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COP28’s director general backs using technology to aid climate action

Majid Al-Suwaidi, the director general of COP28, at the Dubai Future Forum. (Reuters)
Majid Al-Suwaidi, the director general of COP28, at the Dubai Future Forum. (Reuters)
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28 Nov 2023 01:11:40 GMT9
28 Nov 2023 01:11:40 GMT9
  • Panel discussion focused on the changing landscape of climate technology

Arab News

LONDON: The director general of COP28 hosted a session on Monday at the Dubai Future Forum on harnessing the potential of technology to promote climate action, the Emirates News Agency reported.

During a panel discussion called “Uniting for COP28: Leveraging Technology and Defining the Climate Technology Future,” Majid Al-Suwaidi said: “Technology and innovation is a cross-cutting theme across the COP28 agenda, and for good reason.

“Climate technologies can significantly bolster our capacity to both mitigate and adapt to the impacts of climate change, but they must be accessible and affordable.

“To meet our climate goals and drive the green transition, we must invest in and swiftly scale climate tech innovations. There is so much that we can achieve together at the convergence of climate, technology and policy.

“Through dedicated spaces and curated programs, COP28 will also showcase the diverse contributions of entrepreneurs and technology, especially those originating from the Global South.”

The panel discussion focused on the changing landscape of climate technology, as well as the importance of multiple stakeholders’ contributions and partnerships in driving innovation and deployment to address the climate challenge.

David Livingston, senior adviser to the US special presidential envoy for climate; Sabrin Rahman, COP28’s director of partnerships; and Asya Al Shehhi, COP28’s negotiator for technology, science and innovation, were among the panelists.

COP28 will host the Climate Innovation Forum on Friday, gathering government, business and technology leaders to showcase cutting-edge technologies.

It will focus on innovation, including artificial intelligence, satellite technology, big data, sustainable energy, industrial decarbonization, and other topics.

There will also be exhibitions and events in the COP28 Technology and Innovation Hub in the Green Zone, such as the Startup Village, a dedicated space in the hub showcasing 150 of the most innovative climate tech initiatives.

A majlis at the Dubai Future Forum brought together a group of people to discuss the obstacles of realizing AI’s potential in climate action. While AI is largely considered as a significant asset in combating climate change, technology is typically produced by a small group of people, which can have an impact on who it benefits and who it does not.

The majlis considered how governments and society should advocate for more inclusive design in order to ensure that AI’s involvement in climate mitigation and adaptation policies is done by everyone, for everyone.

The conversation emphasized the importance of inclusivity, from the very beginning of the design process all the way through implementation to ensuring that the climate-AI nexus works for everyone.

AI experts, futurists, climate experts, lawmakers, youth advocates, and industry executives were among those who attended.

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