Dr. Sultan bin Ahmed Al Jaber, Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology and COP28 President-Designate with Sameh Shoukry, COP27 President and Egypt’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, and Dan Jørgensen, Denmark’s Minister for Development Cooperation and Global Climate Policy. Image Credit: WAM

Copenhagen: The world needs to build on the foundations achieved at COP27 and move on from setting goals to getting things done, Dr. Sultan bin Ahmed Al Jaber, Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology and COP28 President-Designate, said on Monday.

Dr. Al Jaber was speaking in Denmark at the two-day Copenhagen Climate Ministerial, the first climate ministerial meeting leading up to COP28.

“We are way off track when it comes to the critical goal of keeping 1.5 alive. Incremental steps will simply not cut it, we need transformational progress in the next seven years across mitigation, adaptation, climate finance and loss and damage,” Al Jaber said.

Al Jaber also urged countries to “scale up all available zero-carbon energy sources, while minimising the emissions from all other energy sources”.

“Technology that no one can afford isn’t much use to anyone. Governments should therefore adopt smart policies to incentivise breakthroughs in battery storage and commercialise carbon capture and the hydrogen value chain. We should inject a business mindset, short-term KPIs and an ambitious action-oriented agenda into the Mitigation Work Programme, and remember that the enemy is emissions, not progress,” he said.

Al Jaber held several bilateral meetings with climate leaders and government ministers, including Simon Stiell, UNFCCC Executive Secretary; Frans Timmermans, Executive Vice President of the European Commission; Zhao Yingmin, China’s Vice Minister of Ecology and Environment; Jennifer Morgan, German Special Envoy for International Climate Action; Shahab Uddin, Bangladesh’s Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change; Grace Fu, Singapore’s Minister of Sustainability and the Environment; and Toeolesulusulu Cedric Schuster, Samoa’s Minister of Natural Resources, Environment and Tourism, among others.

Al Jaber reminded attendees of the need to deliver a framework for the Global Goal on Adaptation “that meets the needs of developing countries, builds resilience, protects fragile biodiversity and enhances nature-based solutions”.

He added: “At a minimum, we need to double adaptation finance and adopt national policies that build every country’s capacity to adapt to climate impacts.”

Speaking to the Loss and Damage finance facility established at COP27, Dr. Al Jaber emphasised, “We must bring the Sharm El Sheikh outcome on loss and damage to life. This means the loss and damage fund must be fully operationalised, and we need the right governance and structures in place to target the most vulnerable communities.”