12 Nov Did you know? UN COP 26 and its impact on the oceans

The 26th UN Climate Change Conference at the Parties (COP26) in Glasgow has started on October 31 and will continue until November 12. It is one of the most important platform to accelerate commitments on climate change goals worldwide to reduce carbon emissions. On the UN web-site, we can find daily reports on commitments made by governments, corporate sector and civil society.

At COP21 which took place in Paris in 2015 every country agreed to work together to limit global warming to well below 2 degrees and aim for 1.5 degrees, to adapt to the impacts of a changing climate and to make money available to deliver on these aims. The Paris Agreement was born. The commitment to aim for 1.5 degrees is important because every fraction of a degree of warming results in the tragedy of many more lives lost and livelihoods damaged.

Under the Paris Agreement, countries committed to bring forward national plans setting out how much they would reduce their emissions – known as Nationally Determined Contributions, or ‘NDCs’. They agreed that every five years they would come back with an updated plan that would reflect their highest possible ambition at that time. The run up to this year’s summit in Glasgow is the moment when countries update their plans for reducing emissions. But, the commitments laid out in Paris did not come close to limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees, and the window for achieving this is closing. The decade out to 2030 will be crucial. So as momentous as Paris was, countries must go much further to keep the hope of holding temperature rises to 1.5 degrees alive. More history and background information can be found on this COP26 web-site:  https://ukcop26.org/.

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