Now we have ratified the Paris Agreement what next?
Today, the UK ratified the Paris climate agreement. This means that we join a group of over 110 countries that have so far ratified a global agreement in record time, less than one year since its inception. Last week on the 14th November, the Prime Minister, made a call. She said “Britain has ‘historic chance’ to give leadership to world” Today, in Marrakesh, the climate change negotiations enter their final day, with the negotiations having been laboured unlike in Paris […]
Agriculture – a global win-win but, sadly, a ‘no-win’ at COP22
Agriculture: everywhere, yet nowhere As an agriculturalist following the climate change negotiations (the ‘Conference of Parties’ or annual COPs) I used to think that agriculture was the most ‘not talked about’ topic. It was implicit everywhere, but nowhere in the text. Until, with great relief, food security was highlighted in the Paris Agreement. Recognizing the fundamental priority of safeguarding food security and ending hunger, and the particular vulnerabilities of food production systems to the adverse impacts of climate change However, […]
Why is Loss and Damage critical?
Or why is Loss and Damage different from Adaptation and Mitigation and why serious political will to integrate Loss and Damage in the global climate regime will be vital for the success of the COP22 climate change negotiations. This week the world gathers in Marrakesh for the 22nd Conference of Parties (COP22). This is the next instalment in the annual climate change negotiations at which governments as parties, alongside observers in the form of academics, NGO’s, civil society, community representatives […]
Climate change is fuelling extreme weather events
On International Day for Disaster Reduction, Hurricane Matthew is a timely reminder of the consequences of inaction on climate change. Changing climates exacerbated by years of ineffective development generates risk for everyone, especially the poorest and most vulnerable those least responsible for the climate change problem. We have all seen the news of the devastation that Hurricane Matthew has wrecked on the Caribbean. Matthew, which spawned late in the hurricane season, first struck Jamaica, Haiti and Cuba before turning its […]
Making up time on Loss and Damage
This week the world passed a benchmark when the 56th country submitted documents of ratification for the global climate change agreement that was signed in Paris in December 2015. This was a significant step and raises the likelihood that the Paris agreement will be ratified in advance of the next global climate gathering in Marrakesh, Morocco in November 2016. One of the significant achievements (aside from it actually being passed!) was the inclusion of Article 8 on Loss and Damage. […]
Natural Capital the basis for effective flood protection?
The year has been marked by a number of unusual climate events. Not only was 2015 the hottest year on record, with 2016 appearing on track to exceed this, but the year has also been unusually wet. In the US state of Louisiana, 13 people died and large areas are still struggling to cope when a “no-name storm” dumped three times as much rain on Louisiana as Hurricane Katrina. This disaster manifested despite the US having the largest global disaster […]
Loss and Damage, why it’s vital to get it right.
At the COP21 Paris climate talks the issue of Loss and Damage was firmly cemented in the global agreement under Article 8. This agreement sets the agenda for climate action and the inclusion of a separate article on loss and damage recognises that for many people climate change is already a reality. Climate change is impacting people’s lives and livelihoods and for some adaptation is already too late. Climate change exacerbates existing hazards Climate change hits the poorest hardest, those […]
Gender Inclusive Resilience
Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) involves reducing disaster risks through efforts to analyse and reduce their underlying causes. On International Women’s day it is vital to the success of these efforts that the agency of women is not ignored nor overlooked. Disasters affect men and women, the young and the old, differently. Due to entrenched socio-economic conditions, cultural beliefs and traditional practices, women are more likely to be disproportionately affected by disasters. Hence, the empowerment of women is a critical ingredient […]
Technology Justice is critical to reduce risk for the poorest
Technology can greatly enhance the ability of disaster-affected communities to reduce their risk thus preventing natural hazards turning into human disasters. Technology has driven our development. Key technological innovations have heralded revolutions in the way we interact with the environment, but this drive for development has now started to threaten our future. Many scientists are proposing that we have now entered a new epoch “The Anthropocene”. This started when human activities began to have a significant impact on the Earth’s geology and ecosystems. Climate change […]
A New Hope?
It was almost 10pm in Paris, as a tired looking Laurent Fabius, the French Foreign Minister, said “I see no objections”, barely glancing at the rows of country delegates packing the room, then sharply banged his gavel bring the Paris Agreement to life. After more than 20 years of negotiations by 196 countries, a global climate deal had finally been sealed. On Saturday 12th December 2015, rich and poor countries alike agreed to differ, but in the process adopted 31 […]