Stock - Sultan Al Jaber
Dr. Al Jaber notes net zero emissions will deliver the biggest market transformation with the greatest economic and human promise since the first Industrial Revolution, noting the need to focus on holding back emissions, not progress. Image Credit: Bloomberg

Dubai: The UAE has invested $50 billion in renewable energy globally and plans to invest another $50 billion in the years ahead, said Dr Sultan Al Jaber, UAE Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology, UAE Special Envoy for Climate Change, and the UAE COP28 President-Designate, on Saturday.

“We want COP28 to transform systems and accelerate 2030 trajectories through game-changing partnerships, solutions, and outcomes,” said Al Jaber. “We want it to be a COP of Solidarity that bridges the Global North and South, and includes public and private sectors, scientists and civil society, women and youth.”

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“And we want it to be a practical COP, a COP of Action that raises ambitions and moves from goals to implementation across mitigation, adaptation, finance and loss and damage.”

In his first speech since being appointed as designated COP28 president, Al Jaber emphasized the need for an inclusive, action-oriented approach to transform systems and accelerate trajectories in the fight against climate change.

“Today, over 70 per cent of our economy is generated outside the oil and gas sector. And as the CEO of ADNOC and the founding CEO and Chairman of Masdar, I will continue to follow our leadership’s vision and guidance in making today’s energy cleaner, while advancing and investing in the clean energies of tomorrow,” said Al Jaber. “And we will use our experience, our ambition and deep network of partnerships to inform our approach to COP28.”

Speaking at the Atlantic Council Global Energy Forum, Al Jaber called for scaling up of renewables, nuclear energy, hydrogen, carbon capture, energy efficiency, the least carbon intensive oil and gas as well as new technologies yet to be deployed.

“We must triple renewable energy generation from 8 to 23 terawatt hours by 2030,” he said. “We must more than double low carbon hydrogen production to at least 180 million tons for hard-to-abate sectors." 

We also need to transform our food and agriculture systems because we know that agriculture accounts for one-third of global emissions.

- Dr Sultan Al Jaber

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On adaptation, ADNOC chief said we must do more to protect our vulnerable communities and our most critical systems from extreme weather and biodiversity loss. He stressed the need to invest in nature-based solutions like mangroves that act as powerful carbon sinks, while protecting coastlines and preserving natural ecosystems.

Al Jaber called for adaptation finance for the Global South to be doubled to $40 billion annually by 2025, to enable this progress.

“We need to ensure that every concessional dollar is matched by 2 or 3 dollars of private capital,” he said. “To make this happen, we need to answer the call from the international community for inclusive reform of the multilateral development banks and international financial institutions.”

“And to encourage this process, the UAE, as chair of the World Bank-IMF development committee, intends to play a proactive, supportive and facilitating role.”

Al Jaber said that the UAE as hosts of COP28, and at the crossroads of North and South, East and West, will listen, engage with all those who want to engage, build bridges and pursue global consensus in this collective effort.