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Two weeks before the opening of COP28, the United Arab Emirates inaugurated the Al-Dhafra complex, one of the largest solar power plants in the world.
According to IEA projections, climate policies will significantly change the way people source electricity over the coming years. Photovoltaic solar energy and electric vehicles should be the vectors that will propel this new economy, made necessary by the electrification of buildings, transport and industries.
Without marking the end of fossil fuels, this transformation could mean that a peak in demand for coal, oil and gas could be reached by 2030.
What about the historic promise on which COP27 in Sharm el-Sheikh concluded? In 2022, countries left Egypt promising to establish a loss and damage mechanism so that wealthier states pay for irreversible damage caused to more vulnerable nations.
The countries of the South, which have historically contributed less to the climate crisis, nevertheless find themselves on the front line and suffering the worst consequences.
Since COP27 , a committee met to determine the form that this mechanism will take, the countries that will contribute to it and those that will benefit from it.
Following difficult negotiations between countries of the North and countries of the South, members proposed that a fund be temporarily hosted by the World Bank. A series of conditions associated with this decision will have to be approved at COP28 to make everything operational. Rich countries particularly want to see polluting countries, such as China and Saudi Arabia, contribute to the financing.
The EU Climate Action Network has suggested that a tax on fossil fuels be introduced to cover the costs associated with loss and damage. This solution could generate nearly 210 billion US dollars, according to the organization.
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Code of war, funding is lacking and still imposes itself on the COP agenda.
Long before an agreement was reached on the issue of loss and damage, the richest nations agreed in 2009, in a separate commitment, to pay US$100 billion a year to support the countries of the South in their fight against climate change. However, they have failed to keep their promise, year after year.
Based on preliminary data – and which has not been made public – , the OECD recently indicated that rich countries will have fulfilled their commitment from 2022, two years behind the initial schedule.
The financing gap is also evident in the adaptation file, where the needs of developing countries are 10 to 18 times greater than what is provided in international aid.
In 2021, funding amounted to US$21 billion. This is far from the 387 billion that should be mobilized each year, according to the UN, to implement the most pressing adaptation measures.
At COP28, negotiators should adopt a framework to ensure climate change adaptation targets are met.
The summit will be held in Dubai from November 30 to December 12.
Valérie Boisclair (View profile)Valérie BoisclairFollow