2023 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP28): Resources
The 2023 Conference of the Parties (COP) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) will convene from 30 November to 12 December 2023 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE).
COP28 UAE is a milestone opportunity for the world to come together, course correct, and drive progress. We need everyone to be more ambitious in the fight against climate change to meet the goals and ambition of the Paris Agreement. COP28 will emphasize a 'leave no one behind' approach to climate action. Underscoring all efforts are the principles of transformation, solidarity, pragmatism, and inclusivity. The world needs a COP of action and a COP for all.
The COP28 Presidency’s two-week thematic program is geared towards responding to the Global Stocktake and closing the gaps to 2030. The program reflects the sectors and topics raised by stakeholders during consultations, including new actions areas like health, trade, relief, recovery, and peace. The thematic days programming also incorporates four cross-cutting themes that underpin effective, interconnected delivery: Technology & Innovation, Inclusion, Frontline Communities and Finance.
Climate change and global warming pose significant risks to the global community. Its effects are felt in the physical environment in the form of increasing droughts, floods, wildfires, desertification and rising greenhouse gas emissions, among other things, but importantly also significant economic losses. The impact of climate change is evident in increasing displacement, mass migration, conflict and instability, environmental degradation, and food crises. Urgent action is required by the global community to curb climate-related risks and improve resilience to its effects. It is for this reason that 'Climate action’ is include as Goal 13 in the United Nations’ 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) agenda.
The United Nations has recognised that:
Urgent and transformative action is crucial, going beyond mere plans and promises. It requires raising ambition, covering entire economies and moving towards climate-resilient development, while outlining a clear path to achieve net-zero emissions. Time is running out, and immediate measures are necessary to avoid catastrophic consequences and secure a sustainable future for generations to come.
In the global effort to address climate change and its negative impacts, world leaders at the UN Climate Change Conference (COP21) in Paris reached a breakthrough: the Paris Agreement. It is a legally binding international treaty with the following overarching long-term goals:
To substantially reduce global greenhouse gas emissions to limit the global temperature increase in this century to 2 degrees Celsius while pursuing efforts to limit the increase even further to 1.5 degrees;
Review countries’ commitments every five years; and
Provide financing to developing countries to mitigate climate change, strengthen resilience and enhance abilities to adapt to climate impacts.
There are currently 194 Parties to the Paris Agreement.
The Agreement includes commitments from all countries to reduce their carbon emissions and work together to adapt to the impacts of climate change, which should be strengthen over time. The Agreement provides a pathway for developed nations to assist developing nations in their climate mitigation and adaptation efforts while creating a framework for the transparent monitoring and reporting of countries’ climate goals.
2023 will see the first global stocktake to assess collective progress made towards meeting the Paris Agreement goals, and where they are not being met. UN Climate Change Executive Secretary Simon Stiell has stated that “[t]he global stocktake is an ambition exercise. It’s an accountability exercise. It’s an acceleration exercise. It’s an exercise that is intended to make sure every Party is holding up their end of the bargain, knows where they need to go next and how rapidly they need to move to fulfil the goals of the Paris Agreement.”
The stocktake is an opportunity to ramp up ambition to avoid the most significant consequences of climate change. It has been viewed as a gamechanger – a global response that "will make all the difference”.