In the shadow of COP28, A-Level Geography students attended a climate lecture at the Royal Geographical Society on 27th November 2023. The lecture ‘Are countries meeting their climate promises?’ was led by an expert panel consisting of the Director of the Royal Geographical Society (RGS) Professor Joe Smith, Professor Rebecca Willis of the University of Lancaster, Oliver Morton, senior writer and editor of The Economist, The Independent and National Geographic and Dr Ashok Sinha, CEO of Ashden.
This lecture enabled students to see the current discussions around the earth-changing phenomenon, known as the climate crisis. It highlighted the importance of a constructive dialogue around the climate crisis and necessary leadership to ensure countries meet their climate promises. There were discussions around ‘adjust transmission’ funds by Joe Biden in the US, the EU targets of green energy transition, commitments made to the Lost and Damage funds from the EU, UK and US. However, overwhelming evidence that countries are not meeting there climate promises and some suggestions of what may be needed to do so, including devolution of powers to local authorities, policy coherence and commitments from countries in the upcoming COP28. Overall, students found it fascinating to see how what they have studied in their Geography A-Level topics such as Carbon Cycles and Global Systems and Global Governance being discussed in an expert setting! We hope this inspires students to make their own climate pledges and/or pursue further study in the field.