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COP 28 Live Blog - 9th December

UNFCCC
UNFCCC

Welcome to our live blog of the 28th Conference of the Parties (COP 28) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), taking place in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Over the next two weeks, world leaders, policymakers, activists, and experts will gather to discuss and negotiate critical issues related to climate change, biodiversity, and sustainability. The stakes are high, as the world faces a climate crisis that demands urgent and transformative action.
We will be bringing you real-time updates, insights, and exclusive behind-the-scenes glimpses of the event, providing a comprehensive overview of the discussions, decisions, and outcomes of COP 28.

Next: 10th December

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End-of-Day Update

Updated 20:28h GST/UTC+4 - 9/12/23
UNFCCC
UNFCCC

As COP 28 enters its final days, a sense of urgency hangs in the air. Delegates from around the world are working tirelessly to bridge gaps and reach agreements on critical issues related to climate change. Today, we saw progress on the energy transition front, with high-level dialogues culminating in a "consensus on energy transition." However, tensions remain high on the issue of fossil fuels, with OPEC's opposition to a phase-out sparking outrage from the EU and other nations.
Negotiations:
  • India: Pushes for "equity and justice" in climate negotiations, emphasizing the need for developed nations to take the lead in reducing emissions.
  • Russia: Proposes using frozen gold reserves to support the loss and damage fund, likely as a way to avoid Western seizure of its assets.
  • OPEC: Opposes any phase-out of fossil fuels, sparking outrage and criticism from the EU and others.
  • Azerbaijan to host COP 29 in 2024.
  • Activists demand climate justice and a ceasefire in Gaza, facing restrictions on their demonstration.
  • High-level dialogues: Conclude with "consensus on energy transition," endorsing the IEA's five pillars for success.
  • Civil society: Experiences increased restrictions on their freedom of expression and assembly, raising concerns about censorship and influence of fossil fuel lobbyists.
Overall:
  • COP 28 is nearing its conclusion, with tensions rising over fossil fuels and concerns about civil society participation.
  • Important progress has been made on the energy transition, with a shared vision for achieving a 1.5°C pathway.
  • However, major challenges remain, including how to finance the transition and ensure a just and equitable outcome for all nations.
Looking ahead:
  • All eyes will be on the final days of COP 28 as negotiators work to reach agreements on key issues.
  • The success of the conference will depend on finding common ground amidst diverse interests and overcoming remaining obstacles.

India Demands “Equity And Justice” In Negotiations

Updated 19:35h GST/UTC+4 - 9/12/23
UNFCCC
UNFCCC

India's environment minister, Bhupender Yadav, has emphasized the need for “equity and justice” in negotiations during COP 28. During a plenary session today, he stated that developed nations, with their larger historical emissions, should take the lead in addressing climate change.
Yadav's statement reiterates India's longstanding position that developing countries like themselves should not be forced to cut their energy-related emissions, despite being the world's third-largest emitter. This stance comes as delegates grapple with the contentious issue of fossil fuels within the COP28 discussions.
India, alongside other countries heavily reliant on fossil fuels, contends that the focus should be on developed nations taking more responsibility. Their argument stems from the historical imbalance, where developed nations have borne a greater share of the emissions burden.
With COP 28 nearing its conclusion, delegates are working diligently towards resolving the deadlock surrounding future fossil fuel use.

Russia Proposes Use Of Frozen Gold Reserves For Climate Fund

Updated 18:10h GST/UTC+4 - 9/12/23
UNFCCC
UNFCCC

Russia has proposed the use of its frozen gold reserves to support the loss and damage fund, aiming to “assist developing countries impacted by climate change.” This move appears to be an attempt by Russia to prevent Western nations from seizing its frozen assets, estimated to be over $300 billion.
“We are ready to announce that Russia is looking into the voluntary contribution of finance to the loss and damage fund from the frozen national gold reserves held by international organisations...It is a step dictated by the need to close the gap between developing and developed countries...”
- Ruslan Edelgeriev, Russia's Climate Envoy
However, the proposal is unlikely to be accepted by the West. Western nations have frozen a significant portion of Russia's foreign reserves following the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February 2022. Ukraine itself has expressed its desire for these assets to be used for reconstruction efforts within the country. The legal implications of using these funds and potential future ramifications further complicate the situation.

Azerbaijan Poised To Host COP 29

Updated 17:00h GST/UTC+4 - 9/12/23
UNFCCC
UNFCCC

Multiple sources, including the Guardian and Reuters, are now confirming what we first reported yesterday: Azerbaijan is to host the 2024 UN Climate Change Conference (COP 29). This follows a breakthrough agreement with Armenia and the backing of Russia, removing major hurdles in the selection process. An exclusive high level diplomatic source told us yesterday; “The Pieces Of The Puzzle Have Aligned...Azerbaijan Will Host COP 29.”
Diplomatic sources have indicated widespread support for Azerbaijan's bid. The selection process had previously stalled due to Russia's objections to any European Union country hosting the event, a “consequence” of ongoing sanctions against Moscow.
Azerbaijan's successful bid hinges on two key factors:
  • A late-night deal with longtime rival Armenia on Thursday. This agreement removed a significant obstacle to Azerbaijan's candidacy.
  • The endorsement of Russia, a critical member of the Eastern European group. This support eliminates the threat of a potential veto, as the host nation requires unanimous approval from the region.

