Climate vulnerable countries demand more financial support in draft COP26 agreement

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GLASGOW, Nov. 10 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – Countries vulnerable to the COP26 climate talks have called for stronger funding commitments to help them adapt to the impacts of climate change and repair the damage that ‘they are suffering, in response to a first draft agreement for the Glasgow summit released on Wednesday.

The two-week annual conference is due to end on Friday, but often continues as countries bicker over wording and voice their differences over how to lag behind climate action.

Wednesday’s draft texts urged countries to increase their targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions by the end of 2022, acknowledging that current commitments fall short of what is needed to limit the warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius and avoid the worst impacts of climate change.

Aubrey Webson, UN Ambassador to Antigua and Barbuda and Chair of the Alliance of Small Island States, said the deal needs to be strengthened to help the most vulnerable, especially with funding to embrace clean energy and deal with the impacts of climate change.

“We will not have the ambition on the emissions (reductions) we need for 1.5 ° C if we do not increase the financing supply,” he warned in a statement, noting the Money “late” to cope with increasing climate loss and damage was particularly significant.

One of the texts noted the “regret” that developed countries have yet to deliver on their pledge to channel $ 100 billion a year in climate finance to poorer countries from 2020 – something they have. now promised to do by 2023.

The text urges governments to speed up their efforts to achieve the goal more quickly.

Abul Kalam Azad, Bangladesh’s special envoy for the Climate Vulnerable Forum (CVF), a club of 55 vulnerable countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America, said there was “no excuse” for achieve the already expected goal of $ 100 billion by 2022.

“Without financial support, little can be done to minimize the adverse effects on vulnerable communities around the world,” he said.

He noted that the CVF wants COP26 negotiators to prescribe that financing options for “loss and damage” – resulting from impacts such as rising seas, stronger storms, droughts and floods – be studied and then presented to COP27 next year.

This request has not yet been included in the decision texts.

Vanessa Nakate, a young Ugandan climate activist, also called for the creation of a separate fund to help vulnerable countries like hers cope with the losses, adding that they would suffer “suffering, suffering, suffering” if the warming exceeds 2.4 ° C.

“You cannot adapt to famine, you cannot adapt to extinction, you cannot adapt to lost cultural heritage and you cannot adapt to lost biodiversity,” she said. declared, calling for placing loss and damage at the center of the COP26 negotiations.

‘HARD’

Mohamed Adow, director of Power Shift Africa, a Nairobi-based think tank, said the text of the COP26 decision was currently “a very lopsided document”.

His dominant advances include a push to accelerate emission reductions, and he calls for action to phase out the use of coal and fossil fuel subsidies, the first time such a call has appeared in the text of negotiation during talks.

“But on the key demands of vulnerable countries, there are very few,” he told reporters. “Helping these countries adapt to climate impacts and deal with permanent loss and damage is very fuzzy and vague. “

A 2022 in-text deadline for all countries to come back with more stringent emission reduction targets was welcomed by many, although some developing countries wanted this to primarily target high-emitting countries that have submitted guidelines. weak national action plans this year.

Some climate activists said the text lacked the commitment needed to revise emission reduction targets each year, given the urgency of the changes needed.

The overall goal of the conference is to “keep 1.5 ° C alive” – ​​a reference to the most ambitious goal of the Paris Agreement of continuing efforts to limit the average increase in global temperature to 1.5 ° C compared to pre-industrial times.

But a leading tracker for national climate policies said this week the world will reach 2.4 ° C of warming this century with current plans to reduce emissions by 2030 – if they are realized. .

“This draft agreement is not a plan to resolve the climate crisis. This is an agreement we will all cross our fingers and hope for the best, ”said Jennifer Morgan, Executive Director of Greenpeace International.

“It’s a polite request that countries maybe do more next year.”

Alok Sharma, the UK official leading the COP26 talks, said the UK government was aiming for a “highly ambitious” outcome for the summit.

But there was still “a lot” of work to be done to achieve a satisfactory result on the financing up to the hopes of the vulnerable countries, he noted.

He said he hoped new promises this week would smooth the way.

“We all know what is at risk if we do not achieve an ambitious result. The climate vulnerable countries on the front lines of the climate crisis will continue to bear the brunt before it engulfs us all,” he said. he adds.

Reporting by Megan Rowling @meganrowling. edited by Laurie Goering. Please credit the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, which covers the lives of people around the world who struggle to live freely or fairly. Visit http://news.trust.org/climate

Our Standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.


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