Archive for Press releases

LDCs CALL FOR G7 TO TAKE THE LEAD ON AMBITIOUS CLIMATE ACTION AT ANNUAL SUMMIT

(6 June 2018) As leaders from the world’s largest advanced economies prepare to meet in Charlevoix on 8-9 June for the annual G7 Summit, the Least Developed Countries (LDC) Group is calling on the G7 to demonstrate that they are moving forward with ambitious climate action and stand in solidarity with the developing world.

A key focus area of Canada’s G7 Presidency is working together on climate change, oceans and clean energy. Addressing climate change is also essential to effective outcomes across the other themes of investing in growth that works for everyone; preparing for jobs of the future; advancing gender equality and women’s empowerment; and building a more peaceful and secure world.

Mr. Gebru Jember Endalew, Chair of the LDC Group, said “G7 countries need to take the lead in driving ambitious action against climate change. The Earth’s carbon budget is rapidly dwindling, and the existing pledges made by the international community do not add up to the emission reductions necessary to limit global temperature increase to 1.5 degrees and protect present and future generations. This is despite many LDCs and other developing countries committing to actions exceeding their fair share of the effort.”

“While the G7 continue to benefit from economies and infrastructure built on fossil fuels, climate change is having devastating impacts across the world. The G7 need to begin taking action consistent with their responsibility for the climate crisis and with their capability to respond. This includes fulfilling pre-2020 commitments on climate action and support, and moving forward with more ambitious nationally determined contributions that are in line with the long-term goals under the Paris Agreement and will enable the Sustainable Development Goals to be met.”

Mr. Endalew noted that climate finance remains well below the $100 billion that developed countries committed to providing annually by 2020, and explained “finance is key to enabling an effective global response to climate change so that all countries have the tools to limit greenhouse gas emissions and protect their citizens from its impacts. The G7 must honour their promises to scale up the financial, technology and capacity support they provide, and must also seriously consider how they can enhance transparency, reliability and predictability of that support.”

“The G7 should prioritise investing in a low carbon, climate resilient future, both domestically and abroad. This should include a commitment from the G7 to present a roadmap to phase out fossil fuel subsidies that are hindering efforts to combat climate change. The G7 should build and promote economies that support the needs of all and that do not impinge on the ability of others to live a safe and dignified life.”

Mr. Endalew reflected on the significant impact of severe weather events on economic development, food security, health and migration, and said “the LDCs are particularly vulnerable to climate change and increasingly suffer loss and damage from climate impacts. The G7 needs to step up and work constructively to establish a concrete plan to protect people and the planet.”

Mr. Endalew also welcomed the G7’s focus on advancing gender equality and women’s empowerment, and said “the empowerment of women, youth, indigenous peoples and local communities is a catalyst for climate action, and should be at the forefront of the international community’s response.”

Looking forward in 2018, Mr. Endalew said “the LDC Group looks forward to constructive conversations in June at the Petersberg Climate Dialogue and the Ministerial on Climate Action. A great deal of work needs to be done in 2018 ahead of COP24, which will be the key moment to finalise the guidelines for implementing the Paris Agreement. We need to see ambitious outcomes this year, with scaled up commitments by the G7 and other countries that are not shouldering their fair share of the international climate effort, informed by the outcomes of the IPCC special report on 1.5 degrees and the Talanoa Dialogue.”

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RUNNING OUT OF TIME: LEAST DEVELOPED COUNTRIES CALL FOR URGENT ACTION AT UN CLIMATE TALKS

(10 May 2018) Today, the United Nations Climate Change Conference drew to a close in Bonn, Germany. A key focus of the negotiations has been the Paris Agreement Work Programme, under which countries are designing the guidelines that will implement the Paris Agreement.

At the conclusion of the session, Chair of the Least Developed Countries (LDC) Group, Gebru Jember Endalew, said: “The LDC Group came to Bonn ready to shift gears and make concrete progress on the numerous issues that need to be addressed this year to translate the Paris Agreement from concepts to actions. The Group hoped that the negotiations would advance further at this meeting, and we are disappointed that many vital topics are still at conceptual stages. The Group is concerned by the lack of urgency we are seeing to move the negotiations forward. It is time to look at the bigger picture, see the severe impacts that climate change is having across the world, and rise to the challenge.”

“Finance is key to meeting the goals of the Paris Agreement. In the face of climate change, poor and vulnerable countries are forced to address loss and damage and adapt to a changing climate, all while striving to lift their people out of poverty without repeating the mistakes of an economy built on fossil fuels. This is not possible without predictable and sustainable support.”

