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COP28: We must unite, act and deliver on climate change, says Al Jaber – News

70 ministers in Abu Dhabi as pre-COP event sees record turnout

Photo: Reuters archive

Published: Monday, October 30, 2023, 11:28

Last update: Mon Oct 30, 2023, 11:32 am

More than 100 delegations and 70 ministers take part in a two-day pre-COP event in Abu Dhabi as COP28 President Dr Sultan Al Jaber calls for global action on climate change.

Ahead of the crucial United Nations Climate Change Conference in Dubai next month, the pre-COP meeting in Abu Dhabi is a preparatory meeting of ministers and negotiators. With 70 ministers and more than 100 delegations attending, this is more than double the normal number of participants for a pre-COP event.

“We have to move forward. We must unite. We must act. And we must deliver in Dubai,” Dr. Al Jaber said in his speech during the opening session.

Recognizing that “there are too many things dividing our world right now,” he said that “now more than ever we need to unite on climate and send a clear message of hope, solidarity, stability and prosperity. “We need to show that the international community can deliver and send a clear signal that keeps 1.5 within our reach.”

Dr. Al Jaber noted that before the Paris Agreement, the world was heading for warming of more than four degrees, but is now on track for warming of two to three degrees, according to the latest reports.

“We are going in the right direction, but not fast enough.”

Parties “must do better” in formulating agreements on issues than they had done in previous conferences, Dr. Al Jaber said.

“We have no time to waste on disunity,” he warned. “We must look beyond short-term thinking, we must end excuses and delays, and redefine our own interest as a common interest. Let this process prove that multilateralism still works. I believe we can fulfill our responsibility. “I know we have to do it.”

Keeping promises

The president of COP28 reiterated the need to provide a solid response to the Global Balance and put the world back on track towards meeting the objectives of the Paris Climate Agreement.

He highlighted key areas of focus, including a strong mitigation outcome, a comprehensive adaptation agreement and “innovative solutions” on finance.

“That includes complying with the loss and damage fund and financing agreements,” he added.

“What was promised in Sharm el Sheikh must be fulfilled in Dubai.”

“We need strong solutions for a 43 per cent reduction in emissions by 2030 because that is exactly what the science tells us,” said Dr Al Jaber.

On the issue of fossil fuels, he said: “I know there are strong views on the idea of ​​including language on fossil fuels and renewable energy in the negotiated text. I need you to work together to present solutions that can achieve alignment, common ground and consensus among all parties. We must be responsible. We must be pragmatic. And we must not leave anyone behind.”

Updating the policy meeting, the COP28 president said: “More than 20 oil and gas companies have responded to the COP28 call to end methane emissions by 2030. And I see positive momentum as they unite more. And we are collaborating with all high-emission sectors, such as heavy transport, aluminum, steel and cement, to design credible decarbonization plans.”

On finance, Dr Al Jaber emphasized the importance of ensuring capital flows to where it is most needed, particularly the Global South, and rebuilding trust in developing nations.

Regarding the promises made, he stressed: “Old promises must be kept, like the promise of 100 billion dollars. I appreciate the work of Germany and Canada in this regard and their assurances that things are on the right track. But, as I am here now, I still cannot say with certainty that it has been fulfilled.”

He highlighted the importance of adaptation, called for the Global Goal to be met and said: “We must end deforestation and preserve natural carbon sinks… it is time for all nations to incorporate nature-positive investments into strategies national climatic conditions”.

He reminded attendees that “the world is watching. Our nations, our communities, our families, our children, they are all watching. So, let’s join together. We have the power, we must accept responsibility. This process must not fail. We have to move forward. We must deliver in Dubai.”

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