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France/Africa/climate change

France/Africa/climate change

Published on April 26, 2011
Launch of the Paris-Nairobi Initiative – Communiqué issued by the Ministry for Ecology, Sustainable development, Transport and Housing

Paris, April 22, 2011

Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet is launching the Paris-Nairobi Initiative on access to clean energy for all in Africa and the countries most vulnerable to climate change.

Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet, Minister for Ecology, Sustainable development, Transport and Housing, and the Kenyan Prime Minister, Raila Odinga, yesterday gave the go-ahead to the Paris-Nairobi Climate Initiative on access to clean energy. The conference in Paris brought together more than 300 participants from 90 of the States most vulnerable to climate change, particularly in Africa; more than 40 ministers made the journey.

The initiative enabled progress on three key subjects:

- better understanding of the related challenges of economic development and the fight against global warming: the discussions showed that the two issues are increasingly interlinked and that developing countries must be put on a low-carbon path through use of the best available technologies;

- access to the financial instruments to fight climate change established by the Kyoto Protocol must be improved for Africa: at the moment, it is essentially the emerging Asian countries that benefit from them. The discussions made it possible to identify options for directing loans to where they are necessary;

- a lack of projects cannot be a reason for a lack of financing: the conference provided an opportunity to showcase exemplary projects already carried out, proving that it is possible to break the vicious circle that consists in saying there is no financing because there are no interesting projects, and vice versa;

A joint declaration by the co-presidency sums up the discussions and provides for the creation of a pilot group whose aims are to provide high-level political support for issues around access to clean energy, stimulate reflexion and dialogue between the different players, strengthen cooperative approaches to developing projects and help to implement them.

Several countries have already committed themselves to joining, including Argentina, Algeria, Senegal, Gabon, Morocco, Mauritius, Congo and the Democratic Republic of Congo, as well as several international organizations.

Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet invited all the countries present wishing to join them to do so.

“This conference brings hope now, at the start of the 2011-2012 period, which is crucial for the fight against climate change,” said Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet. “Our goal in providing concrete solutions now is to help make the international climate conference in Durban in December the setting for not only negotiations but also action.”

The Minister recalled France’s commitment to defining and implementing innovative financing, a theme The Paris-Nairobi Initiative will meet again at ministerial level in Kenya in 2012 to continue making progress towards access to energy for all while contributing to the fight against climate change./.

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