New England Forestry Foundation (NEFF) Deputy Director and Climate Fellow Andi Colnes is live blogging from United Nations climate-change conference COP27 in Egypt from Nov. 14-17. Read about her first day below.
Writing by Andrea Colnes
Three flights, two days of travel, gorgeous yellow-green lizards on the wall outside my room, and I’ve finally arrived at COP27 in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt. Every time I come to the COP, I am struck by how truly global and diverse it is.
Climate knows no boundaries, and this annual coming together of people from around the world reflects that. People in the flowing robes of the Middle East, the colorful dresses and patterns out of Africa, and even forestry folks from New England who usually tend toward flannel and fleece… we’re all here. Overwhelmed by the challenge, inspired by each other, we come to listen, learn and find new ways toward urgently needed action.
This afternoon, I will be attending a session organized by the United Nations Department of Economic Social Affairs on strengthening forest-based climate action. The session’s objective is to “seize the opportunity” provided by the Paris Agreement to drive forest-based climate action. The U.N. Focus on Forests initiative recognizes that:
“Sustainably managed forests play an essential role in regulating and stabilizing the global climate. Through their ecosystem services, forests and trees are a key determinant of local, regional and global precipitation and temperature patterns. There is a growing body of evidence that sustainably managed forests significantly contribute to sustaining food and water security. The world’s forests also constitute a vital part of the carbon cycle, absorbing, recycling and storing large amounts of carbon dioxide, thus regulating the accumulation of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. Despite their importance to combat climate change, the full potential of forests continues to remain untapped.”
Session participants span the globe, sharing perspectives and a wide range of forest management challenges and potential climate solutions from India, Latin America, Africa, Europe and more. We will explore key questions like, how can forest-based climate solutions be applied, replicated and upscaled to accelerate the progress in the implementation of the Paris Agreement, and achievement of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals and Global Forest Goals?
It’s pretty amazing NEFF will be able to join in this conversation and offer a nationally and internationally significant approach, based on our 30 Percent Solution and Exemplary Forestry standards and now backed by our USDA Climate-Smart Commodities project, which will help us begin to implement these bold practices across New England.
Well, it’s time to go find the venue—always a bit of a challenge in the crush of people and the inevitable confusion of what it takes to truly innovate at the global scale.
New England Forestry Foundation Heads To COP27 | November 10
NEFF at COP27: Day 1 | November 14
NEFF at COP27: Day 2 | November 15
NEFF at COP27: Day 3 | November 16
NEFF at COP27: Day 4 | November 17
COP27 Wrapup—What Did We Learn? | November 22