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30.09.2015

Statement of Federal Minister Barbara Hendricks at the Interactive Dialogue "Protecting our Planet and Combatting Climate Change" of the UN Sustainable Development Summit

Statement of Federal Minister Barbara Hendricks at the Interactive Dialogue "Protecting our Planet and Combatting Climate Change" of the UN Sustainable Development Summit

- Check against delivery. -

Distinguished co-chairs,
Excellencies,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

It is well known that the current lifestyles in many countries do not respect the ecological carrying capacity of our planet. If we don’t act resolutely in this decade we will face terrible consequences in this century.

The SDGs are a first major effort. They will catalyse and accelerate the transformation to a sustainable future. It is our duty to implement them with the same ambition we saw in the negotiations for the 2030 Agenda.

The G7 summit in Elmau was an important step towards a low-carbon development pathway. With Paris in mind, we agreed to strive for a decarbonisation of the global economy over the course of this century.

To be clear: moving away from fossil fuels is a major transformation for Germany, too. Yet, what we see is that our vision has spurred a major increase in investments that in turn facilitates the transformation to a low-carbon economy. Our long-term goal has become a major economic driver.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am optimistic that the same spirit that has brought us here today can guide us through the COP21 in Paris.

We will have to agree on a legally binding climate agreement that limits global warming to below 2 degrees. This treaty has to be applicable to all parties. And it has to have the capacity and flexibility to develop the international climate regime further.

For this, we will need three things:

Firstly, a long-term orientation as already outlined

Secondly, strong and universally binding rules to ensure maximum transparency and accountability

Thirdly, intended nationally determined contributions by all parties and a mechanism to adjust them upwards if necessary.

In addition we must ensure two more aspects in particular for the poorest and most vulnerable countries: the agreement must promote climate-resilient development and it must enhance support for ambitious and transformative mitigation and adaptation action. Germany takes this seriously and aims to double its climate finance by 2020.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Let us seize this opportunity. Let Paris be the starting point for our joint transition to a low-carbon, climate-resilient future.

Thank you for your attention.

30.09.2015 | Speech Dr. Barbara Hendricks | New York