Right now, something big is going on in Poland. A meeting (known as COP24) is bringing together leaders from around the world to address perhaps our biggest problem – climate change.
Each year, these meetings have been held in an attempt to address climate change on a global scale. Three years ago (at COP21) the famous Paris Agreement was hashed out, making it the first real global accord on climate change. As part of the agreement, almost every country in the world made individual emission-reduction pledges… but the agreement didn’t go far enough in reducing emissions to the levels scientists have suggested.
In other words, the Paris Agreement was a first step. In Poland, the work continues.
Here’s what still needs to happen.
Since the Paris Agreement was only a first step, the idea is that countries will continue to meet and discuss ways to strengthen or ratchet up their emission reduction plans. However, many questions still remain, like how do we actually make sure that happens? What kind of emission reporting should countries be publishing? What should future emission reduction plans look like?
That’s what negotiators are discussing in Poland.
So what comes next?
Several members of the local nonprofit organization, Rainforest Partnership, are currently in Poland, serving as official observer delegates for COP24. Throughout the upcoming week, they’ll be providing us with daily updates, so be sure to check us out on Instagram to follow along.
Last week, the Rainforest Partnership team sent us an email saying that the conference kicked off with a discussion of the latest UN climate report (the one that says we only have 12 years to dramatically reduce global emissions). The authors of the report answered questions from the nations and observer delegates in attendance, helping to establish a “shared understanding of the science” before negotiations begin.