CARE2022 Hong Kong Conference

7 CHAPTER 1 COP26 to COP27 & Design of CARE2022 Cross-cutting, transparent, and inclusive This chapter refers to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) process1 to provide a brief update of the Conferences of the Parties (COP) in 2021 (COP26) and in 2022 (COP27) with specific relevance to climate adaptation. It also explains how CARE2022 was designed and the outcomes it sought to achieve with inspiration from COP27. UNFCCC process The UNFCCC process includes annual gatherings of the Parties to discuss on-going issues under the multilateral treaty on climate change. The current treaty, Paris Agreement (2015), went into force in 2016 succeeding the Kyoto Protocol.2 A key provision of the Paris Agreement is for mitigation efforts to be made for global temperatures to stay within 2°C and to strive for 1.5°C, of the pre-industrial level. Since 2015, the latest scientific references point to a preference to staying within 1.5°C to minimize devastating climate change. Another key treaty provision is climate adaptation. As global warming is already causing more frequent and more extreme weather events worldwide, concurrent efforts are also needed to improve societal resilience against such extremes, especially as the global temperature is already almost at 1.1°C above pre-industrial level and the 1.5°C target could well be missed. The UNFCCC process is supported by a large group of scientists from around the world who provide on-going, indepth scientific knowledge to inform policymakers, known as the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).3 During 2021-2022, the IPCC published its Sixth Assessment Reports (AR6): Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis; Climate Change 2022: Impact, Adaptation, and Vulnerabilities; and Climate Change 2022: Mitigation of Climate Change.4 Moreover, the technical approaches adopted by the UNFCCC process has strong ideals that all such processes on a national and local basis should also strive for – that they be open, transparent, cross-cutting, and inclusive.5 Climate Change: Conference of the Parties 2021 and 2022 The threat of climate change is widely accepted by governments around the world, but progress remains slow. The essential message of COP27 that took place in Egypt (6-19 November 2022) was that there was an urgent need to catch up in both climate mitigation and adaptation. A key outcome of COP27 was the establishment of a Loss and Damage Fund – the culmination of decades of pressure from climate-vulnerable developing countries. The fund aims to provide financial assistance to nations most impacted by the effects of climate change. Climate adaptation, such as building sea walls, preventing landslides, and creating droughtresistant crops, could cost developing countries US$160-340 billion annually by 2030, which could swell to US$565 billion by 2050 should global warming accelerates.6 In 2015, the Paris Agreement established the Global Goal on Adaptation (GGA) with the aim of driving collective action on climate adaptation. At COP26 that took place in Glasgow in 2021, among its various decisions, was a two-year work program on the GGA, as work towards adaptation had languished.7 The GGA discussion at COP27 was considered a success with governments agreeing on the way to move forward at COP28 on improving resilience among the most vulnerable countries with some measure of financial pledges to help adaptation solutions.8