Dr Mahmoud Mohieldin: Overcoming Climate Action Obstacles Requires Data Availability, Mobilizing Sufficient Finance, and Immediate Fulfilling of Pledges and Commitments

Dr Mahmoud Mohieldin, UN Climate Change High Level Champion for Egypt and UN Special Envoy on Financing 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda, said that overcoming climate action obstacles requires updated data systems, mobilizing sufficient finance for climate projects, and the immediate fulfilling of commitments and pledges.

Mohieldin stated, during his participation in a discussion session about climate action obstacles within the events of NYC Climate Week, that states, companies and institutions that made their way to achieve growth and made progress on development tracks depended on leading data systems that should be taken as guidance for the developing countries to benefit from criteria and measures that help them achieve their development goals.

Mohieldin stressed that insufficient climate finance represents a big obstacle that prevents achieving climate targets, saying that Africa contribution to global carbon emissions doesn’t exceed 3%, however the continent has to afford the high cost of dealing with climate change and its other development goals.

“If there is no adequate finance and good technology to support that, the 3% will not be 3% anymore.” Mohieldin warned.

He added that mobilizing sufficient finance for climate action necessarily requires the developed countries to fulfill their pledges to finance climate action in the developing countries, beside the commitment of all stakeholders, especially public and private sectors, of working together to finance climate projects.

Regarding the implementation, Mohieldin referred to the role of new technologies in decreasing the cost of availing renewables by 90% in the last decade, in a sign that shows the opportunities of achieving inclusive growth regarding development goals and making good investments as well.

“Technologies are available but we’re not really progressing sufficiently there. And for the figure that was mentioned earlier on the 45% reduction of the emissions, actually, we’re adding 15%, so we are deviating by 60% and we’re expecting the poor countries to bear the cost of doing that.” Mohieldin said.

Mohieldin described the climate finance as insufficient, inefficient and unfair. Insufficient because even if the 100$ billions of Copenhagen have been fulfilled, they will not represent more than 3% from the required financing, inefficient because it takes too long from states to negotiate about finances instead of investing the time in real action, and unfair because the lowest share of finance goes to the developing countries and they’re asked to pay for a crisis that they didn’t make it at all.

“Climate action requires strong political will, commitment, credibility.” Mohieldin said, adding that with solutions on the table all these factors will help address climate change effectively.

The climate champion said that the track of climate change mitigation is macking progress because of the participation of the private sector, companies and non governmental actors, beside the involvement of GFANZ coalition, adding that this track needs a push from governments through creating a suitable business environment that attracts private finance, beside its need of more sums.

On the other hand, climate change adaptation, according to Mohieldin, needs more attention of governments in the first place to enhance the participation of private sector and non state actors, referring in this context to the Global Adaptation Center report that showed that the private sector contribution to financing climate change adaptation projects in Africa doesn’t exceed 3% of 11$ billions.

Mohieldin said that the four regional forums that are already conducted and organized by Egypt presidency of COP27, UN regional economic commissions and HLCs resulted in more than 60 investable, bankable and applicable projects.

Dr Mohieldin explains how to overcome climate action obstacles during NYC Climate Week