It is high time to pass from words to deeds. The upcoming COP25, the new European Commission, the EU member states, and the governments of all African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries can no longer turn a blind eye to the urgent need to immediately put into practice concrete and decisive common actions to tackle climate change, and to fairly combine development with sustainability.
The ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly co-president and S&D MEP, Carlos Zorrinho, said:
“From the 38th meeting of the ACP-EU JPA in Kigali, a unique voice has been raised over the need to focus financially and economically on the less developed and poorest countries, which paradoxically, despite being the least pollutant, are the ones suffering the most from the consequences of global warming with mass migration, conflicts, food uncertainty and natural disasters.
“We have the tools. The Paris Agreement, the Agenda 2030, the SDGs and now the New Green Deal in Europe; these are all tools and targets which world leaders must reach. It’s a question of political will. The ACP-EU speaks for nearly two billion people. This voice must be heard and continue to influence global actions in the context of the post-Cotonou Agreement. This is especially true now that multilateralism and international organisations are being put into question.
The S&D coordinator for ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly, Neena Gill, commented:
“It is no longer the time to work and think in separated political or geographical blocks. Europe shares the same global challenges as the ACP countries. We have common targets to reach: equalities, food security, women empowerment, a new model of development capable of being combined with sustainability.
“While a part of the world is confronted with food waste and health problems as malnutrition problems, in the poorest regions of Africa, Caribbean and Pacific countries desertification, salinification of freshwater systems and drought are jeopardizing the food security of millions of people, as a consequence of climate change. We must ensure governments respect the international commitments on investments and funds on food security in the areas most in need. This must also be boosted by private investments in research and development into technologies to improve the sustainability of our food systems everywhere.
“As an additional consequence of climate change, we have to fight to convince the governments of the ACP countries and EU member states to recognise the status of climate refugees, outlining principles for assistance to persons recognised as climate refugees.”