Developed country hypocrisy on climate: developing countries are paying the price

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Developed countries, which bear the primary responsibility for climate change, have shirked their own responsibility for mitigating climate change and demanded that developing countries bear a disproportionate share of the burden. They are asking developing countries to phase out coal immediately, while failing to honor their own commitments to reduce emissions made at the Paris Climate Conference.

According to an analysis by the Committee on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW), developed countries will collectively emit about 7.20 gigatons more carbon dioxide between 2020 and 2030 than their National Emissions Reduction Commitments (NDCs) will meet. This is a 40% excess of emissions, of which the US, EU and Russia account for 83%.

Developed country hypocrisy on climate: developing countries are paying the price

What developed countries do will affect the carbon budgets available to developing countries as they seek to grow their economies. The global South will bear the brunt of climate change, and climate justice can only be achieved if developed countries act more ambitiously than they have so far.

However, developed countries will not even be able to meet the modest targets they have set themselves. They have pledged to reduce emissions by 5 percent from 2019 levels by 2030, compared to the 43 percent global average reduction needed to maintain the 1.5°C target. Moreover, they had failed to provide adequate financing for developing countries to transition to cleaner fuels and technologies.

By shirking their responsibilities, developed countries will rob the global South of its future. As COP 28 in Dubai approaches, developed countries must unite and insist on real action. Rich countries will not be able to deliver on the promise of significant emission reductions after 2030, as this does not inspire confidence at the present time.

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