COP 27: The progress so far The first week of COP 27 has come to an end but was the Ocean part of these much-needed climate conversations? Is COP 27 setting itself up for success or failure? World leaders, stakeholders, indigenous and youth campaigners from across the world have come together for the communal vision of implementing initiatives and acknowledging the barriers that exist in the face of the climate crisis. Mia Mottley, the Prime Minister of Barbados made waves with a powerful speech during the World Leaders Summit - here's a memorable snippet. Below are some of the notable advancements from the first week: Climate financing is at the heart of most discussions Many developing nations pointed out their lack of trust in the $100 billion annual pledge. This further emphasised the need for new and immediate financial packages for developing countries to stand a chance against climate change. The good news is that there are plenty of innovative ideas to fund mitigation and adaptation initiatives. This includes on fossil fuel companies (a higher tax on profits from sudden financial gains), debt cancellation for developing countries, frequent flyers tax, etc. France and Barbados even called for urgent changes to the rules of lenders like multilateral banks and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) next spring to support countries facing climate disasters now. No one is immune from the effects of the climate crisis, but coastal and island communities are some of the most vulnerable peoples and they must have access to the finances needed. Negotiations are still underway to address this, and we hope COP 27 ends with practical steps forward rather than uncertainty. Global Methane Pledge gains momentum This pledge seeks to curb 30% of methane emissions from 2020 levels, by 2030. Since its launch at COP 26 in 2021, it’s worth noting that around 130 countries are now part of this pledge, covering over half the methane emissions released by humans. According to the Global Methane Assessment, “reducing human-induced methane emissions is one of the most cost-effective strategies to reduce the rate of warming and will contribute significantly in the efforts to limit global temperature rise to 1.5C.” All eyes are on three sectors: fossil fuels, waste, and agriculture, to make the goal of this pledge a reality. The deep-sea: to mine or not to mine? Over the last year and a half, countries have met for discussions under the guidance of the International Seabed Authority (ISA) to establish regulations for deep-sea mining. Some countries like Fiji and Palau have called for a moratorium, which would prioritise the Ocean over exploitation for resources. Other countries, like Spain and Panama, have called for a “precautionary pause” until environmental impacts of deep-sea mining are well-understood. During the World Leader’s Summit at COP 27 however, Emmanuel Macron, the President of France, called for an outright ban on deep-sea mining. This is a bold statement given regulations need to be in place by mid-2023, the deadline from when mining companies can start their operations. COP 27: One more week to go Much like previous COPs, negotiations are tedious and can sometimes be heated. It is vital that we’re all on the same page; the path of action, not stalling. With some more time for positive outcomes, stay tuned for our final takeaways from COP 27 through the lens of our Ocean and follow us for more updates. Want to know our expectations for COP 27? Read here.