Thoughts from some of Boston’s environmental leaders on the COP26 climate conference – Boston University News Service – Boston, Massachusetts

Boston, Massachusetts 2021-12-03 17:17:48 –

Zoe Allen, Ryan Noel, Joe Pohoryles, Youmna Sukkar, Jack Thornton
Boston University News Service

Earlier this month, world leaders from more than 100 countries gathered at the United Nations Annual Climate Change Conference called “COP26” in Glasgow, Scotland. From October 31st to November 12th, the main outcome of the conference is Glasgow Climate Pact It was the first time that the United Nations Climate Conference Agreement directly called for a reduction in the use of coal and fossil fuels around the world.

The conference called on participating countries to “accelerate efforts towards gradual reduction.” Unabated coal-fired and inefficient fossil fuel subsidies, We recognize the need for support for a just transition. ”

The agreement initially called for a “phasing out” of coal-fired power, but in negotiations later in the meeting, a delegation from India, a prominent producer and consumer of coal, called for a change in the wording of the agreement. rice field.

The conference also saw the recognition that the damage faced by developing countries as a result of climate change is disproportionate to their pollution emissions.

The agreement includes an agreement to establish a mechanism to support countries affected by climate change, with developed countries underdeveloped by 2025 to help adapt to environmental change. We are calling for doubling the joint funding to the country.

In addition, more than 100 countries have promised to reverse deforestation by 2030. Pledged countries occupy about 85% of the world’s forests and include world powers such as the United States. China and the United Kingdom, and High deforestation Charges for Brazil and Indonesia.

Twenty-four governments in developed countries will also work with automakers such as Ford, General Motors and Mercedes-Benz to reduce carbon emissions in all new cars and vans by 2035 in key markets and by 2040 globally. I promised that.

In particular, countries with major automotive industries such as the United States, Germany and Japan did not agree with this pledge, nor did manufacturers such as Volkswagen, Toyota and Nissan.

The meeting acknowledged the pledge and agreement as a step forward rather than achieving the goal. Countries will reduce emissions by 2022 to ensure that they are playing their part in ensuring that the world’s climate does not exceed 1.5 degrees Celsius, as set out in the 2015 Paris Agreement. I was asked to reconsider the plan.

Here’s what local leaders, activists and experts had to say about the outcome of the summit:

Elizabeth Sternble Henry, President of the Massachusetts Environment Federation

Elizabeth Stern Bull Henry, Massachusetts Environmental FederationAn important point of COP26 for her and many of her colleagues in other state and local environmental groups was that “you can’t expect help from high places here.”

“To prove that not only do we need global cooperation and binding global goals, but transitions are possible and that transitions are a fair and way to create economic opportunities for society as a whole, state-based and Regional progress is also needed, “Turn Bull Henry said. “The rules for methane commitments are on track. Certainly, there are good things that came from it. But overall … we are not on track to achieve our science-based goals. The implications of not doing so are obvious and affect us all, especially those who are the least equipped to deal with it. “

Turnbull Henry also talked about the role of wealthy countries in both emission generation and future emission reductions.

“I remember seeing The Guardian’s article … From a revenue perspective, the top 1 percent emits twice as much as the bottom 50 percent,” she added. “So it’s a real shame that we don’t see the bold and candid moral leadership of countries that have the means to do so.”

Jonathan Waldman, Political Leader at Sunrise Boston, Senior at Milton High School

Jonathan Waldmann sunrise Boston is a branch of the national youth movement with the goal of curbing climate change and creating millions of green jobs. Waldmann reiterated Turnbull Henry’s feelings that the event in Glasgow proved that local work was more important than ever.

“COP26 has shown, above all, that the drastic actions needed to avoid a climate change catastrophe come from grassroots organization, not from top-down diplomatic and legislative efforts.” He said.

In his view, the most positive outcome of the Climate Conference is “the revival of the United States as a world leader in climate after four years of incineration of diplomatic bridges and denial of climate change under President Donald Trump.” bottom.

He also said it is promising that the agreement signed at the conference clearly promises to spend additional money to reduce reliance on coal and mitigate the effects of the climate crisis in developing countries. rice field.

But he said the measures agreed at COP26 would go nowhere as long as climate disasters had to be avoided.

“There was a consensus among experts that the pledge contained in the agreement was not sufficient to maintain 1.5 degrees Celsius within the Paris Agreement,” Waldmann said. “This is, above all, a reminder that powers cannot trust to save our future. The climate revolution began in the community, not in parliament, and it must continue to move forward. By the way. ”

Joan Fitzgerald, Professor of Urban Public Policy, Northeastern University

Joan Fitzgerald, a professor of urban and public policy at Northeastern University, said the agreement would help cities and towns play a leading role in climate change in the United States. As an example of a climate-leading town, Fitzgerald pointed out Brookline’s efforts to keep fossil fuel connections away from new buildings.

“Now you have an international agreement saying that you have to phase out fossil fuels, which will completely change the environment in which the city operates,” Fitzgerald said.

Fitzgerald also referred to Boston Mayor Michelle Wu’s climate policy and pointed out her “Free the T” plan as a policy to help curb Boston’s carbon emissions.

“Boston is already making a big move on building efficiency, [Wu] It will continue to make a big move, “Fitzgerald said. “Boston will be a major climate change city with her mayor.”

Fiona Broad, a member of Daibest BU

Boston University students also take the lead in climate change. Sell ​​BU Is a coalition aimed at selling from fossil fuels to Boston University. Fiona Broadey, a member of the group, shared her thoughts on COP26.

“I thought the COP26 Summit was a big loss overall, but there were a lot of small wins in it,” Broadey said.

According to Broadie, these victories are countries that have vowed to stop deforestation by 2030, which will be “85% of the rest of the world’s forests.”

China and the United States have pledged to reduce emissions of fossil fuels, including methane, which have never been mentioned at the Climate Summit.

One of Broadie’s prominent conference speakers was Brazilian indigenous activist Txai Surui. A 24-year-old woman talked about how climate change is affecting her home in the Amazon rainforest.

“Today, the climate is warming. Animals are disappearing. Rivers are dead and our plants are not blooming as they used to,” Suruga said at the Climate Summit.

The big loss is that world leaders and diplomats do not admit that poor countries need more financial support. These countries feel the greatest impact of climate change, but they are not responsible. The two largest pollutants in China and the United States have vowed to reduce fossil fuel emissions, but plan to reduce them over the next decade.

Broadie emphasized the urgency that world leaders must take to stop climate change, saying “we have no decades.” They also explained that the people who make these decisions are often old and wealthy, which makes it difficult for them to personally feel the impact.

“It will affect our youth, our future, and it is now affecting the poor and people in places like the Amazon rainforest,” Broady said.

Thoughts from some of Boston’s environmental leaders on the COP26 climate conference – Boston University News Service Source link Thoughts from some of Boston’s environmental leaders on the COP26 climate conference – Boston University News Service

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