Much discussion also focused on the need to reform multilateral institutions such as the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. For the first time, a draft political decision published at the climate talks calls on multilateral development banks and international financial institutions to be reformed and align their spending with climate goals.
COP27 also shone a light on equity and justice, particularly for Indigenous peoples, frontline and fenceline communities in the US, and abroad For the first time at COP, there was a dedicated space for climate justice, and as part of the negotiations, representatives from both Indigenous peoples and local community groups have launched a detailed vision of what direct access to financing should look like based on guiding principles, guidelines, governance mechanism, actions, and indicators.
Other good news included the US arriving at COP27 with a legislative victory on climate at is back—the Inflation Reduction Act—and an election that produced better-than-expected results for climate solutions advocates. President Biden said as much in his speech at the end of the first week. The Biden Administration released more proposed rules and aid packages that aimed strategically at some important goals: committing to the reduction of methane emissions, mobilizing the federal government’s vast purchasing power to promote SBTi commitments, and deploying more than $150 million in capital towards a resilient Africa.
One of the highlights of COP27 for me personally was moderating a panel at the America Is All In Action Center including White House’s Chair of the Council of Environmental Quality, Brenda Mallory, Governor Jay Inslee of Washington, and Mayor Libby Schaaf of Oakland, California. We’re seeing a strong commitment from non-federal leaders across state and local governments, academic, cultural and religious institutions, and Indigenous peoples to take the resources they can get and turn them into effective and equitable climate action. In the US, we look forward to seeing how the Inflation Reduction Act unleashes climate action.
As for the proposition for global action on climate, COP27 ends with a feeling of stagnation and a lack of progress on needed outcomes. As this “decade of implementation” ticks by, we desperately need more ambition, more commitment, and more action. We cannot be left with creating a fund for the end of the world. It must become the beginning of us taking hold of our future.