MENA Climate Week 2022 kicks off

Image 7MENA Climate Week is being held at Atlantis, The Palm in Dubai from 28 to 31 March 2022.

The event is hosted by the UAE Government, represented by the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment (MOCCAE), WGEO, and DEWA, in collaboration with the UNFCCC, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), and the World Bank Group.

The event is supported by regional partners, including the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), the League of Arab States Secretariat, the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for West Asia (ESCWA), and the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB).

Dr Sultan Al Jaber, minister of industry and advanced technology and the UAE?s special envoy for climate change, said, ?Given that the next two COPs will take place in this region, the MENA Climate Week is an ideal platform to address key climate challenges, and answer them with smart, progressive climate solutions. As a young country, and a responsible energy leader, the UAE has always faced the future with a positive mindset, and addressed challenges head on. We view climate challenges, not just as problems to fix, but as opportunities to seize. As the hosts of COP 28, in 2023, we will use all our convening power to bring the world together. We will ensure that COP28 is as inclusive as possible, reflecting the views of the public alongside the private sector, civil society, women and youth. And we will focus on commercially viable climate solutions to translate strategies on paper into results on the ground.?

Mariam bint Mohammed Almheiri said, UAE minister of climate change and environment, commented, ?The international community?s experience in combating the COVID-19 pandemic has clearly shown that collaborative action and collective approach are the way to addressing all common challenges, particularly climate change that threatens not only people?s health but also the health of the entire planet.?

She noted that during the MENA Climate Week, the UAE will build regional synergies to increase the pace and scale of climate action and devise a regional response model that caters to the challenges and requirements of countries from the region to enhance climate change mitigation and adaptation efforts.

?At the event, the UAE will present its unique sustainable economic development approach of transforming challenges triggered by climate change into opportunities for growth that can be leveraged to build a better future for the current and next generations,? added Almheiri.

At the opening ceremony,Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, chairman of the World Green Economy Organization and managing director & CEO of DEWA, welcomed participants to the first-ever MENA Regional Climate Week organised in Dubai, the UAE. This is in line with the vision and directives of the wise leadership of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE; Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, vice-president and prime minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai; and Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, crown prince of Abu Dhabi and deputy supreme commander of the UAE Armed Forces. These directives are to enhance sustainable development and enhance the UAE?s leading position in the field of green development, in line with the strategies and objectives of the UAE Centennial 2071, the UAE Net Zero Strategic Initiative 2050, the  Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050 and the Dubai Net Zero Carbon Emissions Strategy 2050 to provide 100% of the energy production capacity from clean energy sources by 2050.

?This event will constitute a milestone in global climate action agenda and marks a key moment for the region as we take up a leadership role in this global agenda with the next two critical Climate Conferences being hosted in the region: 27th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP27) in Egypt in November 2022 and COP28 in the UAE next year. I take this opportunity to thank all the organising global partners of the MENA Regional Climate Week who have brought us all together for this important event,? said Al Tayer.

Al Tayer explained that MENA Climate Week comes at the close of a key year in climate action and the start of a critical decade. It is the first meeting on the global climate agenda after COP26 that was organised in Glasgow in November of last year and follows a series of climate weeks that were held in Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean, and Asia and the Pacific in 2021.

?With Dubai?s long-standing experience in hosting global events and its firm commitment to promoting a green economy, we are confident that participants from MENA countries and beyond will have a unique opportunity at the MENA Climate Week 2022, which coincides with Expo 2020 Dubai. The MENA Climate Week is designed to build momentum towards COP27 and COP28 by taking the pulse of climate action in each region, exploring climate challenges and showcasing ambitious solutions. MENA Climate Week is a unique platform for regional stakeholders to voice their concerns and contribute to COP27. We believe MENA Climate Week 2022 is an opportunity to press forward, leverage the momentum and continue to enhance climate ambition and climate action. The UAE has shown a clear commitment to embracing and building momentum for the green-economy shift, along with significant investment in renewable energy. We are one of the first countries in the MENA region to launch a concrete initiative to achieve this ambitious climate commitment and we hope others will follow,? added Al Tayer.

?MENA Climate Week offers an opportunity to advance action at national, regional and local levels, taking regional priorities into consideration. The focus across the MENA region is on adaptation and climate finance, but there are also opportunities to accelerate the collaboration needed to integrate climate action into recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. It is important, after all, to recognise that no global issue stands alone. The UAE is committed to leading this movement and harnessing the momentum to ensure that through MENA Climate Week and the upcoming climate conferences, the region?s needs are prioritised and brought to the forefront. We recognise that COVID-19 continues to be the most imminent threat humanity faces today. But climate change remains the largest threat facing humanity this century. The two challenges are different, but the concept of working together to meet a common challenge for global benefit is the same. This concept of collaboration is central to our success on a global front ? it is about inspiring and sustaining action at all levels, from national and local governments and private industry, to communities and individuals,? Al Tayer said.

?The MENA Climate Week will provide a platform for governments, cities, private sector leaders, financial institutions and civil society to discuss opportunities to build forward from the pandemic by identifying opportunities to enhance climate action. The MENA Climate Week serves as a link between regional action and the global climate change agenda. Therefore, the MENA Climate Week is designed as a platform for governments and stakeholders to explore how to maximise available resources and ensure a more sustainable recovery from the pandemic, while helping achieve the Paris Agreement goals. MENA Climate Week is a global platform to enhance the engagement of stakeholders in the multilateral process. It is a powerful force for raising ambition and advancing action towards the Paris Agreement. We now have clear global milestones to build on and a platform for regional collaboration. Now is the moment to implement the Paris Agreement while working together and deliver a low-emission, resilient and sustainable future, for all of us and generations to come,? concluded Al Tayer.

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