COP28 Overview: Controversy, Hindrance, and Mandate to Achieve 1.5° Goal by 2023

The eagerly anticipated COP28 (Conference of the Parties 28), an annual climate meeting, begins today in Dubai, UAE, running from November 30 to December 12, 2023. Under the leadership of Sultan al Jaber, COP28’s primary goal is to assess signatory countries’ progress in meeting the Paris Agreement’s target of limiting global temperature rise to 1.5°C. The key areas of focus include transitioning to clean energy sources, providing climate finance to the Global South nations most affected by the crisis, creating a new deal for these countries, prioritizing nature and people, and enhancing inclusivity. Over 200 countries, more than 70,000 delegates, and some high-level leaders, including Bill Gates and King Charles are expected to participate. Nonetheless, the event has faced criticism for lacking concrete climate commitment, prioritizing profit over humanity, to the controversial appointment of Sultan Al Jaber, the CEO of UAE’s Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC), a major fossil-fuel company, as COP28 president.

One crucial issue to monitor is renewable energy and its connection to climate finance, particularly for Global South nations. Climate finance has been put in the spotlight, specifically to amplify the commitment of G20 nations to bringing about renewables deployment to 11,000 gigawatts by 2030.1 UNFCC reports that despite many progress has been made since the establishment of the Paris Agreement, it is still not enough to meet the target. The transition from fossil fuel to renewable energy has indeed occurred, but we are still left behind globally. Several countries, including Australia, Brazil, Indonesia, Mexico, New Zealand, Russia, Singapore, Switzerland, and Vietnam, have failed to meet their 1.5-degree goal by 2030.2 China and India are two bigger contributors of the continued use of coal, proven by their possession of huge coal pipelines.3 Not only that, countries such as Indonesia, Vietnam, Japan, and South Korea will also continue utilizing coal in the future.4

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