Monday, November 14, 2022

Musings from Priyadarshini Karve: #COP27: Day 6

 #COP27: Day 6

Saturday November 12 was our last day at COP27. The meeting also takes a break on Sunday and will continue for another week. But our stay here is over. 

As I mentioned in one of the previous blogs, Egypt and Sherm al Sheikh have not done a great job with the logistics of the conference. 

It was not clear till about two weeks before the start of the conference whether we would even be able to be here. The hotels all over the city were arbitrarily hiking prices and refusing to confirm reservations. We managed to sort out our stay arrangements and were able to absorb the escalated cost, but many other people from NGO sector had to cancel their trips. Several people were blackmailed into paying more after arrival here. 

For almost half of the first week the prices of food and beverages inside the venue of the conference were exhorbitantly high. After a lot of protest from the observer organisations the food prices were slashed by half. It seems that the hotels with bookings for the second week of the conference have also been told to lower their prices and not demand extra money from the participants. But all in all, it appeared that the hosts tried their best to contain the civil society presence at the COP. However, those of us who did get here and those who will come in the second week in spite of all the hurdles have certainly made our presence felt. There has been some protest or other going on almost daily and drawing a lot of media attention from around the world. 

Some of the newslinks are here and here and here.

INECC team member Pournima in the Climate Action Network (CAN) Protest

On my last day at COP27, I attended what was for me the best side event. It was organised by International Network for Sustainable Energy (INFORSE) and had speakers from Europe, Africa and South Asia. It was interesting to see that organisations in Denmark on one hand and several prominent countries in Africa on the other hand have come up with systematic plans to shift to 100% renewable energy with a clear timeline. The plans presented were very much grounded in practicality and focused on solar - wind - hydro and sustainable biomass energy with each country focusing on its own unique combination. The south Asian presenters were from India, Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka. They too presented how localised renewable energy solutions that are helping local communities to achieve climate adaptation as well as contribute to mitigation. This was exactly the pathway that we too are pushing for through our #LDCforNDC campaign. 

Personally, it was heartening to see that in spite of the big push and bad mouthing of biomass fuelled cooking by LPG and electricity lobby, the grassroots level organisations in Africa and South Asia still see the importance of improved cook stoves and biogas plants based on waste biomass as the more realistic solutions for meeting cooking energy needs. They also had practical data on how these humble interventions support both adaptation and mitigation. 

What I liked the most about this side event was that all the presentations were to the point, matter-of-fact showcasing of solutions without dwelling much on 'victim' status of the communities. 

Another observation that was personally important to me - I saw on the stage several individuals and organisations that I had connected with at some point or other in the last 22 years of my professional career! I was really happy to see that all of us are still continuing to fight the 'good fight' in our own spheres of influence! I will surely be re-connecting with all of them in the near future and will explore what more we can do collectively. 

On this positive note I am now ending this series of blogs from COP27. Thank you all of those who read and encouraged me to keep this going! 

Climate Action must go hand in hand with SDGs to achieve climate justice

Day 5 Blog

Day 4 Blog

Day 3 Blog

Day 2 Blog

Day 1 Blog

Priyadarshini Karve
Director, Samuchit Enviro Tech
Convener, Indian Network on Ethics and Climate Change (INECC)


Anonymous said...

Very nice of you to let us know the proceedings/happenings/ views etc. Thank You very much.

Conor said...

Thanks Priya

Keep up the good fight!