Prime Minister Rishi Sunak will cement the UK’s COP legacy with a series of announcements on energy transition, climate financing and forest and nature preservation, as he hands over the baton to Egypt at COP27 today (Monday 7 November).
The UK continues to deliver on key funding commitments, spending £11.6 billion on international climate finance. Recognising the existential threat climate change is already posing around the world – from catastrophic floods in Pakistan to drought in Somalia – the Government will commit to triple funding for climate adaptation as part of that budget, from £500m in 2019 to £1.5bn in 2025.
The Prime Minister will also host an event later today to launch the Forests and Climate Leaders’ Partnership. The new group, initially comprising 20 countries, will meet twice yearly to track commitments on the landmark Forests and Land Use declaration at COP26, which aims to halt and reverse forest loss by 2030.
To support the forest agenda, the UK is committing £90m today for conservation in the Congo Basin, a vital tropical rainforest which is home to some 10,000 species of tropical plants and several endangered species, including forest elephants, chimpanzees and mountain gorillas.
The PM will also confirm £65 million in funding for the Nature, People and Climate Investment Fund, which supports indigenous and local forest communities, and new financing for Treevive, which is working to conserve and restore two million hectares of tropical forest.
As the UK hands over the Presidency of COP, the Government is focused in particular on partnering with the private sector to facilitate green innovation and energy transition, at home and around the world.
The Prime Minister will announce a further £65.5 million for the Clean Energy Innovation Facility today, which provides grants to researchers and scientists in developing countries to accelerate the development of clean technology. Since the BEIS-led fund was launched in 2019 it has supported the creation of biomass-powered refrigeration in India, prototype lithium-ion batteries in Nigeria and clean hydrogen-based fuels for steel production in Morocco, among other innovations.
Prime Minister Rishi Sunak is expected to tell COP27 later today: “The world came together in Glasgow with one last chance to create a plan that would limit global temperature rises to 1.5 degrees. The question today is: can we summon the collective will to deliver on those promises?
“I believe we can. By honouring the pledges we made in Glasgow, we can turn our struggle against climate change into a global mission for new jobs and clean growth. And we can bequeath our children a greener planet and a more prosperous future. That’s a legacy we could be proud of.”
As well as supporting innovation, the UK is working with G7 allies to provide countries with reliable, transparent sources of sustainable infrastructure financing. Ahead of an expected meeting later today between the Prime Minister and President Ruto, the UK and Kenya have reaffirmed their commitment to the UK-Kenya Strategic Partnership and agreed to progress a number of flagship green investment projects.
The projects include new and expanded solar and geothermal power plants in Kenya backed by British International Investment, UK export financing for Nairobi’s ground-breaking Railway City and a major Public-private Partnership on the $3 billion Grand High Falls Dam hydropower project led by UK firm GBM Engineering.
The UK will also confirm new financial support for Egypt’s flagship COP27 initiative, the ‘Nexus on Food, Water and Energy’. The funding will develop projects including solar parks and energy storage innovations, and is expected to mobilise billions in private sector finance.
The Prime Minister will also attend a roundtable discussion focused on energy transition partnerships, and will deliver a national plenary statement later in the day setting out the UK’s climate commitments.
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