ECOWAS Climate negotiators meet in Accra to prepare for COP24

By Lydia
Kukua Asamoah, GNA

Accra, Oct. 25, GNA – Climate Change
Negotiators in the Sub-Region on Thursday ended a regional preparatory meeting
in Accra to discuss and coordinate their participation in the upcoming Climate
Change Conference (COP 24) to be hosted in Katowice, Poland in December.

COP 24 is expected to validate the operating
rules for the implementation of the 2015 Paris Agreement and take stock of the
efforts announced to ensure the effective implementation of the Agreement from
2020.

The Accra meeting hosted representatives from
ECOWAS, the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU/UEMOA) and the
Permanent Inter-State Committee for Drought Control in the Sahel, to update
themselves on the regions climate priorities in the United Nations Framework
Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) negotiations.

The three-day meeting was organised by the
ECOWAS Commission aimed to construct guidance messages for negotiators, taking
into account the results of research on global warming scenarios at 1.5 Celsius
and 2 Celsius.

It helped participants to take stock of the
work of the Bonn and Bangkok intercessional meetings held in May and September
respectively, and the ongoing discussions on the rules and modalities for the
implementation of the Paris Climate Change.

Participants also identified the main points
of interest for the Region with regard to the ongoing discussions on the
instruments of operationalisation of the Agreement.

The meeting also afforded the participants,
the opportunity to inform and agree on activities planned by member states and
regional organisations at COP24 and then agree on a plan for the coordinated
participation of the region in the conference. 

Mr John Pwamang, the Acting Executive Director
of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), welcomed the participants on
behalf of the Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Environment,
Professor Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng at the opening.

He expressed the hope that the meeting would
equip them with adequate skills to negotiate on various thematic areas,
particularly adaptation, finance, and mitigation.

Mr Seth Osafo, the Legal Advisor, African
Group of Negotiators, said Africa’s participation in the COP was very important
because it continued to bear the maximum impact of climate change, despite the
Continent contributing three per cent of total Green House Gas emissions.

He said America and China contributed about 50
per cent of GHG emissions, and so they deserved to contribute higher towards
global mitigation and adaptation measures.

Mr Safo emphasised the need to increase
climate actions towards the protection of the planet for succeeding
generations.

He urged the African negotiators, at the
global level, to push forward the critical issues like health, agriculture and
environment that were highly impacted upon by climate change.

Mr Safo said there was the need for countries
to cooperate and collaborate while governments committed more funds to
addressing climate impacts in the world.

During COP24, the developed countries are
expected to report on how much they have committed towards addressing climate
change impact, while the developing countries would recount how much they have
received from the Global funds to mitigate and adapt to the phenomenon.

Various Heads of State are expected to be
meeting on the first day of COP24, which would be held from December 3 to 14 in
Poland, to issue a declaration that would influence the negotiations at the
COP.

COP24 would also be attended by Ministers of
State, NGOs, youth, women groups and various negotiators and delegates.

GNA 

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