April 17, 2024


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Climate Change Crisis: Rwanda joins UN for Urgent Plea for Action at COP 28 in Dubai

Mr. Simon Stiell, the UN Climate Change Executive Secretary

By Ange de la Victoire DUSABEMUNGU

In a powerful appeal to world leaders convened at COP 28 in Dubai, Mr. Simon Stiell, the UN Climate Change Executive Secretary, warned that failing to take tangible actions to address climate change would have dire consequences for millions of people. He emphasized that unless we signal the end of the fossil fuel era and reduce emissions, we risk our own decline and pay with people’s lives. Highlighting the urgency of the situation, he stressed that science gives us only six years before we exceed the planet’s ability to cope with our emissions and surpass the 1.5-degree limit.

In an Interview with TOP AFRICA NEWS Media, Dr. Jeanne d’Arc Mujawamariya, Rwanda’s Minister of Environment echoed the Mr. Simon’s call emphasizing that every project in Rwanda must prioritize climate change considerations.

She said that no commendable progress can be made if millions of people continue to suffer from the impacts of climate change.

For her, COP28 must be a platform for transformational actions that address the challenges faced by vulnerable communities.

Dr. Jeanne d’Arc Mujawamariya, Rwanda’s Minister of Environment together with Faustin Munyazikwiye, Deputy Director General of Rwanda Environment Management Authority

Mr. Stiell’s call for action resonated deeply, urging delegates to remember that behind every decision they make at COP, there are real human beings, families, and communities depending on them. He urged them to turn their badges into symbols of honor and life jackets for those they serve. His message was clear: accelerate climate action to protect lives and safeguard our shared future.

Dr. Mujawamariya emphasized that Rwanda’s priority at COP 28 is to showcase the solutions they have committed to scaling up green growth.

Operationalize “Loss and Damage Fund”

Dr. Mujawamariya stressed the importance of operationalizing the loss and damage fund and ensuring sufficient funding to support communities disproportionately affected by climate change. Additionally, she called for faster emissions cuts by major polluters, particularly developed countries, to keep the 1.5-degree goal alive.

“Rwanda is committed to putting people at the center of every step we take, with policies, programs, and projects that remain people-centered. For Rwanda, there is no turning back, as we strive to green every single development project and prioritize climate change for long-term sustainability and resilience. we recognize our responsibility to future generations and are determined to fulfill it.” she said.

The call for action from both Mr. Simon Stiell and Dr. Jeanne d’Arc Mujawamariya is clear – urgent action is needed to combat climate change, protect lives, and ensure a sustainable future.

World leaders must prioritize the transition away from fossil fuels, support vulnerable communities, and accelerate emissions cuts if we are to meet the goals outlined in the Paris Agreement. The time for action is now, and failure to act will have severe consequences for millions of people worldwide.

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