March 22, 2021

Dublin initiative intends to drive ambition and progress at the COP26 climate summit

Biodiversity Strategy

The plan will represent a catalyst for a more clear and decisive outcome in November.

The group will attempt to forge a declaration on how to turn net-zero pledges into concrete energy policies and actions to be adopted at COP26.

A worldwide campaign is focusing on developing measures to accelerate progress towards net-zero carbon emissions in the lead up to the COP26 climate summit. Dublin Climate Dialogues intends to be the driving force for a more meaningful outcome from the summit later this year. International leaders have cited COP26 as the world’s last and best chance to rapidly avoid climate catastrophe.

Nations and political leaders from high carbon-emitting countries, including the US, China and the EU have agreed to attend the two-day virtual conference in Dublin next May. The plan is to develop an agreement on how to convert net-zero targets into structured energy policies and clear decisive action that strengthens the measures defined in the Paris Agreement. 

The Irish meeting will be hosted by the University College of Dublin and organised by worldwide experts in energy, climate science, engineering and economics. Pat Cox, the former president of the European Parliament will represent the chair for the event.

With a focus on adapting the global response to the agreement, leading industry economists will identify the potential costs associated with the lack of action in counter climate disruption and more importantly, what investment is required to reach net-zero emissions and decarbonise economies. The overall social and economic benefits to the global GDP from decarbonising energy and industrial production will also be investigated further. Current estimates believe the value to be in the region of $600 trillion by 2100.

The second half of the event will focus on how global energy systems should adapt to facilitate net-zero and the importance of technology in driving sustainability forward. The event will highlight the benefits of moving towards an accelerated decarbonisation pathway and what opportunities are available to increase the deployment of renewable energy technology at scale.

Eddie O’ Connor, founder of Mainstream Renewable Power is heading up the initiative explains that the COP is ineffective due to it being voluntary and as a consequence, enabled selected global leaders to pull out, with no implications. 

COP26 president Alok Sharma, the lead representative at the summit recently highlighted the pace of change required to work towards our targets. In an interview with the Guardian, Sharma stated that worldwide we need to reduce emissions by 50% over the next decade in order to meet the goals defined in the Paris agreement. In order to reach these targets requires fast and decisive action.

The dialogues initiative developed further from a concept last year to create an engineering conference with a focus on sustainability. It resulted in the realisation that it was an opportunity to influence the COP, to determine what we would like to see and what we expect to come out of it.

The Dublin conference will coincide with the International Energy Agency (IEA) launching its global plan to reach net-zero. Fatih Birol, the director of the IEA has also been invited to attend the conference in Dublin.