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Jakarta Post

ASEAN’s potential contributions to climate action

  • Simon Tay and Meixi Gan


Singapore   /   Fri, November 20 2020   /  01:00 am
Merciless flames: A local resident passes by a forest fire as it guts a plantation area in Pekanbaru, Riau, on Aug. 27. Strong winds helped escalate the fire, which occurs annually in the hotspot area. (Antara/epost-robot)

If not for the COVID-19 pandemic, most countries would be at the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) in Glasgow this month. Governments had pledged to negotiate rules for a global carbon market and improve their nationally determined contributions (NDCs) under the Paris Agreement. The meeting’s postponement to November 2021 should not equate with inaction. More than ever, there is recognition that the climate challenge must be addressed. Otherwise, the global community risks an existential crisis many times worse than the current pandemic. Some countries have strengthened their commitments. The European Union announced a pathfinding “Green Deal” which aims for the continent to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 55 percent by 2030, and become climate neutral by 2050. Allied to recovery from the pandemic, the EU will spend nearly 550 billion euros (...