A green hope that grows in the desert…
World leaders gather again in Egypt for COP27 to confront the existential threat of the climate crisis; while solutions exist, the world needs to see action and implementation. To achieve this, the global community needs both courage and optimism.
COP27 should be about collaboration, green acceleration and, above all, bringing existing concepts and solutions to life to adapt them and create much-needed green jobs. A metaphorical crossing of the Red Sea is necessary to stop the current trajectory at 2.8°C or more of global warming. It is time for finance to mobilize.
In 2012, during the COP18 in Doha, a pilot installation for the production of food, energy, water and the revegetation of desert areas was launched. Today, a few kilometers from the COP, the Sahara Forest Project produces tons of vegetables far in the Jordanian desert, in salt-water cooled greenhouses, with their own renewable energy, by planting trees in the desert.
Not everyone believed it in 2012. But seeing was believing, and it still is.
At the dawn of the 2000s, the electrification of transport seemed more like a vision than a possible reality. In 2009, when Bellona brought Europe’s first four Tesla Roadsters to COP15 in Copenhagen, it all got a little more real. Today, we can recognize the considerable progress made over the past 13 years.
Not everyone believed it, even in 2009. But the needle has moved. Seeing is believing.
The adage may be old and slightly worn, but it has never been truer. Can a few electric cars solve the problem? No. But can he engage the right gears? Absolutely.
Renewables have been doing this for years, with rapidly falling costs for solar, wind and storage technologies all transforming the energy sector. Replacing fossil fuels in use has also become a given in many other applications, with heavy construction machinery the latest addition. Manufacturers are increasingly aware that electrification is not only good for the environment, but also for worker health, noise levels and the pocketbook. In industry, carbon capture and storage is becoming viable as a large-scale solution for hard-to-remove process emissions.
And while the damages and losses from climate change continue to mount with each passing year of inaction, the global community is still stuck trying to meet the 2009 commitment to mobilize the $100 billion a year from developed countries to developing countries.
But the tempo is missing. Implementation is lacking. The scale is missing. And that’s not the least, funding is lacking.
Allocating money to the right projects is undoubtedly one of the biggest challenges in the fight against climate change. Our current measures to accelerate finance, for both adaptation and mitigation, are failing. And while the damages and losses from climate change continue to mount with each passing year of inaction, the global community is still stuck trying to meet the 2009 commitment to mobilize the $100 billion a year from developed countries to developing countries.
We need to look carefully at the challenges facing current climate finance. At the same time, we must look beyond this single commitment, towards new mechanisms for financing a just and green transition.
A paradigm shift is needed in climate finance, climate finance 2.0. This new paradigm can focus on some key issues.
Infrastructure is one of those issues. Large-scale infrastructure projects are hugely important for deploying much-needed renewable energy, as well as decarbonizing harder-to-electrify industrial processes around the world. But project roll-out is slow, and projects suffer from a lack of public funding, long lead times, challenges with permitting processes, administrative hurdles, and problems with public acceptance. .
Another challenge is to define the projects “of common interest” eligible for climate financing. An international mechanism channeling capital to projects of common interest could create a global stamp of approval, sending positive market signals and leveraging additional private capital either directly into projects or into associated infrastructure-based projects. shared.
These are not just examples, but a vision and a possible reality. Today more than ever, we need action and leadership. This is why it is so important to showcase all the solutions that actually exist today, highlighting their many benefits and building better stories for climate action as climate positive but also for countries, cities, the communities. This is also why we are at COP27.
We are on a trajectory at 2.8 degrees instead of 1.5. The slogan for COP26 in Glasgow was ‘keep 1.5 alive’ – he is currently on life support. Yet every day we see new and innovative solutions to the climate and environmental crises that the global community is trying to solve.
Seeing is believing. Now let’s get them funds.
Dan Kammen is a professor of sustainability at the University of California at Berkeley. He served at the World Bank as chief technical specialist for renewable energy and as science envoy in the Obama administration. He has been one of the main coordinating authors of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change since 1999. Twitter: @dan_kammen.
Frederic Hauge founded Bellona in 1986, at the age of 20. Through academic work, legal action and nonviolent activism, Bellona has changed opinion and set the agenda on environmental issues in Norway for nearly three decades. Hauge was elected in 2007 Vice President of the European Commission’s Technology Platform for CO2 Sequestration (ZEP). The same year, TIME Magazine named him an “Environmental Hero”. In 2009, he became a board member of the EU Biofuel Platform (EBTP) and one of the founding partners of the Sahara Forest Project.
Read more Opinion and analysis