The election of Donald Trump as president of the United States dominated the press conferences that took place at the 22nd Conference of the Parties (COP22) in Marrakech, Morocco earlier this month.
Last year’s conference — COP21 in Paris — featured well-known world leaders making highly publicized speeches on the need to combat climate change. This year’s COP was supposed to be the boring one.
So much for that.
U.N. officials, diplomats, scientists and finance professionals addressed the Sustainable Investment Forum (SIF). Travois attended last year’s SIF in Paris and this most recent event as well. Our goal is to bring international financial and technical resources to the table to help Native communities adapt to climate change in the U.S.
Talk of Trump’s election dominated the SIF. But the president-elect’s pledges to pull back from U.S. climate commitments were not discussed as deal breakers for the rest of the world.
Too many advanced economies are already on board. Too many global corporations have already started down the path toward a low-carbon future. There is simply too much money to be made in the green economy for the rest of the world to turn back now.
For those of us working to increase the flow of renewable energy, mitigate the impacts of climate change and help communities adapt for resilience, we have a rough few years ahead of us in the U.S. But the clear take-away from COP22 was that the world is moving forward to implement the Paris agreement with or without the U.S.
In addition to making new connections and learning new ways to increase sustainable development, we got the chance to explore Marrakech. This ancient city welcomed visitors from around the world with open arms.
Memories of the food, music and architecture will stay with me forever. If your community has plans to adapt and needs capital, get in touch with us. While the political will may seem diminished, the economic forces driving us in a sustainable direction are not going away.