Environment ministers from across 50 countries are gathered in Kinshasa, capital of the Democratic Republic of Congo on Monday for a “pre-COP27” climate summit.
The deliberations are informal, allowing for environmental activists and green groups to take stock of political positions ahead of COP27. COP27 is the United Nations climate gathering of world leaders in Egypt next month.
An opening ceremony will take place in the Congolese parliament building in Kinshasa, followed by discourse on mitigating climate change, and providing funding for countries already damaged by global heating and extreme weather events.
Delegates from about 50 countries are expected to attend the talks, including United States climate envoy John Kerry.
“The emphasis will certainly be on support from industrialised countries to countries in the south,” a Western diplomat explained.
The last UN climate summit, COP26 in Glasgow in November 2021, reaffirmed the goal agreed in Paris in 2015. This includes limiting the rise in the earth’s average temperature to well below 2.0 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit it to 1.5C.
That goal may already be beyond reach as the earth’s temperature is already 1.2C higher than before the Industrial Revolution of the 19th century.
Poorer countries had pushed at Glasgow for a financial mechanism to address losses and damage caused by climate change.
But wealthier nations who constitute the largest polluters rejected the call and the participants agreed instead to start a “dialogue” on financial compensation for damages.
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