New Electronics – November 2021
English | 44 pages | pdf | 12.87 MB
WAY OFF COURSE
Has COP26 lacked credibility, real action and commitment? n this month’s Long Read New Electronics conducted a roundtable discussion that looked at what some leading companies are doing to address, and play their part in dealing with, climate change.
As one participant said, “We understand the importance of being a good, corporate citizen and doing our part to reduce our negative impacts to the environment and society. When we all work together,
we can create long-lasting change to make the world a better place.” Most of these companies have adopted sustainability targets derived from the Global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set out by the United Nations.
But while these companies have acknowledged the role that engineering has played in creating the problems we currently face and that engineering can and should also take responsibility for addressing them, are we truly doing enough?
As NE goes to press COP26 is coming to an end and while there has been plenty of optimism expressed and pledges made, the world is still nowhere near limiting global temperature increases. According to the Climate Action Tracker (CAT) the world is heading for 2.4C of warming, far more than the 1.5C limit nations are committed to, and that prediction contrasts starkly with the optimism that was seen at the start of the conference.
The report by CAT took a look at the promises made by governments
I before and during COP26 and has compared them to actual policies. And while 140 governments have promised to reach net zero, covering 90% of global emissions, only a few have actual plans in place to reach that goal.
The sad fact is that while we have the technology, the people, the industries, and the money to tackle climate change what we still lack appears to be real political commitment.
Speaking at a COP26 press conference, Boris Johnson said that the UK would look at an international initiative to phase out fossil fuels over the next 30 years, but at the same time his
government is supporting the development of a new oil field off Shetland and is backing a massive new gas terminal in Africa.
Politics is all about compromise, but surely we are at a point when incremental change is no longer enough and what is needed is a truly radical approach to this magazine issue.
Because without a serious plan for 2030 in place most of the longer term goals that have been discussed in Glasgow will not be realised. Are
politicians yet again kicking the can down the road to next year’sCOP27 in Egypt? Negotiations will continue whatever is agreed in Glasgow, and the surprise announcement from China and the US to work together is a sign of that, but without a strong and credible route map COP26 will be, and rightly so, judged a failure.