COP28 Week One Overview

December 7, 2023

Media Advisory

Dubai, United Arab Emirates

December 7, 2023

Week one of COP28 officially concluded on Dec. 6, 2023, followed by a day set aside for attendees to rest, catch their breath and be ready to hit the ground running for week two beginning on Dec. 8, 2023. 

From Solutions from the Land’s perspective, week one was incredibly productive. At the same time, there were also challenges for global agriculture. Here are some notable updates to be aware of. 

Nearly 140 countries signed onto the Emirates Declaration on Sustainable Agriculture, Resilient Food Systems and Climate Change. This is the first-ever declaration on the “profound potential of ag and food systems in driving innovative responses to climate change and unlock shared prosperity for all.” The Declaration addresses global emissions while protecting the lives and livelihoods of farmers who live on the frontlines of climate change. 

In a disappointing follow-up, the member states failed to reach a consensus on a roadmap for Sharm el-Sheikh joint work on the implementation of climate action on agriculture and food security. 

The failure to agree on a roadmap to implementation is a major disappointment and a failure to move beyond process to implementation,” says Solutions from the Land President Ernie Shea, who led SfL’s week one delegation to COP 28. “The lack of constructive dialogue and willingness to find common ground means that a year has been wasted.”

Frustratingly, this continued impasse means farmers, who are already on the frontline of climate impacts, are unable to move forward with addressing the climate crisis with the guidance and support of the Sharm el-Sheikh joint work.  

“This temporary impasse should awaken all parties to the urgent need to finalize and agree on a climate smart agriculture implementation roadmap,” says Shea “Failure to agree on a roadmap is a failure to deliver for farmers.” 

Thanks to the proactive interventions by SfL and our partners, the message of agricultural systems as a solution pathway to climate and other SDGs was greatly elevated. 

SfL’s presentations and recommendations on data policy guidance and pathways to scale up the adoption of a circular biological approach to farming were well received by COP participants. Watch the IICA recordings of these sessions and learn more: 

SfL’s farmer delegates in attendance for week two of the COP will continue to share our vision of a 21st Century Agricultural Renaissance where sustainable farms, ranches and forests not only improve food and nutrition security but concurrently deliver high-value ecosystem services. 

SfL’s next presentation is scheduled for Monday, Dec. 11 at 1:30 p.m. UTC located at the Sustainable Agriculture of the Americas Pavilion. SfL Co-Chair and California farmer, A.G. Kawamura, will be moderating Biofuels and Circular Economy: A Roadmap to Net Zero. For those tuning into the panel discussion from home, the recording will be added to IICA’s YouTube page.  

For more information, contact Ernie Shea, SfL President eshea@solutionsfromtheland.org, or Ray Gaesser, SfL Board member gaesserfarms@gmail.com.

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