British HC hosts virtual confab on climate change

The UK will host the United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) in Glasgow in November, 2021. With less than a year to go, the British High Commission in Colombo hosted a virtual conference on December 9 to introduce COP26 to Sri Lanka. The UK and partners from Sri Lanka, France, Italy and the UN set out their climate, COP and UN Framework Convention on Climate Change ambitions.

As the incoming COP Presidency, the UK is leading by example and raising global ambition to tackle climate change. On December 12, the UK set out its own ambitious Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) at an international Climate Ambition Summit, highlighting the UK’s climate related targets, policies and measures towards global climate action.

Under the UK’s COP Presidency the overall aim is to accelerate global progress towards the goals of the Paris Agreement through increased ambition in three key domains: Adaptation, Mitigation and Finance.

Sri Lanka is rich in biodiversity but vulnerable to the adverse effects of climate change, such as temperature rise, rainfall variability and sea level rise. The UK recognises Sri Lanka’s climate leadership through its work to promote nature-based solutions to protect, restore and manage ecosystems and biodiversity in a way that also benefits livelihoods. The UK also welcomes President Rajapaksa’s recent climate commitments, which include a move to generate 80 per cent of all power through renewable energy by 2030, banning single-use plastic by 2021, and its work on the ‘Colombo Declaration’ to halve Nitrogen waste by 2030.

The British High Commission is supporting Sri Lankan environmental organisations through initiatives such as the Commonwealth Blue Charter and Darwin Fund, to reduce plastic pollution and preserve Sri Lanka’s unique environmental heritage, including mangroves, wetlands and wildlife. Under its COP26 Presidency, the UK aims to generate significant momentum on climate action. Sri Lanka is a key part of this equation.

“The UK is proud to host COP26 in Glasgow next year. We need to continue working together to address the impact of climate change and create a more sustainable, secure and prosperous planet for all.’’

British High Commissioner to Sri Lanka Sarah Hulton OBE said, “World leaders will come together at COP26 in Glasgow next November to make progress on climate change. It is essential that governments, business and communities worldwide take strong climate action now to set the world on a Net Zero trajectory. Sri Lanka is an important partner for the UK in delivering this change.”

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