You can be forgiven for thinking the dust hasn’t really settled yet on COP26 in Glasgow, but now is definitely the right time to start considering COP27. It’s set to take place in November 2022 in Sharm el-Sheikh on the southern tip of Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula, and, make no mistake, it’s going to be important. Think of it in terms of a global summit that will have repercussions for all. If COP26 enabled the debate to take place, COP27 is where it will hopefully come to fruition.
So what will be on the agenda in Egypt? Well, let me point out here that if I had a crystal ball I’d be looking for next week’s lottery results rather than wondering about climate change. So, instead of touring the local Maserati showroom and getting fitted for a solid gold suit, I’m trying to guess the agenda of a conference that’s 11 months away. And while this isn’t an easy thing to predict, it’s perhaps safe to assume that certain items will definitely be up for debate.
As we’ve all heard in recent years, decisive action is needed to reverse environmental damage that has been taking place for many years, but where do you start? There are so many issues that need to be on the agenda, including the likes of:
- Climate change
- Sustainable agriculture
- Climate poverty
- Renewable energy
- Fossil fuel usage
- Carbon emissions
Needless to say, these hugely important factors are only parts of a much bigger picture. A huge number of initiatives are already in place, and are making a noticeable difference to our environment, but are they enough? Despite the best of intentions on the part of many politicians, businesspeople and influencers, we still have ecosystems under threat, endangered animals facing more difficulties, oceans becoming ever more polluted and factories continuing to churn out vast quantities of carbon emissions.
How loud can you shout?
Our mistreatment of the planet over the years has resulted in us now facing a diverse selection of problems, far more than one conference will be able to neutralise. Imagine yourself sitting in a packed coffee shop and every single customer is shouting to you at the top of their voices; that’s what it must feel like to be a COP delegate with a conscience. You want to help everyone, but no matter how hard you try you’ll only be able to satisfy a few of them.
And of course many of the solutions that are adopted will inevitably need to be long-term gains rather than short-term wins. Switching to electric vehicles will result in a dramatic drop in the amount of fossil fuel we consume, for example, but we’ll then need to think about what we do with spent EV batteries when they come to the end of their effective lives. Second-life battery usage is already an important factor on the green wish-list, and it’s easy to see why.
COP27 may seem a long way off right now, but it will be here in no time. The agenda might seem difficult to predict, but there are many items which we already know will need to be heard. My crystal ball is still unable to predict the lottery numbers, sadly, but it has told me that COP28 will be held in the United Arab Emirates, and COP29 will take place in the Ukraine. As for what will be on their agendas, I have absolutely no idea. We may be able to offer the type of B2B public relations Sussex companies can rely on, but even we can’t predict the future.