At the recent G20 Environment and Climate Sustainability Ministerial Meeting in Chennai, India, Mariam bint Mohammed Almheiri, the UAE Minister of Climate Change and the Environment, underscored the critical role of collective action and finance in driving sustainable development. Almheiri called on the G20 nations to honor their commitments to providing financial support for global climate initiatives.
Almheiri, representing the UAE at two key meetings during the event, stressed the nation’s dedication to environmental and climate sustainability. The Ministerial Meeting, culminating the three-day Fourth Environment and Climate Sustainability Working Group (ECSWG) Meeting, was attended by prominent global representatives, including Bhupender Yadav, India’s Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, and Dr. Sultan bin Ahmed Al Jaber, Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology and the COP28 President-designate.
The minister used the forum to highlight the UAE’s commitment to mitigating climate change. She emphasized that 2023, the year in which the UAE will host COP28, should be a milestone for climate action. Almheiri focused on two principles essential to climate change mitigation: collective action and collective finance. She also proudly shared the UAE’s recent progressive move of publishing the Third Update to its Second Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC), aiming to reduce carbon emissions by 40% by 2030, in alignment with their net-zero 2050 objective.
Almheiri reiterated the importance of a collective push towards ambitious global emission reduction targets. She also urged developed countries to exhibit proactive leadership by fulfilling their 14-year-old commitment to provide the pledged $100 billion to support global climate initiatives. The minister highlighted the UAE’s commitment to leading the Global Green Economy Alliance and promoting transformative changes in global food systems through the newly announced COP28 Food and Agriculture Agenda.
The second session of the meeting dealt with ‘Environment and Climate Sustainability: Land and Biodiversity, and Water Resource Management’. Here, Almheiri underlined the necessity of ecosystem restoration, biodiversity preservation, and the implementation of nature-based solutions for resilience. She cited the Mangrove Alliance for Climate, a UAE-Indonesia initiative, and the UAE’s commitment to expanding its mangrove cover to capture carbon and provide coastal protection.
Almheiri concluded her address by underscoring the economic benefits of climate action, including the creation of new industries and natural world preservation. She emphasized the significance of water resource management and combating desertification, exemplifying the UAE’s comprehensive approach to environmental stewardship. These dialogues further cemented the UAE’s commitment to an inclusive and proactive approach to tackle climate change, with ambitious local plans and contributions to global efforts.