UN Climate Change High Level Champion for Egypt Mahmoud Mohieldin
Mohieldin’s statement came during his speech at the opening of the virtual training programme of the executive members of committees nationwide within the framework of the National Initiative for Smart Green Projects.
On 7 August, Egypt's official gazette published Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly’s decision to launch the National Initiative for Smart Green Projects nationwide under the supervision of Minister of Planning and Economic Development Hala El-Said, and Ambassador Hisham Badr, the coordinator of the initiative.
Madbouly assigned Mohieldin on 9 August as the jury chairperson of the initiative that is responsible for selecting winning projects.
The initiative, part of the National Climate Change Strategy 2050, will chart a map for each governorate's smart green projects, connecting them with funding agencies and attracting the necessary investments.
Mohieldin said the initiative is unprecedented in the history of all the countries that hosted previous COPs.
The local, winning projects will be showcased at COP27, which Egypt is scheduled to host in the Red Sea resort city of Sharm El-Sheikh in November, he added.
"The initiative overcame the useless argument about the centralisation and decentralisation of development action," Mohieldin said, explaining that the initiative has two dimensions: centralisation, in which mobilising technical and fund capabilities is stronger; and decentralisation, which aims to localise development action.
Although the initiative is focused on climate and environment issues, it adopts a holistic approach that is meant to achieve all SDGs through investing in human capacity, activating digitalisation, achieving sustainability, and making the most of new technologies to achieve development, he noted.
Mohieldin said that the initiative is tightly linked to Egypt’s 2030 Vision, which means that it is not a temporary measure. The initiative will be held annually with the goal of localising sustainable development and investing in Egypt’s 27 governorates to develop all of Egypt's cities and villages.
The climate champion explained that the aim of the local competition is to motivate all local players and stakeholders to show their best projects that contribute effectively to climate and environmental action, saying that the six categories of the competing projects allow all social strata to participate in development action.
"There are two levels in the competition. The first is the governorates level, in which one winning project will be selected in each category, and the winning six projects will be showcased on the day of the governorate in September. In the second level, three winning projects in each category will be selected to finally get the best 18 projects from all over Egypt," Mohieldin explained.
Each governorate will select the best smart green project in each of the six categories to compete for the best 18 projects on the national level, which will be awarded and showcased during COP27.
The six categories of competing projects are mega projects, medium projects, small local projects especially those related to women and Decent Life initiative, startups projects, development projects related to women, climate change and sustainability, and finally the non-profit social initiatives and participations.
The most important criteria to selecting the winning projects is to have two main tokens: sustainability and smartness. The project should make the most of digitalisation, he noted.