While it feels that COPs are getting less attention as time passes, COP 27 in Sharm el-Sheikh is a great occasion to assess the progress of countries to reach net-zero and other sustainability goals. Previous COP conferences were focused on agreeing on targets (Kyoto in 1992, Doha amendment 2012 and Paris 2015) and more recent ones have been focusing on ensuring specific goals (COP 26 and the phase-out of coal) and a financing mechanism for supporting poorer nations in their transition to renewable energy (known as loss and damage or climate reparation).
Steps such as ensuring sponsors have a true commitment to the environment have also been taken during COP 26. However, amongst others, concerns surrounding Chinese and Brazilian’s head of state absence and India’s difficulty to commit to phasing out coal by 2050 weakened the power that COP had to bring countries together to create a sustainable future.
There is hope to assess and strengthen countries’ emission com due to the momentum from the recent catastrophic climate events such as the European heatwave, Pakistani floods and Hurricane Ian, is also expected. A recent UN report forecasted the world to be on track to 2.5 degrees.
Due to Egypt’s poor record of human rights especially free speech, women’s rights and LGBTQ+ people, attendees have been prompted to challenge the Egyptian government on its current policies. This is also the case for the Men’s Football World Cup in Qatar.
Rising Nations An initiative launched by several island states. There will also be initiatives of loss and damage expected by Scotland and Denmark and capacity-building support to ensure that countries that are the most affected by climate change are not left behind.
Another similar initiative is carried by Germany called Global Shield, some European countries may be more likely to back this.
The intersection of gender and climate, youth and climate will be explored.
Focus on Africa with the heads of state of Senegal, France and the Netherlands leading a group. This is due to the particular vulnerability of the African continent and their low emissions.
The government has asked King Charles III not to attend despite his commitment to the cause while PM Rishi Sunak himself first declined to attend.