Climate vulnerable countries left out of COP plenaries where main decisions were made, they say The outcomes of the recent global climate change conference (COP26) were frustrating for Bangladesh and other Most Vulnerable Countries (MVCs) as there was no significant decision on financing climate change adaptation activities, speakers at a virtual seminar have said. They also demanded that the government develop its own long-term financial strategies to support climate change action in the future.
The virtual seminar titled “CoP 26 outcome and our future perspective as MVCs” was organized by COAST foundation, An Organization for Socio-Economic Development (AOSED), BIPNET-CCBD (Bangladesh Indigenous Peoples’ Network on Climate Change), Centre for Participatory Research & Development (CPRD) Coastal Development Partnership (CDP), Coastal Livelihood and Environmental Action Network (CLEAN) and Equity and Justice Working Group, Bangladesh (EquityBD). Member of parliament Barrister Shamim Haider Patowary was the special guest at the seminar, which was moderated by Mostafa Kamal Akand of EquityBD. Brac University Professor Emeritus and lead climate negotiator of Bangladesh Dr Ainun Nishat, Khulna University of Engineering and Technology Professor Mostafa Saroar, Bangladesh Poribesh Anolon (BAPA) General Secretary Md Sharif Jamil, climate change negotiator and ex-secretary of National Press Club Quamrul Islam Chowdhury, Mrinal Kanti Tripura of BIPNET-CCBD, Md Jahangir Hossen Masum of CDP, Shamim Arefin of AoSED-Khulna, climate change advocate Emranul Hoque, and Kawser Rahaman of Janakhanta spoke at the event, among others. Syed Aminul Hoque from EquityBD delivered the key note speech.
Syed Aminul Hoque said COP 26 was expected to produce much more of a concrete decision and action by world leaders to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions and generate appropriate financing to support adaptation actions and to face recurrent loss and damages. “This did not happen due to opposition from some developed countries such as the US and their allies,” he said. He also condemned the UK for their so called “Net Zero Emission” target by 2050, mentioning that it actually supports big emitters to continue their greenhouse gas emissions instead of helping reach the zero-emission target.
Barrister Shamim Haider said COP26 disappointed because the decisions dismantled the Common but Differentiate Responsibilities (CBDR) principle of the Paris Agreement, denied the loss and damage with displacement issues, and moved towards a business model instead of focusing on the survival of MVCs and protection of the earth.
He appreciated Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for speaking up at the conference, but expressed concern that the Bangladesh delegation was left out of many COP plenaries where the main decisions were made. Dr Mostafa Saroar said the proposed “Net Zero emission” target is a false and elusive solution, describing it as “carbon colonialism.” Quamrul Islam Chowdhury criticized the “New collective and quantified goal on finance (NCQG),” saying it was prepared by certain developed countries without input from MVC representatives. Sharif Jamil urged the Bangladesh government to commit to effective carbon reduction strategies with alternative energy techniques.