Wealthier nations pledged to aid poorer ones in reducing emissions.
On Sunday, the United Nations Climate Change Conference, also known as COP27, drew to a close with the participating countries renewing their vows to reduce global emissions and lessen the effects of global climate change. Over 200 countries signed a new agreement to form a committee that would seek to aid poorer countries with their anti-climate change efforts.
“This COP has taken an important step towards justice,” UN Secretary-General António Guterres said in a video message from the conference. “I welcome the decision to establish a loss and damage fund.”
“The United States welcomes the decision at COP27 to establish arrangements to respond to the devastating impact of climate change on vulnerable communities around the world, including through a fund that will focus on what the world can do now to support particularly vulnerable countries in managing the impacts of changing climate,” John Kerry, the US special presidential envoy for climate change, said in a statement.
“But let’s be clear,” Guterres added. “Our planet is still in the emergency room. We need to drastically reduce emissions now — and this is an issue this COP did not address. A fund for loss and damage is essential, but it’s not an answer if the climate crisis washes a small island state off the map — or turns an entire African country to desert.”
Without any binding commitments to rapidly and immediately reduce greenhouse gases, the world stands no chance to deliver on the 1,5°C limit, and by doing so minimising risks of uprooting the life supporting systems we all depend on and endangering countless human lives.#COP27
— Greta Thunberg (@GretaThunberg) November 20, 2022
Several representatives echoed Guterres’ frustration that a concrete plan for lowering emissions had not been set in stone.
“Emissions peaking before 2025 as the science tells us is necessary? Not in this text,” British politician and former COP26 representative Alok Sharma said in a speech. “Clear follow-through on the phasedown of coal? Not in this text. A clear commitment to phase out all fossil fuels? Not in this text.”