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Dhaka Tribune

COP27: Tough negotiations need thorough research, experts say

Despite being one of the nations most vulnerable to climate change, Bangladesh has little information on the losses and damage caused by the phenomenon, they observed

Update : 03 Nov 2022, 11:00 PM

Bangladesh should improve its data collection systems and build up scientific evidence of losses and damage to strengthen its negotiations in international forums, such as the upcoming United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP27), experts have said.

Despite being one of the nations most vulnerable to climate change, Bangladesh has little information on the losses and damage caused by the phenomenon, and this is stopping the nation from demanding sufficient compensation in world forums, they added.

The experts were speaking at a webinar, titled “COP27: Bangladesh Perspective”, organized by the Society of Experts on Environment Development (SEED) on Thursday.

The country should raise the issue of the consequences it is facing due to the activities of global emitters, but it should not wait for global funds to begin tackling the impact of climate change. It needs to ensure that it can properly use its own resources and funds to address issues in climate-vulnerable areas, the speakers said.

Saber Hossain Chowdhury, chairperson of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, said COP so far has not been successful in delivering its promises, which is frustrating most of its participants.

“It is a colossal failure of global political leadership. This time, we are going to participate in COP amid the 3Cs — conflict, covid and climate change. It is highly likely that most global leaders will use this as an excuse for their failure in fulfilling pledges. We should not wait for COP to realize our demands for climate change mitigation and adaptation,” he said.

“We need to increase our capacity and also strengthen our voice at COP27 to minimize the impact on people from climate change adversities,” he said.

Dr Qazi Kholiquzzaman Ahmad, chairperson of Palli Karma Sahayak Foundation, said it is crucial for Bangladesh to remain vocal at global conferences like COP and highlight the actual situation through utilising its resources as effectively as possible.

“We will not expect much from global economies due to Covid-19 and the Russia-Ukraine war. I am not very hopeful given this context, but we should highlight issues on mitigation and adaptation to secure funding for these sectors,” he said.

Brac University Professor Emeritus Dr Ainun Nishat said Bangladesh should prepare its standards in line with global policies to fight for funds with regard to the long-term goal of mitigation and adaptation efforts.

Dr Mohammed Asaduzzaman, former Research Director at the Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies, said: “Regardless of whether it is termed as compensation, assistance or a fund, Bangladesh, as a climate-vulnerable nation, must fight hard to secure funds from the global emitters.”

Bangladesh needs to develop its standards and knowledge on climate change issues based on evidence and data to negotiate effectively in global forums, he opined.

In his keynote speech, Md Ziaul Haque, director at the Department of Environment, noting that the promise made by developed nations at COP26 to mobilise $100 billion annually has not been kept, urged developed countries to fully deliver on the pledge to address the needs of developing countries.

“Given the projections about the $100 billion, it is vital that developed countries give a clear indication of how they will step up their funding to meet goals in line with the Paris Agreement. Developed countries should come forward with a delivery plan, including sources of financing and mode of allocation,” he said.

Pointing out that the private sector is not well aware of the opportunities and their role in both mitigation and adaptation, he stressed the need for increased dialogue and capacity building of the private sector for effective climate action mechanisms.

Along with emphasizing the need for country-specific adaptation finance mechanisms, the Climate Finance Expert at UNDP Bangladesh, Dr Maliha Muzammil, said Bangladesh needs to think about scaling up innovative finance mechanisms, including public and private sector investments in adaptation, through forging better public and private partnerships.

“Engaging civil society organizations, small and medium enterprises, or local organizations and youth groups and including them in local level adaptation mechanisms are very much needed,” she added.

Countries and advocates for climate change will attend COP27 in Egypt from November 6.

Heads of government will join the Sharm el-Sheikh Climate Implementation Summit on November 7 and 8, while a high-level segment primarily attended by ministers will take place from November 15-18.

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