Activists Call For Climate Justice And Ceasefire In Gaza

Updated 16:45h GST/UTC+4 - 9/12/23
Image of post in post detailed view

Hundreds of activists gathered to call for both global climate action and a ceasefire in the ongoing conflict in Gaza. Chants of "Ceasefire now!" resonated through the Blue Zone, as the diverse crowd, encompassing climate activists, indigenous representatives, and pro-Palestinian campaigners, marched through one of Expo City's main thoroughfares.
While the peaceful march was flanked by UN security personnel, the organizers expressed their dissatisfaction with certain restrictions placed upon the demonstration. They specifically highlighted the prohibition of displaying Palestinian flags and chanting specific slogans, such as "from the river to the sea."
Despite these restrictions, messages of “solidarity with Palestinians” were evident, with marchers carrying signs bearing phrases like "End the occupation" and "Right of return," written in Palestinian colors.

Spanish Minister Criticizes OPEC's Stance On Fossil Fuels

Updated 14:27h GST/UTC+4 - 9/12/23
UNFCCC
UNFCCC

COP 28 negotiations have seen a sharp rise in tensions following pushback from OPEC against any phase-out of fossil fuels. Spanish Ecology Transition Minister Teresa Ribera, representing the EU in negotiations, expressed her outrage, calling the move ”disgusting.”
Spain currently holds the rotating presidency of the European Union, and Ribera is leading the bloc's push for the global phase out of oil, gas, and coal.
”I think that it is quite, quite a disgusting thing that OPEC countries are pushing against getting the bar where it has to be...we need to be quite clear, bold, crystal clear that the European Union will be aligning with...s large majority of the parties in this conference to ensure that we have (a) meaningful and productive outcome connected to this phase-out of fossil fuels...”

French Minister Condemns OPEC's Opposition To Fossil Fuel Phase-out

Updated 14:12h GST/UTC+4 - 9/12/23
European Union
European Union

French Energy Minister Agnes Pannier-Runacher has expressed strong disapproval following the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries' (OPEC) call for its members to resist any agreement targeting fossil fuels.
Pannier-Runacher described herself as "stunned" and "angry" by OPEC's stance, highlighting its potential harm to vulnerable populations suffering disproportionately from climate change.
“I am stunned by these statements from OPEC. And I am angry...OPEC's position endangers the most vulnerable countries and the poorest populations who are the first victims of this situation...counting on the presidency of the COP not to be influenced by these declarations, and to reach an agreement which affirms a clear objective of phasing out fossil fuels.”

Frustrations Mount At COP 28 As Restrictions On Civil Society Protests Increase

Updated 12:40h GST/UTC+4 - 9/12/23
Image of post in post detailed view

The atmosphere at COP 28 grew increasingly tense this morning as reports emerged of restrictions on civil society and frontline communities' freedom of expression and assembly. This comes amidst mounting criticism of the UNFCCC for allowing nearly 2,500 fossil fuel lobbyists to participate in this COP.
Today marks the global day of action, however a major climate action march faces numerous restrictions, including restrictions on speech content and participant numbers. Notably, any mention of ”Israel” was reportedly prohibited, with threats of badge revocation for violators.
Earlier in the day, an action titled “No Climate Justice Without Human Rights” took place in Area B6, adjacent to Building 76. This event honored imprisoned human rights defender Ahmed Mansoor. A vocal advocate for environmental protection and human rights in the United Arab Emirates, Mansoor has been imprisoned since 2017 for criticizing his government's human rights record and policies.

High-Level Dialogues Conclude With “Consensus On Energy Transition”

Updated 12:10h GST/UTC+4 - 9/12/23
UNFCCC
UNFCCC

The COP 28 Presidency and the International Energy Agency (IEA) concluded their High-Level Dialogues with “strong agreement” on key elements for the global energy transition. Over 40 high-level leaders, including Heads of State, participated in the final dialogue.
Key Takeaways:
  • Convergence on 1.5°C Pathway: The Dialogues established “clear consensus” on the building blocks for a 1.5°C-aligned energy transition, supporting ambitious outcomes at COP2 8.
  • IEA's Five Pillars: IEA Executive Director Fatih Birol proposed five pillars for success at COP 28, including tripling renewable energy capacity, doubling energy efficiency improvements, phasing out fossil fuels, and supporting developing economies.
  • Global Renewables and Energy Efficiency Pledge: The COP 28 Presidency's Global Renewables and Energy Efficiency Pledge, signed by 130 countries, garnered strong backing. Participants emphasized the need for urgent action on coal, both on phasing out new plants and accelerating the retirement of existing ones.
  • Supporting Developing Countries: The Dialogues recognized the importance of supporting developing countries through finance and technology transfer to enable their own energy transitions. Mechanisms like Just Energy Transition Partnerships (JETPs) were highlighted as “impactful solutions.”

