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Deputy Secretary-General, in Summit Dialogue Message, Urges Donors to Commit Half of Climate Funds for Crucial ‘Breakthrough’ on Adaptation, Resilience

Following is the text of UN Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed’s video message for the Climate Adaptation Summit Ministerial Dialogue on Adaptation Action, held today:

I thank the Global Center for Adaptation for convening this inaugural Ministerial Dialogue on Adaptation Action.  This forum provides a much-needed space for political leadership and cooperation.

The Secretary-General and I are committed to achieving a breakthrough on adaptation and resilience in 2021.  This is crucial for hundreds of millions of people.  To achieve this, we have five asks for you today.

First, we call on donors, public and multilateral development banks to significantly increase the volume and predictability of adaptation finance.  By COP26 [the twenty-sixth United Nations Climate Change Conference], all donors and multilateral development banks should commit to direct 50 per cent of their climate finance towards adaptation and resilience.

Second, we call on you to integrate climate risks into all policies, investments and budgetary processes.  As ministers and political leaders, you can ensure this happens.

Third, we need to rapidly scale up existing catastrophe-related financial instruments and develop new ones to strengthen resilience.

Doing so makes economic sense.  For instance, the African Risk Capacity is based on the principle that investing in preparedness and early warning through innovative finance mechanisms is one of the best approaches to building resilience.

The results speak for themselves, as every dollar invested ex ante via the African Risk Capacity can save about $4.50 in post-disaster response cost.  This means that investing in climate resilience creates jobs and saves money.

Fourth, we urge you to ease access to finance, especially for the most vulnerable.  This is both a moral imperative and an opportunity to support those on the front lines of climate impacts.

Fifth, we need to support the development and implementation of community, local and regional adaptation and resilience initiatives.

For instance, the recently launched Great Green Wall Accelerator will actively support the Sahelian countries in their efforts to scale and implement projects, tackling climate, biodiversity and land degradation cohesively while building a corridor of prosperity across the region.  So far, over $14 billion in funding has been pledged to carry this work forward over the next five years.  Support and efforts now need to focus on delivery on the ground.

We are in a race against time to adapt to a rapidly changing climate and protect the most vulnerable.  For all the suffering it has caused, the COVID-19 pandemic has also been a forceful reminder of the importance of preparedness.

This new forum and your ambitious actions can accelerate this vital work in line with the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement [on climate change].  As we recover from the pandemic and look towards COP26 and beyond, I ask you to remember that your efforts will save lives and livelihoods and usher in a fairer and more sustainable world.


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