Market News


28th Conference of the Parties of the UNFCCC (COP28) and its Outcomes – Review of Previous COPs and Benefits

28th Conference of the Parties of the UNFCCC (COP28) was successfully completed in the UAE on December 12, 2023, at Expo City, Dubai.  The gatherings which was organized by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) was aimed to negotiate actions addressing climate change, limiting emissions, and stopping global warming.

These conferences are the world’s foremost decision-making body on climate issues, hosting one of the largest international meetings globally.  It marked a transformative moment for global unity on tangible climate action and realistic solutions, necessitating collaboration across civil society, governments, industries, and sectors.

Established in 1992, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) serves as the primary global platform for addressing climate change, with 195 countries joining the international agreement.  Focused negotiations within the convention center around four key areas:

  1. Mitigating (reducing) greenhouse gas emissions.
  2. Adapting to climate change
  3. Reporting national emissions
  4. Financing climate action in developing countries.

The UNFCCC obliges signatory nations to formulate, implement, publish, and update measures for climate change impacts, known as ‘adaptation.’ It promotes international cooperation on adaptation and provides various support mechanisms for its implementation in developing countries.  The 2010 adoption of the Cancun Adaptation Framework underscored the equal priority of adaptation and mitigation, urging increased efforts to reduce vulnerability and enhance resilience to climate change in developing nations.

COP28 marked a historic turning point with significant outcomes:

  1. Loss and Damage: One notable achievement was the establishment of a loss and damage fund. This fund aims to provide financial support to developing countries already experiencing the impacts of climate change, such as extreme weather events, sea level rise, and biodiversity loss.  Despite being a milestone, the $700 million pledged by wealthy nations falls considerably short of the estimated annual damage cost ranging from $100 billion to $580 billion.
  2. Fossil Fuel Phase-Out & Increased Renewable Energy Capacity: COP28 witnessed the adoption of a groundbreaking fossil fuel phase-out agreement. Parties committed to transitioning away from fossil fuels in energy systems in a just, orderly, and equitable manner, aiming for net-zero emissions by 2050.  It was the first time the COP explicitly addressed the necessity to end the use of coal, oil, and gas, the primary drivers of the climate crisis.  The agreement also called for tripling global renewable energy capacity by 2030 and accelerating technologies like carbon capture and storage.
  3. Role of the Private Sector: Another significant outcome was the launch of a $30 billion private market climate capital, designed to mobilize private sector investment in low-carbon and climate-resilient projects, particularly in emerging and developing economies. This capital leverages the expertise and resources of entities like the World Bank, the International Finance Corporation, and the World Economic Forum.
  4. Challenges & Criticism: Controversy arose over remarks made by COP28 President Sultan Al Jaber, also the CEO of UAE’s state-owned oil company, Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC). Initially questioning the need for a fossil fuel phase-out, he later clarified that such a transition was both “inevitable and essential.” Challenges included the lack of ambition from major emitters like China, India, and Russia, who did not submit updated emissions reduction pledges under the Paris Agreement.  Current pledges fall short of the necessary levels to limit global temperature rise to 1.5°C.

Furthermore, dissatisfaction and frustration were expressed by civil society groups, indigenous peoples, youth activists, and scientists who staged protests throughout the summit.  They demanded more action and justice from leaders, denouncing the influence of the fossil fuel industry and the inadequate representation of the most affected and marginalized communities.

Several significant commitments were made during past COPs:

  1. Kyoto Protocol (COP3, Kyoto 1997): Enacted during COP3 in Kyoto in 1997, the Kyoto Protocol mandated “industrialized nations and economies in transition to limit and reduce greenhouse gas emissions in accordance with agreed individual targets.” While 192 countries are part of the protocol, only 37 industrialized countries and the EU had legally binding emission targets.  The protocol was effective until 2020 and was succeeded by the Paris Agreement.
  2. Paris Agreement (COP21, Paris 2015): The Paris Agreement, established during COP21 in Paris in 2015, is a legally binding international treaty where countries committed to limiting global warming to well below 2 degrees Celsius, with an ideal target of 1.5 degrees Celsius compared to pre-industrial levels.
  3. Glasgow Climate Pact (COP26, Glasgow 2021): COP26 in Glasgow resulted in the Glasgow Climate Pact, where nations agreed to bridge the gap between current emission reduction plans and the necessary actions to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius.  Notably, it marked the first time a COP agreement included commitments to phase down coal power and reduce fossil fuel subsidies.
  4. Loss and Damage Fund (COP27, Sharm el-Sheikh, 2022): COP27 in Sharm el-Sheikh in 2022 led to the establishment of a Loss and Damage Fund.  This fund aims to support the costs incurred by developing countries, which are most vulnerable to climate change impacts despite contributing the least to global emissions.  It addresses the expenses related to rescuing and rebuilding infrastructure following extreme weather events.


In conclusion, COP28 held in Dubai marked a pivotal moment in the global effort to address climate change.  The conference, hosted by the UAE, provided a platform for nations to come together, fostering collaboration across various sectors to achieve the ambitious 1.5°C target outlined in the Paris Agreement.  Noteworthy outcomes included the establishment of a Loss and Damage Fund, a groundbreaking fossil fuel phase-out agreement, and initiatives to mobilize private sector investment in climate-resilient projects.  Despite these achievements, challenges such as insufficient financial pledges and criticisms regarding the fossil fuel industry’s influence surfaced.  India actively participated in COP28, contributing to discussions on climate finance accessibility, industry transition, and vulnerability in the Himalayan region.  The impact of COP decisions on India’s environmental policies and actions is evident, influencing commitments, targets, and policy changes.  As COP continues to shape the global climate agenda, it remains crucial for nations to collectively strive for sustainable solutions and decisive action to mitigate the impacts of climate change on a rapidly changing planet.

DART Consulting provides business consulting through its network of Independent Consultants.  Our services include preparing business plans, market research, and providing business advisory services. More details at