The first week of COP26 | Despite the ads, time is still running out

26NS Climate conference meets huge expectations to contain global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius? New commitments have been announced, but the red flags are still red. Back to the first week of COP26.

Eric-Pierre Champagne

Eric-Pierre Champagne

Barbados is sounding the alarm

Photo by Daniel Leal Olivas, AFP

Mia Amor Motley, Prime Minister of Barbados, speaking at COP26, Tuesday

“Code red. The Prime Minister of Barbados, Mia Amor Motley, launched the G7 countries’ code red, code red, and the G20’s code red,” during her address to world leaders assembled at the opening of COP 26 on Monday. A tough eight-minute speech set the tone from the start of this conference The long-awaited.” How many additional images and sounds should we see on these screens without being able to act? Are we so blind and stubborn that we can no longer understand humanity’s tears? ”

Watch Mia Amor Motley’s speech

good news

Some ads got special attention during the week. More than 80 countries, including Canada, have agreed to reduce methane emissions by 30% from 2020 levels by 2030. Canada and 22 other countries have also signed an agreement to end international public financing of fossil fuels. “What amazes me most so far is that we’re finally starting to talk about the elephant in the room: fossil fuels,” notes Caroline Brouillette, climate policy analyst at Climate Action Network. It was necessary and urgent to do so. ”

Less good news

One hundred countries, including Canada, on Tuesday announced an agreement to end deforestation by 2030. Remember that forests play an essential role in absorbing a significant amount of carbon dioxide.2 Released by human activities. However, the equivalent of 27 football fields will be destroyed in the forest every minute on a global scale. However, environmental groups remain skeptical about these commitments that have already been made in the past. Suddenly, Indonesia Thursday rejected the agreement announced two days ago. “The tremendous development of President Jokowi’s era [Joko Widodo] “You can’t stop in the name of carbon emissions and deforestation,” Indonesia’s Environment and Forest Minister Siti Nurbaya Bakkar wrote on Twitter.

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bad news

global carbon dioxide emissions2 On the rise again this year after a 5.4% decline in 2020 due to the pandemic. On Wednesday, the Global Carbon Project announced that emissions in 2021 are expected to rebound by 4.9%. At this rate, the carbon budget still available to limit global warming to 1.5°C would be exhausted within 10 years. Everyone wants to keep their dream [limiter le réchauffement à 1,5 °C]. Quite literally, you’re kidding if you think we’re headed towards 1.5°C. Why this optimism? Glenn Peters, director of research at the Center for International Climate Research, wrote on Twitter. “We are not biased towards limiting temperature rise to 1.5°C,” confirms Damon Matthews Journalism. At the time of writing, there are 10 years, 5 months, 16 days and 21 hours left before the carbon budget still available is exhausted, according to the climate clock developed by the professor at Concordia University. Matthews says the target can still be achieved, but it will be necessary to raise the targets and target to carbon neutrality in 2040, not 2050, as planned. Caroline Brouillette adds: “There are two facts I like to remember. We are moving forward, but it is too late and too slowly.”

Check out Damon Matthews’ climate clock

The number you should take with a grain of salt

According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), commitments made so far at COP26 will limit global warming to 1.8°C by 2100. An announcement that has raised some doubts among scientists. Many of these commitments must be ratified by the parliaments of many countries, rightly note researchers in climate analyses. In addition, the IEA’s calculations have been made on the basis of promises to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050. However, reduction targets must be raised by 2030 to achieve the 2050 targets. “It is as if someone said they were going to run a marathon, But he’s never trained in it, Brilliant Patrick Boonen, Greenpace Canada Climate Energy Campaigner. It will be difficult to meet our 2050 goals if we don’t do enough by 2030.”

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“Our leaders are not showing the right way,” laments Greta Thunberg

Thousands of young people took to the streets of Glasgow on Friday to protest the inaction of world leaders in the face of the climate emergency. Sweden’s Greta Thunberg claimed COP 26 was a “failure”, describing the conference as a “celebration of work as usual And blah.” “Our leaders are not showing the right path. “This is what leadership looks like,” she added, referring to the crowd. A second event is also on the program this Saturday.

weak countries

On Wednesday, nations most vulnerable to climate change called again for help from wealthier nations. In 2009, industrialized nations pledged $100 billion in funding annually starting in 2020 to help developing countries. However, this goal will not be achieved until 2023. Meanwhile, the poorest countries are pleading that $100 billion will be clearly insufficient and are calling for a new agreement. According to Caroline Brouillette, of the Climate Action Network, trillions of dollars will have to be disbursed to the countries that will be hardest hit by climate change.

A new deal on the horizon?

There is still a week left at 26NS Climate conference This will be crucial. If the 2015 Conference results in the Paris Agreement, the Glasgow Conference should in principle allow for the formulation of an instruction manual for this Agreement. Because once the goals are set, it is necessary to determine how to reach them. “I expect negotiations to continue until the last minute,” explains Caroline Brouillette. COP26 will have to show how the parties will continue to keep the 1.5°C target alive. Professor Damon Matthews agrees that the situation is “extremely frustrating”. “We could have acted before, but we didn’t. It can still get there, but it will take more than words.”

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with AFP

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