This past weekend, the UN Climate Change Conference COP26 in Glasgow came to an end after two weeks of intensive debate. Peace researcher Dr Delf Rothe, who studies connections between climate change and security, offers an assessment:
“Opinions differ as to the outcome of the debates. From a diplomacy perspective, there were several minor successes such as the agreement between China and the USA for increased climate protection or the long-term commitment to phase out coal. Certain technical details from the Paris Agreement -- the trading of emissions certificates between countries, for example -- were put into concrete terms. From a peace policy perspective, however, the results of COP26 were unsatisfactory. The measures that have been agreed upon thus far are not enough to prevent dangerous global warming of over 1.5 degrees on average. And financial and technical support for adaptation measures in developing countries is still lacking. Increased public attention to international climate policy as well as the growing pressure from civil society on delegates and decision makers, on the other hand, are a cause for optimism. This public pressure will be a crucial factor when it comes time for the signatory states to improve their national climate goals at COP27 next year.”
Dr Delf Rothe is a researcher at the IFSH and head of the DFG project “The Knowledge Politics of Security in the Anthropocene”.