US giving much importance to Bangladesh as its partner to tackle climate crisis, says Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will deliver her speech virtually at the “Leaders’ Summit on Climate” on Thursday highlighting the climate-related challenges Bangladesh faces and the efforts it is undertaking.

She will address the inaugural session of the summit titled “Raising Our Climate Ambition” with other global leaders, an official told UNB.

US President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris will open the inaugural session of the two-day Summit at 6pm (Bangladesh time).

This session will underscore the urgent need for the world’s major economies to strengthen their climate ambition by the time of COP 26 to keep the goal of limiting warming to 1.5° Celsius within reach.

It will provide an opportunity for leaders to announce new steps to strengthen climate ambition.

United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres, US Secretary of State Antony J Blinken and Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry will also join.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Chinese President Xi Jinping, Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, Russian President Vladimir Putin, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, South Korean President Moon Jae-in and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan are among participants invited by the US president.

Other sessions

The second session will be on “Investing in Climate Solutions”.

This session will highlight the urgent need to scale up climate finance, efforts to increase public finance for mitigation and adaptation in developing countries, and efforts to shift trillions of dollars of private investment to finance the transition to net zero by 2050.

The third session will be on “Adaptation and Resilience”.

This session will highlight the climate adaptation and resilience challenges faced by all countries, especially those most vulnerable to climate impacts, and cutting-edge approaches to strengthening resilience in the face of climate change and climate variability.

The session titled “Climate Action at All Levels” will highlight the critical efforts of subnational and non-state actors (cities, states/regions, and indigenous groups) that are contributing to green recovery and working closely with national governments to advance climate ambition and resilience on the ground.

There will be discussions on “Climate Security” which will highlight the global security challenges posed by climate change, the impact on the military and readiness, and efforts underway to address the threat multipliers to energy, economic and national security.

The session on “Nature-based Solutions” will highlight the critical role of nature-based solutions in reducing emissions and strengthening climate resilience, including efforts to reduce deforestation and the loss of wetlands, restore marine and terrestrial ecosystems, and promote sustainable agricultural practices.

‘US giving much importance to Bangladesh’

The United States is “giving much importance” to Bangladesh as its partner to tackle the climate crisis.

“They have much interest in Bangladesh. They have taken note of key issues that should come up in the summit agenda,” Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen told UNB during an interaction at his residence recently.

The US praised Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for her leadership in the Climate Vulnerable Forum (CVF) and she will be “recognized for Bangladesh’s leadership” of countries especially vulnerable to climate impacts during the “Leaders’ Summit on Climate”.

Bangladesh talked about the significance of the promised international financial flow at and beyond $100 billion annually to support sustainable development and energy transformations of the developing economies.

Bangladesh stressed that the funding should be distributed at a 50:50 ratio between mitigation and adaptation at the same time noting that adaptation without mitigation is not a good strategy.

On the issue of the national determined contribution (NDC), Foreign Minister Momen emphasized on behalf of Bangladesh as well as the CVF that all countries need to work hard to fulfil their NDCs at the earliest.

The summit will also highlight examples of how enhanced climate ambition will create good paying jobs, advance innovative technologies and help vulnerable countries adapt to climate impacts.

By the time of the summit, the US will announce an ambitious 2030 emissions target as its new Nationally Determined Contribution under the Paris Agreement.

In his invitation, the US president urged leaders to use the summit as an opportunity to outline how their countries will also contribute to stronger climate ambition.

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