President of Cyprus Nicos Anastasiades asked world leaders to walk the road towards climate neutrality and a future of green, sustainable, resilient economies and societies, during his intervention at the COP27, in Sharm el Sheikh on Tuesday.
He also referred to the initiative by Cyprus for the climate crisis in the Eastern Mediterranean and Middle East region (EMME) calling on all to adopt the political declaration.
"We look forward to the adoption of a comprehensive Sharm el-Sheikh outcome, which will ensure an ambitious global response to climate change" -Anastasiades
The President said that numerous scientific reports, including the latest IPCC report, send out the clear and stark message that only the most drastic cuts in carbon emissions would help prevent an environmental disaster from rising temperatures.
"We must rise to these challenges, acting collectively, decisively and with greater urgency and ambition so can we avoid the worst consequences of a rapidly warming planet", he said.
President Anastasiades said that Cyprus is a Mediterranean island state, located in a region that is already experiencing the impact of climate change with prolonged periods of drought and increased temperatures, which have been threatening our forests and ecosystems, affecting people and livelihoods, demanding an urgent national response.
He said that the implementation of the National Adaptation Strategy began in 2017 and are currently in the process of updating this Strategy with the aim to advance from the current modalities of incremental adjustment to a planned and systematic approach that can better address the multiple, complex and interlinked climate change risks and impacts.
The President went on to say that Cyprus has, collectively within the EU framework and with the other Members States, submitted a significantly enhanced Nationally Determined Contribution in 2020, with a commitment to reducing net greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55% by 2030 compared to levels in 1990.
He reminded all that the EU and its Member States remain steadfast in their commitment to net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, through a legally binding climate law.
"We look forward to the adoption of a comprehensive Sharm el-Sheikh outcome, which will ensure an ambitious global response to climate change", he noted.
He also said that we welcome the establishment of a Mitigation Work Programme that aims at enhancing accountability and encouraging ambition and implementation adding that we will engage, within the EU framework, in the two-year Glasgow-Sharm-el-Sheikh Work Programme on the Global Goal on Adaptation, to enhance adaptive capacity and resilience and reduce vulnerabilities in order to protect people, livelihoods and ecosystems.
Speaking about the launching of the Eastern Mediterranean and Middle East Climate Change Initiative in 2018, the President said that it led to the development of a Regional action plan consisting of regionally appropriate policies and measures, based on the scientific findings of our region’s top scientists brought together by the Initiative, to develop solutions to our shared problems that will be practical, achievable and have enduring benefits for our citizens.
"We now call upon the Heads of State of the region to participate in a Summit tomorrow, where a political Declaration will be adopted, expressing support to the Initiative and willingness to utilize policies and measures included in the Action Plan", he underlined.
He also spoke of the role of the youth noting that young people’s voices have been instrumental in galvanizing action for a more ambitious climate agenda. " We are hearing these voices, this clear message demanding action so as to be able to look to the future with optimism", he concluded.