UN climate summit chief Al Jaber praises India for energy vision

Abu Dhabi: UN climate conference COP28 President Sultan Al Jaber on Sunday praised India, the current host of the Presidency of the G20, for its energy transition vision.

At the ‘From G20 to COP28’ special forum held here, Al Jaber said the UAE and India shared a “vision for embracing an energy transition in line with sustainable socio-economic development.”

This joint focus on renewables presents a huge opportunity to develop both economies for the future.

“The UAE is a pioneer in renewable energy, home to some of the biggest solar projects in the world and one of the largest global investors in the sector.”

Al Jaber thanked the leadership of India in delivering the G20 Delhi Declaration and for the immense progress achieved on core climate actions.

He specifically thanked the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi for delivering a global agreement and highlighted the Indian government’s strong approach to cooperation and multilateralism, which the COP Presidency aims to emulate.

COP28 would “frame climate action as an opportunity for growth”, Al Jaber said, adding it would aim for “ambitious and balanced outcomes through the first Global Stocktake, across mitigation, adaptation and means of implementation.”

Al Jaber praised Prime Minister Modi’s commitment to multilateralism and he reminded delegates that, under Prime Minister Modi’s guidance, countries representing 85 per cent of the global economy have agreed to COP28’s global goal of tripling renewable energy capacity and doubling energy efficiency by 2030.

However, he also acknowledged the critical need for a “new paradigm” in climate finance to ensure every country across the Global South can adopt low carbon development — which he told delegates must start with “rebuilding trust” between north and south.

He renewed calls for the transformation of climate finance to ensure a fair and inclusive global energy transition.

“Unmet promises like the $100 billion pledge must be fulfilled,” Al Jaber said. “The green climate fund must be fully replenished. Adaptation finance must be doubled. And the fund for loss and damage must be fully operationalized at COP28.”

He added “the broader climate finance landscape must be transformed. IFIs and MDBs urgently need to reframe their mandates to meet growing climate needs. More concessional funding is essential to attract more private capital.

“We need smart policies to ensure the efficiency, integrity and equity of voluntary carbon markets. And we need innovative models of blended finance to combine catalytic and private investment that can be deployed in emerging and developing economies.”

“In short, the clean technologies that are taking off in the north must be available accessible and affordable across the global south,” Al Jaber told delegates.

The COP28 President also called for rebalancing of climate finance to focus on adaptation alongside mitigation, noting that currently “for every $10 spent on mitigation, only $1 goes to adaptation.”

Al Jaber’s address to the G20 Presidency comes shortly after the Fifth Meeting of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Transitional Committee on Loss and Damage concluded with agreement on a list of recommendations for implementing the Loss and Damage Fund, which will be taken forward at COP28.

Looking ahead, Al Jaber recapped the comprehensive agenda for COP28, which he told delegates will be an opportunity to “show that multilateralism still works”.

He said it was time to “replace discord with solidarity… let’s bring positivity to climate deliberations and restore hope through united climate action.”

Nearly 200 countries meeting at this year’s COP28, which the UAE is hosting, at the end of the month is the place to deliver and operationalise the fund and funding arrangements for loss and damage.

Also the Global Stocktake is an opportunity at COP28 to evaluate the world’s progress on slashing greenhouse gas emissions, building resilience to climate impacts, and securing finance and support to address the climate crisis.

IANS

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