UAE Participates in High-level Segment for Heads of State and Government at COP 24 in Poland

Katowice-Poland: 3 December, 2018 – The UAE delegation to the 24thConference of the Parties (COP24) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in Katowice, Poland, attended the official opening ceremony of the event and the High-level Segment for Heads of State and Government.

The delegation joined attendeesfrom more than 190 countries and territories at the meeting, aimed at deciding on the rules to ensure the implementation of the Paris Agreement.

Hosted by Polish President Andrzej Duda, the High-level Segment drew the participation of António Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations, and Patricia Espinosa Cantellano, Executive Secretary of UNFCCC.

His Excellency Dr Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, UAE Minister of Climate Change and Environment and head of the UAE delegation to COP24, emphasized the importance of expediting global climate action and reinforcing commitment to the principles of UNFCC.

He said: “Climate is changing faster than we have predicted, and the need for decisive climate action has never been more crucial. With the gravity of the consequences continuing to build over the past decades, we have reached a point where we can no longer ignore the reminders earth is sending to the world in the form of natural catastrophes – heatwaves, forest fires, and floods.”

With its participation at COP24, the UAE seeks to advance endeavors to achieve the objectives of the Paris Agreement worldwide. Its delegates are calling for more ambitious climate action based on voluntary approach. Advocating for the right of developing countries to socio-economic development, they are proposing that developed countries with historical responsibilities continue taking the lead in mitigating greenhouse gas emissions as well as providing financial, technical, and capability-building support to developing countries.

The delegation is presenting an overview of the UAE’s climate action in line with its nationally determined contributions (NDCs). The delegates are outlining the country’s experience in issuing legislations and strategies that form a regulatory framework for climate change mitigation and adaptation efforts. In addition, they are highlighting the UAE’s ambitious clean and renewable energy targets, as well as the country’s global aid and investment in renewable energy through its public and private sector. They are also introducing the national youth empowerment drive that aims to encourage young people to actively participate in achieving a sustainable future.

The negotiations at COP24, running from 2 to 14 December 2018, focus on finalizing the elements of the Paris Agreement Work Programme that will guide the implementation of the milestone accord. This includes the type of information future NDCs will need to include and common criteria for assessing NDCs to ensure comparability in order to evaluate the levels of global climate action against the two-degree target.

About the UAE Ministry of Climate Change and Environment

The Ministry of Climate Change and Environment was established in February 2006 as the Ministry of Environment and Water. The ministry acquired its new name following the UAE Cabinet reshuffle in February 2016 and the subsequent integration of the climate change function.

Under its redefined scope, the ministry has taken on a dual mandate. On the national level, the ministry aims to strengthen the UAE’s efforts in preserving the environment and promoting food diversity in accordance with the nation’s aspiration to emerge as a key benchmark for sustainable development. On the global level, the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment will join international stakeholders in combating climate change and profile the UAE’s path-breaking achievements in the sector at thought leadership platforms worldwide.

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