President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo is leading Ghana’s delegation to the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference of Parties (COP26) which opened in Glasgow, Scotland yesterday.
He will join the World Leaders Summit, a special session of the 12-day event, where presidents and global personalities would speak on how to accelerate action towards the goals of the Paris Agreement and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.
President Akufo-Addo who left Ghana yesterday , according to a release from the presidency, would deliver a statement on Ghana’s position on Climate Change, as well as measures put in place to combat the threat it poses.
He would also deliver three separate statements on efforts Ghana is making to protects her forests and ocean, and participate in the Africa Adaptation Acceleration Summit, being held on the sidelines of COP 26.
Whilst in Glasgow, he would hold bilateral meetings with Uhuru Kenyatta; President of Kenya; Jonas Gahr Støre, Prime Minister of Norway; Robert Abela, Prime Minister of Malta; Elizabeth Truss, MP, British Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs; and Raphael Mariano Grossi, Director-General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
The President was accompanied by the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey; the Minister for Energy, Matthew Opoku Prempeh, MP; the Minister for Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, Dr Kwaku Afriyie, ; the Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel A. Jinapor, and officials of the presidency and Foreign Ministry.
The statement said President Akufo-Addo would return to Ghana on Thursday, November 4 2021, and in his absence, the Vice President, Alhaji Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, would, in accordance with Article 60(8) of the Constitution, act in his stead.
More than 30,000 delegates and 125 world leaders from across the globe have converged for the event on the theme ‘Keeping 1.5 alive; ensuring it is still possible to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees”,
Co- hosted by United Kingdom and Italy, it marks six years since 196 parties at COP 21 held in Paris in 2015, adopted the Paris Agreement, an international treaty on climate change which came into force in 2016.
Under the agreement , all parties including Ghana are required to have Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) to combat climate change , adapt to its effects and achieve the common goal of limiting global warming to below 2 degrees Celsius.
Ghana’s delegation, is also made up of negotiators, experts in climate and related fields drawn from sector ministries, departments and agencies and academia including Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Council of Scientific and Industrial Research(CSIR), Energy Commission, and other officials.
A pre-COP26 meetings in Accra, Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, Dr Afriyie said the country was poised to make the best of the event through collaboration with her African counterparts to attract the needed support for mitigation and adaptation programmes.
With Africa bearing the higher brunt of the impact of climate change despite its least contribution to global emissions , he said it was important that the continent puts its best food forward at the conference so it gets support.
“We are going to the CoP with some expectation including to attract investments; showcase what we are doing as a country on climate change and to contribute to the global discourse on Climate change;
“I know we have a solid team that will be up to task and I urge everyone to keep the momentum that has begun here back home when we get to Glasgow”, he said.
The Executive Director of the EPA, Dr Henry Kokofu, said the Agency would continue to provide technical leadership on climate change, noting that the phenomenon would be another pandemic if the international community failed to act fast.
FROM YAW KYEI, ACCRA & JONATHAN DONKOR, GLASGOW, SCOTLAND