COP28: a key test of the process and Scotland’s climate credibility on the world stage

  • 30 Nov 2023
  • International, Press Release

As world leaders gather for COP28, a coalition of over 60 organisations is calling on the First Minister to seize the opportunity to bolster the international leadership Scotland has shown at previous COPs, by supporting the priorities of countries most impacted by the climate crisis and driving progress by making ambitious announcements on reducing emissions and delivering a fair transition away from fossil fuels.

Mike Robinson, Chair of Stop Climate Chaos Scotland, said: 

“2023 will soon be confirmed as the hottest year ever recorded, with increasingly extreme weather devastating lives and livelihoods across the world, yet emissions continue to rise along with temperatures. With current international climate pledges failing to keep the planet below 2 degrees of heating, we need COP28 to step up – to break our perilous reliance on fossil fuels and to deliver much-needed financial support to people around the world who are suffering its worst impacts.   

“However, with the talks being hosted by one of the world’s biggest exporters of fossil fuels, many are very doubtful that we will end up with agreements anywhere near what is needed. In addition, it would appear that the whole COP process is currently in serious jeopardy, with reports that the host nation have been using these talks as a vehicle to promote its oil interests with other nations, which is deeply concerning, and the venue for next year’s talks is still undetermined after Russia vetoed agreement on the host.

“With this background it is more vital than ever that Scotland continues to play a role in demonstrating leadership on the world stage and pushes ahead with action at home.  The First Minister has confirmed his commitment to strong climate action, but we are yet to see this translate into sufficient investment in the actions needed to reduce emissions quickly and fairly here in Scotland. 

“COP28 presents a key test of climate credibility on the world stage, and to protect this we urge the Scottish Government to get on with the things they can do now, such as reforming the funding system for agriculture, accelerating peatland restoration, making our homes warmer, and enabling more sustainable transport options.

“In addition, we want to see Scotland bolster the leadership it has shown at previous COPs by committing to raise new money for climate finance by making the biggest polluters pay, backing the development of the Fossil Fuel Non-Proliferation Treaty, and raising global ambition on the need to deliver a just transition.”