Two years after opening its doors to millions of guests from around the world, Expo City Dubai is gearing up to host COP28– the 28th iteration of the Conference of the Parties (COP) of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). Over 70,000 delegates–including world leaders, environmental experts, and civic influencers–are expected to gather at the venue, marking a critical juncture in the ongoing battle against climate change.
At its core, COP28 is a forum for examining progress, fostering consensus, and shaping the trajectory of international climate policy. As delegates delve into national reports and emission inventories, the overarching goal remains crystal clear: limit the mean global temperature increase to 1.5°C and mitigate the far-reaching impacts of climate change.
For the duration of the event, Expo City will be divided into two zones: blue and green. The blue zone is set to be a UNFCCC-managed site, open to accredited attendees and delegates. Formal negotiations, the World Climate Action Summit, panel discussions, round tables, and cultural events will be hosted in the blue zone.
The green zone, on the other hand, is designed to be a platform to cultivate dialogue and awareness about climate action and is open to non-accredited delegates, including youth groups, civil society, NGOs, the private sector, indigenous groups, and the general public via registration. Visitors can explore themed spaces dedicated to the Energy Transition, Technology and Innovation, and Youth.
Curious to know more about COP28? Here are eight things to look forward to during the COP28 summit.
EXPO CITY DUBAI PAVILLION
At COP28, the Expo City Dubai Pavilion will be a crucial hub for those passionate about tackling climate change. It will welcome participants to engage in a program aiming to raise awareness and inspire action. The Pavilion, with its mix of events and exhibitions, acts as a catalyst, bringing people and ideas together.
COP28 urges visitors to adopt a healthier, eco-friendly lifestyle with its new urban project. Engage in hands-on workshops, savor culinary adventures using locally sourced ingredients, and enjoy immersive farm-to-table dining experiences. The soon-to-be-unveiled initiative aims to immerse the community in the realms of regenerative agriculture and circular economy principles.
At COP28, 20 chosen projects from the third cycle of Expo Live’s University Innovation Programme (UIP) will present their solutions to an expert panel. Winners, each receiving an AED25,000 grant, will be revealed during the event.
NEXT-GEN WORLD MAJLIS
Empowering and encouraging UAE youth to be environmental guardians, the Expo School Programme concludes its final Next Gen World Majlis session on December 5. Participants will engage in global conversations with industry experts, advocating for a better future.
ARAB WOMEN LEADERS’ SUMMIT WITH WISER
Taking place on December 4, The Arab Women Leaders’ Summit with WISER focuses on the link between gender equality and climate action. Bringing together diverse stakeholders, including researchers, activists, policymakers, and civil society representatives, the summit aims to identify challenges, share best practices, and create strategies for promoting gender equality in climate efforts. Participants will collaboratively develop actionable initiatives to integrate gender equality into climate change agendas for a more inclusive, equitable, and resilient future.
At the end of each thematic day, the green zone will host COP-Connect – a series of curated networking events to be attended by 80-150 guests from the climate tech ecosystem, including tech innovators, investors, corporate leaders, academics, and government representatives.
ABU DHABI SUSTAINABILITY WEEK
Under the patronage of HH Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week (ADSW) presents a special edition at COP28, highlighting the UAE’s sustainability achievements. Throughout COP28, ADSW serves as a platform bridging blue and green zones, fostering collaboration and thought leadership. The ADSW Summit, a crucial part of this edition, gathers leaders from finance, investment, business, public sector, and civil society to accelerate the transition to a net-zero future. Themed “United on Climate Action at COP28,” the summit features discussions on sustainable investments, climate innovations, and financial inclusion. Launched in 2008, ADSW is a global initiative, with the ADSW Summit occurring on December 4 at the Connect Conference Center, Expo City, Dubai.
ACTNOWFILM SHOWCASE AND PANEL
The ActNowFilm, featuring around 30 global climate experts and youth climate leaders, will be showcased in both the blue and green zones. The informative film centers around subjects of youth involvement in climate change conversations with experts and official processes and opportunities for young people to join national climate negotiation teams.