Youths Took Center Stage

Updated 11:50h GST/UTC+4 - 9/12/23
UNFCCC
UNFCCC

Several key initiatives were launched yesterday during "Youth, Children, Skills and Education Day," including the first-ever Youth Stocktake, the graduation ceremony for the Youth Climate Delegates Program, and the signing of the UNESCO Greening Education Partnership Declaration.
Key Highlights:
  • The Youth Stocktake was launched, analyzing youth inclusion in UNFCCC and offering strategies for amplifying youth participation in decision-making.
  • 30+ countries signed the UNESCO Greening Education Partnership Declaration, committing to incorporate climate education into their national plans.
  • 110 youth delegates from around the world graduated from the COP28 Youth Climate Delegates Program.
  • The UAE announced a $220 million funding package for Africa to improve health outcomes for youth.
  • The Marketplace of the Future and Green Skills Fair connected young people with career opportunities and potential employers.

Ministerial Dialogue Tackles Trust And Transparency In Ex-Ante Climate Finance Reporting

Updated 11:30h GST/UTC+4 - 9/12/23
UNFCCC
UNFCCC

Yesterday afternoon saw a high-level ministerial dialogue on the provision of ex-ante information on climate finance, as mandated by Article 9.5 of the Paris Agreement. This dialogue, co-moderated by the Minister of Environment and Climate Change of Canada, Steven Guilbeault and Minister of Environment of Egypt Yasmine Fouad, aimed to discuss lessons learned from the second round of reporting on anticipated climate finance. UNFCCC Executive Secretary Simon Stiell highlighted the crucial role of trust in the process, emphasizing the need to rebuild trust between developed and developing countries. He pointed to the failed goal of mobilizing $100 billion annually by 2020 as a key example of the challenges faced.
During the dialogue, reports from the OECD and Oxfam analyzed the delivery of climate finance. However, the lack of a common definition of climate finance led to variations in methodology, especially regarding the use of grant-equivalent figures. Developing countries emphasized the need for a common definition, arguing that the current lack of clarity undermines transparency, predictability, and implementation. Developed countries, on the other hand, highlighted their contributions and efforts to increase predictability. Some also encouraged a wider group of countries to report under Article 9.5.

COP 28 Enters Political Phase With Ambitious Agenda

Updated 11:10h GST/UTC+4 - 8/12/23
UNFCCC
UNFCCC

Yesterday, COP President Sultan Al Jaber outlined a roadmap for moving forward, emphasizing the importance of collaboration and concrete action. Al Jaber proposed pairing ministers to oversee consultations on key issues, including mitigation, adaptation, and finance. These “ministerial pairs” will be responsible for leading discussions and finding common ground. Meanwhile, senior negotiators will continue to address outstanding technical matters, aiming to finalize all technical discussions by today.
While the tight time frame leaves little room for extensive consultations before Saturday's stocktaking plenary, delegates expressed confidence in the chosen ministers. They also hoped that these experienced leaders would continue playing a significant role in the subsequent “Majlis,” which will convene tomorrow.
Despite the shift towards political discussions, negotiations on cooperative approaches under Article 6 of the Paris Agreement continued throughout the day. However, some parties threatened to stall progress on certain market-related issues unless equal attention is given to alternative approaches. Finance negotiators, too, faced a long day, grappling with complex issues but ultimately agreeing to continue technical discussions.

Good Morning!

Updated 11:00h GST/UTC+4 - 9/12/23
UNFCCC
UNFCCC

We're back with more live coverage of COP 28! Stay tuned for the latest updates, expert insights, and exclusive access to the ongoing negotiations.
  • George Kariuki

    18 w

    We keep going!

    1
    • Princess

      18 w

      Thank you for the update.

      3
      • Olamide Teru

        18 w

        I think OPEC need to come out of their fear zone and have a rethink. Thanks Prof.

        2
        • Bonnie Lee

          18 w

          It is very upsetting that there is a debate at COP about why we shouldn't burn fossil fuels and OPEC seems to be the major backer to so many attendees. It's unfuriating!

          4
          • Gorffly mokua

            18 w

            @bonnie_lee It's concerning that some attendees are still advocating for burning fossil fuels despite the overwhelming evidence of their negative impact on the environment!!

            4
            • Jane Wangui

              18 w

              @bonnie_lee It should not be up for debates. Fossil fuels have no profit to the environment.

              2
            • Christina Carlmark

              18 w

              Great summary!

              2
              • Munene Mugambi

                18 w

                Was tuned on today's broadcast and I'm hopeful we have been more enlightened on climate change from the expert opinions availed to us

                2
                • Rotich Kim

                  18 w

                  We are following this conference colsely and we are going to get better and good results

                  5
                  • Gorffly mokua

                    18 w

                    @rotich_kim Lets hope so!

                    2
                  Welcome, let's solve the climate crisis together
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