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COP28 Highlights: An RMetS update on Day 12

11 December 2023

As negotiations move into the final phase on day 12 of COP28 in Dubai, RMetS Chief Executive, Prof Liz Bentley FRMetS, gives an update on some of the positive highlights that have happened in the last two weeks.

Watch here or read the transcript below:

Hello and welcome to day 12 of COP28 on Monday, the 11th of December. 

Here is the latest update from the Royal Meteorological Society at COP28 as the negotiations move into the final phase. 

Despite the COP president, Al Jaber, suggesting that things will be wrapped up by tomorrow (Tuesday) morning, it's looking very likely that these talks will continue through into Wednesday and possibly even Thursday.

The main highlight from day 11 yesterday at COP was the Majlis, which is a sit-in place designed to gather people in a circle to discuss and make decisions. The COP president, Al Jaber, convened ministers and heads of delegation and stood in the middle, telling them under no circumstances to let ambition be diluted. 

As this COP closes and there's likely to be a lot of focus on the low lights and the opportunities that have been missed, weighing up whether this COP has been a success or not, I thought I'd focus today's report on some of the highlights over the last two weeks. 

The first highlight came on day one, when nearly 200 countries adopted the framework to establish an international Loss and Damage Fund with hundreds of millions of dollars already being pledged to the fund. The Loss and Damage Fund provides a mechanism for rich countries to compensate poorer countries for the extreme impacts of climate change.

The second big highlight came on day two, when over 100 countries, including big emitters like the US and China, agreed to triple renewable energy capacity worldwide by 2030 and to double annual rates of energy efficiency improvements. Over the last week or so, we've heard countries like Nigeria pledge to end fossil fuel subsidies and France banning ESG funds from oil companies.

COP28 has also demonstrated new technologies such as batteries that don't require lithium, nickel or cobalt. And Hitachi, the Japanese electrical company, is now using a 100% green aluminium in its products. We've also heard that the destruction of the Amazon rainforest has decreased sharply over recent years and that China's carbon dioxide emissions may have already peaked and be starting to fall.

So, some really positive messages. Countries like Canada and Belgium have made ambitious net zero pledges – more ambitious than they have before. And the city of Dubai, where COP is being hosted, has pledged to cut its emissions by 50% by 2030. 

These are positive, small steps forward, and every step matters. As we will no doubt hear in the next few days as this COP comes to a close, progress is far too slow and more ambitious action is needed.


Read more on COP28 from the Royal Meteorological Society:

COP28: Energy, Industry and Just Transition

Empowering Future Generations: Enhancing Climate Literacy and Education in the UK