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Conservation Science for a Healthy Planet

2018 UNFCCC Global Climate Meeting– Ellie’s COP24 blog #1 from Katowice, Poland (video and news links)

by Ellie Cohen

Just arrived!

I’m honored to be representing Point Blue again this year at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change’s 24th Conference of the Parties (UNFCCC’s COP24).  The “parties” are representatives of the 195 countries of the world that have signed on to the Paris agreement to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

You can watch various COP24 events live and recorded here (see for example some of the inspiring opening plenary).  Read daily summaries and listen to daily podcasts prepared by Climate Home News here (and sign up for their informative e-newsletter here and see for example Katowice brief: Final push for Paris).  Also sign up for updates and find excellent information at the International Institute for Sustainable Development’s COP24 website pages here.

Point Blue became an officially recognized Observer NGO in 2017 as one of about 2000 globally.  This year’s meeting is being held in Katowice, Poland.  COP24 kicked off Sunday, December 2 (you can read more here) and goes through Friday, December 14th at least (could be extended depending on where negotiations are at).

This year’s COP is considered very urgent as it is time (past time!) to nail down specific “teeth” to the Paris agreement of 2015 and ensure that the countries of the world reach their greenhouse gas reduction goals for 2020.  Those goals as currently committed- while ambitious- are not enough to keep us below 2C warming above pre-industrial times; we are already over 1C warmer now with severe consequences.

An exciting trend is that nature-based solutions including the oceans and agriculture are increasingly being considered as part  of the solution.

It is also exciting just to be “in the room where it happens” with dedicated and bright climate leaders from around the world.  Per a recent Eco-business article, “according to the provisional list (pdf) published by the UNFCCC, there is a grand total of 22,771 registered participants at COP24. This includes 13,898 people representing specific parties, 7,331 from observer organisations – such as scientists, business groups and various non-governmental organisations – and 1,541 journalists.”  Inspiring!

Check my blog over the next week for more updates.