COP24, the two-week 24th conference of the parties of the United Nations Climate Change Convention (UNFCCC), started on Sunday in Katowice, Poland, with a special focus on carbon neutrality and gender equality.
Days after the UN sounded the alarm on the unprecedented levels of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere, the world is gathering to define how the 2015 Paris Agreement will be implemented and moved forward by its 197 parties.
Under the agreement, all countries have committed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in order to limit the global average rise in temperature to well below 2°C, and as close as possible to 1.5°C.
Cycling for the planet:
Kicking off the two-week event in Katowice, a historically mining town in the south of Poland, a team of cyclists on electric bikes arrived from Vienna, having biked 600 km to demonstrate the value of renewable energy in reducing emissions. The expedition was supported by the UN Global Compact, a group of private sector companies committed to sustainable development.
The cycling team, called “Moving for Climate NOW”, made up of about 40 people from different institutions and countries was welcomed by UN Climate Change Deputy Executive Secretary, Ovais Sarmad, and Jakub Gibek, Head of the Climate Policy Unit of the Ministry of Environment of Poland.
“I commend the cyclists involved in this bike tour for inspiring the world to move in the right direction to fulfil the promise of the Paris Agreement. This is the most important COP since the signing of the agreement, and we need initiatives like yours to testify that governments, the private sector and individuals can work together to tackle climate change by committing to multilateralism.”
UN Climate Change Deputy Executive Secretary, Ovais Sarmad
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