The Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications, Eamon Ryan T.D., has arrived in Glasgow to attend the National Climate Delegation at the 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) to lead Ireland’s participation in the concluding week of the conference.
Negotiations are ongoing to secure agreement on critical issues – to mitigate emissions, increase adaptation and provide increased climate finance.
Ireland, as a new signatory to the High Ambition Coalition (HAC), is calling for ambitious action and commitments at COP26, as part of global efforts to limit the temperature rise to 1.5°C.
Minister Ryan said, “we are already experiencing the negative impacts of climate change across the world. As we look to increase climate ambition it is crucial that we support those that are most vulnerable and exposed. We must support those for whom the transition will be most difficult. Addressing this challenge will require an unprecedented level of international cooperation. I believe it can be done and Ireland is determined to play its part, during the final days of COP26 this week but also through our efforts at home.”
“Our new climate legislation commits us to net-zero by 2050. Climate Action Plan 2021, published last week, sets out the actions and measures across all sectors to ensure that we achieve our increased ambition – delivering on our commitments to curb climate change.”
Recognising the need for a substantial scale-up in adaptation financing to ensure that no one, especially the most vulnerable, is left behind, the Minister took part in an Adaptation Fund Contributor Dialogue. This high-level event provided an opportunity for contributor and recipient governments to exchange views on the fund’s crucial role in delivering adaptation finance. In light of calls from developing countries, the Minister’s announcement of a scaling up of Ireland’s support for the Adaptation Fund was timely. This will include a contribution from Ireland of at least €10 million between now and the end of 2022. This funding will be used to help the most vulnerable to adapt to climate change.
This complements an announcement from the Department of Foreign Affairs, whereby the Government has also committed €1 million for the National Adaptation Plan Global Network (to support national-level adaptation in developing countries) and €2.5 million for the Least Developed Countries Fund (LDCF).
Minister Ryan will also participate in a Climate and Clean Air Coalition Ministerial, which will discuss ways to accelerate action to reduce short‐lived climate pollutants – methane, black carbon and HFCs. This will contribute to wider global efforts to decarbonise the economy, reduce air pollution, and achieve related Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Also on Minister Ryan’s agenda is an event hosted by both the Government and EirGrid, titled ‘Delivering a Cleaner Energy Future: Government, Energy Sector and Civil Society working together to accelerate decarbonisation’. This event, encompassing a panel discussion, will highlight the importance of engagement using practical examples from Ireland. How best to work with wider civil society, in our efforts to transition, will also be a key topic for discussion.
Furthermore, the Minister will launch the National Dialogue on Climate Action (NDCA). This will be the primary vehicle to enable stakeholders and the public to engage in climate action – at both local and national level. It will empower everyone in Ireland to transition towards a climate neutral society by 2050 in a way that is fair, equal and just.