Statement of President von der Leyen on the outcome of COP28

© European Union, 2021, Source: EC - Audiovisual Service, Ursula von der Leyen© European Union, 2021, Source: EC - Audiovisual Service, Ursula von der Leyen

President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen said today:

“I welcome the successful conclusion of the COP28 UN Climate Conference and the first Global Stocktake of the Paris Agreement. It is good news for the whole world that we now have a multilateral agreement to accelerate emission reductions towards net zero by 2050, with urgent action in this critical decade. This includes an agreement  by all parties to transition away from fossil fuels. We have agreed on reducing global emissions by 43% by 2030, in line with the best available science, to keep 1.5 Celsius within reach. This will keep us on track with the goals of the Paris Agreement, and speed up the transition to a cleaner and healthier economy.

I want to thank our Climate Action Commissioner Wopke Hoekstra and all of our Commission and Member State negotiators for their efforts these past weeks. COP28 is a perfect example of European cooperation, coordination and leadership. And it is also a powerful demonstration of the value of multilateralism in tackling our planet’s biggest challenges.

I am delighted that the goals of the Global Renewables and Energy Efficiency Pledge, which we brought to the COP, have also been translated into the outcome of the Global Stocktake. The world has committed to tripling renewable energy capacity and doubling the rate of energy efficiency improvements by 2030. This gives powerful momentum to the transition away from fossil fuels. It is also important that we have an agreement to tackle methane emissions and other non-CO2 emissions in this decade.

2023 has been the hottest year on record, and so it is fitting that we also make it the most ambitious year on record for climate action. Parts of Southern Europe have reached almost 30 degrees Celsius again this week, in the middle of December, and we are not alone in facing such extreme weather. Climate adaptation is becoming increasingly important. That is why the European Union is also standing in solidarity and working in partnership with countries all around the globe. We are dedicating record amounts of money to international climate finance, including adaptation finance. The European Union has also helped to operationalise a new loss and damage fund at COP28, and with our Member States we have contributed over two thirds of the initial funding pledges.

We stand ready to do more, and we know that more must be done. For example, COP28 has also been the opportunity to discuss carbon pricing with other Parties, so that more countries start to put a price on pollution. And we have also been able to lay the ground for broader financial reforms, new innovative sources of funding, and aligning all financial flows with the Paris Agreement.”