With only a few months until the UN’s annual climate summit, COP28 President Sultan Al Jaber released his plan of action during a meeting of governments in Brussels, which took place in July 2023.
“We must be brutally honest about the gaps that need to be filled, the root causes and how we got to this place here today…Then we must apply a far-reaching, forward-looking, action-orientated and comprehensive response to address these gaps practically,” he said.
For Africa, Jaber’s call for a holistic approach that integrates both the supply and demand sides of the energy sector is a positive step. By recognising the need for a comprehensive response, COP28 must ensure that energy transitions are carried out in a manner that provides equitable access to renewable energy. This approach encourages the frontloading of scaling up renewable energy deployment with a clear target of 2030, fostering an inclusive and sustainable energy transition across Africa.
Furthermore, Jaber did not shy away from “fixing climate finance as a critical imperative”. Africa, being highly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, requires substantial financial resources to implement effective adaptation and mitigation measures. By addressing the challenges surrounding climate finance, COP28 must create a conducive environment for mobilising the necessary funding and ensuring that African nations have the means to implement climate initiatives successfully.
Equally important to Africa in his Letter to Parties, was the operationalisation of the new fund and funding arrangements for Loss and Damage, established in Sharm El Sheikh, to ensure support for those facing climate impacts that cannot be adapted to.
“COP28 President Sultan Jaber has published his vision and roadmap to make the gathering a success. For that to happen it depends on the good will of many. I am happy to serve in his advisory council and push Africa’s views and interests in this key and urgent process,” says Carlos Lopes of the African Climate Foundation.
COP28 will take place in Dubai, UAE from 30 November 2023.