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Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Brazil's COP28 Delegation May Be the Largest in History, Including President Lula and Ministers from Different Portfolios

Brazil is expected to send the largest delegation in history to the United Nations Conference on Climate Change, also known as the Conference of the Parties (COP). According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MRE), at a press event on 20/11, there were around 2,400 registrations, from the public, private sector and civil society — 400 of which were from the government — interested in representing the country at COP28 in Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates, which takes place between November 30 and December 12, 2023.

“I think it’s great for Brazil to integrate everyone, and everyone to be able to participate in the negotiations. This has always been extremely useful, because when you have the business community, academia, scientists, NGOs, seeing how Brazil is trying to defend a position and understanding the difficult contexts in which the issues go, it is something that helps immensely”, stated the Ambassador André Aranha Corrêa do Lago, Secretary of Climate, Energy and Environment of the MRE, during the event, highlighting that registrations do not represent the number of people who should actually go, due to issues such as visas and participant limits. “I think it is a wonderful sign that our delegation is very large, because it shows that there is enormous attention in Brazil in the most diverse areas and a great desire to attend the most advanced debate there is on the topic, which has already been incorporated by Brazil very impressively.”

Ana Toni, national secretary for climate change, complemented this by talking about the difference between this delegation and the previous ones.

“This delegation brings back civil society, the private sector, subnational governments and the federal government sharing the same pavilion, being together, in their diversity, to discuss themes and bringing international events into the Brazilian pavilion, instead of what was in recent years, when there were almost antagonistic pavilions,” she said.

In the Brazil Pavilion at COP28, 135 panels will be held, coordinated by different ministries, companies, universities and NGOs. According to the Ministry, President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva will be present on the 1st and 2nd of December.

During the summit, several State ministers — including the Environment Minister, Marina Silva; da Fazenda, Fernando Haddad; Tourism, Celso Sabino; das Cidades, Jader Filho; of Science, Technology and Innovation, Luciana Santos; of Women, Cida Gonçalves; and Agriculture and Livestock, Carlos Fávaro — must participate at different times in the program, which is divided thematically.

This edition of COP will be the first to present the Global Stocktake (GST), a global assessment of the progress of the ambitions and promises of each of the 195 signatory countries of the Paris Agreement, since its signing in 2015 until today. Based on this assessment, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) intends to guide the next round of Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), a document that brings together the main commitments and contributions of countries to comply with the Paris Agreement.

The Brazilian target, with a review published in September by the Interministerial Committee on Climate Change, at the request of the Ministry of the Environment, is to reach 2025 with a maximum emission of 1.34 GtCO2e (gigatonne of carbon dioxide equivalent), a reduction of 48% compared to 2005. For 2030, the objective is to reach 1.21 GtCO2e, which represents a reduction of 53%.

Delegation highlights

The delegation from the Ministry of Indigenous Peoples, made up of 20 people, includes Sonia Guajajara, minister of the portfolio; Joziléia Kaigang, secretary of Articulation and Promotion of Indigenous Rights; Ceiça Pitaguary, National Secretary of Environmental and Indigenous Territorial Management; Eunice Kerexu, Secretary of Environmental and Indigenous Territorial Rights; Suliete Gervásio Baré, State Director of the Department of Climate Justice; Lidia Guajajara, Youth coordinator; Larissa Pankararu, coordinator of LGBTQIA+ Policies; Cláudia Tereza Signori Franco, general coordinator of Tackling the Climate Crisis; and Clarisse do Carmo Jabur, general coordinator of Protection Policy.

The delegation from the Ministry of Indigenous Peoples is divided into four fronts of action during COP28: monitoring the Minister's agenda, negotiating front, monitoring the civil society agenda and communication.

“Indigenous peoples are increasingly protagonists in debates on climate change and biodiversity protection. It is through our livelihoods and our traditional and sacred relationship with the territory and the environment that we are able to guarantee this preservation. However, for this to be viable, the presence and protagonism of indigenous peoples in international debates is necessary”, said the Ministry in a note to Um Só Planeta. “We want to make COP30 a COP with indigenous leadership, and presence at COP28 is very important for this. Many of the international resources obtained by the Ministry in these missions they also help finance local policies and balance the Government’s fiscal spending.”

The Consórcio Amazônia Legal, an entity formed by the nine Amazonian states, will also be present at the Brazil Pavilion, with its own hub.

“We are strongly concerned about combining economic growth with sustainable development, which has benefits for the population and the standing forest. All the initiatives that the consortium supports aim for this purpose, and we have supported the participation of states in the climate conference and other climate events”, says Beatriz Narita, coordinator of partnerships and sectoral chambers.

The intention of the hub is to promote bilateral meetings with national and international actors and offer an opportunity for states and the consortium to present their progress in relation to climate and environmental policies. There will also be the launch of updated strategic planning that accompanies the 2030 agenda, with sustainable development objectives, the launch of strategies and public policies for the environment and climate and a regional cooperation program for fire control and prevention.

“We have been working together to amplify Brazil’s voice in resuming climate ambitions for the world and strengthening the Amazon region, which will host COP30,” Narita said.

This story was produced as part of the 2023 Climate Change Media Partnership, a journalism fellowship organized by Internews' Earth Journalism Network and the Stanley Center for Peace and Security. It was first published in Portuguese by Um Só Planeta on 29 November 2023, and has been translated and lightly edited for length and clarity.

Banner image: COP28 in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates / Credit: Getty Images.