Ambassador Barbier speaks at the Pan-African Parliament
On Friday 9 October 2015, upon invitation of the new President of the Pan-African Parliament (PAP), Hon. Roger Nkodo Dang, the Ambassador of France to South Africa, HE Elisabeth Barbier, addressed the members of the parliament on the issues at stake at the upcoming 21st session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), COP21.
The Pan-African Parliament is currently holding the first ordinary session of its 4th legislature in Midrand (5 – 17 October 2015).
The Ambassador thanked the members of the Pan-African Parliament for their mobilization around issues pertaining to the fight against climate change.
A few weeks ahead of COP21, she highlighted that in order to reach a sustainable, universal and binding, as well as a balanced agreement in Paris, the remaining challenges needed to be addressed together through planning, negotiation, the mobilisation of public and private resources for a low-carbon development, and a dynamic, concerted and cooperative action.
The Ambassador also stressed the importance of the “Agenda of Solutions”, or Lima-Paris Action Agenda, that aims at strengthening the dynamic of commitments of States and non-State actors. This agenda demonstrates that the fight against climate change offers economic opportunities for all countries, regardless of their level of development. It also shows that a strong coalition of State and non-State, public and private actors, is ready to pull in the same direction, with a common objective.
On behalf of the future presidency of COP21, the Ambassador pointed out that particular attention was being paid to the African priorities in the context of the negotiations: mitigation, adaptation, financing, capacity development and technology transfer. She underlined that France was fully mobilised to ensure that equity and justice were at the heart of COP21 and that the agreement to be reached in Paris needed to be a historic one for Africa.
Lastly, she called on the members of Parliament to keep in mind that Paris will be more of a beginning than an end: “The Paris agreement, as crucial as it may be, will be nothing without concrete actions on the ground. The time for speeches is long over. It is now time for action.”
The Ambassador’s presentation was followed by a debate in the plenary, engaging delegates from different member States. In her final remark, HE Elisabeth Barbier thanked the members of the Pan-African Parliament for their contributions and promised to convey their messages to the future presidency of COP21.
- Download the Ambassador’s speech here.