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COP25 started and countries will have to move up a gear

On December 2, COP25 started, the UN event focused on the fight against climate change and the scenario where the Paris Agreement emerged .

Conversation during COP25 in Madrid.

Conversation during COP25 in Madrid. / Photo: twitter.com/COP25CL

LatinAmerican Post | Juliana Suárez

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Leer en español: Empezó la COP25 y los países tendrán que ponerse las pilas

The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change 2019 will last from 2 to December 13 in Madrid and will have the slogan #TimeForAction, seeking that states continue their commitment to the fight against climate change.

The main aspect, that the nations that are part of this meeting have to resolve, is a modification to the limits imposed in the Paris Agreement, since these initiatives seem to no longer be sufficient to curb global warming. Different groups of experts have mentioned on different occasions that even if each country met the stipulated goals, they would not be sufficient to maintain a temperature below 2 ° C of the global average.

Read also: Declaration of a climate emergency and next steps for action

 

 

This, coupled with the fact that the Paris Agreement, although legally binding, does not allow any type of sanction to those who do not meet their goals, are the problems of the agreement itself. The UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, said at the opening ceremony of the COP25, that governments are at high risk of reaching a point of no return if appropriate measures are not taken in time.

As agreed at COP21, where the agreement was born, a review of the progress and compliance of all countries will be made every five years, which will happen at the next convention, in 2020. For this, countries can review and change aspects of what they delivered previously to be able to improve those commitments.

Meanwhile, in this edition that had to be celebrated in Madrid although it was originally in Chile, and was changed because of the situation that the Latin American country is currently experiencing, several points both related and independent of the Paris Agreement will be discussed. The scenario at which this event is reached is worrying considering important natural disasters, such as the fires of the Amazon and others, that occurred throughout the year.

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COP25 also arrives with one less country in the agreement. Exactly one month ago, the United States announced that it would withdraw from the Paris Agreement, which Trump had threatened since he became president, considering that his country was at a competitive disadvantage. This announcement was worrying in the first place, as the North American country is the second largest producer of greenhouse gas emissions, after China, for its large polluting industries. The exit meant that one of the countries on which it depends more to reach the goal would no longer be participating.

It was feared that leaving the United States could encourage other countries to withdraw from the Paris Agreement. However, this decision seemed not to affect others, at least for now. On the contrary, some states in the country have shown their commitment to create state environmental policies that would allow at least some extent to continue with the US commitment. "It is very significant that this commitment is being made at the level of the states of the United States, it does not compensate, but it helps in the face of the lack of commitment of Washington", said Miguel Ruiz Cabañas, professor and director of the ODS Initiative, for the TEC Review magazine.

This same commitment has come to light at the beginning of COP25. On the second day of the convention, the needs of not only countries but cities to avoid global warming continue to increase. The mayor of Medellín, Federico Gutiérrez, said that in order to achieve global climate action it is necessary to start from the local level. "We can have many differences - political, religious - but there is something that we all have in common: the air that we breathe",  Euro News recalled.

During the two weeks of the event, there will be talks of all kinds that will include from the role of universities, investors and the financing of the Paris Agreement for developing countries, the role of young people, circular economy and sustainability and meetings of specifically regional issues, among other events.

 

 

Climate activism, especially led by young people, has also aroused the eagerness and need for nations to fully engage in the fight and has become one of the best tools of the UN and civilian population at the time of demanding governments.

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