The 23rd Conference of Parties (COP23) currently being held in Bonn, Germany, is meant to advance the aims and ambitions of the Paris Climate Change Agreement -- a pact to limit the rise in global average temperature.
This year’s conference is particularly significant for a climate-vulnerable country like Bangladesh as it is being presided over by Fiji, an island nation that is itself highly vulnerable to the adverse effects of climate change.
Last year’s conference was criticised for neglecting the critical need for funds allocated to vulnerable and developing nations struggling to cope up with climate change.
Many of the countries most affected by climate change are in this perilous situation through no fault of their own.
We don’t have to look far. The people of Bangladesh have suffered and continue to suffer enormous loss and damage due to the climate change caused by industrialised nations.
But far from providing more support to vulnerable countries for mitigation and adaptation to climate change, industrialised nations are barely doing enough in their own countries.
Germany, regarded as a leader in combating climate change, has done little to phase out coal and is likely to miss its own CO2 emissions reduction target for 2020.
And the United States, the country with the second highest carbon emissions in the world, pulled out of the Paris climate pact itself just earlier this year.
It is time we demand more support from the so-called advanced nations whose activities over the past few centuries have gotten us into this mess.
We hope that this year, with Fiji’s presidency, we will see an improvement in that regard.