Countdown to COP and Beyond blog launches
Partner, Global Co-Head International Trade and Regulatory Law Group, and Global Head of the firm's Environmental Law Group
Partner, Global Co-Head Environment, Climate and Regulatory Law Group and the International Trade Group
Dr Udo Herbert Olgemöller
Frankfurt am Main
Gauthier van Thuyne
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Climate change, biodiversity loss and environmental degradation are becoming critical issues across the globe.
In November this year, the UK will host COP26, the UN Conference of the Parties (COP) on climate change. The COP is the ultimate decision-making body of UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), composed of all UN member states, amongst others.
This year’s COP is considered to be a landmark meeting. It is the first COP to be held since countries were required to submit their Nationally Determined Contributions under the Paris Agreement. It is first in the final decade for action before the 2030 deadline for emissions cuts, which was revealed in the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 1.5⁰ report. It is the first since the US re-joined the international climate policy discussion. And it is the first since the Covid pandemic gripped the world, an event which has highlighted the potential ramifications of a global existential threat.
COP26 will be proceeded this year by CBD COP15, the UN Conference of the Parties on the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), which will be held in Kunming, China.
Biodiversity – the measure of variation of life on earth at a genetic, species and ecosystem level – has gained increasing prominence in the past few years. The 2020 WWF Living Planet Report has shown a catastrophic decline in biodiversity, with an average of over 68% decline in animal population sizes and 84% decline in freshwater wildlife in the past few decades.
There is unequivocal evidence that nature is unravelling.
2020 Living Planet Report
This topic has brought into sharper focus by Covid, with the link between biodiversity loss and rises in pandemics under scrutiny.
With increased policymaker and private sector focus on natural capital, CBD COP15 is likely to be one of the most important summits on biodiversity in a decade.
As climate change and environmental issues move into the mainstream across the globe, we will provide you with insights and commentary on the announcements leading up to COP26 and CBD COP15, the events themselves and how they translate into new policy and regulation in all sectors.
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