Global Leaders convened by the Global Center on Adaptation call for COP26 to elevate adaptation action onto an equal footing with efforts to cut emissions because of escalating climate emergency.


Today, global leaders gathered in Rotterdam to participate in the Global Center on Adaptation (GCA) High Level Dialogue: “An Adaptation Acceleration Imperative for COP26”. With less than a hundred days to go until the world’s most significant summit on climate change, the Dialogue established that the success of COP26 will be determined by whether, for the first time, climate adaptation is elevated to an equal priority with the mitigation of carbon emissions.

Patrick Verkooijen, CEO of the Global Center on Adaptation, who convened the Dialogue, said in his opening remarks We are now living in the eye of the storm – adapting the world to our climate emergency is essential for our safety even as we tackle a global pandemic. From now on, we are fighting a battle on two fronts: we have to fight to slash emissions while investing the same level of energy to adapt to a global climate emergency. Millions of lives and the safety of communities around the world are already at stake.”

Over fifty leaders from the international climate and development community attended the Dialogue which concluded with a Communique adopted in the presence of the Dialogue’s Co-Conveners, Chair of the Board, 8th Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, CEO of the Global Center on Adaptation, Patrick Verkooijen, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, Kristalina Georgieva and UN High-Level Climate Champion on Private Sector for COP26, Feike Sijbesma.

The recent report from the IPCC warned a major worsening of climate impacts is coming a decade earlier than previously anticipated with unprecedented and some irreversible changes. It highlighted that certain impacts, such as extreme heat spells, would double in scale over the next decade, demanding unprecedented acceleration and investment in adaptation and resilience to counteract the growing climate emergency.

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