Climate conference in Glasgow: more decisions – and a “mountain of work”

Status: 11/9/2021 5:25 p.m.

The climate summit in Glasgow could be extended: Conference President Sharma said there was a mountain of work ahead of them. Germany joined an initiative to phase out the financing of fossil fuels abroad.

Germany is joining an initiative to phase out the financing of fossil fuels abroad by the end of 2022. This was announced by Environment State Secretary Jochen Flasbarth at the UN climate conference in Glasgow.

Last Thursday, the governments of the United States and around 20 other countries announced that they would withdraw from financing coal, oil and natural gas projects abroad by the end of next year.

Investments in gas infrastructure are still possible

Flasbarth explained that Germany had needed a few days longer because some details had to be clarified. Accession was now possible because Germany had received confirmation that investments in gas infrastructure were still possible in individual cases.

According to Flasbarth, this makes sense as a bridge when getting out of coal and moving into renewable energies.

Natural gas is also needed for the production of green hydrogen. “That must of course be directed towards the future,” said Flasbarth about the possible investments.

In addition, these are only necessary in a transition period of “a few years”. The State Secretary for the Environment also emphasized that in the case of Germany, the financing of coal projects abroad had “long been a thing of the past”.

According to researchers, the global community is still a long way from achieving the necessary climate target, despite the commitments made around the Glasgow conference. This is shown by new forecasts by the Climate Action Tracker (CAT), which were published at the conference.

Plus 2.4 degrees – if everything is adhered to

If all states’ commitments to climate protection for the year 2030 are implemented, global warming will climb to around 2.4 degrees by the end of the century, according to the researchers.

If you only look at what the states are doing now and ignore further announcements, global warming will rise to 2.7 degrees by 2100.

According to the CAT researchers, an “optimistic scenario” of just 1.8 degrees warming is also conceivable – but only if those countries keep their long-term commitments that want to become climate neutral by the middle of the century. Most countries lacked reliable, concrete concepts for this.

The goal agreed in the Paris Climate Agreement of 2015 is to limit the temperature rise to below two degrees, if possible 1.5 degrees, compared to the pre-industrial era.

Crucial phase of the summit

The world climate meeting is now entering the decisive phase, where the ministers themselves intervene in the negotiations. The German Environment Minister Svenja Schulze wanted to arrive on Wednesday evening. The meeting in Glasgow is scheduled for Friday evening, with an extension to Saturday not being surprising.

Conference President Alok Sharma said there was progress but still had a mountain of work to do. The world must now be able to trust that states’ promises will be kept.

According to him, there could be a first draft of a final document on Wednesday night.

Analysts: With Glasgow commitments 2.4 degrees

Werner Eckert, SWR, currently Glasgow, November 9th, 2021 5:16 pm

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