress. [...] There are [...] lots of questions to be answered: what exactly does loss and damage mean? And who is going to be contributing to this fund? And who's going to benefit from this fund?"
[8:43] VC: "Historically developed countries, Annex I parties, have been the ones responsible for providing climate finance to developing countries with the argument being that developed country parties are responsible for the bulk of historical greenhouse gas emissions. However, some emerging economies, so [...] non-Annex I parties, actually account for a sizable share of emissions not just now increasingly, but also historically. So China accounted for something like 14% of historical emissions since 1750, the EU accounted for 16%. [...] Russia, for example, is not on the line for providing climate finance historically, but it accounted for 7% of historical emissions."
[21:04] VC: "1.5 [degrees] is now on life support. [...] The UN produces each year a synthesis report of the climate plans and it looks like even if those were achieved, [...] we're still nowhere near even 2 degrees target."
[30:44] VC: "My top three [positive aspects] would be that they achieved agreement on [the] loss and damage fund, that they have recognized the need to tackle both climate change and biodiversity loss, and they need to do so in a coordinated way. And number three [...] [is] the progress on methane emissions. This [...] recently has gone up in terms of people's attention. And actually, both countries and companies seem to be taking action on that."
[31:11] VC: "On the less good side, [...] the thing that I found disappointing was the kind of reopening of old wounds. There were various things [...] that were agreed on in the Glasgow climate pact and you would have thought going into COP27, we would seek to build on that. However, that wasn't necessarily the case in the Article 6 discussions, the discussions on coal, [...] overall ambition discussions. [...] [Regarding] the lack of progress on the 100 billion dollars a year pledge, what's most concerning is the fact that there seems to be a lack of urgency on the part of developed countries to deliver on that."
[37:22] VC: "If I was in charge, I would reform the whole COP process itself. I think that trying to get these detailed agreements based on unanimity is not actually very efficient, or deeming to be very effective at this point. [...] There could also be streams, [...] where we could approach a [...]more qualified majority rule, like they do in the EU, where a certain number of countries have to support it and measures to for it to go through and a certain kind of share of the overall EU population."
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