French special envoy calls on Kuwait to attend ‘CoP21’

KUWAIT CITY, Oct 30, (KUNA): France urged Kuwait on Thursday to attend the upcoming 21st Conference of the Parties to United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, dubbed “CoP21” in Paris next month. French Special Envoy for Africa and Middle East on Climate Change Ambassador Stephane Gompertz made the remarks at a press conference at the French embassy accompanied by French Ambassador Christian Nakhla.

“We hope, in particular His Highness the Amir or his representative the Prime Minister could come and attend the conference,” Gompertz said, adding “in order to basically transmit a clear and simple message to ministers and negotiators that (you guys), you better come home with a good agreement,” in reference to officials and organizers of the conference and negotiators. “This conference is particularly important because the challenge we are facing is reaching a comprehensive agreement, which will replace the Kyoto protocol from the year 2020 onward,” Gompertz said. “The world on mother earth is more and more threatened by climate change,” the ambassador said.

“In all countries we can all already feel its consequences. Climate change is with us already.” Gompertz added that the upcoming conference, scheduled to be hosted in Paris from November 30th until Dec 12th, “is crucial because it must result in an international climate agreement that represents a tipping point and sends a clear signal that the transition towards resilient and low Greenhouse Gas “GHG” emitting societies, compatible with an increase in temperatures limited to 1.5 to two Celsius is entirely credible.” The diversification of oil and gas producing countries will be progressive, but the direction is set, and investment in energy transitions are more and more concrete and numerous, Gompertz noted.

In General, France’s goal consist of four components, the first an ambitious, durable, dynamic, and binding agreement on climate change that will be applicable to all. Second, a first set of intended national determined contributions (iNDC) representing the efforts that each country feels able to make by 2025 or 2030. Third, a broad climate finance and means of implementation mobilization. Fourth, the reinforcement of multipartenarial initiatives under the “Lima-Paris Action Agenda”, demonstrating the commitment of non-state actors to reaching a new and ambitious legal agreement in 2015.

During his visit here, Gompertz met with Kuwait Minister of Oil Ali Al-Omair, who is also head of the national environment committee and with Deputy Director General of Kuwait Environment Public Authority Mohammad Al- Ahmad, Director General of KISR Dr Naji Al-Mutairi, as well as several representatives of Kuwait’s civil society and private sector. Discussions mainly focused on the preparation for COP21 which will be held in Paris under the presidency of France.

Many have already proposed the transition toward a greenhouse gases neutral development model by the end of the century, and a long term goal of 100 percent clean energy. This involves taking into account the positions the climate Convention placed on equal footing, bringing viewpoints closer and enabling the unanimous adoption of an agreement, and the formation of “Paris Alliance”.

The international political response to climate change began at the Rio Earth Summit in 1992, where the ‘Rio Convention’ included the adoption of the UN Framework on Climate Change (UNFCCC). This convention set out a framework for action aimed at stabilizing atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases (GHGs) to avoid “dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system.”

The UNFCCC, which entered into force on March 21, 1994, now has a near-universal membership of 195 parties. In 2015 COP21, also known as the 2015 Paris Climate Conference, will for the first time in over 20 years of UN negotiations, aim to achieve a legally binding and universal agreement on climate, with the aim of keeping global warming below 2C.

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