22 Sep 2009
Summit on Climate Change
H.E. Mr. Manouchehr Mottaki
Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Islamic Republic of Iran
(Tuesday, 22 September 2009- New York)
In the name of God, the compassionate, the Merciful
At the outset I would like to express my appreciation to the Secretary General for his initiative to convene this timely Summit.
Climate change is an inevitable and urgent global challenge with long-term implications for the sustainable development of all countries in particular developing countries. Climate change also adversely imposes serious damages to vital socio-economic infrastructures of countries, and erodes their development progress.
The progress towards achieving technical, technological and financial commitments made in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), and subsequently in the Kyoto Protocol by developed countries has been extremely disappointing. Those who closely follow the ongoing climate change negotiation process can see the sense of disappointment among developing countries from constant rhetoric which could jeopardize the success of the Copenhagen Conference.
Concerted and ambitious commitments and measures are required by developed countries, based on the principles enshrined in the Convention, to address the needs of developing countries in all four major components of the Bali Action Plan namely; mitigation, adaptation, finance and technology. This is the basic requirement for the success of the Copenhagen Conference. The Post-Kyoto Deal should preserve the right of developing countries to have access to the appropriate technology, know-how and finance, in order to enable them to protect their ecological and socio-economic security, and to achieve the internationally agreed development goals including MDGs, and in particular the goal on poverty eradication.
Reducing emissions from deforestation and degradation (REDD) should be definitely one major component of the post-Kyoto agreement. However, the Copenhagen Conference has to take a more comprehensive approach to this issue, and look into REDD in the context of sustainable management of forest. Investing in sustainable forest management will bring 10 million new green jobs which provide long-term employment opportunities for the rural sector and fostering pro-poor sustainable development in many developing countries. On top of that, such an investment would also make a major contribution to climate change mitigation and adaptation efforts, biodiversity conservation and combating deforestation and desertification.
Developing Countries are committed to the Convention and the Bali Action Plan and will further undertake nationally appropriate mitigation actions, provided that these actions are enabled by capacity-building activities and supported by investment, finance and transfer of technology from developed countries, in a measurable, reportable, and verifiable way, as specified in the Bali Action Plan.
One major regional impacts of climate change which has emerged as a huge challenge to countries in recent years, is dust and sand storm. Dust and sand storm is one of the most serious and hard-to-beat challenges in the last few years inflicting substantial damage to the socio-economic situation to Iran and many countries of our region, impairing the normal life and health of the people, eroding agricultural lands and polluting water resources throughout the area.
This is a region-wide problem and in addition to a firm national determination in all countries involved, requires regional and global cooperation and interaction to combat this challenge. The post-Kyoto arrangements have to look at the dust and sand storm closely in order to identify the root causes of the problem and to eradicate them. Of course, cooperation and coordination among affected countries is essential for any successful plan of action, and Iran will spare no efforts to work with others to address this challenge.
We need to work together now, and engage in a meaningful way in a fair and sincere cooperation to fight collectively the challenge of climate change. Tomorrow would be too late.
Thank You Mr. Chairman.