Environment Minister Bhupender Yadav at the Climate for Business Forum on concluding day of India Global Forum Middle East and Africa

India's Environment Minister Emphasises Climate Justice Ahead of COP28

Nov 30, 2023

BusinessWire India
Dubai [UAE], November 30: Ahead of COP28 in UAE, India's Environment Minister Bhupender Yadav underscored the importance of climate justice. Speaking at the final session of the concluding day of India Global Forum's Climate for Business (ClimB) Forum, the Minister said, "17 per cent of the developed world has a per capita emission of 60 per cent, but what about the 54 African countries? Their carbon emissions are only 4 per cent. When we talk about climate change, we must talk about climate justice also. It is important to give a dignified life to every human being, and to recognise that every country has a right to development."
Drawing attention to the unfulfilled funding pledges by developed countries, Yadav said, "The promise by developed countries to provide a hundred billion dollars in finance has not been fulfilled till today. So where will the trust come from?"
"In COP28, the outcome of Global Stocktake is very important," he said, adding that the conference should adopt the framework of the Global Goal on Adaptation. The minister also called upon COP28 to increase the funds for global adaptation practices.
ClimB Forum, strategically timed on the eve of the COP28 Summit in Dubai, explored the convergence of climate leadership, clean energy, policy strategies and green financing for the promotion of sustainable economic growth, and the critical role of technology and innovation in addressing the far-reaching impacts of climate change.
Earlier in the day, Commonwealth Secretary-General Rt Hon Patricia Scotland highlighted the existential threat climate change posed to vulnerable nations.
"One of the reasons why we are so determined to be the difference we need to make now, is because if we don't stop this, if we don't hold to the 1.5 degrees, there will not just be individuals who will no longer be here, many of our countries will not be here either. You've heard the slogan '1.5 to stay alive,' it's not a slogan, it's lived reality for the 25 small (Commonwealth) states and most of the other developing states in our world."
Recalling the devastation caused by Hurricane Maria in Dominica, an emotional Scotland said, "When you think about climate change, all of us need to understand it is deeply personal. This is not some esoteric, academic exercise. This is people's lives, their livelihoods and their countries. When someone tells you your island is no more and the graveyards of your parents are the bottom of the sea, and you've lost your culture, your music, your language, and your people, these things are irreplaceable. That is what existential means, not a word, but a reality."
"The world accepted that Covid presented an existential threat to us all, and we responded, we acted, we came together and we fought it. The threat that climate poses is actually an even greater threat and what is really quite curious is, why aren't we now responding with the same urgency, with the same rigour and the same vigour. If you look at where we are now, human genius, got us into this mess...and human genius will have to get us out of this mess," she observed.
The challenges around climate financing and discrimination faced by developing countries were recurring themes that emerged throughout the day.
Highlighting global inequity, Kate Hampton, CEO of The Children's Investment Fund Foundation noted, "Look at the cost of capital that is faced by developing countries relative to advanced economies. Unless we bring that cost of capital down, countries and communities will find it difficult to invest in climate mitigation, but also in resilience because a lot of green solutions have a high upfront cost."
Deepali Khanna, Vice President Asia, Rockefeller Foundation said, "Where a lot more needs to be done is the commitments that have been made so far. When you're looking at developed countries, the hundred billion dollars that we need to be flowing, is really the need of the hour. Developing countries need the resources, they need the capacity to be able to absorb this finance as well as get the finance for everything that they need to do."
India Global Forum Middle East and Africa 2023 programme convened business leaders, policymakers, and thought leaders from India, UAE and Africa to discuss opportunities for further collaboration and growth between these regions through a series of exclusive networking opportunities, panel discussions, and keynote speeches, covering a range of topics including trade, investment, innovation, technology, and sustainability.
To watch the session click here, and to access photos click here.
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