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COP27 – Are we making progress?

24 November 2022
After the COP27, the Amsterdam Sustainability Institute organises a debrief event to unpack the results together with attendees and researchers of VU Amsterdam.

What are the key outcomes of the negotiations and which steps have to be taken now to tackle the wide range of challenges? Our speakers, who returned to COP27 share their insights on what progress has been made since last year. Moreover, we briefly touch upon the issue of accessibility which impacts participation of some actors.

As part of the SDG Academy lecture series, the Amsterdam Sustainability Institute (ASI) organised a live event debrief at the Green Office VU of the conference during which the results have been analysed. Researchers of VU Amsterdam Eszter Szedlacsek and Xiaoran Li and ASI Director Philipp Pattberg shared their reflections and discussed which roles stakeholders around the world have now.

Philipp Pattberg, director of the Amsterdam Sustainability Institute, called the COP27 a ‘lukewarm conference’. Philipp acknowledged the small wins in the inclusion of fossil fuels as an important issue, the growing consensus on the contestation against its use and the first time inclusion of the topic on loss and damage. However, the exclusion of some civil society activists and the war in Ukraine takes away from the impact of the conference. Moreover, the host location in Africa has effectively put the spotlight on a region and has steered the focus on the continent that has contributed the least to the problem but must be included in decision making processes to arrive at solutions. 

Eszter Szedlacsek, Ph.D. candidate at the IVM and Marie Curie fellow, joined the COP27 and our debrief online and focused on the issue of trade offs between achieving the 1.5 degree target and financing for loss and damage and emphasised that the COP is a platform that enables actors to come together.

Xiaoran Li, Ph.D. candidate at the Institute for Environmental Studies (IVM) at VU Amsterdam, participated in the COP27 online. She joined us in person to share her engagement in the article 6 negotiations and her view of the loss and damage fund as a positive signal albeit with a worrisome legacy, where the lack of funds may render it ineffective. Xiaoran also touched upon the issue of accessibility and complimented the conference for its accessible online platform that allowed her to participate despite not attending in person.

We would like to thank our speakers for sharing their invaluable experiences with us and for allowing us to view more closely into this COP and its outcomes. The recording of the event can be watched on our YouTube channel.

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