Egypt aims to avoid backsliding at Cop 27

  • Market: Coal, Crude oil, Emissions, Natural gas
  • 10/25/22

Egyptian officials remain concerned that many countries may backslide on their climate commitments with less than two weeks left before they host this year's UN Cop 27 climate talks.

One of the biggest concerns is that many countries are not taking enough action to meet commitments they have made at previous talks, including pledges for reducing emissions financing projects in developing countries.

"We had very nice headlines coming out of Glasgow. How much was this delivered on?" Egyptian ambassador Mohamed Nasr, one of the country's lead negotiators, said to reporters today. "Either we make headlines, or we make progress on the ground."

One concern is that countries will, as some already have, use global events such as Russia's invasion of Ukraine and strained US-China relations, as reasons not to live up to their commitments. Egypt is also hoping those events do not interfere with the talks.

"We hope the geopolitical scene that is out there does not find its way into the negotiations," Nasr said.

Egypt hopes the way it has structured the talks will help avoid any backsliding. The Cop, which runs from 7-18 November, will open with a two-day "climate implementation summit" of world leaders and heads of government.

"We need to make sure that the political commitments at the highest level of the international community are still there," Nasr said.

So far about 90 heads of state or government have said they will be in Sharm el-Sheikh for the opening days of the talks, through it remains to be seen whether leaders from some of the world's biggest emitters, such as China, will attend.

In addition to issues such as adaptation and loss and damage, which Egypt has emphasized in the lead-up to the talks, Cop 27 will also include a discussion of fossil fuel use, a major issue at last year's talks in Glasgow, Nasr said. But Nasr declined to predict a specific result, noting that the Glasgow Cop went into overtime to reach agreement on language around the phase out of subsidies for coal and other fossils fuel that some countries felt had been weakened too much.

"It's up the parties at the end of the day to decide on what kind of outcome they want to agree on," he said.


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