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COP28 President-Designate stands with Brazil’s President Lula da Silva in call for protecting

  • COP28 President-Designate Dr. Sultan Al Jaber commends the leadership of President Lula in reducing deforestation in Brazil by 34 percent in just the last six months and targeting zero illegal deforestation by 2030.
  • Dr. Sultan Al Jaber and Brazil’s President Lula stand united at a landmark Amazon Summit, expressing their commitment to deliver a more equitable climate future and calling on world leaders to bring their energy and ambition to COP28.
  • The Presidency continues to build on the back of Dr Sultan’s recently announced COP28 plan to Fast-track an orderly and equitable energy transition, Fix climate finance, Focus on people, lives and livelihoods and underpin everything with Full inclusivity.
  • Brazil assumes the Presidency of the G20 during COP28 and will host COP30, leading to a desire to build a bridge to enable inclusive, resilient and lasting climate progress.
  • The talks between President da Silva and Dr. Sultan Al Jaber took place during a key climate summit in Belém at the mouth of the Amazon River. Dr. Sultan Al Jaber also spoke at the event and met with ministers and heads of state to build consensus on the road to COP28.

Belém, 9 August 2023: Following talks at the Amazon Cooperation Treaty Organization (ACTO) Summit in the city of Belém, COP28 President-Designate Dr. Sultan Al Jaber and Brazil’s President Lula da Silva have expressed their joint commitment to deliver a more equitable climate future, by putting nature at the core of the climate agenda at COP28.

Both parties have expressed an intention to build a bridge to enable inclusive, resilient and lasting climate progress. This comes on the back of Dr Sultan’s recently announced COP28 plan to Fast-track an orderly and equitable energy transition, Fix climate finance, Focus on people, lives and livelihoods and underpin everything with Full inclusivity.

During the talks, Dr. Sultan Al Jaber and President da Silva reaffirmed the vital importance of protecting the Amazon rainforest to keep 1.5°C within reach.

They agreed on a range of issues, including fighting deforestation and degradation, enhancing the bioeconomy and strengthening adaptation actions.

Promoting low carbon agriculture practices and intensifying bilateral and multilateral cooperation in areas such as food, health, science, technology, and innovation also featured. However, reforming international climate finance and bolstering clean energy deployment were identified as particular areas of joint focus to be pursued from COP28 through to COP30.

Commenting on the talks, Dr. Sultan Al Jaber said: “President Lula da Silva is bringing the energy, focus and drive we need to meet the urgency of the moment. In the first half of 2023 alone, he has cut deforestation in Brazil’s Amazon by 34% and it is this strong and robust leadership that can deliver substantive outcomes in the real world.

“Alongside President da Silva, I call on other leaders to bring the same energy and ambition to COP28, and in particular, to unite around decisive action and achieve game-changing results on climate finance and the global energy transition.”

ACTO unites Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana, Peru, Suriname, and Venezuela in a shared ambition to promote the preservation of the Amazon basin and regulate Amazonian development.

Dr. Al Jaber attended to the summit to not meet only with President da Silva, but to also speak to ACTO directly on his recognition of its work to protect the Amazon and his commitment to support South-South cooperation and the alliance between Brazil and other tropical forest regions including Indonesia and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

However, the main focus of his remarks was the united effort that must now take place at COP28 to raise ambition for progress across all climate pillars and build a bridge to a sustainable future, particularly in the area of international finance.

He said: “We need to expand available, accessible and affordable finance to meet the needs of the most vulnerable and ensure that adequate finance meets the needs of nature. This Presidency will keep the pressure on donor countries to fulfill the overdue 100 billion pledge and seek to ensure that a designated portion of these funds is directed to nature and forest protection”.

In his speech, Dr. Sultan also praised Brazil’s inclusion of Indigenous Peoples in developing solutions to climate change and expressed COP28’s commitment to put their rights front and center of COP28’s approach to nature.

He said “While representing five per cent of the global population, indigenous communities protect over 80 per cent of our biodiversity. The role of Indigenous communities in preserving natural ecosystems and promoting sustainable land use practices cannot be over-stated. COP28 will give space for their perspectives so that their voices and wisdom can be heard and amplified.”

As part of the COP28 Presidency delegation to Brazil, Razan Al Mubarak, UN Climate Change High Level Champion for COP28, emphasized the inextricable link between addressing climate change and nature loss.

“We have just over six years to simultaneously reverse biodiversity loss, halve emissions, enhance adaptation, and advance equity. This transformation needs to be inclusive, nature positive and with justice at its heart,” said Ms. Al Mubarak. “It is my strong conviction that investing in nature is the most cost-effective mitigation and adaptation solution for climate change.”

She also stressed the critical inclusion and support for Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities (IPLCs) in the development of collective climate and nature solutions, adding: “We must all recognize the fundamental role of IPLCs in protecting the world’s most biodiverse and ecologically important areas. Over 75% of forests are protected by indigenous peoples and local communities, yet only 17% of funds allocated in the last ten years included an Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities organization. Indigenous Peoples need access to resources to maintain their self-determined climate actions.”

During his visit to Brazil, Dr. Al Jaber held meetings with world leaders to discuss the COP28 energy transition agenda, including with Luis Arce, President of Bolivia; Gustavo Petro, President of Colombia; Felix Tshisekedi, President of the Democratic Republic of the Congo; and Mark Phillips, Prime Minister of Guyana.

Dr. Al Jaber also held bilateral meetings with Marina Silva, Minister of Environment of Brazil; Mauro Vieira, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Brazil; Jean Paul Prates, CEO of Petrobras; and Antonio Queiroz, Vice President of Innovation, Technology and Sustainable Development at Braskem, among others.

Notes to Editors COP28 UAE:  

  • COP28 UAE will take place at Expo City Dubai from November 30-December 12, 2023. The Conference is expected to convene over 70,000 participants, including heads of state, government officials, international industry leaders, private sector representatives, academics, experts, youth, and non-state actors.  
  • As mandated by the Paris Climate Agreement, COP28 UAE will deliver the first ever Global Stocktake – a comprehensive evaluation of progress against climate goals.  
  • The UAE will lead a process for all parties to agree upon a clear roadmap to accelerate progress through a pragmatic global energy transition and a “leave no one behind” approach to inclusive climate action.”

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