On the road to COP26 and COP22: PAM holds a high-level consultation and calls for parliamentary climate action

On the road to COP26 and COP22: PAM holds a high-level consultation and calls for parliamentary climate action

On 12 July 2021, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Mediterranean (PAM) organised a high-level consultation on climate action entitled “On the road to COP26 and COP22: the role of Euro-Mediterranean and Gulf Parliaments in climate negotiations”. The event gathered over eighty representatives from national and international Parliaments, UN Agencies, international organisations, and the scientific community.

The consultation was opened by the remarks of Amb. Sergio Piazzi, who emphasised the role of the Assembly as a platform for parliamentarians across the Euro-Mediterranean and Gulf regions to access science-based data and strategic information on climate policies. He also underlined the importance PAM places over environmental protection, exemplified in the PAM longstanding advocacy for a global Carbon Added Tax, as decided at the 2015 Monaco PAM Plenary Session. 

In his opening remarks, Hon. Centemero (Italy), co-chair of the PAM Economic Panel, highlighted the impacts of the ongoing climate crisis and the urgency of parliamentary engagement for the sake of current and future generations. Hon. Centemero further encouraged his fellow parliamentarians to adopt a forward-looking and an environmentally sound approach when structuring the post-Covid-19 recovery packages. 

The roundtable was launched by Dr. Mitja Bricelj (Slovenia), President of the Mediterranean Commission on Sustainable Development (MCSD), who urged PAM Parliaments to reinforce multilateral coordination to get the region back on track to meet the Sustainable Development Goals. 

Prof. Petteri Taalas, Secretary General of the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO), illustrated the current effects of climate change in the PAM region and the future dramatic scenarios in case of unilateralism and political inaction. He stressed that 85% of the current trends is due to the continued use of fossil fuels, the main responsible of global warming. 

Dr. Luca Brusa, Coordinator of Regional Support at the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), urged PAM countries to resume discussions on the rules of implementation of the Paris Agreement as well as to review the emission trade system. 

Ms. Giarratano, Head of the Department of Personnel, Nature, and the Mediterranean at the Italian Ministry of the Ecological Transition, provided insights on the efforts made by the Italian Government in promoting sustainable practices in maritime ports and trade across the Mediterranean, and to sustain investments in innovation and decarbonisation of maritime transport.

Dr. Florian Ermacora, Head of Unit for Neighbourhood Policies at the Directorate General for Energy of the European Commission (EC), touched upon the importance of investments in green hydrogen, resilient infrastructures, and solar and wind power, to accelerate the transition towards carbon neutrality in the PAM region. He emphasised the importance of the cooperation between the EC and PAM in addressing these critical issues. 

Mr. Enrique de Villamore, Director of the Regional Activity Centre for Sustainable Consumption and Production (SCP/RAC) of the UN Environment Programme/Mediterranean Action Plan (UNEP/MAP), illustrated how sustainability can foster economic growth. He presented a set of policy measures for supporting green and circular businesses that Parliaments could discuss and promote in the framework of the Mediterranean COP22, including the creation of a Mediterranean Community of eco-entrepreneurs. 

The expert panel was concluded by Mr. Antonio Troya, Director of the International Union for Conservation of Nature – Centre for Mediterranean Cooperation (IUCN-Med), who highlighted the importance to forward nature-based solutions to preserve the endangered regional biodiversity. 

The roundtable was followed by a parliamentary debate, in which participants emphasised the delicate moment the world is living and the unprecedented opportunity that PAM countries must seize to advance climate action through post-pandemic green recovery strategies.

The event was closed by the remarks of Hon. Alain Perea (France), PAM Rapporteur on Environment. He thanked all participants and guests and reaffirmed PAM commitment to continue to promote science-based solutions for the green transition of PAM economies and societies. He highlighted the role of communities as critical to the successful implementation of green transition. 

Taking stock of the outcomes of the meeting, PAM will continue to actively engage in G20 Forum and the upcoming regional and international climate negotiations, namely COP26 in Glasgow (UK) and the Mediterranean COP22 in Antalya (Turkey), in its capacity as the main intergovernmental organisation representing the voice of Euro-Mediterranean and Gulf Parliaments.//


Issued on: 13/07/2021


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