December 5, 2022

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The choice between cooperation and annihilation

The choice between cooperation and annihilation

France Press agency

NOS . News

At the opening of the Sharm El-Sheikh Climate Summit, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres noted in harsh terms the need to implement climate measures. “Greenhouse gas emissions are still rising, temperatures are rising, and the planet is approaching the point of no turning back from climate chaos,” he said in his opening statement.

“We are on the highway to climate hell with our feet on the gas pedal,” he told state leaders gathered at the COP27 Climate Summit in the Egyptian resort.

‘We’re on the highway to climate hell’

According to Guterres, a clear choice must be made: work together to reduce emissions or burden future generations with climate catastrophe. “Humanity has a choice between cooperation and annihilation.”

The Secretary-General of the United Nations wants an agreement between richer and poorer countries to accelerate the energy transition from fossil fuels to sustainable energy. To do this, the poorest countries must receive the money to be able to reduce emissions and deal with the current consequences of climate change. Guterres is mainly dependent on the two largest economies, the United States and China. He believes that they have a special responsibility to join forces and make such an agreement possible.

We’re on the highway to climate inferno with our feet on the gas pedal.

United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres

Oil and gas as long as necessary

The President of the United Arab Emirates, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, said that his country, a member of the unified oil producing countries in OPEC, will continue to supply oil and gas as long as necessary. He also said that his country is focusing on reducing emissions and burning cleaner gas. “We are also working on renewable and sustainable energy and putting an end to emissions by 2050.” Zayed pointed out that the UAE and the United States signed an agreement worth $100 billion to achieve this.

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The next climate summit, COP28, will be in Dubai next year, as well as in the United Arab Emirates. President Zayed said there will be a first assessment of the Paris climate agreement and of agreements at previous climate summits, including the current one. In Paris, it was agreed that global warming should remain below 2 degrees and preferably less than 1.5 degrees.

Tangible results

The host, Egyptian President El-Sisi, emphasized in his speech that despite the major problems, there are signs of hope. “Egypt has set ambitious goals and we are determined to achieve them,” he said. The country is working towards a green economy with low carbon dioxide emissions and the obligation to work towards achieving this is enshrined in law. We want tangible results.

He said that all countries are able to achieve such goals, and it is important that rich countries help the poor, that countries trust each other and that this responsibility is shared. He also noted the importance of financing for the poorest countries. “We know what to do, we have the money and the technological resources, but we also have to actually implement the measures.”

together for implementation

Climate Summit logo in Egypt

Countries most affected by climate change are seeking financial compensation. The poor countries that have contributed the least to climate change are the most vulnerable to its effects. They need money to take action and to combat the consequences, such as floods.

Barbados Prime Minister Mia Amor Motley indicated that the political will to implement the measures appeared to be lacking. “In addition, the global south depends on the north. We have great ambitions, but we cannot implement them because we are hampered by other countries,” he added. In particular, she stressed the importance of a loss and damage fund, A fund that poor countries can count on to combat and pay for the effects of climate change.

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Rich countries have to step in to pay the price for this damage. This topic is sensitive at the top, but the realization seems to be growing that this can’t wait any longer.

Today and tomorrow, delegates from all participating countries will have the opportunity to articulate their main point of view in a maximum of three minutes.