An Overview of the COP 28 Climate Talks

An Overview of the COP 28 Climate Talks

The following article, “An Overview of the COP 28 Climate Talks“, is written by Sara Khan, a student of Sir Syed Kazim Ali. Moreover, the article is written on the same pattern, taught by Sir to his students, scoring the highest marks in compulsory subjects for years. Sir Kazim has uploaded his students’ solved past paper questions so other thousands of aspirants can understand how to crack a topic or question, how to write relevantly, what coherence is, and how to include and connect ideas, opinions, and suggestions to score the maximum.

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Outline

1- Introduction
2- Understanding the terms “COP” and “COP 28”
3- Understanding the significance of the COP 28

4- Rundown of the critical outcomes of the COP 28 climate talks

  • ✓Doubling finance for adaptation goal
    • Case in Point: To elaborate on water security, ecosystem regeneration, and other climate-related issues, the target has been set to achieve the demands by 2030.
  • ✓ Scrutinizing Global Stock take
    • Case in point: The COP text has emphasized limiting temperature increase to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and achieving net zero by 2050.    
  • ✓Supporting vulnerable nations
    • Case in point: The wealthy nations pledged at the conference to support the affected nations; the funds have totalled over 650 million dollars.
  • ✓ Standardizing carbon markets 
    • Case in point: Carbon markets help foster a reduction in emissions, which is cost-effective.

5- Suggestions of the COP 28

  • Cases in point: Transition away from fossil fuels     
  • Climate resilient farming techniques

6- Critical Analysis
7- Conclusion

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Answer to the Question

Introduction

COP 28, a remarkable global conference in the realm of climate change, is significantly known as the 28th conference of the parties of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), having taken place in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE) from 30th November to 13th December 2023. The focal points of the largest conference in history are agriculture and food, and the main focus was on the Global Stock take – the temperature monitoring asserted in the Paris Agreement. To elaborate on key decisions at the conference, the summit has successfully brought all member countries to one table regarding decisions, including slashing energy emissions by 2030, creating a comprehensive transformation of climate finance, and protecting the most vulnerable communities, for they protect 80 per cent of the world’s biodiversity. In summary, the meeting has concluded with practical and ambitious solutions, promising the complete phase-out of fossil fuels. The article opens the window to the key outcomes of the COP 28 climate talks and its way forward.

Understanding the terms “COP” and “COP 28”

Since the Rio Summit and the launch of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), the member countries have held meetings named Conference of the Parties to the Convention (COP). The parties meet yearly to review the progress of all the member countries and decide what to do next. Besides, the countries gather to regulate responsibilities and assess climate-related measures. Meanwhile, the COP 28 means the 28th conference of the parties of the UNFCCC. It was held in Dubai, UAE, under Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber’s presidency, where the governments talked about how to tackle and prepare for the repercussions of climate change.

Understanding the significance of the COP28

COP 28 holds special significance as it is the first-ever conference marking the conclusion of the first Global Stock take – a comprehensive review of the progress and a five-yearly temperature check, as stated under Article 14 of the Paris Agreement. As the year 2022 has been enlisted as the hottest year on record, the COP 28 Presidency pledges to work on the goal of keeping the temperature increase to 1.5oC above the pre-industrial levels. Sustainable agriculture was also part of the agenda at COP 28, including innovation and ideas on how to grow food and increase crop yield.

Rundown of the critical outcomes of the COP28 climate talks

Standardizing carbon markets 

Another area of concern at the conference was carbon markets. Carbon markets are systems where countries, to meet their climate targets, buy and sell carbon credits showing a reduction of greenhouse gases. These markets help foster a reduction in emissions, which are cost-effective but have some credibility concerns. Nevertheless, no agreement was reached at this point in this regard as no clear answers were given. So, questions regarding this are supposed to be addressed in the COP 29. And for those in these markets, this outcome of loopholes is highly disturbing and disappointing. In short, the topic of carbon markets was a matter of discussion at the summit in Dubai.

Supporting vulnerable nations

The COP 28 achieved a milestone as it agreed to support the most affected nations facing the disastrous impacts of climate change. The conference talked about several areas. For instance, addressing loopholes in climate information and data and boosting human mobility by ensuring safe and stately relocation or migration. To illustrate, the wealthy and developed nations pledged at the conference to support this fund, and the fund totalled over 650 million dollars. In case of loss and damage, safe displacement will be granted. For this purpose, a diverse board will be established; however, the World Bank will initially manage or supervise this fund. Conclusively, this agreement seems to be a landmark achievement at COP 28.

Doubling finance for adaptation goal

At the conference, another area under consideration was doubling the finance for adaptation to the impacts of climate change. Furthermore, it was a theme of COP 27 to shift the world’s focus towards existing climate changes and support numerous strategies to adapt, assess, and monitor the changes happening. The same debate was dragged into the summit in Dubai this year. To elaborate, the target has been set to achieve water security, ecosystem regeneration, and other climate-related issues by 2030. No doubt, the target is set, and hopes to see the adaptation finance gap filling up are high. Hence, surging in the adaptation finance is an achievement of the COP 28.

Scrutinizing Global Stock take

This year’s COP also focused well on the Global Stock take, making it a hot topic at the conference. The stakeholders talked about the reductions in emissions and fossil fuels. Moreover, it held the developed nations accountable for the mushrooming of emissions; the COP text emphasized the goals of limiting temperature increase to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and achieving net zero by 2050. It called on nations to put an end to the fossil fuel era, and it was also explicit that the countries should try to turn down the CO2 emissions at the global level by 2030. To conclude, it would be fair enough to say that the Global Stocktake was the most inspected topic at COP 28.

Suggestions of the COP 28

Like the previous COPs, this year’s conference in Dubai also brings about some hopes, for it leaves a little sparkle in giving resolutions. Enlisting the way forward, transition away from fossil fuels, climate resilient farming techniques, efficient assessment and adaptation plans for climate impacts, and structured water management are all the hopes associated with the recent year’s COP. The world is now looking forward to COP29, as it will help more to make plans and goals crystal clear before the nations. Also, it vows to reduce emissions and overall global warming. To summarize, the COP28 appears to be a blessing in disguise in the contemporary climate-affected times. 

Critical Analysis

A keen analysis of the conference reveals that the COP 28 has devised various goals and promises. It has emphasized reducing fossil fuel emissions, the global stocktake, and loss and damage. However, there are also loopholes, for various areas are left unaddressed or partially addressed. Dedication to close the adaptation finance gap has not been completely promised yet. Similarly, additional information on financing targets has not been discussed; as far as the area of carbon markets is concerned, there seems to be no agreement that claims the permanent reduction in greenhouse gases. It means there is a lot left to be discussed at the COP 29. Therefore, the COP 28 brings both suggestions and challenges with it.

Conclusion

Ringing down the curtain, the COP 28 is described as the “beginning of an end” of the fossil fuel era. As the conference focuses on the Global Stocktake, the review process for nations’ progress regarding climate goals is strengthened. In addition, it marks a supporting hand for the nations that are at risk, the victims of climate change. It focused on ameliorating climate finance and adaptation finance simultaneously. Nonetheless, it undoubtedly has lacked in some areas as well. Still, it has emerged on the sky at the right time as it is the need of the hour to negotiate on the emerging issue of climate change.

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