COP28 Dubai: Balancing Climate Aspirations with Grounded Realities

As Cool Climate Collective steps into the vibrant arena of COP28, we are here not just as observers but as active participants, bringing innovative climate solutions to a global platform. COP28, or the 28th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, is a global summit that brings together world leaders, experts, activists, and businesses to tackle climate change.

This event is extraordinary, a testament to our collective ability to unite amidst diversity, aiming for a common goal. While COP28 has its share of challenges – bureaucratic intricacies, slow decision-making processes, and sometimes, inadequate outcomes – its existence is a marvel in itself.

Imagine a world filled with varied cultures, languages, and beliefs. COP28 is where this rich mosaic converges. Representatives from every nation gather to discuss, negotiate, and shape the future of our planet’s climate. The experience of being amidst such a diverse gathering is astonishing, especially considering the challenges in reaching a consensus.

The process of agreement at COP28 can be likened to trying to get a group of friends or a family to unanimously decide on something, but on an immensely larger scale. Every participating country brings its unique perspective to the table, making COP28 more than just a conference; it’s a vibrant testament to humanity’s ability to strive for harmony and collective action against the odds.

Despite all the pessimism around this year’s COP28, I hope to make the most of it.  Besides the fact, I spent a decade working in Dubai in my pre-climate life, I hope to tap into many of my ‘newly’ climate-curious contacts to cajole their climate-curiosity into deeper climate action. 

Also in the lead up to COP28, I had the privilege of attending the Dubai Future Forum 2023, a gathering that epitomized the world’s largest convergence of futurists, meeting others’ thinking and strategizing the big problems. It was a refreshing take of the grand scale of the problems we face and the ambitious opportunities we can seize on to tackle them

Why COP28 Matters to Me – and Us

As we converge at COP28, it’s not just another conference or summit. For me, it represents two pivotal axes – one purposeful and the other deeply personal.

1. Harnessing the Power of Presence

My experience has taught me one undeniable truth: there’s an unparalleled power in physical presence. The most significant shifts in climate action I’ve witnessed or contributed to have stemmed from those energetic, in-person exchanges. At COP28, my goal is to leverage this to foster a broader coalition across various industries and investors. 

The objective is clear: to elucidate how climate change presents both risks and opportunities unique to each sector. By being physically present, I aim to catalyze more impactful change in these 12 days than what could typically unfold over 12 months.

2. The Personal Quest for Broader Perspectives

On a personal note, COP28 is more than just a professional engagement; it’s a journey towards self-expansion. My third-culture upbringing has undoubtedly shaped my worldview, but I’m here to challenge and broaden it further. 

By interacting with a diverse array of individuals – from scientists to activists, from negotiators from the Global South to everyday individuals – I anticipate breaking down my unconscious biases. It’s in the casual conversations, the shared jokes, the mutual dreams, where I believe I’ll emerge not just more informed, but more humble and open.

Advocating for Our Portfolio Companies

A key aspect of my role at COP28 is to represent and champion our portfolio companies. These companies, with their groundbreaking technologies, hold the potential to scale across various markets, including emerging economies. 

My goal is to highlight their innovations and explore opportunities for expansion and collaboration, ensuring their solutions reach where they’re needed most.

A Side Note on Fundraising

While the primary focus is on fostering impactful climate action – I’ll also be seizing the chance to engage in some strategic fundraising on the side for our first fund. With a host of prospective LPs and Family Offices flying into Dubai, it’s the perfect setting to share our vision and invite them to join our mission-aligned climate investments. Think of it as making the most of every opportunity COP28 presents us!

COP28 Events

Alongside our participation in COP28, as organizers of sessions, as well as an Innovate for Climate Tech partner, we’ll be hosting various private events, bridging my personal regional investor network with the global connections we forge here.

Additionally, will be co-hosting a more inclusive experience on December 11th. It’s an opportunity not just to network but to be part of a community united by a shared vision for climate action.

If you will be in town, RSVP here:

As I navigate the corridors of COP28, I carry with me not just my personal aspirations but the collective ambition of our founders, partners & allies. Let’s use this platform to propel our shared vision for a sustainable future.

Automation & Jobs

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