Today is the first day of COP25, the 25th annual international UN climate negotiations! Over 25,000 people from 200 countries are gathering in Madrid, Spain to participate as world leaders work to increase their commitments for climate action under the Paris Agreement.
We’re excited to send one of our staff, along with three additional Minnesota delegates (meet them below!), who will join the second week of the negotiations. It’s important to note that the negotiations were originally set in Chile, but President Sebastian Piñera announced he would suspend the conference amidst civil unrest and violence in the country.
We know some of you might be thinking — wait, isn’t the Trump administration pulling the U.S. out of the Paris Agreement? How do Americans fit into these negotiations?
Yes, the U.S. has officially begun the process of leaving the Paris Accords, but it doesn’t go into effect until November 3, 2020, one day after Election Day. The President-elect can signal the U.S. will not withdraw at this time. Right now, it’s even more important for subnational entities (like businesses, states, cities, tribal governments, and non-governmental organizations) to show the rest of the world that climate action is continuing under our watch and that we remain committed to the U.S. pledges under the Paris Agreement.
COP25 comes on the heels of the EU parliament declaring a climate emergency, and last week’s report from the World Meteorological Organization noting that global carbon dioxide (CO2) levels reached 407.8 parts per million (ppm) in 2018, up from 405.5 ppm in 2017:
“The findings of WMO’s Greenhouse Gas Bulletin and UNEP’s Emissions Gap Report point us in a clear direction — in this critical period, the world must deliver concrete, stepped-up action on emissions,” said Inger Andersen, Executive Director of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP). “We face a stark choice: set in motion the radical transformations we need now, or face the consequences of a planet radically altered by climate change.”
This needs to be a “COP of ambition”, and over the next two weeks we hope to report on how the world is “stepping up” their action, but regardless we’ll be bringing you the “what’s what” of the negotiations, starting daily next Monday, December 9th. We’ll also focus on highlighting stories from Indigenous and Latinx communities at the frontlines of climate impacts across the American continents.
Thanks for joining our Window into COP25 experience! Starting next Tuesday, tune in daily for inside looks, webinars, and more from our delegates’ blogs, as well as special guest bloggers, as they report back.
If you’re an educator following along in your classroom, don’t forget to check out our COP Educator Toolkit.
Climate Generation Delegation Blogs
Today, we share the insights of our entire delegation as they prepared to head to COP25.
GUEST BLOG: Sarah Goodspeed, Climate Generation
GUEST BLOG: Jen Kader, Freshwater
GUEST BLOG: Sabrina Patlan, Youth Delegate
GUEST BLOG: Eric Wojchik, Metropolitan Council
Mark your calendar for the COP25 webcasts throughout the experience!
Tuesday, December 10: CLEAN Network Webinar (12 p.m. CST)
Wednesday, December 11: Inside COP25 with Sarah Goodspeed with special guest – Part 1 (12 p.m. CST)
Thursday, December 12: COP25 + #TeachClimate (11:20 a.m. – 12:15 p.m. CST)
Friday, December 13: Inside COP25 with Sarah Goodspeed with special guest – Part 2 (12 p.m. CST)
Sign up for your own Window into COP25 updates.