The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Secretariat is responsible for organizing and hosting the annual UN Climate Change Conference. These conferences bring together world leaders, policymakers, and experts to discuss the most pressing issues facing the global community in the fight against climate change. However, the UNFCCC Secretariat should seriously consider canceling the 2023 UN Climate Change Conference, also known as UNFCCC UAE COP 28, due to the United Arab Emirates’ (UAE) record as a top polluter.
The UAE is one of the largest producers and exporters of oil in the world. Its economy heavily relies on the extraction and production of fossil fuels, which are the primary contributors to greenhouse gas emissions. According to the Global Carbon Atlas, the UAE is the 10th largest emitter of CO2 in the world, emitting 217.6 million metric tons in 2019 alone. Additionally, the country has been criticized for its lack of action on climate change and its reluctance to transition to renewable energy sources.
Hosting a climate change conference in a country with such a high carbon footprint and a lack of commitment to addressing climate change sends the wrong message to the global community. It undermines the urgency of the climate crisis and fails to hold the UAE accountable for its contribution to the problem.
Furthermore, the UNFCCC Secretariat has a responsibility to lead by example and prioritize sustainability in all aspects of its operations, including the selection of host countries for its conferences. The organization has made significant progress in reducing its carbon footprint over the years, but hosting a conference in the UAE would be a step backward.
The country’s per capita emissions are among the highest in the world, standing at approximately 21.7 metric tons per person. This is significantly higher than the global average of approximately 4.8 metric tons per person.
While the UAE has made some efforts to reduce its carbon footprint, such as investing in renewable energy sources and launching initiatives to promote sustainability, these efforts have not been sufficient to offset the country’s reliance on fossil fuels and the significant contribution it makes to global greenhouse gas emissions.
Given these statistics, it is clear that the UAE is not qualified to host the UNFCCC UAE COP 28. The conference should be held in a country that is committed to reducing its carbon footprint and taking bold action to address the climate crisis. Hosting the conference in the UAE would send the wrong message to the world and undermine the urgency of the issue at hand.
Instead, the UNFCCC Secretariat should consider alternative options, such as hosting a virtual conference or selecting a host country that has demonstrated a strong commitment to addressing climate change and transitioning to renewable energy sources.
In conclusion, the UNFCCC Secretariat should seriously consider canceling the 2023 UN Climate Change Conference in the UAE due to the country’s high carbon footprint and lack of commitment to addressing the climate crisis. Hosting a conference in the UAE undermines the urgency of the problem and sends the wrong message to the global community. The UNFCCC Secretariat should prioritize sustainability in all aspects of its operations and lead by example in the fight against climate change.