Minister Bruton Travels to COP 24
Government commits to making Ireland a leader in responding to climate change
Minister announces €4.5m funding for global climate action
12 December 2018
The Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Mr Richard Bruton T.D. is today (Wednesday the 12th of December) attending a number of high level meetings and making a national statement at the Twenty-fourth Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC COP 24) in Katowice, Poland. The Minister attended the opening ceremony of the conference last Monday the 3rd but returned today to participate in high level negotiations.
Speaking from the conference, Minister Bruton said, "Ireland is fully committed to the implementation of the Paris Agreement. This conference is about making those commitments stick by agreeing a rule book among all countries so that we are all making progress in a consistent, transparent manner.
"It is the foundation for moving on in the coming months to see how, acting in solidarity, we can stretch our ambitions beyond what we have committed to. We need to be honest with where we are at so that we get to where we need to be."
Minister Bruton recently secured government approval to develop an all of government plan to make Ireland a leader in responding to climate change.The focus will be on implementation. We will identify actions with clear timelines and the steps needed to get there, and assign clear lines of responsibility for delivery. He is currently working across government to develop new initiatives across a range of sectors. COP 24 underlines the importance of what we are seeking to do and highlights the urgency of this work.
The Minister also announced that he is directing €4.5million to fund international co-operation on climate action.
Announcing this funding, Minister Bruton said, "Multilateral action is the only way to tackle the global challenge of climate change. This funding is crucial if we are all to meet our global ambition. We must support developing countries to adapt and to mitigate against the costs associated with the effects of climate change. This funding is in addition to the supports provide by the other Government Departments involved in international climate action this year and represents a further scaling-up of climate finance provided by Ireland."
This funding will go towards:
Green Climate Fund During the negotiation of the Paris Agreement in 2015, Ireland pledged to support the Green Climate Fund and has contributed €2million in 2016 and 2017, and now again in 2018 to signal our continued commitment. It is essential that developing countries are supported in taking ambitious action to reduce their emissions and in adapt to the impacts of climate change.
The Great Green Wall Initiative €1.2million will go towards helping developing countries to prevent and mitigate against the effects of desertification. This donation will significantly scale up action on the Great Green Wall initiative, which will stretch some 8,000km from the Horn of Africa to the east, to Dakar in the west, covering some 10 million hectares. The Great Green Wall will reduce the impacts of climate change and will increase the resilience of the countries involved. It will improve food security, resilience to droughts, and when completed, will abate an estimated 250 million tonnes of CO2 annually. It will also generate an estimated 10 million land-based green jobs across Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Ghana, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal and Sudan.
Support More Engagement & Gender Responsive Climate Action The convention recognises that climate change exacerbates gender inequalities and that effective climate action needs to be gender-responsive. The government will contribute €500,000 in 2018 to support the Convention in carrying out gender-responsive measures for example, ensuring that climate measures target all sectors of vulnerable communities and meet the needs of those most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. Additionally, since the adoption of the Paris Agreement, the importance of non-Party climate action has become more and more apparent. We will build on previous contributions with a financial contribution in 2018 of €300,000 for enhanced engagement of non-Party stakeholders at UNFCCC conferences and events.
Adaptation Fund This Fund finances projects and programmes in developing countries to help vulnerable communities to adapt to the impacts of climate change. Ireland has been a strong supporter of adaptation action in developing countries and made its first contribution of €300,000 to the Adaptation Fund in 2017. A contribution of €300,000 is being made again in 2018.
Technical Expertise Ireland will contribute a further €100,000 to fund technical expertise to help developing countries in determining and implementing their Nationally Determined Commitments (NDCs), the key vehicle by which Parties commit to their respective implementation of the Paris Agreement. Ireland joined the NDC Partnership in 2017 and this contribution shows our continued support for their important work.
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Ireland will continue to contribute €100,000 to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the international body for assessing the science related to climate change.
Minister Bruton finished by saying, "I am really looking forward to the next couple of days. I witnessed first-hand at the launch of COP 24 that the urgency of climate action is clearly understood across the world. I will participate in the conclusion of negotiations in Katowice and ensure that Ireland plays our part, with the European Union and our global partners to enable the Paris Agreement to fulfil its potential as the multilateral mechanism for global climate action."
Notes for Editors – Ireland's support for international climate change action
Ireland has committed to scaling up its financial contributions in support of the commitment given by developed country Parties to the UNFCCC in 2009 to jointly mobilize US$100 billion annually by 2020 from public and private sources to support climate action in developing countries. At COP 21 in Paris, Ireland committed to providing at least €175 million between 2016 and 2020.
Public financial support provided by Ireland to address climate change in developing countries has been increasing year on year, with support of €52.7 million and €64.4 million in 2016 and 2017 respectively. This funding is provided primarily through bilateral assistance through Ireland's Irish Aid programmes, with the support of €4.5 million announced today adding to support already committed by Ireland for 2018.