The main criticism of the outcome of the United Nations Climate Summit in Glasgow is that the targets set are insufficient to adequately limit global warming. However, Annika Schröder also sees successes and a diplomatic success.
domradio.de: The Glasgow Climate Agreement was approved after passionate deliberations on Saturday evening. You react with caution. Why?
Annika Schroeder (Climate Officer at Misereur): You can look at the climate conference from two perspectives or two glasses. One is what will be needed to actually limit the climate crisis to such an extent that in fact all people on this earth still have a chance to live with dignity, get out of poverty and leave this trap of poverty.
And the second approach is actually possible in the consensus of more than 200 countries around the world. OPEC countries are also in this group, that is, countries that have a lot of crude oil or other fossil raw materials.
There have been some political successes on the latter issue. But it is certainly not enough to put a protective shield on the poorest people from the climate crisis.
domradio.de: Experts say: “It’s half past five”. The international community stresses the urgency and need to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees. Then the president of the United Nations Climate Change Conference, Alok Sharma, shed tears and apologized for the softness of words to turn his back on coal. What happened?
Schroeder: There was a little flight of imagination in between. It seemed very, very possible. For the first time, the word “coal” and the end of subsidies for fossil fuels were literally in the text. Politically, it would have been a very, very big success.
Because it’s hard to believe, these words didn’t even appear in the Paris climate agreement, instead it was simply about reduction in greenhouse gas emissions. When it softened, it was certainly very sad at first, especially since he himself, as the chairman of the process, received a lot of anger from the most vulnerable countries, especially the Pacific.
Nevertheless, it still says: We are beginning to phase out coal with the Glasgow Agreement. Politically, it is a great success that, with little lag, – even personally – can be rated higher than on the same day.
domradio.de: Greta Thunberg says everything is just “blah”. Is he right in your opinion?
Schroeder: As I said, you can see it through two glasses. Many of them took it very seriously on the site, in fact. These are some industrialized countries. These are mainly emerging and developing countries. To them it’s all less than “blah”. You are not just negotiating how much climate protection has to be done.
In principle, this is possible even without the International Climate Conference. Everyone can, yes everyone is allowed to do as much as possible. But there is no substitute for this climate conference, especially for the poorest of the poor. Because they are also negotiating how much money industrialized countries will have to spend to offset the damage caused by the climate crisis, which they have largely done.
On the one hand, to adapt to climate protection, that is, to the question of whether dykes or other forms of farming are needed to produce food in the new climate, but also to deal with losses and losses. . Because we already know that even in the best-case scenario, sea levels will rise so much that a lot of land will be lost.
And are these states left alone to build new places to live for their people or do we need help?
domradio.de: Can we do anything as a country in Germany?
Schroeder: Yes we can do it. Germany currently accounts for about two percent of global greenhouse gas emissions, which is why I keep hearing discussions with the population, but also with politicians, that we are a little fly crap in the climate crisis.
But it is very, very important that we are in sixth place among polluting states if we look at what we have blown into the atmosphere over the past few decades. This means that we are contributing six percent of the damage caused by the climate crisis we face today.
And it brings with it a lot of responsibility for solving the climate crisis, that we no longer use the prosperity we’ve achieved to solve it, but also that we, as a wealthy country, tackle the crisis and implement climate protection, greenhouses become gas-neutral very quickly and show that it works.
domradio.de: What was really cool for you in Glasgow?
Schroeder: Developing countries have struggled for a very, very, very long time to ensure that no matter how much they are supposed to adapt and how climate protection now succeeds in the end, they are facing a lot of damage from storms and growing have to deal with. Sea level, which I addressed with the loss of food production.
And they have demanded that the states that have caused climate change take responsibility and put money on the table for it. So far, this has been an absolute no-go in this diplomatic process, as industrialized countries, including the European Union, but above all the United States have repeatedly said that this is too difficult for us from a legal point of view. In the end the lawsuits come and we don’t want to spend those trillions.
But now two states have said that they are not afraid of it and are putting money on the table for this. They believe that they should take responsibility and have put money on the table to deal with the loss and the loss. It was a diplomatic success, breaking almost a taboo in the doctrine of industrialized nations.
And it has been observed by developing countries, especially the most vulnerable, and by civil society.
domradio.de: Which two states were those?
Schroeder: On the one hand, it was Scotland. The climate summit took place in Scotland and Wallonia in Belgium later joined.
domradio.de: The next summit, COP 27, will take place in Egypt in November 2022. are you going
Schroeder: We will probably be there again, especially because this is an African police officer and we could be there with many African partners. In addition to influencing the negotiation process, these climate talks are always a very good moment to talk to the partners, to give them access to these negotiations, but also to build contacts so that they can discuss these contacts at a later stage. be able to work. lobbying in their own countries; For climate protection or, of course, for necessary adaptations.
The interview was conducted by Uta Vorbrod.
Devoted problem solver. Tv advocate. Avid zombie aficionado. Proud twitter nerd. Subtly charming alcohol geek.