Environment Analyst interviewed our local Associate Amr Abdel-Aziz from Integral in Egypt ahead of COP27 for local perspective and expectations. Check out the excerpt from the article below and click over to the original article here on EA.
This year’s Conference of the Parties (COP), which takes place in the Egyptian resort of Sharm El-Sheikh between 6th and 18th November, is being heralded as the Africa COP and the COP of implementation. Making substantial climate progress in a troubled, disrupted global economy will be the order of the day – and developing countries are expecting to be on the receiving end of long-awaited, rich-world largesse.
COP27 might also emerge as a ‘consultants COP’. Much hope is being placed in new and emerging methods of funding and innovative projects for addressing climate change and its impacts – and keeping the 1.5C goal alive.
"There is a sense of urgency and all parties are keen to have a good outcome," says Amr Abdel-Aziz, chairman of Cairo-based Integral Consult – part of the global Inogen Alliance of environmental consulting firms. "We have seen a temporary push back on the mitigation front because of the war in Europe and one of our aims is to get countries back on track," added Abdel-Aziz, who is also a member of the COP27 presidency team.
"Vulnerable communities are the hardest hit by the effects of the climate crisis, leaving many families unprotected, and [resulting in] increasing displacement," said UNHCR’s representative in Somalia, Magatte Guisse. "The Somalia situation was already one of the most underfunded before this latest crisis."
The question of how to step up efforts to curtail deforestation and reduce the developed world emissions, which are harming Africa, will be high on the agenda at COP27. Financing those efforts in a still stuttering, inflation-racked global economy will be a central talking point.
"There’s a new narrative, looking at different sources of finance," says Abdel-Aziz. He predicts that new initiatives could center around financial instruments such as debt swaps – whereby the debts of developing countries are written down or discounted in exchange for equivalent funding commitments to address climate change.
The challenge for COP27, it seems, is to replace bold words with realistic, affordable actions. In this respect the African COP has a lot to live up to.
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