Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today urged the developed countries to formulate an “immediate and ambitious action plan” to cut their carbon emissions to protect the planet from the adverse impact of climate change as she placed a four-point proposal at a high-level global climate summit.
While delivering her statement at the virtual “Leaders’ Summit on Climate”, convened by US President Joe Biden, the prime minister simultaneously called for “strong collective response” to address global crisis like the climate change and ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
Sheikh Hasina joined the summit at the invitation of the Joe Biden. John Kerry, the US special presidential envoy for climate, handed over an invitation letter to the Bangladesh premier in Dhaka on April 9 to participate in the summit.
As many as 39 heads of state and government from across the world and the European Council president are expected to attend and deliver speech at the two-day virtual summit.
“The Covid-19 pandemic has reminded us that global crisis can only be addressed through strong collective response. As such, as a responsible member state of the Conference of the Parties (COP), and as the Chair of Climate Vulnerable Forum (CVF), I would like to make few suggestions,” the Bangladesh premier said while placing the four-point proposal.
In her first proposal, she said immediate and ambitious action plan should be taken by developed countries to reduce their carbon emissions to keep the global temperature rise at 1.5 degree Celsius and the developing nations should also focus on mitigation measures.
Sheikh Hasina, secondly, suggested ensuring the annual target of 100 billion US dollars which should be balanced 50:50 between adaptation and mitigation with special attention to the vulnerable communities while pursuing “Loss and Damage”.
“Major economies, international financial institutions and private sectors should come forward for concessional climate financing as well as innovation,” she said in her third proposal.
In the fourth proposal, the prime minister said focus is needed on green economy and carbon neutral technologies with provision of technology transfer among nations.
She pointed out that as the Chair of the CVF and V20 (The Vulnerable Twenty), Bangladesh’s key focus is to uphold the interests of the climate vulnerable countries.
Sheikh Hasina said that Bangladesh is hosting the South Asian regional office of the Global Centre on Adaptation which is promoting locally-led adaptation solutions.
She extended thanks to US President Joe Biden for convening the summit and inviting her to speak to this august gathering.
The prime minister said that Bangladesh deeply appreciates the United States’ return to the Paris Climate Agreement and is keen to engage with the international community.
She told the summit that Bangladesh has emerged as a global leader on adaptation and mitigation despite being a climate vulnerable country with resource constraints.
In this connection, Sheikh Hasina said every year, Bangladesh is spending about 5 billion dollars, about 2.5 percent of its GDP, on climate adaptation and resilience-building measures.
“The 1.1 million forcefully displaced Rohingyas from Myanmar whom we’ve sheltered worsened our vulnerability,” she continued.
The premier said Bangladesh is pursuing a low carbon development path, and to raise its Nationally Determined Contribution-NDC and adaptation ambition, the country has included new sectors in addition to the existing energy, industry and transport sectors in the mitigation process.
“We’re planning to submit a quantified ambitious NDC by June 2021,” she said.
Sheikh Hasina mentioned that Bangladesh is observing “Mujib Year”, marking the birth centenary of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
“We’re planting 30 million saplings nationwide and adopted ‘Mujib Climate Prosperity Plan’ to achieve low carbon economic growth,” she said.
The 39 heads of state and government who are expected to join the summit include Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Russian President Vladimir Putin, Chinese President Xi Jinping, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Emmanuel Macron, UAE President Sheikh Khalifabin Zayed Al Nahyan, Argentine President Alberto Fernandez, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Indian Premier Narendra Modi, Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez.
Besides, European Council President Charles Michel is scheduled to attend the summit virtually.