This year, Egypt is set to host COP27 from November 6–18 with the aim of “building on previous successes and paving the way for future ambition to effectively tackle the global challenge of climate change.” Since it is set in Egypt, this year’s conference represents an additional nudge to governments in the Middle East and North Africa to focus on climate action, as many efforts to address climate change in the region remain driven mostly by civil society actors and the private sector. And since temperatures are rising almost twice as fast in the Middle East when compared to the rest of the world, climate action must become a regional priority.

Climate change is a conflict-multiplier in many areas by accentuating the socio-economic grievances of vulnerable communities and undermining agriculture, economic growth, as well as the population’s health and wellbeing. The implications of climate change are also aggravated by governance shortcomings, political disputes, and lack of transnational cooperation, which COP events attempt to overcome. In the Middle East and North Africa, disputes between Iran and Iraq have contributed to water shortages in Iraq, while the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) project threatens Egypt’s and Sudan’s water resources.

COP27 is also taking place amid large-scale geopolitical and economic shifts with long-term implications for states, markets, and communities as a result of several crises, including post-pandemic economic ramifications which were further exacerbated by the Russian war on Ukraine.

To better understand the global and regional challenges related to climate change and their wide-ranging implications on politics, security, and economic development ahead of COP27, the Malcolm H. Kerr Carnegie Middle East Center is organizing a panel discussion on Thursday, October 27 from 16:00 till 17:15 (EEST) Beirut time with Aisha Al Sarihi, Amr Hamzawy and Zeinab Shuker.

The discussion will be in English and moderated by Nick Clark. Viewers may submit their questions to the panelists using the live chat feature on Facebook and YouTube during the event. For more information, please contact Lina Dernaika at lina.dernaika@carnegie-mec.org