COP26 brief

Briefing on COP26

Intervention by Ambassador Odd-Inge Kvalheim at the briefing by COP26 President and UN Secretary-General, 6 March 2020.

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Let me first thank you for the very informative information about the preparations for COP26. Some have dubbed 2020 a "super-year" for nature. COP26 certainly is among the most important events this year, and Norway will do its share to make it a success.

Climate change is the biggest challenge of our time, and Norway is taking a leading role in cutting emissions both nationally and internationally. We believe the Paris Agreement was a historic breakthrough. After the agreement on the rulebook in Katowice in 2018, the success of COP26 will now depend on our collective ability to raise ambition and enhance climate action.

As we all know, COP26 takes place in the year that first update of NDCs is due, and Norway believes there are strong reasons to review and strengthen the current NDCs. In early February, Norway therefore submitted an enhanced climate target under the Paris agreement. Our new and strengthened target is to reduce emissions with at least 50 %, and towards 55 % by 2030 compared to 1990 levels.

Norway is one of the first countries in the world to submit a strengthened target under the Paris Agreement. Since then many other countries have also pledged to strengthen their targets under the Paris Agreement and we hope that this will inspire the biggest emitters to follow suit. We need all countries on board to reach the Paris goals.

We would also like to encourage the UK as incoming COP Presidency to focus and enhance its diplomatic efforts to help Parties strengthen their NDCs ahead of COP26.

COP26 should also be a place to display climate action and international support in areas of both mitigation and adaptation. While Norway has been a large contributor to climate finance over decades, we are now substantially increasing support to developing countries’ efforts to build climate resilience. This will be one of our main priorities of our development assistance in the coming years.

We intend to contribute approximately 15 million US dollars to the Adaption Fund. And we have more than doubled our contribution to the Green Climate Fund. We believe it’s important at COP 26 to discuss how we can further improve such global responses to climate change.

Lastly, there are outstanding issues that need to be concluded at COP26. The rules for the Paris Agreement Article 6 on markets is one. We will also work to ensure follow-up on addressing the nexus of ocean and climate change after the decision we made in Madrid.

Again, thanks for this briefing. We wish the UK the best of luck in preparing for COP26, and stand ready provide any support we can in making it a success!