Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, who is leading the UAE delegation to COP26, said the country is grateful and honoured with the endorsement…reports Asian Lite News
The Asia Pacific Group of nations on Tuesday endorsed the UAE’s bid to host the 28th Conference of the Parties (COP28) in 2023, at the COP26 summit in Glasgow, which brings nation states together to accelerate action on the goals of the Paris Agreement and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, leading the UAE delegation to COP26, said, “We are grateful and honoured with the endorsement to host COP28 in the UAE in 2023, and look forward to the confirmation of the UNFCCC. As a young, inclusive country that celebrates its Golden Jubilee this year, we believe partnership is the key to progress and to solving global challenges. Our vision is to work with all countries to realise net economic benefits from accelerated climate change action.”
Sheikh Abdullah said, “Guided by this trust and our 30-year legacy of positive climate action, culminating in the UAE Net Zero by 2050 Strategic Initiative announced before this year’s UN Climate Conference in Glasgow, we are even more determined as a nation to forge ever stronger partnerships, and to innovate new technologies and solutions, to bring about a more sustainable future, both for present and future generations of UAE citizens, and the citizens of countries around the world.”
30 years of climate action
For more than three decades, the UAE has acted with foresight in tackling climate change. The nation has shown unwavering commitment towards investment projects aimed at mitigating and adapting to climate challenges, and more importantly, creating a positive economic impact for its people.
A critical player in the region, the UAE is now calling for bolder action. This October, it launched the Net Zero by 2050 Strategic Initiative, an ambitious national drive to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.
In addition, the UAE is determined to support the international community and find practical ways to implement and drive change. It is also calling for closer analysis of future climate-related risks and “anticipatory action” – a humanitarian model that releases resources in advance of reliably predicted climate disasters.
Dr. Sultan bin Ahmed Al Jaber, Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology and UAE Special Envoy for Climate Change, said, “COP 28 will be especially significant as the first stocktake of national commitments after the Paris Agreement. Our goal will be to make COP 28 as inclusive and action-oriented as possible; a solutions COP that brings together developed and developing countries and unites all sectors – public, private, academic and civil society – around a focus on tangible solutions.”
Investments in clean energy projects
The use of renewable energy has been integral to the UAE’s multifaceted strategy to reduce emissions and ward off the worst effects of global warming. These initiatives include solar power, carbon capture and hydrocarbon energy. In recent years, the UAE has invested an estimated US$17 billion in renewable energy projects in 70 countries with a focus on developing countries.
In 2021, the UAE organised the regional climate dialogue and participated in the Leaders Summit on Climate, where it extended its commitment to sustainable agriculture and farming. Recognising that food systems account for one-third of all global carbon emissions, the UAE partnered with the US to launch the Agriculture Innovation Mission (AIM) for Climate that has garnered the support of 30 countries to date.
The UAE is home to three of the world’s largest and lowest-cost solar plants. Whether achieving the world’s lowest-cost solar power, introducing biodiversity conservation targets, deploying commercial-scale carbon capture technology, running a zero-carbon nuclear power plant or pursuing hydrogen energy, the UAE has been a pioneer of significant climate initiatives in the region.
Further supporting the UAE Net Zero by 2050 Strategic Initiative, Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) has announced that it will decarbonise its power grid at scale through nuclear and solar clean energy sources starting January 2022, marking a global first by a major oil and gas company.
A holistic approach to climate action
Mariam bint Mohammed Almheiri, UAE Minister of Climate Change and Environment, said, “The UAE’s steadfast commitment to building bridges with the international community in the face of global challenges has significantly contributed to winning international support for its COP28 bid.”
“Building on its three-decade experience in fighting climate change, the country intends to mobilise the international community into robust climate action, and highlight the importance of adopting sustainable economic development models that turn challenges into opportunities at COP28. We will make sure to bring everyone on board and give climate change the urgency and priority it deserves to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement,” she added.
Since the UAE ratified the Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer in 1989, it has joined the UNFCCC (1995), signed the Paris Agreement (2015) and ratified the Kyoto Protocol (2005), as well as organised the Abu Dhabi Climate meeting two years ago.
Moreover, the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) officially inaugurated its permanent headquarters at Masdar City in Abu Dhabi, a low-carbon urban development featuring innovative solutions in energy and water efficiency, mobility and waste reduction.