Reality Check: Reality of COP26 Deals for Our Future

The United Nations talks of COP26 deals, but what does it all mean for our future climate? The IPCC report is frightening. It predicts that the world will be 4 degrees Celsius hotter by 2100 if we do not act now to implement new policies and change our behavior. We need to start taking action now before it’s too late!

This blog post discusses how you can help fight climate change without sacrificing your lifestyle or budget. Take the pledge to reduce your carbon footprint and help us achieve a better world.

Over the past few decades, CO2 emissions have been on a steady rise. While some countries have been successful in bringing them under control, others have not been able to do so. The United States is one of the major emitters that have seen an increase in carbon dioxide emissions. In fact, the country emits nearly a fifth of global greenhouse gas emissions and has been unwilling to sign up to COP21 agreement.

COP stands for Conference of Parties and these conferences take place every year under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. They are aimed at tackling issues that are related to climate change. Between 1995 and 2015, 20 COP conferences have been held with the most recent one in Marrakech in November 2016. The COP26 talks in Poland aim to address the challenges faced by countries around the world when it comes to implementing policies related to greenhouse gas emissions reduction.

NDC stands for Nationally Determined Contributions and these are voluntary climate pledges made by each participating country at the COP conferences. The latest NDC talks took place in Bonn, Germany where 184 countries submitted their plans to fight climate change. These NDCs need to be implemented between 2020 and 2030.

NDCs are not legally binding unlike the COP agreements, but if a country fails to meet its NDC goal then they are expected to provide updates on how they are planning to achieve them. Another important point to note here is that the targets mentioned in these NDCs do not equate to national emissions reduction goals. They only represent how much each participating country’s emissions will increase or decrease in comparison to their 1990 emissions.

China currently ranks first in terms of emitting greenhouse gases. It emits about 10 billion tons of carbon dioxide every year which is nearly 30% of global emissions. The United States comes second, Russia follows at third place while India and Japan occupy the fourth and fifth positions respectively. China is also one of the top polluters in terms of power generation, accounting for nearly half of all the coal used globally every year. So these two factors combined mean that they have a significant role to play when it comes to climate change policies and their implementation.