As we settle into the new normal of uncertainty, the recent COP26 postponement reaffirms international timelines are just one of a long list of things in flux. In the absence of an annual COP to drive international climate cooperation, I find myself considering the unique test the Paris Agreement 2020 is shaping up to be. First and foremost, of its promise to broaden and deepen climate cooperation.
Rather than relying on COPs to drive conversations on climate action, let’s start building societies and politics that put resilience, preventative action and human security at the centre. With a window to systemic and geopolitical change now wide open, let’s think about the bigger shifts we could bank at COP26, beyond the incremental changes that international peer pressure can achieve. In a year where recovery conversations will dominate political discourse, let’s create the broad coalition for climate action and resilience as a vital element of recovery, safety and prosperity.
One thing is certain as we start contemplating these new challenges: we need conversations across silos now more than ever. While COVID-19 requires us to retreat from each other, perhaps somewhat surprisingly, my last few weeks in E3G have been defined by dialogue rather than isolation. The blogs below give a glimpse of the types of systemic changes we’re starting to think through. We don’t have all the answers, but we’re looking forward to discussing the right sorts of questions with you.
First, Claire Healy introduces the Global Financial Crisis and Climate Change Playbook developed in partnership with E3G and the Stanley Center for Peace and Security just before the recent global pandemic began. Then in light of COVID-19, Chris Littlecott and Leo Roberts examine the potential impacts of postponing COP26 on the transition from dirty coal to clean energy. Finally, Taylor Dimsdale explores how economic recovery also presents an opportunity to address climate risk to ensure a more resilient and just future.
Thanks for reading,