Oceana marine scientist Ellycia Harrould Kolieb is at the COP16 climate negotiations in Cancun for the next few weeks.
Here we are again at the international climate change negotiations, this time in Cancun, Mexico. The weather is nice, but it is yet to be seen if the negotiations will be equally sunny. This is the 16th conference of the parties (COP) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and we had hoped that by now the international community would be a bit further along at coming to a binding agreement.
Despite the lack of optimism around a meaningful agreement coming out of this meeting, positive steps can (and should) be made to move the process along, hopefully allowing for an agreement to be made next year in South Africa. This meeting has the potential to provide a clear path forward that can lead to a legally binding agreement, one that will require countries to meet their pledges and truly reduce their carbon dioxide emissions.
We are also hoping to see countries commit to reaching a global goal of 350 parts per million of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. This will protect the oceans from rising acidity that has the potential to negatively impact many marine species and the humans that depend on them.
Oceana has once again teamed up with Scripps Institution of Oceanography and Plymouth Marine Laboratory to host an exhibit about the dangers of ocean acidification. We will also be talking at a series of side events and releasing a new report and white paper (more on those in the days to come).
In the meantime, you can help us out by taking action to stop ocean acidification!