Recognising the progress the world has made, Dr. Al Jaber “We’re playing catch-up in our efforts to keep 1.5 alive. …reports Asian Lite News
COP28 President-Designate, Dr. Sultan Al Jaber, has underscored the need for transformational, game-changing partnerships and solidarity to drive climate action for all, at the opening ceremony of Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week (ADSW) 2023.
Dr. Al Jaber recognised the UAE’s history of leadership in tackling challenges. “The UAE has always risen to challenges by getting ahead of the future. And the transformational progress we have managed to achieve in only 50 years has been anchored by the principle and practice of genuine partnership. We’ve been blessed with a leadership that invested the wealth of the nation in the health of the nation, balanced economic growth with environmental responsibility, and put climate action at the heart of our development strategy,” he said.
With a focus on looking to the future and investing in innovation, Dr. Al Jaber noted, “Before anyone in this region saw a future in renewables, the UAE saw them as the future. When people questioned our ability to deliver on the promise of Masdar, we focused and stayed the course. Before others decarbonised, we embedded sustainability into our hydrocarbon operations. And we will continue to invest in the clean energies of tomorrow as we drive down the carbon footprint of the energy the world needs today. For us, sustainable development is about never settling for the now. It’s always about the next. Because next never stops.”
Reconising the progress the world has made, Dr. Al Jaber “We’re playing catch-up in our efforts to keep 1.5 alive. We need to reverse emissions while moving economies forward, enable an inclusive and just transition that leaves no-one behind. That’s why we are determined to make COP28 a COP for all, a COP of action. A COP where the Global North and Global South really listen to each other.
“A COP where we move from goals to getting it done across mitigation, adaptation and loss and damage. And a COP where we deliver a new deal on climate finance.”
He emphasised “The road to net zero represents the biggest market transformation with the greatest economic promise since the First Industrial Revolution. A low carbon pathway to a high growth destination with inclusive progress for all.”
Dr. Al Jaber pointed to the winners of this year’s Zayed Sustainability Prize as a source of inspiration, noting that driving inclusive progress is at the theart of the prize. “The Prize has been empowering positive change-makers for 15 years. Their initiatives are changing lives from Asia to Africa, from the Caribbean to the Pacific. So let us take inspiration and hope from them,” he said.
In closing his remarks, Dr. Al Jaber said, “As we prepare to host COP 28 in November, I ask myself: can the world come together to meet the urgency of this moment? Can the world cut emissions in half in the next seven years? My answer is Yes.
“I believe in the power of human progress. I believe in the power of our leadership’s vision for progress through partnership. I believe that together, we can turn the greatest challenge we face into the opportunity of our lifetimes.
Dr. Al Jaber concluded “Let me extend an open invitation. Cooperate, collaborate, share your ideas and let’s put the principle of partnership into practice. Let’s make practical real progress, because next never stops.
“Now is the time to unite. Now is the time to act. This is the time to turn rhetoric into tangible results.”
ADSW is a global initiative established in 2008 by the UAE to convene heads of state, policymakers, industry leaders, and other key stakeholders, around climate action and innovation. The ADSW opening ceremony was attended by thousands of global delegates, alongside the Zayed Sustainability Prize Awards Ceremony, which recognises sustainability achievements.