The conclusion of COP26 reminds us of an essential goal. It aimed at tackling ways to keep 1.5 degrees Celsius, the global warming limit prescribed by the Paris Agreement. COP26 had yielded several noteworthy achievements, including the first-ever mention of fossil fuels in a UN climate agreement, India’s first commitment to reach net-zero emissions by 2070, and an agreement by all governments to accelerate their deadline to publish more ambitious climate goals.
Based on new announcements made during the Conference, experts estimate that we are now on a path of attaining 1.8°C and 2.4°C of warming. To deliver on these promises, COP26 also agreed for the first time to accelerate efforts towards the phase-down of unabated coal power and inefficient fossil fuel subsidies and recognized the need for support towards a just transition. COP26 also completed the technical negotiations of the Paris Agreement Rulebook, which fixes the transparency and reporting requirements for all parties to track progress against their emission reduction targets. Just like a coin with dual sides, COP26 too has been facing mixed reactions from the global media.
Nearly 200 countries approved the U.N.-brokered deal, which suffered stumbling blocks over the phasing out of coal, fossil fuel subsidies, and financial support to low-income countries. India and China both among the world's biggest burners of coal, insisted on a last-minute change of fossil fuel language in the pact — from a "phase out" of coal to a "phase down." “We did not achieve these goals at this conference but, we have some building blocks for progress” said António Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations. He also had a message to young people, indigenous communities, women leaders, and all those leading the charge on climate action. I know you are disappointed but the path of progress is not always a straight line. Sometimes there are detours, sometimes there are ditches. But we know we can get there. We are in the fight of our lives, and this fight must be won. We must keep pushing forward.
So how do we do our bit?
The two most powerful weapons acknowledged in defying climatic change are youth and technology says Eric Gifted. The most important global health intervention is achieving net-zero emissions. COP26 is a pivotal time to drive action and mobilize knowledge on the impact of climate on health. The ways to act on climate change include saving energy at home by using less electricity, walking, or using cycle more which reduces greenhouse gas emissions and help your health and fitness. Stop wasting food, reduce, reuse, and recycle and the best of all is to switch to an electric vehicle.
Creating impartial, sustainable food systems is equally necessary. To build and strengthen the communities’ obduracy there should be a vigorous conversation on uniting homegrown solutions. Along with that, restoring ecosystems to protect communities and natural habitats, building defenses, warning systems, and flexible infrastructure and agriculture to avoid loss of livelihoods. Humans are dependent on the food system is one of the major causes of land cover change and the emission of the greenhouse gas effect.
We all know the catastrophic impact on biodiversity, natural water resources, and soil nutrition. The effect of the weather destabilization will create pressure regarding food security around the world mainly for sensitive people. Besides our leaders, it is a combined effort for all of us to unite and take swift action against climate change and its consequence on the environment. Small changes within us can help us to achieve the goals of cop26. It begins with me.