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Eco-friendly strategies to combat climate change are urgent

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Eco-friendly strategies to combat climate change are urgent

By: Lal Mia
Even if it seems like COP is taking a long time to deliver results, it is still the most important event when officials from 197 nations get together to try to reach a consensus on meaningful climate action. Delegates from organisations fighting climate change, including the Alliance of Small Island States, may speak with the biggest polluters in the world directly at this conference. Their suggestions were crucial in creating a loss and damage fund for nations that are susceptible to climate change and in obtaining money for climate adaptation.
COP 28 offers a chance to find worldwide solutions to keep the increase in global temperature to 1.5 degrees Celsius, to help nations get ready to submit updated and more ambitious Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) by 2025, to speed up the green transition that is already under way, and to ultimately meet the objectives of the Paris Agreement.
COP 28 is all about putting the Paris Climate Change Agreement into practice and stepping up ambition and action after years of deliberation and consensus on its most important elements. The newest data from the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change indicates that, in comparison to 2019 levels, greenhouse gas emissions must be lowered by 43% by 2030. This is crucial if we want to prevent the worst consequences of climate change, such more frequent and severe heatwaves, droughts, and rains, and limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius by the end of the century.
Climate change is the phrase used to describe long-term variations in temperature and weather patterns. Large-scale volcanic eruptions or shifts in the sun’s activity may naturally cause such changes. But since the 1800s, human activity—primarily the burning of fossil fuels like coal, oil, and gas—has been the main driver of climate change. Fossil fuel burning results in greenhouse gas emissions, which cover the Earth like a blanket and retain solar heat, causing temperatures to rise.
The two main greenhouse gases that cause climate change are carbon dioxide and methane. These result, for example, from burning coal to heat a house or petrol to power an automobile. When trees are destroyed and land is cleared, carbon dioxide may be emitted. Oil and gas companies, as well as agriculture, are significant methane emitters. Land use, buildings, industry, transportation, energy, and agriculture are some of the main causes of greenhouse gas emissions.
With July, August, September, and October all smashing monthly records by notable percentages, 2023 is predicted to be the hottest year on record. Extreme weather has resulted in wildfires that have destroyed parts of Canada, Hawaii, and Greece, among other locations. Torrential downpours have caused flash floods across China, the Philippines, and the African Great Lakes. The planet saw its hottest average temperature ever, sending a message to the rest of the world that we are not acting quickly enough to address the climate crisis.
Even if it seems like COP is taking a long time to deliver results, it is still the most important event when officials from 197 nations get together to try to reach a consensus on meaningful climate action. Delegates from organisations fighting climate change, including the Alliance of Small Island States, may speak with the biggest polluters in the world directly at this conference. Their suggestions were crucial in creating a loss and damage fund for nations that are susceptible to climate change and in obtaining money for climate adaptation. Large-scale demonstrations, like the International Day of Climate Action, which takes place in the midst of the conference, also find a home during COP. Millions of protestors assemble in various locations throughout the globe in response to this, calling for swift action.
Scientists studying climate change have shown that, for the last 200 years, almost all of the global warming has been caused by human activity. The globe is warming more quickly than it has in the previous 2,000 years as a result of greenhouse gas emissions from human activity like the ones mentioned above.
The Earth’s surface temperature is now, on average, 1.1°C higher than it was during the pre-industrial revolution in the late 1800s and higher than it has ever been in the previous 100,000 years. The past four decades have been warmer than any other decade since 1850, with the most recent decade (2011–2020) being the hottest on record. Many people think that rising temperatures are the main effect of climate change. But that’s just where the story starts—the temperature is rising. Changes in one area may affect all others since the Earth is a system in which everything is interrelated. Severe droughts, water shortages, wildfires, rising sea levels, floods, polar ice melting, catastrophic storms, and a decline in biodiversity are all being brought on by climate change.
Numerous strategies to combat climate change have the potential to improve lives, protect the environment, and provide economic gains. To guide development, international frameworks and accords like the Paris Agreement, the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, and the Sustainable Development Goals are in place. Three main categories of action exist: cutting emissions, adjusting to the effects of climate change, and funding required modifications.
Deploying renewable energy sources like wind and solar power in place of fossil fuels would reduce the emissions responsible for climate change. But we have to move fast. Even if more nations are promising to attain net zero emissions by 2050, emissions must be halved by 2030 to keep global warming below 1.5°C. Massive cuts in the use of coal, oil, and gas are needed to do this because, in order to prevent catastrophic levels of climate change, more than two-thirds of the world’s confirmed fossil fuel reserves must remain in the ground by 2050.
Governments and businesses must spend a significant amount of money in climate action. But ignoring climate change comes at a considerably higher cost. A vital first step would be for wealthier nations to honour their promise to provide poor nations with $100 billion year so they may adjust and move towards greener economies.
All things considered; we must be conscious of the necessity to safeguard the environment lest we be unable to defend ourselves against dangerous disasters. Therefore, we need to understand what the word “environment” means. The environment is not something that can be carelessly ignored since all living things flourish in their own favorable environmental zones. protect the environment not only for living things but also for plants and trees, which help us directly by supplying the oxygen we breathe. Pollution and the detrimental effects of human activity on the environment also pose a danger to industrialized and developed nations.
(The author is an Associate Professor at the ‘Department of Political Science’ at Mashuddi Razia College in Tangail Bangladesh)

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