Today, 29 November 2021, a Post COP-26 discussion was organized by Center for Participatory Research and Development (CPRD) associated with BARCIK, CANSA-BD, CCDB, CDP, COAST Foundation, Maleya Foundation, NCC,B, SDS, and YPSA titled “A Post-Mortem of COP 26: Outcry, Outcome, and Takeaways”. The discussion took place at the National Press Club, Tofazzal Hossain Manik Miah Conference hall, Dhaka.
The discussion was chaired by Qazi Kholiquzzaman Ahmad, Chairman, Palli Karma-Sahayak Foundation. The keynote speech was delivered by Mr. Md. Shamsuddoha, Chief Executive of CPRD, Guest speaker were Qamrul Islam Chowdhury, President, Bangladesh Environmental Journalist Forum, Dr. Nurul Quadir Ex-Additional Secretary, MOEFCC, Climate Change journalist forum’s president Mr. Kawser Rahman. Among others, Mr. Syed Jahangir Hasan Masum, Executive Director, CDP, Sundarbans, and costal belt protection movement convener Mr. Nikhil Chandra Bhadra and many other distinguished guests, journalists, CSOs organizations representatives as well as CPRD staffs, were present in the discussion
In his presidential speech, Dr. Kholiquzzaman said, our policymakers often don’t see the regional problems and the problems of root-level people. Sometimes they send people and collect information. So the information they give is not often from the heart rather more from their head. So this information is not the reflection of people that are most affected and the materialization of their requirement is often neglected and that negative effect is seen in national and international policies. Mentioning the negative effect of climate change, he said, the global temperature has increased 1.1 degrees Celsius which will create many climate migrants. If we cannot limit the global temperature within 1.5 degrees Celsius and if the limit is declared to be 2 degrees Celsius instead of 1.5 degrees Celsius, it will become the death trap for many regions. Observing all situations and practical conditions, by end of this century it will not be possible to keep the global temperature within 1.5 degree Celsius. So the world needs to focus on reducing carbon emission along with planning, technology, and skills.
In his Keynote speech, Md Shamsuddoha said, “Instead of some limitations there are many significant achievements during this COP-26. To tackle Climate change, COP-26 has brought new hope. All parties’ evolvement to pursue efforts to limit global temperature rise to 1.5 °C is the beginning of a new pathway. It is the outcome of our various movements, research work, statements, and claims. Our demand for limiting global temperatures to 1.5 °C has also been more strengthened since the release of IPCC Report AR6”. He Added “All efforts and initiatives could become unsuccessful if we fail to reduce carbon emissions at the appropriate rate in order to keep it confined to 1.5 degrees. He also noted that Time is flying, and pretty soon we will be too late to reduce carbon emissions to keep global temperatures within 1.5 degrees. He urges the importance to take immediate action by the country to limit global temperature along with proportionate CO2 reduction through the establishment of legally binding agreements. One of our biggest demands during this COP was a phase-out time frame of using coal but it has not been achieved due to India, China, and some other countries dissenting positions. He demands to stop using fossil fuels including coal by the year 2050. He also demands Bangladeshi all adaptation plans should be bottom-up approaches and they need to be focused on vulnerable people and the community’s needs.
Dr. Nurul Qader said, Observing the negative effects due to the global temperature rising 1.1 degrees Celsius, The world parties in COP-26 have agreed to keep the global temperature within 1.5 degrees Celsius. This will also ensure the requirements of the regional suffered people. He also mentioned according to the present reality even 1.5 degrees Celsius is an extravagance, There is no option to let the global temperature rise above 1.5 degrees Celsius, Steps should be taken immediately. He said that CVF has played an active role, but as the platform of the disaster-afflicted countries, CVF must play a more active role.
Mr. Qamrul Islam Chowdhury said, we went to COP with a determination to increase the coal “Phase out” timeline, but due to the hindrance created by China, India, and some other countries we had no other option but to accept the “Phase down” policy. These countries forced other countries to accept this issue due to their narrow economic advantage. He said that a proper stand needs to be taken against these unfair decisions. He complained that the negotiators of our countries have a bossy and know-it-all attitude but that is not reflected in their works.
Mr. Kawser Rahman complained that COP is slowly becoming a weapon to fulfill political motives and ignoring different scientific eagerness and suggestions. Instead of giving grants for the impacts of climate change, Loans are given in the name of helping and countries are using this for business purposes, the developing countries should keep this in mind.
The co-ordinator of “Shundarbon o upokul andolon” Nikhil Chandro Vadro said that, Specific adaptation plan needs to be taken in order to fulfill the requirements of the coastal people. He also added that many people in the coastal areas have to depend on the tide and ebb for their livings. Many people cannot go to their homes when the tides come up.
In this COP one of our main requirements was to determine the timeline of coal “Phase out”. But due to obstacles created by China, India we could not achieve this. He demanded to stop the use of Coal and Fossil fuels within 2050. He also mentioned including Regional requirements and demands in the Adaptation plan and also mentioned the importance to follow the bottom-up approach in adaptation plans. There was a plenary and an open discussion from the distinguished guests and Dr. Kholiquzzaman summarized the event with key takeaways from the event.