Planet continues to be in emergency room, we need to take a serious stance.

Article by Kavya Wadhwa

Climate change is a global issue that demands international cooperation. As a result, more than 30 newspapers and media organizations from more than 20 nations have come to a consensus on what has to be done. The clock is ticking. Rather than transitioning away from fossil fuels and toward renewable energy, many affluent countries are reinvesting in oil and gas, failing to reduce emissions quickly enough, and wrangling about the amount of aid they are willing to pay to poor countries.

All the meantime, the earth is speeding towards a point of no return, where climatic disasters will become irrevocable. Countries have only agreed to undertake one-fifth of what is required to stay on track to keep temperatures within 1.5°C of pre-industrial levels since the COP26 United Nations climate meeting in Glasgow a year ago. This year has seen dramatic weather disasters on every continent, from floods in Pakistan to heatwaves in Europe, and forest fires in Australia to hurricanes in the United States. Given that they were caused by 1.1°C temperature increases, the world may expect substantially worse to come.

A ‘gold rush’ in fossil fuels As many countries strive to minimize their dependency on Russia, there is a “gold rush” for new fossil fuel projects throughout the world. These are portrayed as temporary supply solutions, yet they risk causing irreparable damage to the earth. All of this emphasizes the need for mankind to break its dependence on fossil fuels. There would be no climate emergency if renewable energy was the norm. Drought, melting ice sheets, and crop failures will wreak the most havoc on the world’s poorest people. It will need money to protect these groups from loss of life and livelihood. According to one renowned assessment, developing nations require $2 trillion per year to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and cope with climate change.

Rich nations bear moral responsibility for just one in every eight persons on the planet today, yet they are accountable for half of all greenhouse gas emissions. These countries have a strong moral obligation to assist. Developing countries should be given enough money to repair the perilous conditions they helped to create, especially as a global recession approaches. To demonstrate their commitment, rich countries should deliver on previously agreed contributions, such as $100 billion each year beginning in 2020. A windfall tax on the combined profits of the largest oil and gas companies, estimated at nearly $100 billion in the first three months of the year, is required at the very least.

A windfall tax on the combined earnings of the top oil and gas firms, estimated at $100 billion in the first three months of the year, is required at the very least. The United Nations was correct in requesting that the funds be utilized to assist the neediest. However, such a tax would only be the beginning. Poor countries are also burdened with debts that make it hard for them to recover from climate­related disasters or protect themselves from future ones. Creditors should be liberal in forgiving loans to those on the front lines of the climate crisis. These measures do not need to rely on coordinated international action. Countries could put them in place at the regional or national level.

The accumulated emissions of a country must serve as the foundation for its need to act. While private funding can help, the onus is on large historical emitters to contribute. Solving the situation is our century’s moonshot. Because vast resources were spent on it, getting to the moon was accomplished in less than a decade. The same dedication is required now. However, the economic crisis has diminished rich countries’ desire for expenditure, and the earth risks being stuck in fossil fuel dependency by a huge corporate backlash. Nonetheless, throughout the epidemic, central banks around the world greased state spending by purchasing their own governments’ bonds. The trillions of dollars required to address the ecological crisis necessitate the revival of such bold ideas.

Take action right now. This is not the time for indifference or complacency; the crisis has arrived. The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change must be about argument power, not power argument. The key to keeping the Egyptian consensus is to not allow trade and conflict tensions in Ukraine to stymie global climate diplomacy. The United Nations’ mechanism is not without flaws. However, it has presented nations intending to rescue the planet, which must be pursued at COP27 to avoid an existential threat to mankind.

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