In an interview with The Associated Press on Monday, Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shukri, who is also the president-elect of the next annual conference of the parties to be held in the Red Sea resort town of Sharm el-Sheikh next November, overall called the goal “implementation.”
The latest summit, held in Glasgow, Scotland last year, finalized many of the commitments made during the Paris Agreement in 2015, aimed at reducing emissions aimed at limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 Fahrenheit) from pre-industrial times, Shoukri said.
Shukri, who is attending the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, said: “Everywhere you look today, the tide of protectionist sentiment is flowing.
In recent years, many developing countries and workers have raised long-term calls to establish a fund to compensate poor countries for disasters caused by inequality caused by rich countries due to climate change.
The call was rejected during last year’s summit. Many proponents of the idea, often referred to as “loss and damage”, expect it to make progress in November. Their arguments could be further enhanced by the symbolic significance of this conference held in Egypt, a developing country in North Africa.
“We hope that the discussion (on loss and damage) is comprehensive, but it is non-confrontational,” said Shukri, adding that there should be recognition among all countries. “We are all in the same boat and for us to succeed, we must all succeed.” . “
Shokori said protests would be allowed during the conference. With Egyptian authorities cracking down on unauthorized protests and retaining the right to cancel or suspend any protests, activists have wondered what the protests could be if they happened, a common occurrence in previous COPs.
“We are developing a facility adjacent to the conference center that will give them full opportunity to participate, to be active, to demonstrate, to express that opinion,” said Shoukari. “And we will also give them access, as is traditionally done on one day of negotiations, on hold.”
Protests at UN climate conferences around the world often fill the streets with floats and banners and continue for days. In addition to demonstrations outside official facilities, booths and press conferences create a conference of their own, although they are not the ones where critical language is created about carbon commitments.
Shokri said he had invited protesters outside to speak to him during a meeting in Denmark earlier this month on climate change. He called the meeting “productive” and said Egypt’s climate goals were aligned with many protesters.
“We recognize their influence, their determination, their commitment as government representatives and as a team to keep us all honest that we should not be guilty and should not come up with this and address this crucial issue,” he said.
Before hosting the conference, Egypt is running for a number of agreements on renewable energy. In March, Egypt and Norway signed an agreement on green hydrogen and green infrastructure construction projects in African countries. Egypt and clean energy company Scatec have signed a 5 billion memorandum of understanding to set up a plant in the Suez Canal area to produce green ammonia from green hydrogen. This kind of agreement comes after years of steady investment in wind and solar technology.
Shokri said Egypt was relying on renewable energy as much as possible to build several new cities, including a new administrative capital east of Cairo. Critics have called it a “vanity project”, but the government says Cairo’s growing population needs to be exploited, which is expected to double to 40 million by 2050.
Shokri said the rapid change in renewable energy presents huge opportunities for investors, a common argument of supporters. Asked if fossil fuels could or could be part of the transformation into renewable energy, Shoukari did not agree with an argument made by many oil and gas companies, including many at the Davos conference.
“I can’t say that fossil fuels are part of the solution. There has been a problem with fossil fuels, ”he said. “We must see a transitional source of energy with low emissions of gas,” he said. But I think we need to move really fast towards net zero and we need to apply ourselves more effectively to new technologies, renewable energy. “
Peter Prengaman is the Global Climate and Environmental News Director at the Associated Press. Follow him here: http://twitter.com/peterprengaman
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