Before the pandemic, the global community was gearing up for a big 2020. But as the pandemic spread and took hold, meetings were postponed to 2021. The result? A concentrated series of big events and decision-points related to climate change, nature and development over the coming 12 months: leading this year to be labelled the 2021 'super year'.
Among the many landmark activities taking place in 2021, two will take centre stage: the 26th UN climate talks (COP26) and the 15th UN biodiversity conference (COP15) will bring countries together to set the agenda on climate change and nature for the decade to come. The ambitions and agreements reached at these meetings will affect us all.
Global leaders will also meet under the auspices of the G7 and G20 Leaders’ Summits, the United Nations General Assembly, the United Nations Environment Assembly, and the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting. At these meetings, leaders will tackle the big issues – economic recovery from the pandemic, climate change, environmental degradation and more.
Add to this the World Bank and International Monetary Fund annual meetings, the IUCN World Conservation Congress, the UN Food Systems Summit and an array of global North and global South conferences and workshops… and 2021 is big!
Events are already under way: last month, the 1st Gobeshona Global Conference organised by the International Centre for Climate Change and Development (ICCCAD) convened adaptation researchers under the theme of locally led adaptation. And last week, the Dutch government convened thousands of people to launch a comprehensive adaptation agenda at the Climate Adaptation Summit.
The World Resources Institute and IIED launched the principles for locally led adaptation that Irish Aid has endorsed along with many other organisations. ICCCAD has launched a 10-year learning journey on locally led adaptation to emphasise the need for a long-term focus to building resilience and managing multi-dimensional risks.
IIED and partners will be hosting the 15th Community Based Adaptation conference online from 14-18 June, 2021. Here you can sign up to receive the latest updates.