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COP27  – Outcomes and Takeaways from Planet Mark – Part 1

COP27  – Outcomes and Takeaways from Planet Mark – Part 1
14 December 2022 | Updated 20 December 2022
 

COP27 was hailed as “a make-or-break moment” and an opportunity to move from targets to implementation. Our partners at Planet Mark have shared some key takeaways.

Prior to the conclusion of negotiations, COP27 was hailed as “a make-or-break moment” and an opportunity to move from ambitious targets to policy implementation. Several key outcomes have highlighted some progress towards climate action. However, even successes that seemed difficult to imagine only a few years ago still fall short of where we need to be to guarantee a 1.5°C pathway. 

Here are Planet Mark’s key takeaways:

 

Loss and Damage

 

COP27 reached a historic agreement on a fund to provide developing countries with financial assistance for losses and damage caused by the climate crisis. Despite having the smallest carbon footprint, countries such as Pakistan, Kenya and Barbados have experienced the most extreme impacts of climate change leaving millions displaced. After three decades, the issue finally made it into the COP27 agenda. However, there is no agreement in place as to how the finance should be provided and where it should come from. Developed countries have yet to live up to their 2009 commitment to jointly mobilize $100 billion annually in climate finance. 

 

1.5C Barely “Alive”

 

Despite the progress on loss and damage, there has been a lack of progress during the summit on how to reduce greenhouse gas emissions faster. The 2015 Paris Agreement aims to keep temperature rises “well below 2C” above pre-industrial levels and pursue efforts to keep it to 1.5C. Failure to keep 1.5C “alive” would be a death sentence for many small island states and African nations. So, COP26 in Glasgow saw countries agree to return each year to “revisit and strengthen” their 2030 climate plans by the end of 2022. But in the past year, only a small proportion have done so. The emissions-reduction plans submitted ahead of COP27 would cut less than 1 per cent off projected global emissions in 2030. 

There was a glimpse of hope as several countries pushed for the final agreement to include a reference to the need to peak emissions in 2025 – the deadline for keeping 1.5C alive, but this was later scrapped from the final text. 

 

Fossil Fuels

 

Despite more than 80 countries supporting a proposal to phase down the use of fossil fuels, once again, the agreement finalised included the same as that in Glasgow. Fossil fuels are only mentioned once in the text – in the context of the “phasedown of unabated coal power and phase-out of inefficient fossil fuel subsidies”. Given the gravity of the climate crisis, this is still very ambiguous and weak language. 

 

Other Notable Firsts

 

The final agreement acknowledges the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) key finding of “tipping points” – a warning of the consequences of human-induced climate change that lead to changes are not gradual and linear but could lead to rapidly escalating and often irreversible effects. 

Also included was a reference to “the right to a clean healthy and sustainable environment”, highlighting the clear link between global warming and health. 

 

Net-Zero Carbon Emissions

 

Net-zero certainly hasn’t moved forward enough at an international level at COP27, but industry continues to show leadership with the release of the ISO Net-Zero Guidelines, which provides our first end-to-end framework for what good net-zero governance looks like from targets, to plans, to claiming success. The UK’s net-zero plan framework was also released by the Transition Plan Taskforce, which all listed companies must now submit to the FCA against by the end of 2023, something that will cascade through supply chains in a really significant way. 

To learn more, watch Planet Mark’s COP27 Business Debrief webinar recording here.

 

READ PART ONE OF PLANET MARK’S COP27 ROUNDUP HERE

 

Picture: a photograph of the main gate at COP27 in Sharmm El-Sheik. Image Credit: Unsplash

Article written by Planet Mark | Published 14 December 2022

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