Secretary-General of the United Nations António Guterres said that the Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP 27) that will be held in Egypt is a fundamental opportunity for Africa and our world.
In a videotaped speech to the 35th Assembly of the Heads of State and Government currently taking place in Ethiopia’s Addis Ababa, Guterres said that “our planet will speed past the 1.5 degrees Celsius temperature threshold without steep emission cuts this decade by all major economies. We are in emergency mode, and we need all hands on deck.”
Guterres is being represented in the Ethiopian capital by his deputy, Amina Mohamed, who held talks with African Union government leaders focusing on the urgent need for peace, security, inclusion, climate action, and good governance as imperatives for sustainable economic development in Africa.
Africa contributes only three percent of global greenhouse gas emissions, however, many of the worst impacts of climate change are being felt there.
“To address today’s tragic reality, we need a radical boost in funding for adaptation and mitigation on the continent,” Guterres said.
He stressed that the Glasgow commitment to double adaptation finance — from $20bn — must be implemented.
“I’m calling on wealthier countries to make good on the $100bn climate finance commitment to developing countries starting this year and hold to account private sector partners who have made commitments so far,” he said.
The secretary-general described the cooperation between the UN and the AU as “stronger than ever”, as the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and Agenda 2063 — Africa’s blueprint for a peaceful, integrated, and more prosperous continent — are key pillars of that partnership.