COP 25

Susana Vera/Reuters

Reflections on a Dysfunctional Climate Summit

, director of strategy & policy

As I arrived at the Féria de Madrid metro station on the Saturday before the opening of the annual United Nations climate summit (referred to as COP 25), I was struck by the signage in the exit tunnel. “17.2 MILLION PEOPLE LEAVING THEIR HOMES BECAUSE OF CLIMATE DISASTERS IS NOT A CHANGE,” one graphic read. Another said “MIAMI DISAPPEARING UNDER THE SEA IS NOT A CHANGE;” a third read “40% OF THE ANTARCTICA ICE MELTING IS NOT A CHANGE.” All of them had the same tag line next to them: “DON’T CALL IT CHANGE, CALL IT CLIMATE EMERGENCY.” This was my first indication of how intent the Chilean COP 25 presidency was on driving home the theme of the climate summit, “time for action.”

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Susana Vera/Reuters
Alden Meyer
IISD reporting services
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