The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) attended this year’s COP 28, and has provided us with some event highlights.
According to USGBC, COP 28 was a COP like no other. The conference was marked by its size and scale, with the largest ever number of participants spread out across the large Dubai Expo City campus. More importantly, this COP expanded the collective understanding of how climate change intersects with other sustainable development goals—which in the past have been only on the margins. In a welcome development, COP 28 formally recognized the inextricable links between climate and health, climate and nature, and climate and food, among other links, creating the opportunity for integrated solutions to these crises. Further, the COP agenda for the first time formally included cities and states, a critical move for effective climate action.
The atmosphere of COP 28 felt different, too. The sober assessment of the global stocktake seemed to focus attention on the urgency of scaling the implementation of climate solutions, with the objectives of mitigation and adaptation increasingly intertwined. We observed participants from around the world talking about what they are doing now and seeking collaboration to do more. The agenda included all forms of energy, including nuclear and hydrogen.
USGBC engaged at COP 28 on behalf of and with our members, emphasizing our core messages and urging collaboration across all levels of government and the private sector to scale available solutions. In this article, we share some of our highlights from COP 28.