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  • Sharma's promotion was welcomed,  but some sectors warned that the official is late in organizing a conference that is just around the corner.

    Sharma's promotion was welcomed, but some sectors warned that the official is late in organizing a conference that is just around the corner. | Photo: EFEverde

Published 13 February 2020
Opinion

The decision was announced shortly after Johnson's cabinet shuffle, marked by the unexpected resignation of Treasury Secretary, Sajid Javid. Sharma will replace Claire O'Neill, who was fired in January.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson appointed Thursday his Business Secretary, Alok Sharma, as President of the Climate Change Summit (COP26) next November in Glasgow, Scotland.

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The decision was announced shortly after Johnson's cabinet shuffle marked by the unexpected resignation of Treasury Secretary, Sajid Javid. Sharma will replace Claire O'Neill, who was fired in January.

According to the BBC, although Sharma's promotion was welcomed, some sectors warned that the official is late in organizing a conference that is just around the corner.

In this way, Christian Aid spokesperson Kat Kramer pointed out that leading the climate change negotiations is a dangerous and delicate task. On her side, Mohamed Adow of Power Shift Africa expressed concern about the nine-month left for Sharma to do his job.

Previous COP26 President praised her successor, who worked in the banking sector before entering politics ten years ago, and considered that he would be able to meet the challenge.

After Claire O'Neill's dismissal last January, she published a letter accusing Johnson of a lack of leadership and commitment to tackle climate change. Referring to the previous Climate Change Summit celebrated in Spain, she stressed that the format needs to be "re-energized" if a considerable climatic action is to be achieved.

The next climate meeting will be held in Glasgow, Scotland, between November 9 and 19. This may become a defining year after a COP25 - chaired by the Minister of the Environment, Carolina Schmidt - turned out to be insignificant and a lack of agreements before a critical environmental scenario.

During COP26, the renewal of the Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) is expected. These parameters were established in the Paris Agreement and are a set of measures taken individually by each country signing the pact to "keep the global average temperature rise well below 2 ºC with respect to pre-industrial levels, and continue efforts to limit that temperature increase to 1.5 °C."

So far, established NDCs have proven to be insufficient.

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