Emphasizing the importance of collaboration, data sharing, and investment in achieving global solutions for promoting water sustainability, Her Excellency Mariam bint Mohammed Almheiri, the UAE’s Minister of Climate Change and Environment, said water security will be a core part of the agenda at COP28.
In an interactive dialogue and side sessions at the United Nations in New York last week, Almheiri urged all parties to coordinate their climate change adaptation and mitigation initiatives with those for ecosystem and water preservation.
“The challenges that were once seen as relevant only for desert countries or small island developing states are now being experienced by a growing number of countries to the tune of nearly 2 billion people,” said Almheiri.
“There is, thankfully, a flip side to these challenges – investment and action on water supply ecosystem health and food systems have never had higher returns.”
Almheiri stated that COP28 will concentrate on the activities required to maintain 1.5 degrees Celsius and address climate impacts, including water, and added, “The UAE is committed to an inclusive and consultative process that results in enhanced financing policy and technology around water.”
She discussed the UAE’s efforts to combat the problems of water scarcity and climate change.
“What has been remarkable, during the last month of our listening tour for COP28, is how many other sectors raise water as an urgent focus; food producers, humanitarian agencies, environmental health organizations, energy producers, gender equality specialists.”
In a session organized by Egypt titled From COP27 to the UN 2023 Water Conf: Action on Water Adaptation and Resilience, Almheiri emphasized the UAE’s investments in research and development and cutting-edge water-efficient food production.
“We must collectively rethink the water challenge and recognize the impact of the three macro-trends: population growth, socio-economic development, and climate change, which each put pressure on water supplies.”
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