COP 21 PARIS Assesment meeting, Tekfen Tower Conference Hall, Istanbul (22 février 2016) [tr]
COP 21 PARIS ASSESSMENT MEETING, Tekfen Tower Conference Hall, Istanbul
Let me first thank you very much for this invitation. It is always a great pleasure for me to talk about the Paris summit. Indeed, if 2015 was a sad year with several terrorist attacks, particularly in France and Turkey, the COP 21 gave us some hope. 195 countries were able to reach an ambitious agreement to tackle, together, the most important challenge of the 21st century.
1- The Paris Agreement last December was a historic achievement. It is now necessary to sustain this momentum and accelerate the transformation of our economies towards low carbon and resilient societies.
2016 will therefore be as important as 2015. 2015 was the year of negotiation and mobilization, 2016 should be the year of action and implementation. It would be a mistake to believe that we have plenty of time to prepare the implementation of the Agreement from 2020. There is a lot of work and we must use wisely the months ahead of us to build upon “the Paris dynamic”.
1.1- Implementation of the Paris Agreement.
The Agreement must be signed and ratified as soon as possible. The high-level signature ceremony of the Agreement will take place in New York on April 22nd. We invite every country to participate at the highest political level to confirm the political will behind the Paris Agreement and to initiate their ratification process as soon as possible. I remind you that this Agreement will enter into force after the ratification by 55 countries, representing at least 55% of world greenhouse gas emission.
For the Agreement to be implemented from 2020, we also need to “operationalise” the Agreement mechanisms and define the rules of implementation. I have in mind two examples :
• the transparency framework to monitor actions and support ;
• the principle of assessing the collective efforts every five years with the national contributions (INDCs).
The next important step is in May, when the Bonn session will bring all Parties together for the first time since the COP, and will launch the implementation work.
1.2- Pre-2020 action.
The Paris Agreement sent to businesses, investors, local governments and citizens the strong signal they were waiting for in order to strengthen their commitments towards low carbon economy.
On 16 December, more than 800 stakeholders (major cities, regions, companies and investors) from around the globe representing over 150 million people promised to “quickly and effectively help implement the Paris Pledge for Action and accelerate the transformative changes needed to meet the climate change challenge”.
And yet, more immediate action is necessary. Initiated projects must be implemented as soon as possible, and new initiatives from all sectors must emerge and be supported.
The mobilization of the private sector will contribute to the necessary reduction in emissions by 2020 and play a central role in strengthening our collective ambition. Financial flows must be gradually redirected from high-emitting sectors, especially the fossil fuel industry, towards the low-carbon economy, so that the cost of clean technologies goes down.
These actions will in turn change the technological and financial conditions that will make it possible for governments to develop meaningful climate policies and present each time more ambitious national contributions.
1.3- From the French to the Moroccan Presidency.
Our official Presidency has just started. Throughout the year, we will maintain an open dialogue with Parties and between Parties to set the necessary implementation work on the right track.
Following the excellent cooperation we had with Peru until the very end, we will work closely with the incoming Moroccan Presidency towards COP22. In coordination with the incoming COP22 Presidency, we will organize informal meetings that will serve as a contribution to the formal negotiations that will take place in Bonn.
2- Cooperation between France and Turkey in the field of climate change.
2.1- France and Turkey worked together before the Antalya and the Paris summits.
We knew that to reach a success in Paris, we needed to work closely with Turkey, a key ally and an important stakeholder.
Our Turkish partners were and are still involved to tackle climate change and implement concrete actions. They presented their INDC, with a target to reduce by 21% their CO2 emissions. They also accepted to add a paragraph on climate at the G20 summit in Antalya, two weeks before the COP21, which sent a strong signal for a positive outcome in Paris.
In Paris, the negotiations were tough until the last minute, but we finally reached an ambitious agreement, which is considered as a real success.
As I said, the Paris Agreement is just the beginning of a process. Therefore, we continue to work closely with our Turkish partners on climate change. We had a meeting last week at the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs to talk about the next steps. We want, for instance, to prepare the Bonn session as early as possible to be able to answer Turkey’s specific requests and expectations, especially regarding the financing and the technology transfer.
2.2- I would also like to underline that we implement a lot of bilateral projects related to environmental issues.
The Regional Economic Service of the French Embassy is in charge of developing our bilateral cooperation between the French Ministry of Environment and its counterpart in Turkey.
Many events were organized in 2015, including conferences on climate change, urban transportation, air and water quality.
In 2016, we would like to deepen our cooperation in several fields, notably in the water sector, urban planning and recycling.
In addition, the French Agency for Development (AFD) is today a major and innovative actor in international “climate finance”. Let me give you some examples of its action in Turkey :
• In 2009, AFD Group launched its Turkey-Climate Program, in partnership with Turkish partners. This program, which amount has reached 350 M€, aimed at contributing to the fight against climate change by supporting investments of SMEs in energy efficiency and renewable energy. It contributes to save over 2,5 million tons of CO2 equivalent every year.
• Between 2011 and 2015, AFD granted 300 M€ to the Turkish authorities to finance activities in reafforestation, rehabilitation of degraded forests, fight against erosion and forest fires. This support should lead to an annual sequestration estimated at 285 million tons of CO2 equivalent over the next 30 years.
• AFD is also very committed in supporting a sustainable urban development in Turkey. In particular, the cooperation with Istanbul and Izmir municipalities has led to finance part of the Istanbul metro network and to support the upgrading of the Izmir’s maritime transport network, the construction of two new tram lines and the extension of its subway network.
With all these projects, which have a significant impact in terms of carbon emissions reduction and fight against climate change, I wanted to highlight the dynamic cooperation between France and Turkey. We want to strengthen this bilateral cooperation, especially within the framework of the French Presidency of the COP 21, and increase the number of projects implemented on environmental issues in Turkey in the future./.