COP28 - The Girls are on COP!

We’re five days into COP28, currently taking place in Dubai, UAE, and it’s been a rocky start to the week for COP28 President Sultan Al Jaber 

Yesterday (4th December), the CEO of Adnoc responded to a report quoting him saying during an online event in December that ‘there is no science out there, or no scenario out there, that says that the phase-out of fossil fuel is what's going to achieve 1.5C’. During Monday’s statement he defended himself, claiming the quote had been ‘taken out of context’ and that "we are here because we very much believe and respect the science.” The claims fuel an already growing fire among groups expressing concern for the direction of the talks.  Eyes will remain on Al Jabar over the coming weeks to see if he can deliver on his commitment to an ‘unprecedented outcome’ for this year’s COP, which he believes has been very successful so far.  

In news closer to my own heart, 4th December was COP28’s Gender Equality Day. 

Climate change is known to disproportionately impact women and girls, since globally, women are frequently responsible for securing natural resources such as food, water, and fuel. Agriculture is also the most important employment sector for women in low- and lower-middle income countries. Thus, during periods of erratic weather such as storms or drought, women are forced to work harder, putting added pressure on younger women and girls to leave school to help their mothers. Indeed, a report published yesterday (4th December) by UN Women suggests that by 2050, climate change may push up to 158 million more women and girls into poverty, with 236 million more facing food insecurity.  

The high-level technical dialogue of the day, led by Razan Al Mubarak, president of the IUCN, culminated in the launch of the Gender-Responsive Just Transitions and Climate Action Partnership which has now been endorsed by over 60 Parties. The package is reported to build on the Gender Action Plan which was part of the Lima Work Programme on Gender (LWPG) set out in 2014. Discussions focussed on mobilising gender-positive finance and the implementation of the so-called ‘gender responsive just transition’, with the aim of developing a more coherent understanding of the opportunities and gaps in these areas. The measures centre around three pillars: 

  • Improve quality of data to support decision making in transition planning 
  • More effective finance flows to regions most impacted by climate change 
  • Ensure access to education, skills and capacity building to support individual engagement in transitions 

 Speaking about the programme, Al Mubarak said, “to deliver a just transition we must reform the architecture of the global financial system and ensure finance flows to the regions and the people who need it the most.” As well as the measures to be implemented over the next three years, the partnership also requires that signatories reconvene at COP31 to review progress against its aims. We’ll be sitting tight.  

Stay tuned for more updates! 

Natasha Jacobs - ESG Consultant, Earth Active

5 December 2023
Catherine Barrett
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