Brussels, 27 March 2017/ ACP: Climate change remains a major collective concern for African, Caribbean and Pacific countries, which are particularly vulnerable to its negative effects. A special meeting organised by the ACP Sub-Committee for Sustainable Development laid the groundwork for an enhanced ACP role at the COP23 global climate talks in Bonn, Germany this November.
The Special Meeting on the UN Climate Change Conference COP23 held at the ACP House on 14-15 March sought to assess the outcomes of the previous climate conference (COP 22), and identify follow-up actions, with an emphasis on key issues for the ACP Group including mitigation, adaptation, finance, technology development and transfer, capacity building and REDD+.
“The adverse impacts of climate change remains the single greatest challenge to the sustainable livelihood, security and well-being of our people, posing immediate and long term risks to sustainable development efforts,” said ACP Secretary General H.E. Dr. Patrick I. Gomes.
Representatives from the African, Caribbean and Pacific regions, as well as negotiating groups including the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS), the Least Developed Countries (LDCs), G77 +China, and the African Group of Negotiators (AGN) made presentations on actions to implement the Paris Agreements, along with members of key institutions such as the European Commission, UNDP, UNEP and UNFCCC.
The meeting also explored different ways and means to enhance support to ACP Member States’ implementation of the Paris Agreement, taking into account priorities in the ACP Action Plan on Climate Change 2016-2020.
An ACP Roadmap to COP23 is being finalised to support member states in this regard.
“As one of the largest groupings of developing countries, the ACP Group has a unique role to play in ensuring that issues affecting countries most vulnerable to climate change will be given adequate focus leading up to and at the, in order to contribute to reducing vulnerability and strengthening resilience and adaptive capacities in these countries,” stated the Ambassador of Kenya to the EU, H.E. Mr. Johnson Weru, who chaired the meeting. (Read full remarks)
The ACP Group counts among its membership 37 Small Island Developing States, 39 Least Development Countries and 15 Land-locked Developing Countries. Out of more than 140 countries that have ratified the Paris Agreement to date, 69 are ACP member states.
While Amb. Weru welcomed the historic entry into force of the ambitious, legally binding and universal Paris Agreement in November 2016, he stressed the need to forge ahead with the work programme under the Agreement and the development of the rule book to ensure implementation.
He also urged active participation of the ACP Group in the Facilitative Dialogue, which will assess the progress towards reaching the long-term temperature goal, and inform countries’ preparations of Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs).
The ACP Group welcomes Fiji’s presidency of the upcoming UN Climate Change Conference to take place 6-17 November in Bonn, Germany and sees it as a special opportunity for the ACP Group to work closely with the COP23 Presidency to demonstrate political engagement and leadership in advancing the Paris Agreement.
– Press ACP
(Photo: Ambassador Johnson Weru of Kenya chaired the special session of the ACP Suc-Committee on Sustainable Development)