“Countries have failed to deliver on pre-2020 commitments and global temperatures are dangerously close to 1.5 degrees. Countries need to shoulder their fair share of the effort to increase ambition and support in line with their responsibilities for this climate crisis and their capabilities to respond.”

On the Talanoa Dialogue, Mr. Endalew said, “The LDC group valued the opportunity to engage with governments and civil society to share our stories through the Talanoa Dialogue. To be meaningful, this Dialogue must deliver concrete outcomes that drive an increase in ambition and support to put us on track to achieving the 1.5 degree temperature goal set in Paris, guided by equity and science.”

“A robust, balanced and comprehensive package of guidelines to implement the Paris Agreement must be delivered at COP24. The LDCs will arrive in Bangkok prepared to engage in concrete, textual negotiations, and expect other countries to do the same. Steady progress needs to be made throughout 2018 on all issues so that poor and vulnerable countries can engage effectively. A last-minute rush at COP24 risks leaving developing countries behind.”

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Press Release: Strategy Meeting of the Least Developed Countries Group hosted in Addis Ababa

Addis Ababa – From 21-23 March, members of the Least Developed Countries (LDC) group met in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia to assess the status of the UN climate change negotiations following COP23 and devise a strategy to bring the priorities and interests of LDCs to centre-stage in 2018.

Mr. Gebru Jember Endalew, Chair of the LDC Group, said it had been a valuable meeting, with coordinators on key issues in the negotiations collaborating on how to ensure a holistic approach is taken to advance the positions of the LDC group on all fronts, particularly to develop and finalise the rules of the Paris Agreement by the end of 2018, as mandated. Priorities across all areas of the climate change negotiations were discussed, including, for example:

  • Continuing to push for enhanced global climate action and the provision of support;
  • Engaging in the Talanoa Dialogue to building momentum for greater mitigation ambition in NDCs to be communicated by 2020, in the context of putting the world on a 1.5°C pathway;
  • Maintaining focus on the global goal of limiting temperature increases to 1.5°C, noting that models and analysis must focus on achieving 1.5°C rather than 2°C to protect the lives and livelihoods of people in LDCs;
  • Advancing discussions on a new collective goal on climate finance to scale up existing support to meet actual needs in developing countries, and urgently agreeing a definition on what constitutes climate finance to address ongoing issues such as the double counting resources provided;
  • Ensuring an agenda item is devoted to the Paris Agreement’s article on loss and damage at the negotiations of the Conference of the Parties serving as the meeting of the Parties to the Paris Agreement, reflecting the urgent need for concrete action to address loss and damage; and
  • Advocating for the entry into force of the Doha Amendments of the Kyoto Protocol in 2018.
  • Incorporating the Gender Action Plan into all elements of the Paris ruleset.

The importance of enhancing cooperation with negotiating groups sharing common interests was also highlighted. Mr. Mohamed Nasr, Chair of the African Group, joined the meeting and both Chairs emphasised the value of collaboration between the two groups, noting 34 African countries are LDCs.

The LDC group will next convene in Bonn, Germany for preparatory meetings from 24-25 April 2018, to consolidate LDC positions and strategies ahead of the upcoming Bonn Climate Change Conference.

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PRESS RELEASE: Least Developed Countries Group at COP23

BONN—COP23, the international climate negotiations, draws to a close today in Bonn, Germany. Hosted by Fiji, the first ‘island COP’ shone a spotlight on the impacts of climate change on island states and particularly vulnerable countries.

Chair of the Least Developed Countries (LDC) group, Gebru Jember Endalew, said, “As an Ethiopian, I know intimately the pain caused by climate change. My country is in the grip of a severe drought that has put 13 million people in Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia at risk of increased food insecurity. At the same time, our friends in South Asia have been drenched by extraordinary monsoon flooding, friends in the Caribbean have been battered by devastating hurricanes, and island states in the pacific are watching their homes disappear before their eyes beneath the water.”

“As Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama of Fiji put it, we are all in the same canoe. The impacts may vary, but no country can escape the damage of climate change. This is why we came to COP23 with high expectations for a COP of action and support, with substantive outcomes to achieve the goals set by the international community in Paris.”

“The LDCs welcome progress that has been made here at COP23, including the adoption of the Gender Action Plan and the Indigenous Peoples’ and Local Communities’ Platform. It is essential that we amplify marginalised voices and recognise the disproportionate impact of climate change on women and indigenous communities around the world. This is crucial for achieving global climate justice and for addressing the multi-faceted threat of climate change.”

