Minister Outlines Climate Priorities at Bilateral Meeting with UNFCCC Executive Secretary

The Honorable Eng. Collins Nzovu, Member of Parliament and Minister of Green Economy and Environment of the Republic of Zambia, engaged in a bilateral meeting with His Excellency Mr. Simon Stiel, the Executive Secretary for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The discussion took place on the sidelines of the 19th Conference of the African Ministerial Conference on the Environment (AMCEN 19) in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

During the meeting, Minister Nzovu expressed his gratitude on behalf of the Zambian Government and the African Group of Negotiators on Climate Change for the invaluable support extended by the UNFCCC Secretariat towards facilitating effective participation in this crucial process.

The Minister acknowledged the historic strides achieved at COP27, highlighting the breakthrough agreement on funding arrangements to address loss and damage and the establishment of a fund to aid the communities most impacted by climate change. He informed the Executive Secretary that preparations are underway to operationalize the funding arrangements for loss and damage at COP28, while also emphasizing the importance of resolving the hosting location of the Santiago Network on Loss & Damage.

Minister Nzovu outlined the key deliverables Zambia and the African Group of Negotiators are aiming for at COP28, including:

  1. Adaptation: Minister Nzovu expressed optimism that COP28, under the leadership of the Executive Secretary, will deliver a robust Global Goal on Adaptation (GGA) Framework with indicators to track progress in building resilience. He highlighted the importance of finalizing the work program on GGA and securing an agreement on goals and targets promoting resilience.
  2. Climate Finance: Minister Nzovu stressed the significance of meaningful financial commitments from developed countries to bridge the gap in delivering the promised $100 billion per year since 2020 and doubling adaptation finance. He urged progress on the New Quantified Goal on Finance and operationalization of the loss and damage fund.
  3. Global Stocktake (GST): The Minister underscored the importance of a GST outcome that pushes for greater ambition across all aspects of climate action, while considering equitable responses. He emphasized the need for GST to reflect a balanced view of political messages on climate action and support, considering the unique circumstances of Africa’s development.
  4. Just Transition Pathways: Minister Nzovu called for an ambitious decision under the work program on just transition pathways that promotes sustainable development, operationalizes equity, and supports Africa’s transition to low-emission and resilient development.

The Minister also highlighted the special needs and circumstances of Africa, emphasizing that despite contributing less than 4% to global emissions, the continent is disproportionately impacted by climate change. He called for focused efforts to address Africa’s concerns under the Paris Agreement.

Minister Nzovu acknowledged the challenges ahead, including a lack of political will and transparency from developed countries, as well as the need for inclusive negotiations and trust-building. He expressed enthusiasm for the upcoming Africa Climate Summit hosted by Kenya during the Africa Climate Week in Nairobi, outlining the areas of focus, including renewable energy, sustainable agriculture, and green infrastructure.

As the bilateral meeting concluded, Minister Nzovu conveyed his commitment to advancing climate priorities and collaborating with the UNFCCC Secretariat to drive meaningful outcomes at COP28 and beyond.

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