Against the backdrop of the Coronavirus pandemic, European Commission Executive Vice-President Frans Timmermans, Canada’s Environment and Climate Change Minister Jonathan Wilkinson and China’s Ecology and Environment Minister Huang Runqiu co-chaired on July 7 the 4th session of the Ministerial on Climate Action (MoCA) in virtual format, focusing on aligning global recovery measures with the Paris Agreement, and improving resilience against future crises.
Meeting participants included Ministers from G20 countries and other key parties in the UN climate negotiations.
“The planet cannot wait for us to take action on climate change. We have been forced by COVID19 to postpone COP26, but we are working with all of our international partners to share ideas and experience on restructuring and cleaning up our economies,” Timmermans said. “The €750 billion Recovery Package proposed by the European Commission has the green transition at its heart, including in our support for recovery in partner countries, and I was pleased to present this to my colleagues from around the world today. Without a green recovery we would come out of the COVID crisis only to find out we’ve sleepwalked into a climate crisis,” he added.
As countries around the world fight to tackle the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic, they also face a once-in-a-generation opportunity to reboot their economies and build more sustainable, inclusive and resilient societies, the European Commission said. “Investment choices we make today in our recovery plans must address the well-being of this and future generations, through transformational climate action and a greening of our economies,” the Commission said in a press release.
The MoCA is an important forum for coordinating action, and sends a clear political signal that the recovery from the coronavirus pandemic will go hand in hand with the transition to low-carbon and climate resilient economies in many of the world’s major economies, the press release read.
The co-chairs acknowledged on July 7 that societies around the world have been affected differently by the pandemic and are at different stages in planning for the recovery, the Commission said, adding that they noted that their efforts will yield the best possible results if they work together, share experiences and coordinate their action at national level and global levels.