“Progress was also made on the design of the Talanoa Dialogue to be held in 2018. The Dialogue must lead to an increase in ambition by all countries to put us on track to limit the global temperature increase to 1.5 degrees Celsius.”

“A key priority at COP23 was making significant progress on developing the ‘ruleset’ that will govern how countries implement their Paris Agreement commitments. While the LDC group welcomes the progress made, many areas of work are still lagging behind. This jeopardises our ability to complete the Paris ruleset by our agreed deadline at the end of 2018. We must urgently put pen to paper to properly finalise the ruleset in a thoughtful and considered manner, without a last-minute rush.”

“We also need to rapidly translate work done in the negotiating rooms into tangible action on the ground. This calls for ambitious climate action by all countries through strengthening and implementing national contributions, managing the decline of fossil fuels, and promoting renewable energy. The LDCs are committed to leading on ambitious climate action in our countries – a key example is the LDC Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Initiative, an LDC-owned and driven initiative to bring universal access to clean energy in the world’s poorest countries.”

“Tackling climate change also requires support for adaptation and loss and damage action in poor and particularly vulnerable countries. The LDC Group thanks Germany, Sweden and Belgium for the contributions to the Adaptation Fund and Least Developed Countries Fund. We hope to see other countries following suit and rapidly accelerating their finance pledges to meet the scale of support needed by developing countries to fill the ever-widening finance gap.”

“In particular, the need to adapt to, and address the irreversible loss and damage arising from, climate change is a matter of urgency for LDCs. The scale of loss and damage that LDCs are experiencing is already beyond our capacity to respond and it will only get worse, with more lives lost, more destruction to infrastructure and a bigger impact on our economies. We will not be able to raise our people out of poverty if we do not effectively address loss and damage and for that we need support.”

“The LDCs call for a global response to climate change that is fair and equitable, that advances the interests and aspirations of poor and vulnerable countries and peoples, and fulfils our Paris vision of limiting warming to below 1.5°C to ensure a safe and prosperous future for all.”

Contact: Mr. Gebru Jember Endalew, Chair of the Least Developed Countries group, ldcchair.media@gmail.com

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PRESS RELEASE: Least Developed Countries Group Call for Ambitious Action and Commitments from G20 leaders

As G20 leaders prepare to meet in Hamburg on 7-8 July 2017, the Least Developed Countries (LDC) Group calls on heads of state and government to reaffirm their commitments to tackling climate change by committing to ambitious climate action and support for the most vulnerable countries. The theme of Germany’s G20 presidency is ‘Shaping an Interconnected World’. This is extremely relevant to the issue of climate change: a truly global problem requiring a global, collaborative solution.

Mr. Gebru Jember Endalew, Chair of the LDC Group, called on the G20 to:

  1. Commit to scaling up climate finance and support

The LDC group represents the 47 poorest countries in the world. LDCs bear negligible responsibility for the greenhouse gas emissions that are causing climate change but are some of the most vulnerable to its impacts, with a limited capacity to adapt to those impacts or address the resulting loss and damage.

Climate change is a reality that we are already witnessing the impacts of. However, there is no doubt that leadership and ambitious climate action by the world’s largest economies can deliver prosperity, productivity and stability for all. The Hamburg G20 Summit is an opportunity for G20 countries to demonstrate their leadership in meeting the commitments set out in the Paris Agreement. As the leaders of some of the wealthiest countries, G20 countries also have the greatest capacity to support vulnerable countries in taking action to adapt to and mitigate climate change.

  1. Develop a comprehensive Joint Action Plan

The Paris Agreement manifests global momentum to tackle the greatest challenge humanity has faced and the Hamburg summit provides an opportunity for G20 countries to rally around this momentous agreement. The LDC Group urges the G20 to reaffirm their Paris Agreement commitments through an ambitious G20 Joint Action Plan on Climate and Energy for Growth. We hope that this action plan will be the most comprehensive to-do list on climate action that the G20 has agreed to date.

  1. Ensure ambitious climate action with a focus on clean energy

The LDC Group urges G20 countries to adopt sustainable and renewable energy solutions to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement. Coal, including ‘clean coal’ cannot be considered a legitimate source of energy for mitigation action, or counted as part of climate finance support to developing countries.

