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COP28 Agreements and EVORA Reflections
COP stands for Conference of the Parties and it is the world’s biggest climate meeting.
The supreme decision-making body of the Convention has representation from all States that are signatories (or Parties) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC). They have the duty to assess the effects of the measures introduced to limit climate change against the overall goals of the Convention, and review and implement decisions.
This year, COP28, which took place in Dubai from November 30 to December 12, had many events planned for several (urgent) topics, from Just Transition and Built Environment to Education and Nature.
COP28 was designed to bring together a diverse range of stakeholders, from governments, businesses and investors to youth and indigenous people from around the world. Together, they discussed effective solutions that must be adopted this decade to limit warming to 1.5 degrees, build resilience, and mobilise sustainable finance.
During COP28, the Parties asked governments and key climate stakeholders to take action in four areas:
- Fast-track the energy transition
- Fix climate finance
- Focus on nature, people, lives, and livelihoods
- Full inclusivity
COP28 ended on December 12 with a closing speech by Simon Stiell, UN Climate Change Executive Secretary. “Whilst we didn’t turn the page on the fossil fuel era in Dubai, this outcome is the beginning of the end,” Stiell said “Now all governments and businesses need to turn these pledges into real-economy outcomes, without delay.”
These are the initiatives which have been agreed by the Parties:
- Tripling renewable energy targets
- Doubling energy efficiency goals
- Establishing a Global Goal on Adaptation framework
- Operationalising the Loss and Damage Fund
Stiell highlighted that all COP28 outcomes are not the finish line and they need to be translated immediately into actions and climate plans by governments.
However, the final draft contains some toned-down language. For example, a change from “rapidly phasing down unabated coal” and putting “limitations on permitting” to just speaking about “efforts towards the phase-down of unabated coal power”. Also, the role of “transitional fuels” only directly refers to fossil fuel use in energy systems. Moreover, a “transition away” from fossil fuels is called for rather than a “phaseout.”
Crucial topics have been discussed but it feels like decisive and detailed climate actions haven’t been delivered. For example, there was no agreement on how carbon credit markets would be supervised and how different types of credits would be accounted for.
Focussing on the built environment, on December 6, the Governments of France and Morocco, together with the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), launched the Buildings Breakthrough with a view to making near-zero emissions and climate-resilient buildings the new normal by 2030. Twenty-eight nations, representing around 34% of the global population, 51% of global greenhouse gas emissions and 64% of global Gross Domestic Product (GDP), pledged their commitment to the initiative.
The new initiative “aims to strengthen international collaboration to decarbonize the building sector and make clean technologies and sustainable solutions the most affordable, accessible and attractive option in all regions by 2030.”
“Unless we change course and adopt the policies that can in fact mitigate that increase in temperatures, we are going to see far more lives lost and far more damage done” said Mia Mottley, Prime Minister of Barbados.
At EVORA, we couldn’t agree more and we are looking forward to seeing the improvements from the actions agreed upon this year at COP29 which will be hosted in Baku in Azerbaijan.
Paul Sutcliffe, EVORA COO & Co-Founder, said “Gatherings such as COP help set agendas and bring together people with differing perspectives and ideas. However, is clear that the real work of transitioning the world economy to a sustainable future will happen elsewhere – within the economy. Companies are increasingly recognising the risks posed to their business by climate change and new legislation, as well as the opportunities that arise when sustainability becomes increasingly important to customers and investors. Rapid action is now needed”.
For over a decade, EVORA has been addressing the climate challenges posed by the real asset industry. Our sustainability experts have decades of experience in navigating client portfolios through the effects of climate change while balancing the economic, social and regulatory changes necessary to decarbonise. We are a purpose-driven business to accelerate the evolution and adoption of real asset sustainability for the benefit of the planet and its people.
See how EVORA can support you and your business and contact us here.