Global Crisis Watch 249

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The highlighted topics will include:

Global Powers Recognise its Risk:

The UK, US, EU, Australia and China have jointly declared that the AI poses a catastrophic risk to humanity. In the Bletchley declaration, 28 governments pledged to collaborate on AI safety research, although competition between the US and the UK to lead in AI regulation is evident. Rishi Sunak, the UK Prime Minister, welcomed the declaration, highlighting the transformative power of AI. The declaration addresses the development of AI in a collective manner, with a focus on "frontier AI" which could surpass human intelligence. However, global consensus on AI regulations and oversight remains a challenge.


COP28: UN Calls for Unity in Addressing Climate Crisis:

At a preparatory meeting (Pre-COP) in Abu Dhabi, Deputy UN Chief, Amina Mohammed, emphasised the critical nature of the upcoming COP28 summit, stressing the need to respond effectively to the climate crisis. The Pre-COP aimed to lay the groundwork for COP28, which will take place in Abu Dhabi from November 30 to December 12.

Following on from Cop26, which was held in Glasgow in 2021,the Summit's main goal is the Global Stocktake, which will address gaps in climate mitigation, adaptation and loss and damage. The hosts of COP28, including the EU, the US and the UAE, are working to rally governments to triple renewable energy capacity by 2030, with hopes of a launch event at the Summit. COP28 will focus on accelerating the transition to clean energy and enhancing climate action on a global scale.


Ukraine Emerges as Key Player in Europe's Winter Energy Security:

The EU has nearly filled its natural gas storage facilities to near full capacity, surpassing its target of 90% by November. This surplus is attributed to continued imports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) and reduced demand, making the EU less vulnerable to energy shocks this winter, although not entirely immune. EU companies are also increasingly utilizing Ukraine's storage facilities, with natural gas reserves in Ukraine reaching their highest levels since Russia's invasion the previous year. However, the reliance on LNG has made Europe more sensitive to potential supply disruptions. The EU and Ukraine are exploring the possibility of insuring these storage facilities against war-related damage, although challenges persist.


Biden Calls for ‘Pause’ in Israel-Palestine Conflict for the First Time:

President Biden has expressed support for a humanitarian "pause" in conflict Israel-Plaestine conflict, marking a shift in the White House's position. This comes as the US aims to evacuate American citizens from the besieged Palestinian enclave. Biden's call for a pause does not entail dictating how Israel conducts its military operations but focuses on securing the release of prisoners held by Hamas, the group governing Gaza. The US has been a strong ally of Israel, providing significant financial aid, but Biden has been facing mounting pressure, including from within his own Democratic Party, to address the situation more assertively. His shift in rhetoric coincides with efforts to evacuate Americans from Gaza and diplomatic moves in the region, such as appointing a new ambassador to Israel and upcoming visits by Secretary of State Antony Blinken.


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