COP25: UfM calls for reinforced cooperation in the Mediterranean region to address the climate emergency
- The Mediterranean region is warming 20% faster than the global average, according to the first-ever scientific report on the impact of climate change in the Mediterranean, presented at the COP25
- The UfM Secretary General called for evidence-based climate policies in order for the Mediterranean region to effectively address pressing environmental challenges.
- The UfM signed partnership agreements with the World Meteorological Organisation and the Copenhagen Centre on Energy Efficiency. It also presented major regional initiatives on climate action together with the Republic of Cyprus, the European Commission and UNDP.
Madrid, 13 December 2019. The Mediterranean region has already reached the temperature rise threshold of 1.5°, warming up 20% faster than the global average, according to the first-ever scientific report on the impact of climate and environmental change in the Mediterranean. The main conclusions of the study were presented at the COP25 by the UfM and MedECC, a network of more than 600 Euro-Mediterranean scientists whose creation was supported by the UfM in 2015.
UfM Secretary General Nasser Kamel, took part in the high-level segment of the COP25 and highlighted some of the most alarming facts from the report. He pointed out that data collection and evidence-based climate policies are crucial for the region to effectively tackle the current environmental issues. “Governments are set to submit national climate action plans at COP26. This scientific knowledge, together with multiple examples of best-practice actions to address climate change, should be helpful for countries to adopt much more ambitious goals. We look forward to bringing climate ambition in the Mediterranean to new heights”, he said.
The final scientific report will be presented in 2020 to the Ministers of Environment and Climate Change from the 43 UfM Member States, together with key recommendations for policymakers.
The UfM also presented the Cyprus Climate Change Initiative and the Clima Med project together with the Republic of Cyprus and the European Commission, respectively. These two major regional initiatives on climate action are fully supported by the UfM as part of its efforts to enhance collective and concerted action towards effective adaptation and mitigation measures. The Cyprus Climate Change Initiative seeks to develop a regional plan to address the pressing challenges caused by climate change in the Eastern Mediterranean and the Middle East, which are expected to experience changes in climatic conditions significantly above the global means. The Clima Med project, an EU-led initiative labelled by the UfM, supports the transition of eight Southern Mediterranean countries towards sustainable, low-carbon and climate-resilient development.
Furthermore, UfM Secretary General Nasser Kamel and UN WMO Secretary General Petteri Taalas, signed a partnership agreement between the UfM and the World Meteorological Organisation (UN WMO). Both organisations are determined to put in place joint action plans that will include a section on climate change in vital economic sectors in the region. The UfM also signed an agreement with the Copenhagen Centre on Energy Efficiency to cooperate in promoting capacity building on energy efficiency for local authorities.
Building on its regional ambition for tackling climate change, the UfM also organised a side-event with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to discuss how to achieve the implementation of the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) through supporting community-based mitigation, adaptation and cross-cutting actions in the region.
The UfM Secretary General held bilateral meetings with Saleh Kharabsheh, Minister of Environment of Jordan; Mokhtar Hammami, Minister of Local Affairs and Environment of Tunisia; and Fady Jreissati, Minister of Environment of Lebanon. He also met with Bertrand Piccard, Chairman of Solar Impulse and World Alliance for Efficient Solutions.