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Climate accountability now – Mary Robinson

Climate accountability now – Mary Robinson

climate finance,loss and damage,just transition,climate justice,COP26,COP27,Paris agreement

Major emitters must deliver on critical ‘climate justice’ issues, such as financing for vulnerable countries.

climate finance,loss and damage,just transition,climate justice,COP26,COP27,Paris agreement
Short supply—poor countries rendered victims of climate change by rich-country emissions need much more financial support (Piyaset/

It’s been 30 years since the world’s leaders met in Rio de Janeiro to agree a set of steps to begin the global mobilization against human-caused environmental change and to meet the imperative for a more sustainable development model. Their Rio Declaration affirmed that ‘human beings are at the centre of concerns for sustainable development. They are entitled to a healthy and productive life in harmony with nature.’

Tens of millions of people are now suffering from the worst effects of the climate crisis, even though they were not born in 1992. Covid-19 has highlighted and exacerbated policy failures over the past three decades in a world already plagued with economic inequality and social injustice. Politicians have failed to live up to their promises.

To overcome inertia policy-makers would do well to pay attention to those at the forefront of the climate crisis, who are demonstrating real leadership as well as innovation, to overcome it. They include Yvonne Aki-Sawyerr, Freetown’s mayor in Sierra Leone. Young activists such as Elizabeth Wanjiru WathutiFrom Kenya and Mitzi Jonelle TanFrom the Philippines, where I am partnered with These topics were discussedFuture challenges Project Syndicate’s ‘Generation Green’ event last month.

These intergenerational debates are critical for driving progress and upholding one of the Rio Declaration’s central principles: ‘The right to development must be fulfilled so as to equitably meet developmental and environmental needs of present and future generations.’

Multilateral key body

One of Rio’s strongest Legaciesis the creation and implementation of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. The UNFCCC has been the key multilateral body in the international community’s effort to strengthen the political consensus on climate action, through annual Conference of the Parties (COP) summits.

There was some at COP26 in Glasgow last Nov. Progress toward strengthening the 2015 Paris Agreement’s nationally-determined contributions to emissions reductions, closing the gap in the financing of climate adaptation and ending the use of Coal. These advances were however There isn’t enoughGiven the existential threat posed rising temperatures and emissions, I agree.

2022 must be the year for accountability. This means that all major emitters must deliver on the promises made by the so-called “Accountability Year”. Glasgow Climate Pact. This declaration provided a vital lifeline to limit global warming to 1.5C relative to preindustrial levels, as per the Paris agreement. All the countries represented at COP26 pledged to increase their ambitions and revise their emission-reduction targets by the end of this year.

Concisely, those who have not yet set 2030 Paris-aligned targets for 2030 should do so. COP27Sharm El-Sheikh, November All countries must implement their new commitments quickly, but it is particularly important for wealthy G20 economies to do so. They are responsible in large part for the majority of global Emissions.

Trust and goodwill

Another critical piece of the puzzle is climate finance. It has been over a decade ago that rich countries have pledged climate finance. COP15Copenhagen: To provide $100 billion annually for developing countries to aid in mitigation and adaptation efforts. This goal has been achieved. Never been met. Rich countries must fulfill this commitment in order to build trust and goodwill around the world.

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COP27 will take place in an African country, near the shores of Red Sea. Africa is the continent that has the most. vulnerable to climate change, despite African countries’ negligible contribution to the problem. In the interest of justice and solidarity, I hope to see Africa speak with one voice to ensure that COP27 advances the region’s concerns on adaptation, finance and Loss and damage (L&D)—the acknowledgement that countries are suffering climate effects beyond their ability to adapt.

See Also

COP26 left unfinished business on L&D, because the United States, backed by the European Union, PostponedThe creation of a new financing mechanism to help rebuild communities following climate-related catastrophes. COP27 is a great opportunity to make progress on this issue.

An effective L&D fund is increasingly important for climate-vulnerable states. At COP26, the Scottish Government and the Belgian Region of Wallonia made the first step. Pledging $2.7 million and $1 million, respectively, for L&D (with matching funds from philanthropic organisations). This money has no place to go.

Another encouraging development is: Deal concluded by South Africa, the EU, the United Kingdom, the US, France and Germany to support South Africa’s ‘just transition’ away from coal. This now needs to be built upon—and Similarity elsewhere.

Geopolitical climate

The spirit of multilateralism that inspired the Rio summit and its result is still essential today, despite the tensions, mutual suspicion, and weak institutions. As my Elder Ban Ki-moon Telled the ‘Generation Green’ audience, ‘We all have a part to play in addressing the climate crisis—especially those with the power needed to bring about change.’

To honor the Rio summit’s legacy, to help those already suffering from the effects of the climate crisis, as well as to limit its impact on future generations, all of us must work together to achieve our shared goal of protecting our home. 2022 must be the turning-point.

Republication forbidden—copyright Project Syndicate 2022, ‘Climate accountability now

Mary Robinson, a former president and high commissioner for human rights at the United Nations, is the chair of Elders.

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