Twig Takeaways from COP26

Author: Twig

Date Published: 16.11.2021

Tags: #COP 26

COP26 is over. While it showed that global climate finance still falls short of its commitments, we try to list up some of the other key takeaways from the event to cut through the buzz that built up around it in the past weeks.

  • There are still not all the right people at the table. The dominant group of participants at COP26 were representatives of the fossil fuel industry while indigenous people and people from the Global South were underrepresented. This is a problem not only because of the lack of diversity but also because industrial and developed countries in the Global North are by far the main cause for global emissions and climate change while the people in the Global South are the ones who suffer the most from the consequences and indigenous people protect 80% of the global biodiversity. It is a ray of hope that more than 100 world leaders committed a total of £14bn to end deforestation by 2030.
  • More aggressive commitments and disruptive change are needed. When looking at the near-term targets that are linked to the pledges of policymakers at COP26 we observe only a marginal improvement against the proposals and standards that were made at the previous COP in Paris. This means that a projection of the targets that were set until 2030 only, would lead to a temperature increase of 2.4°C in 2100. When we only take the actual policies into consideration (not the targets and proposals) this number is even higher at 2.7°C. This leads to the sobering conclusion that since the last climate conference 6 years ago no real progress was made to meaningfully change the trajectory towards the 1.5°C goal.
  • We achieved a break-through in the resources debate For the first time, the worldwide phase-out of fossil fuels has been openly discussed on such a global stage. Some concrete commitments were that 25 nations and several banks agreed to end the financing of fossil fuel abroad by the end of 2022 and to invest the money in green energy instead. Also, 40 more countries joined the pact to end coal energy in the long-term whereby the “Coal-to-Clean-Statement” is now supported by 190 nations. We should not overlook that countries like the USA, China or India have not yet joined the pact and the COP26 decision text remains vague as it only refers to a phase-down rather than phase-out of coal energy. Still, we consider this development as important to break the lock-ins of extractive industries. {If you want to support green energy projects in India you can do so through the offsetting function in our app}
  • We have a lot in our own hands. While COP26 attracted the attention of the entire world, the real stars of the past two weeks were the thousands of people that gathered in the streets of Glasgow and other places around the globe to peacefully protest the lack of impactful climate action by our leaders. This demonstrates how important the voices of individuals are in changing not only the narrative but taking action in their own hands. At Twig, we believe that we as individuals in an all-time connected world should use our voice and deeds more purposefully to positively contribute to a sustainable future. This can be enabled by technological solutions that help to become a more conscious individual, e.g. by participating in petitions, measuring one’s own impact or supporting those regions and people that actually keep our planet in balance!

Twig enables you to participate in climate action and use your power as a consumer to change the system from the bottom up! Check out our app and start today :)

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Sources: Climate Action Tracker, Handelsblatt, National Geographic, Politico, Rogeli et al., 2016

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