AUSTIN (KXAN) — Every year, the majority of our world’s countries come together at a global summit called the Conference of the Parties (COP) to discuss, evaluate and set goals that prioritize climate change issues.

COP27: When, where and who

COP27 is being held from Nov. 6-18 in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. Those invited include global leaders, heads of state, minsters, negotiators, royalty, government representatives, climate activists and citizens. The global conference is a piece of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), a group of 198 countries with the ultimate goal of preventing ‘dangerous’ human interference with the climate system.”

What will be discussed?

Most of the discussions expected at COP27 are likely to build off those that occurred at COP26 (2021) in Glasgow, Scotland. Topics include the need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and building national resilience and adaptation in addition to financially assisting those who bear the brunt of our globe’s climate crisis — developing countries.

One of the most pressing conversations expected to be had is an evaluation of the Paris Climate Agreement, a goal set at COP21 (2015) to limit the global temperature increase to 1.5°C by the end of the century.

A recent report by the United Nations ahead of COP27 showed since COP26, only 29 out of 194 countries “came forward with tightened national plans.” In fact, given current pledges, the global temperature increase is expected to be near 2.5°C, one degree higher than the projected goal.

Officials with UN Climate Change stress COP27 needs to be when countries gain momentum in turning from “negotiations” to “implementation” of their climate goals.

Other topics include innovation, technology, finance, youth education, land use, oceans and market trading.

Progress in the United States

NOAA Administrator Dr. Rick Spinrad spoke Sunday at the conference, highlighting the recent goals set into motion in the states. Spinrad spoke on the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) passed by Congress and signed into law by President Biden this past August, calling it “the most sizable and comprehensive climate legislation enacted in U.S. history.” This act would put Biden’s goal to cut U.S. emissions by 50-52% below 2005 levels by the end of the decade within reach. 

To follow along with events, news and conversations had at COP27, click here.