HE the Minister of Environment and Climate Change, Sheikh Dr Faleh bin Nasser bin Ahmed bin Ali al-Thani affirmed Sunday Qatar's commitment to achieving sustainability and supporting innovative solutions to address climate challenges that cause desertification and threaten the security of water, food, and energy, highlighting the country's 25-year penchant for environmental preservation since it signed the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in 1996.
This came in his speech at the opening of the third Qatar National Dialogue on Climate Change — a two-day event organised by Qatar Foundation's (QF) Earthna Center, the French Embassy in Doha, the French Business Council in Qatar, and Qatar National Bank (QNB), as part of Expo 2023 Doha.
HE the minister highlighted Qatar's unrelented efforts to enhance sustainability and reduce emissions through tangible on-the-ground moves including setting up eco-friendly urban cities that merge green technology with urban design such as Lusail City and Msheireb Downtown Doha, the Doha Metro network to promote green transportation, the 800-mw Al Kharsaah solar power plant on an area of 10sqkm. He also took a lot of pride in Doha's hosting of the most sustainable World Cup in FIFA history, where the country set a new global standard for sustainability and environmental preservation.
The minister expressed happiness at the opening of the third Qatar National Dialogue on Climate Change, which discusses one of the current most pressing problems, and the significant climate change impacts across the world including rising temperatures, extreme weather, loss of biodiversity, and others that threaten economies and eco systems.
The world needs further efforts and work to address this problem and mitigate its severity for healthy, safe and prosperous future generations, he said, reiterating Qatar's commitment and determination to address and adapt to climate change through collaboration among research and academic institutions, companies, government and private agencies.
HE Sheikh Faleh voiced hopes that the event, which has evolved into a platform for experts to discuss and explore innovative solutions to the difficult global challenges, would contribute to bringing about positive change and tangible results that help cut back on the climate change effects.
The outcomes of the deliberations will play a fundamental role in formulating the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change's methodology regarding sustainability issues, and putting frameworks for participation in the COP28 conference due in the UAE in late 2023, in a bid to keep the rising global temperatures below 1.5 degree Celsius and mobilise the necessary funding by 2030, in line with the Paris Agreement goals.
For his part, Executive Director of Earthna Center Dr Gonzalo Castro de la Mata stated that this edition of the Qatar National Dialogue on Climate Change would discuss the impact of climate change and how to confront its challenges as well as the responsibility that falls on individuals, organizations and countries to build a sustainable future.
He praised the role of Qatar in dealing with the issue of climate change by being proactive in confronting it and mitigating its consequences. The commitment to confronting climate change is reflected in its policy, research institutions, and civil and sustainable organizations, and its hosting of the International Horticultural Expo 2023 Doha, which aims to bring about positive development and tangible results to mitigate the effects of climate change, he said.
He expressed confidence that the upcoming edition will be followed by positive measures and changes thanks to the support it enjoys from the partners in the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change, the French Embassy in Doha, and the French Business Council in Qatar, among others.
Ambassador of the French Republic Jean-Baptiste Faivre praised the efforts made to host and organise the Expo 2023 Doha, a major event that reflects Qatar's commitment to raising the level of awareness and progress made in climate change issues.
France, he said, has set ambitious goals to achieve sustainability, operating within the framework of the European Union, and is committed to reducing emissions, increasing afforestation, protecting biodiversity, and promoting social equity. Both Qatar and France, he added, are committed to sustainable development, urban greening, and green transportation, expanding the scope of partners in this aspect, and accelerating the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by reducing waste and emissions, reducing the use of plastic, strengthening resilient systems, and encouraging agricultural practices such as diversifying crops capable of countering the effects of climate change, thus helping to create food supplies.
The third edition of the Qatar National Dialogue on Climate Change comes from Earthna's effort to bring together parties concerned from various sectors of the country to determine the methodology for work related to addressing climate change in Qatar.
The dialogue provides an opportunity to enhance cooperation and knowledge exchange between ministries, financial, industrial, academic, and research institutions and international organizations. Its discussions highlight the latest innovations and opportunities through which climate change can be addressed, with a focus on the topics of water and food security, economic diversification, green finance, sustainable transport, and reducing the effects of climate change.
The first day's sessions reviewed several topics related to climate change-related innovations, economic diversification, sustainable transformation, and the involvement of companies and organizations concerning vital raw materials and food and water security.
The second day covers sustainable transport, public transport infrastructure, alternative fuels, electric vehicles and logistics, and other sessions on permanent carbon, artificial intelligence solutions to combat climate change, and green and sustainable finance.
Earthna is a non-profit policy research and advocacy center, established by Qatar Foundation (QF) to spread awareness and influence national and global sustainability policy.
HE the Minister of Environment and Climate Change, Sheikh Dr Faleh bin Nasser bin Ahmed bin Ali al-Thani speaking at the event Sunday.