COP28 underway

Latest round of climate talks opened today in Dubai with stark warning that the world is but taking baby steps to combat the planetary crisis that requires bold action now.

COP28 UAE poster

The 28th annual meeting of the Conference of Parties (COP) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is scheduled to run through to 12 December. The conference is taking place at the campus of Expo City, located on the outskirts of Dubai and is expected to host over 70,000 delegates, climate negotiators and other participants.

Just hours ahead of the opening of the COP, the UN World Meteorological Organization (WMO) issued a provisional report confirming that 2023 is set to be the warmest on record, with global temperatures rising 1.4 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.

In his opening statement, Simon Stiell, UNFCCC Executive Secretary said “This has been the hottest year ever for humanity. So many terrifying records were broken. We are paying with people’s lives and livelihoods. Science tells us we have around six years before we exhaust the planet’s ability to cope with our emissions. Before we blow through the 1.5-degree limit.”

Reports published in the lead up to COP28 have shown that the world is way off-track in achieving climate goals and in the absence of ambitious action, we are heading towards a temperature increase of 3 degrees by the end of this century.

Against this backdrop, Mr. Stiell called on countries to deliver ambitious new Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), or national climate action plans where every single commitment in 2025 – on finance, adaptation, and mitigation – must be in line with a 1.5-degree world.