YK Poudel

Dubai, UAE—Countries are expected to witness major investment in climate financing post-28th Conference of Parties (COP28). As of yesterday, countries have promised and pulled in over $80 billion for climate financing. 

The discussion under the UAE Presidency started with a deal to capitalise on the Loss and Damage (L&D) Fund assisting vulnerable countries with the major impact of climate change. The support from the UAE Presidency is a historic approach—the L&D was a long-discussed component of COP without much outcome. 

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is leading a process for all parties to agree upon a clear roadmap to accelerate progress through a pragmatic global energy transition and a “leave no one behind” approach to inclusive climate action. 

Bhutan has endorsed five declarations that concern the nation ranging from sustainable agriculture to health and renewable energy, among others.

After an agreement to operationalize a fund for climate impact response on day one, announcements have come in across the entire climate agenda, including on finance, health, food, nature, and energy.

Need for Climate Financing

The Paris Agreement—eight years ago, the world made a promise in Paris to slow down global warming. Today, at the COP28 in Dubai, following the impact of climate change over the years, the Global Stocktake is a centre of discussion.

The expected call to action from what will come out of this COP is suggestions of actions to keep the global temperature increase within the Paris Agreement goal of 1.5°C, which is the limit. The 2°C temperature is going to cost badly on humanity.

Since yesterday, negotiators have been working collaboratively into long discussions and put forward their motions for discussion.

As activists and major countries see fossil fuel as one of the primary emitters, over 100 countries, including the US and the EU, have already said that they want to see a “phase out” of fossil fuels. 

Nonetheless, Russia and Saudi Arabia have been resistant to “phasing out” fossil fuels.

The COP28 President, Dr Sultan Al Jaber, said that there is ‘no science’ behind demands for the phase-out of fossil fuels. “A phase-out of fossil fuels would not allow sustainable development “unless you want to take the world back into caves”.

“I agreed to come to this meeting to have a sober and mature conversation. I’m not in any way signing up for any discussion that is alarmist. There is no science out there, or no scenario out there, that says that the phase-out of fossil fuel is what’s going to achieve 1.5C,” he said.

In contrast, the UN Secretary-General, António Guterres told the COP28 delegates on Friday: “The science is clear. The 1.5°C limit is only possible if we ultimately stop burning all fossil fuels. Not reduce, not abate. Phase out, with a clear timeframe.”

More outcome is yet to come, as the negotiation week began yesterday, this COP is expected to see more outcome with a vibrant role played by the President in pushing forward various agendas.