Access to energy is vital to boost social welfare and productivity in developing nations. The last decade has demonstrated that renewables more than any other source of energy provide fast, efficient and cheap access to energy for many across the world. LDCs are already pursuing sustainable development through renewable energy projects, including a bottom-up, LDC-driven Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Initiative for Sustainable Development (REEEI). Support for these efforts and scaling up universal access to affordable, clean, renewable energy is vital to address poverty eradication, climate change, sustainable development objectives and the Sustainable Development Goals. We also encourage G20 countries to protect our collective clean energy efforts by pursuing energy options that affirm the ‘clean and sustainable’ nature of access to energy both in developed and developing countries.

  1. Join the transition to a clean, green economy

After a strong, positive signal at the G7 summit, we call on G20 countries to rally around defending, implementing and advancing the Paris Agreement, despite the US announcing its intention to withdraw. It is clear that transformations in technology, consumption patterns and demand for clean, sustainable, green innovations are charging ahead around the world. Embracing these opportunities and joining the transition to a green economy means business opportunities that are beneficial for all. Some of the world’s leading businesses and sub-national governments, even within the US, have already recognised this and have begun to take strong actions on climate.

LDCs are leading the way

The LDCs reaffirm our commitment to the Paris Agreement. We are already leading the way through ambitious NDCs capturing mitigation and adaptation action beyond our fair shares, and the LDC-owned and -driven REEEI designed to meet our sustainable development objectives. We invite the G20 to join us and work alongside us as we pave the way for the sustainable economy of tomorrow.

Contact: Mr. Gebru Jember Endalew, Chair of the Least Developed Countries Group, ldcchair.media@gmail.com 

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Press Release: Least Developed Countries group responds to United States withdrawal from the Paris Agreement

Following President Trump’s announcement of his intention to withdraw the US from the Paris Agreement on climate change, the Least Developed Countries (LDC) group, representing nearly one billion people in the 48 poorest countries in the world, expressed disappointment in the decision but emphasised that global climate momentum will continue with or without the US.

Chair of the LDC group, Mr. Gebru Jember Endalew, said: “It is deeply disappointing to see the US shirking its responsibilities as a member of the global community. We are already seeing the impacts of climate change with record droughts, flooding and heat waves recently faced around the world. For LDCs the impacts are especially devastating; as the poorest countries in the world we are highly vulnerable but the least capable to respond to the threat of climate change. By refusing to commit to ambitious action on climate change President Trump is showing disregard for the lives of millions around the world.”

“In Paris the world united with a call for climate action and the wave of momentum now behind the Agreement cannot be slowed by one country deciding to sit on the sidelines. Many countries have taken up the mantle of global climate leadership through ambitious climate policies and innovation, and the US has lost a seat at this table.”

“The international community won’t wait for the US to catch up. Transformations in technology, consumption patterns and demand for clean, green innovations are charging ahead of political will around the world. Countries are learning that taking advantage of these innovations is not only smart for the climate, but smart for the economy. Joining the transition to a green economy means embracing business opportunities that are beneficial for all.”

“The US is only one country. I urge global leaders not to let President Trump’s decision to distract us from the important work we need to do to achieve the vital goals enshrined in the Paris Agreement. I also invite President Trump to reconsider his decision. Let us continue to work together to build a safe world for present and future generations.”

Contact: Mr. Gebru Jember Endalew

Chair of the Least Developed Countries group

 ldcchair.media@gmail.com

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PRESS RELEASE: Least Developed Countries Group

18 May 2017, the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Bonn, Germany concluded. At the conclusion of the session, Chair of the Least Developed Countries (LDC) group, Gebru Jember Endalew, said “The LDC emphasise that the global response to climate change must be consistent with the best available science. We must limit warming to 1.5˚C to protect lives and livelihoods, and this means peaking global emissions in 2020. Less than three years remain to bend the emissions curve down.”

“Climate change impacts are already striking all corners of the world, and are anticipated to grow substantially over the next few decades. The longer we wait, the more costly adaptation, loss and damage, and mitigation will become. We risk undermining our efforts to eradicate poverty and keep in line with our sustainable development goals.”

“The LDCs are concerned that we are still far from addressing actual finance needs of developing countries, whose Nationally Determined Contributions tell us that we need to find trillions not billions. Mobilising climate finance is crucial for LDCs and other developing countries to implement the Paris Agreement.”

“The LDCs are pleased that some valuable progress was made during this conference but we are not moving fast enough. This November at COP23 we must make considerable progress towards finalising the ‘rulebook’ that will implement the Paris Agreement without a last minute rush. The LDCs look forward to continuing our work to produce concrete outcomes.”

“The LDCs call on all Parties to redouble their efforts to tackle climate change with the urgency the climate crisis demands. The livelihoods of present and future generations hang in the balance and depend on all countries taking fair and ambitious action.”

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