The COP26 Outcome: What it Means for Orchid City

This year’s COP26 meeting and the subsequent Glasgow Agreement is a wake-up call — we can no longer rely on our leaders to initiate effective policies to reduce the impacts of climate change. — Daniel Leal-Olivas/Agence France-Presse

Finally Discussing Fossil Fuels

It’s hard to imagine, but no UN climate summit in the last 20 years has drawn the direct line between fossil fuel use and its relation to rising emissions and atmospheric temperatures. This willful blindness was primarily due to the fierce opposition from nations dependent on oil and coal consumption.

The economic slowdown of 2020/2021 caused a dip in global fossil fuel emissions. However, this figure has risen and is predicted to continue increasing. — Global Carbon Project 2021.

Controversial Coal Disagreement

As they penned the final draft, India, China, and South Africa, some of the world’s largest polluters, raised concerns with the exact wording around coal-fired power generation.

Coal is cheap, plentiful, and our single largest source of energy generation. It also happens to be the cause of severe environmental and public health impacts and the premature death of millions. — REUTERS/Ajay Verma.

Shortened Timelines for Negotiations

Thankfully, there was some good news.

Financing the Global South

In 2009 an agreement was made that the world’s wealthier countries would financially help the developing countries, promising over US$100bn over the next decade to help cut emissions and reduce the impacts of climate change. They didn’t meet their promise, coming in well under that figure, and developing countries feel let down.

Annual UN Climate Change Conferences discuss global environmental issues to try and build consensus on desired outcomes and effective action. — AP Photo/Alberto Pezzali, Pool.

Summary of Outcomes

Not many new or positive actions emerged out of COP26. Many experts claim that the meeting has made no progress on the 2015 Paris agreement and has gone backward. As it stands, the prior commitments we had made to keep warming under 1.5C is near impossible.

Orchid City is a blueprint for fully-integrated closed-loop communities that enhance food systems, biodiversity, economies, and living standards to address all the UN’s 2030 SDGs, not only climate change.

How Orchid City Matters

The fact is, it’s going to take a wide range of different methods to create the acceleration we need to address the climate crisis. Furthermore, a global policy can only demand specific actions when already-proven methods exist and show how to achieve them. We conceived Orchid City to address this problem.

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Except Integrated Sustainability

Except Integrated Sustainability

A multidisciplinary team that creates better futures by applying systems thinking to solve complex sustainability challenges.