After the first week of negotiations at the UN climate change conference COP27 in Sharm el-Sheikh, these will be handed over from the official level into the hands of the political actors from Monday.
In any case, NGO representatives are hoping for a “breakthrough” in the future. Austria will then be represented in Egypt by Environment Minister Leonore Gewessler (Greens), who will be the EU’s chief negotiator in the area of ”adaptation” from Monday – one of the four main points on the agenda.
Committed funds mostly loans
“Adaptation” includes financial aid to poorer countries for climate protection measures and adaptation to climate change. The role of rich industrialized countries – responsible for around 80 percent of global emissions – was hotly debated last year, as these financial aids were expected to amount to $100 billion a year from 2020, but they have not the case is. There is also criticism of the fact that most of the funds that have already been promised are loans.
The finances are also the contentious point when it comes to “loss and damage”, this is about damage that has already occurred, the payments should also go here from the main emitters to those who suffer most from the resulting climate damage, the Global South – with the ongoing UN Negotiations are pushing them towards a financing mechanism.
“Reduction by 45 percent by 2030”
In order to minimize this climate damage as far as possible in the future, progress must be made in the third priority area, “mitigation”. After the COP26 in Glasgow, some states raised their climate protection targets, but with the NDCs (National Climate Protection Targets) that have been made so far, it is still not possible to achieve either the 2-degree target or the 1.5-degree target. Johannes Wahlmüller, climate and energy spokesman for Global 2000, calculates what would be necessary for the APA: “A reduction of 45 percent would be needed by 2030, but current climate protection plans would mean an increase of 10 percent”. The climate plans as of COP26 in Glasgow would have meant an increase of 13 percent”, so there is progress, but this is too little.
A way out for this must also be found at the climate conference, but according to the WWF the situation is still bleak: the draft for a “work program to reduce emissions” has so far been kept entirely in brackets, so there is no consensus or a common vision, such as emissions can be reduced to the necessary extent by 2030. A “real breakthrough” is therefore needed. “This is the only way we can close the gap between the current sham climate protection and the 1.5 degree limit,” demands WWF climate spokesman Thomas Zehetner. In addition to the massive reduction in emissions, the global community should finally give more consideration to the central role of nature conservation: “Because intact nature is our best ally against the climate crisis. Technological solutions alone are not enough,” said Zehetner.
“climate protection engine”
The 27th UN climate conference with participants from around 200 countries began last Sunday. According to official planning, it ends on Friday. “It has to produce more than hot air, because the future of our planet is at stake. The gaping gap between the 1.5 degree target and fair financing must no longer be ignored,” said Jasmin Duregger, climate and energy expert at Greenpeace in Austria and observer at the conference in Sharm El-Sheikh on site on their expectations for the final week.
After the COP27, “the climate protection engine” must also be turned on in Austria. “Stopping the climate crisis requires uncompromising concessions,” said Duregger. Important legislative initiatives such as the Energy Efficiency Act or the Climate Protection Act are still outstanding. The environmental protection organization Greenpeace is also calling for fossil fuels to be phased out, for example through an end to fossil fuel subsidies or a clear Austria-wide ban on fracking.