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The Paris Agreement on Climate Change: Bonn to Polski

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COP 23: the last climate change conference held in November 2017, represents a further step on the long road in the fight against climate change. Governments have brought a number of measures into focus which will allow the Paris Agreement to build momentum. We will continue to make progress, and this will all be reviewed at the next event to be held in Polski (Poland in Polish), in December 2018.  

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COP 23,orTheConference of Parties,washeld at last! The goals that have been set for the climate change roadmap continue to be met and what is more, they are being met “with good grades”. The last conference was held in Bonn (Germany) last November and brought together 190 countries to give the measures set out in the Paris Agreement a further push and thus make further progress in the fight against climate change.

The summit was presided by Fiji, and aimed to bring into focus the vulnerability of small island developing states against the impacts of climate change, such as rising sea levels or the frequency and intensity of storms. Even the logo of this year’s event is reminds us of this geography. By means of a large wave partially submerging an island, COP 23 aims to raise awareness about the uncertain future that hangs over these small territories, as well as to coastal areas all around the world, as a result of climate change.

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The ’Talanoa Dialogue’ is a process that allows countries to review their objectives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions before 2020.

The event in Bonn came to a close by making the Paris Agreement action plan more ambitious. After all, 2020 is the year marked in which our greenhouse gases will have been reduced so that the increase in global average temperature remains at 2ºC or approaches 1.5ºC, compared to pre-industrial levels. In this respect, member countries have committed themselves to the ‘Talamoa Dialogue,’ which is a process to be undertaken in the next 12 months and where the following questions will be analyzed: “Where are we currently?” “Where are we heading?” “How will it all be done?” This concept is derived from a traditional and constructive dialogue that originates in the Pacific.

Patricia Espinosa, the Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and conference organizer with support provided by the Government of Germany, said: “The conference has, with the adoption of the Talanoa Dialogue, delivered a launch-pad that can take us to that next stage of higher ambition.” To which she added, “Bonn 2017 has underlined that support for the Paris Agreement is strong and that the journey upon which the world has embarked is an unstoppable movement supported by all sectors of society, across all parts of the globe”.

Two years have passed since the Paris Conference on climate change. Following the event in Bonn (COP 23), the next event will be held in Polski(Poland in Polish).

The Talanoa Dialogue will prove crucial to lay the foundation for national plans in favour of the climate which will be reviewed at the next event: COP24, in 2018 that will have its epicenter in Katowice (Poland).

Frank Bainimarama, President of COP23 and Prime Minister of Fiji, said: “I’m very pleased that COP23 has been such a success, especially given the challenge to the multilateral consensus for decisive climate action. We have done the job we were given to do, which is to advance the implementation guidelines of the Paris Agreement and prepare for more ambitious action in the Talanoa Dialogue of 2018”.

For the very first time the United States did not havean official pavilion following Donald Trump taking office and announcing his decision to withdraw from the Paris Agreement. Nevertheless, they did have a social representation called ‘We are still in’ and ‘Under 2 Coalition’, which comprised of organizations, States, companies and cities who wanted to show that there are still Americans today who are committed to fight climate change.

The second anniversary of the Paris Summit was held recently and a celebration of this was organized on December 12 by the President of France, Emmanuel Macron, Jim Yong Kim, President of the World Bank, and António Guterres, General Secretary of the UN, thereby establishing a new event to attend called One Planet. This meeting has served to set forth many public and private funding initiatives that are being carried out all over the world.

Abengoa continues to display a firm commitment to protecting the environment  and joins in the fight against climate change by applying technological solutions for sustainability in the infrastructures, energy and water sectors.

Abengoa builds both sustainable and efficient power plants in parts of the world where infrastructures need to be renewed in order for greenhouse gases to be reduced, and in this way meet the new requirements of countries. Abengoa has built the first three solar thermal plants in South Africa. In Mexico, it is building plants like the A3T efficient cogeneration facility which can produce clean energy from natural gas. Also, in the water sector, Abengoa is constructing large scale desalination plants in the planet’s most arid areas such as Saudi Arabia, Oman and Algeria, among others.

With all this and, more importantly, by being aware that action against climate change is a global issue, we will keep on working with recharged batteries and can pack our suitcase, this time for w drodze do Polski!.

Rocío Castro Moreno,

Rocío Castro Moreno, Communication department of Abengoa.

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