Mahmoud Mohieldin UN Climate Change Champion speaks during session in COP27 Global Youth Statement
Mohieldin's remarks came during his participation in a session titled "COP27 Global Youth Statement -- Opening Ceremony Handover," during the 27th session of the UN Climate Change Summit taking place in Sharm El-Sheikh from 6-18 November.
Participants in the session included Ashraf Sobhy, the minister of youth and sports; Yasmine Fouad, the minister of environment; and Simon Stiell, executive secretary of the UN Climate Convention.
"Achieving climate goals needs a social behaviour change, a fair and sufficient finance, and the availability of scientific solutions," Mohieldin said, pointing to the important role of youth in raising awareness about climate problems and solutions.
Mohieldin, also UN special envoy on Financing 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda, praised the goals set by youth for climate action, stressing that "youth are the fuel for implementing climate and development action."
"The Sharm El-Sheikh climate conference is interested in inclusivity and diversity, so it is important for all groups and parties to take part in expressing opinions, proposing solutions, and implementing measures," Mohieldin said.
He added that this inclusivity was expressed by the National Initiative for Smart Green Projects, launched by the Egyptian government to localise development and climate action, which witnessed a significant participation of university students, young researchers, and entrepreneurs.
Mobilising efforts towards adaptation
In a second session entitled "The Sharm El-Sheikh Adaptation Agenda: An Opportunity to Accelerate the Transformation to Resilience," Mohieldin stressed the important role of science to find solutions to major challenges such as debt reduction and debt swap for investment in nature, as well as solutions to adaptation and resilience problems.
The world is far from achieving mitigation goals, which is the first line of defence, Mohieldin added, referring to the report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which revealed that instead of working to reduce carbon emissions by 45 percent, a reduction of an additional 15 percent is needed
Countries are deviating from achieving the desired goal of reducing carbon emissions by 60 percent, he noted, adding that developing countries will bear the consequences and the largest cost of addressing them.
Mohieldin highlighted the importance of mobilising science, technology and investment towards adaptation measures, noting that 80 percent of climate finance is directed to mitigation and only 20 percent to adaptation.
The Sharm El-Sheikh Adaptation Agenda, which the Egyptian presidency launched on Tuesday, is meant to support adaptation measures in various sectors such as nature, water, planning, infrastructure, and oceans within specific time frames, he said.
He called for enhancing investment in data systems to contribute to doing better jobs and identifying financial gaps globally.
Mohieldin cited the climate champions' initiative "Race to Zero" as a means to support the lines of defence for adaptation and damages and losses.