COP27 Agreement Marks Important Progress, Leaders Need to Transform Commitments into Action
SHARM EL-SHEIKH, Egypt (November 20, 2022) — The final agreement of the 27th Conference of the Parties (COP27) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change made important progress in building alignment and agreement among world powers. The agreement includes essential, landmark provisions that pave the way for climate reparations and a more unified, global agreement on the protective value of nature. Crucially, the participants also resolved to seek to avoid warming the globe beyond 1.5°C, though additional action is needed with the United Nations projecting the planet is on track for 2.5°C warming in the coming decades. The agreement did not include a clear commitment to phase out the use of fossil fuels in line with the evidence on climate mitigation.
“COP27 offered the United States and the world to reaffirm their climate commitments and to ensure we not only reduce emissions, but to embrace nature as an ally and compensate frontline communities — which are hurt first and worst by climate-fueled disasters. The agreement affirms that 1.5° is still alive and that countries are ready and able to embrace nature as an ally, halt deforestation, and address loss and damage,” said Nathalie Walker, senior director of tropical forest and agriculture at the National Wildlife Federation. “We will work with leaders in the public and private sector to ensure they transform their commitments into action and hold them accountable for the missed opportunities.”
“Over the course of two weeks, leaders from around the world — including Brazil, Ghana, and the United States — reiterated that forests can and will play a central role in mitigating climate change, as did the final decision text,” said Edie Juno, forestry specialist at the National Wildlife Federation. “As our window of opportunity closes, protection and responsible stewardship of forests, grasslands, oceans, and other ecosystems — and their irreplaceable biodiversity — is more important than ever.”
The National Wildlife Federation, which sent a delegation to Egypt for the two-week gathering, urged countries to prioritize the use of natural infrastructure, such as coastal floodplains and healthy forests, to save lives, naturally sequester carbon, provide essential wildlife habitat, and support clean air and water for people.
The National Wildlife Federation and the Climate Equity Collaborative, which engages communities, youth and nonprofits in designing and implementing equitable and inclusive climate solutions, participated in and supported environmental programs and partners at the first-ever climate justice pavilion.