… focus on fragile ecosystems

YK Poudel

Dubai, UAE—A substantial crowd attended the Bhutan Pavilion’s launch at COP28 on December 1, highlighting the youth’s call for intervention to address climate change and emphasising the nation’s commitment to global sustainability.

Lekzang Pakila Lhaki, a fifth-year student from Jigme Singye Wangchuck School of Law, conveyed a message representing Bhutanese youth, acknowledging the country’s efforts despite climate change challenges. Despite Bhutan’s low greenhouse gas emissions, high carbon sequestration rates, and significant forest cover, she stressed that the impacts of climate change are still felt, particularly through melting glaciers, erratic weather patterns, and potential threats to water resources.

During the session “Tales from the Dragon Kingdom: Architects of a sustainable tomorrow,” reiterated the theme of unity highlighted by the COP28 presidency, emphasising the interconnected nature of global climate issues that transcend geopolitical borders and affect the broader global community.

“In light of this, now, more than ever, there is an urgent call for the youth to not merely be spectators but active participants in crafting a sustainable and resilient future,” Lekzang stated.

The tales from the Dragon Kingdom, shared accounts of resilience and innovation, questioning the audience and the global leaders to change, be the architects, and investors of a sustainable tomorrow.

Similarly, Pema Choki, a student of JSW School of Law along with other three friends shared the story of the melting glaciers, erratic weather patterns and the devastating flash floods that have been affecting the Bhutanese annually. “As the COP28 is a means to get investment in climate adaptation and mitigation, the global leaders must invest in bringing a social change. The call to action is simple, these national issues should not just be in headlines with statistics but investment in ensuring the people live in peaceful harmony with nature.”

Bhutan’s presence at COP28 signifies not just a pavilion but a reminder that even the smallest voices and humblest nations have a role to play in the global dialogue on sustainability.

The Bhutan Pavilion, launched yesterday at the Expo City in Dubai, underlines Bhutan’s commitment to addressing climate change and maintaining carbon neutrality. Delegates from various countries attended the launch, showcasing international interest in Bhutan’s efforts.

COP28, an annual event to determine climate action ambitions and responsibilities, is focused on implementing the Paris Agreement’s pillars. This includes fast-tracking the energy transition, fixing climate finance, prioritising nature, people, lives, and livelihoods in climate action, and ensuring inclusivity.

The main agenda items for COP28 include a global stock-take, the mitigation work programme, and the global goal on adaptation and climate finance, including financial arrangements for loss and damage, with sessions scheduled over the next 10 days.