Look inside the UN COP27 climate summit in Egypt – Business Insider

Spending 12 days in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, to cover the United Nations climate summit requires getting comfortable with contradictions.
Long stretches of highway separate the luxury coastal resorts, with their green grass and water fountains, from the dusty desert and many half-constructed buildings.
The ease of jumping on electric buses that shuttle COP27 attendees to the Tonino Lamborghini International Convention Center, where the summit being is held, abruptly ends once you enter the sprawling campus. It took me a solid three days to get comfortable navigating it.
Small protests are allowed inside, where UN rules apply, but outside and across the rest of Egypt, political dissent is effectively banned. 
Then there’s the substance of UN talks themselves. Climate diplomats are trying to strengthen global efforts to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions even as some of the countries they represent are pushing oil-and-gas expansion in the name of energy security. That’s the case in Europe, which is searching for alternative suppliers to Russia following its invasion of Ukraine.
So what does it feel like to take part in the two-week-long event? Take a glimpse inside before the summit comes to a close on Friday. 
I opted for the all-inclusive resort so I didn’t have to worry about finding breakfast and dinner. The Parrotel Beach Resort had a beautiful beach, but unfortunately I didn’t get to enjoy it very much because most days are spent at the convention center. 
More than 35,000 people from around the world would make their way through the entrance over the course of two weeks, from politicians and business executives to civil-society groups and activists. More than 3,000 journalists were also registered. 
The event is formally known as the Conference of the Parties but people refer to it by the shorthand COP27. Last year’s summit, COP26, was in Glasgow, Scotland. COP28 is set to take place next year in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
The phrase “What goes on in Pakistan, will not stay in Pakistan,” displayed at the country’s pavilion at COP27, is intended as a warning to the world about the impacts of the climate crisis. 
Earlier this year, heavy monsoon rains and flooding killed nearly 2,000 people in Pakistan and cost an estimated $30 billion in damages. 
Climate change makes such heavy rainfall more likely, according to an analysis by a group of scientists in Pakistan, Europe, and the US. 
The flooding helped catalyze the issue of “loss and damage” to the top of the COP27 agenda. Developing countries want to be compensated for the climate impacts they are already facing because of big polluters like the US and European Union.
Pakistan is leading the Group of 77 and China, a coalition of developing countries that band together in negotiations.
Groups like Amnesty International and the Egyptian Commission for Rights and Freedoms reported that in the lead-up to COP27, Egyptian authorities arrested dozens of people they suspected were planning protests.
There’s a designated area at the conference for demonstrations, but it’s a bus ride away from where the main events take place.
I enjoyed seeing the creativity and the variety of art on display. The most powerful pieces were reminders of what’s at stake in dealing with the climate crisis. 
The UAE pavilion is among the largest at this year’s event and mainly promotes investments in wind power, hydrogen, and sustainable aviation fuels. The country also sent the largest delegation — around 1,000 people. It’s all in preparation for next year, when Dubai is hosting COP28. 
There is little mention of UAE’s plans to continue supplying oil and gas “for as long as the world is in need,” a statement made by President Mohamed bin Zayed al-Nahyan during COP27. 
UAE is the eighth-largest oil producer in the world and a member of OPEC. It has also promised to achieve net-zero greenhouse-gas emissions by 2050.
After complaints about price gouging and a lack of food and water, the Egyptian government intervened and announced that meals would be half off and drinks would be free.
A Hard Rock Cafe also popped up. 
This is the view from the main media center where journalists from around the world worked.
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