Minister Joubert addresses leaders at high-level dialogue on energy in New York |25 September 2021
“Seychelles is doing its best to transform its energy systems, and in doing so, contribute its fair share in combating the climate crisis.”
This was said by the Minister for Agriculture, Climate Change and Environment, Flavien Joubert, at a high-level dialogue on energy in New York.
The High-level Dialogue on Energy was brought together by UN secretary-general António Guterres at the summit level at the request of the General Assembly.
This was a historic opportunity to accelerate action on clean, affordable energy for all, (Sustainable Development Goal 7), as the first gathering of leaders in more than 40 years at the UN solely devoted to energy issues.
The main objective of the dialogue was to promote the implementation of the energy-related goals and targets of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. It raised ambitions and accelerated actions towards the achievement of the SDG7 targets by catalyzing innovative solutions, investments, and multi-stakeholder partnerships in support of the Decade of Action to deliver the SDGs and accelerate the implementation of the Paris Agreement.
The dialogue was held yesterday at a summit level during the 76th session of the General Assembly in New York, for a duration of up to a day. This also brought together heads of state and government as well as leaders from business, foundations, and international, civil society, and youth organisations, to mobilise commitments and actions. Over 100 member states have inscribed to participate.
In the midst of the Covid-19, Minister Joubert are among the delegates who provided a pre-recorded statement. In his intervention, the minister highlighted that Seychelles is doing its best to transform its energy systems, and in doing so, contribute its fair share in combating the climate crisis.
He further stated that Seychelles as a small island developing state (Sids), is accelerating its efforts to scale up renewable energy, increase energy efficiency, and move to green transport.
“As a large oceanic state reliant on the ocean for many things, Seychelles is doing its best to transform our energy systems, and in doing so, contribute its fair share in combating the climate crisis. So far, Seychelles has invested in solar farms, a wind farm, and will host the first Independent Power Producer in Africa to have a utility-scale grid-connected solar PV plant. We are also putting in place financing schemes to encourage private entities and residents to install solar PV on buildings to reduce our dependency on fossil fuels and in turn, reduce pressures on our foreign exchange reserves,” said Minister Joubert.
“Moreover, we are working on a national e-mobility strategy and regulatory and policy framework for electric vehicles. We are shifting to low-carbon technology to substantially reduce our greenhouse gas emissions through refrigeration and air conditioning, so as not to raise our carbon footprint,” added Minister Joubert.
Furthermore, as Seychelles is accelerating its effort to scale up renewable energy, Minister Joubert called upon key stakeholders to discuss the future energy sources to facilitate collaboration and cooperation for the country.
He also took this occasion to connect and consult with international partners for suitable investment opportunities in renewable energy.
Throughout the time, such a partnership would strengthen the role of renewable energy in balancing our country’s energy mix and would contribute to addressing its long-term energy security.
“Seychelles aims for a transformational change from a current target of 15% renewables by 2030 to a strategy for 100% by 2050 in our updated and enhanced NDC, in keeping with the IPCC’s Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5 degrees Celsius,” Minister Joubert declared.
The minister also highlighted that to achieve this 15% renewables by 2030, Sids like Seychelles need to move away from fossil fuel and embrace renewable energy on a large scale.
“This is what will allow us to meet our energy needs, lower our carbon emissions, and mitigate the adverse effects of climate change. We are committed to providing sustainable energy to our population at affordable rates and attain UN SDG 7,” Minister Joubert stated.
He continued by saying that Seychelles needs access to appropriate financing that will facilitate energy transformation, and support the implementation of the Paris Agreement commitments, and the achievement of the SDGs.
He further added “Increased ambitions of Seychelles’ Nationally Determined Contributions and national renewable energy targets cannot be realised if we do not address challenges such as a varied, fragmented financing with stringent financing procedures, reduced access to financial assistance because of the country’s GDP level, and also if we do not find innovative ways to alleviate the country’s debt burden”.
To conclude the minister voiced to other world leaders and key development partners to work with Sids like Seychelles by supporting policies, legislation as well as promotional schemes which are being prepared to be implemented in the near future.
He also emphasised the importance of multilateralism to strengthen climate change mitigation, adaptation efforts and to contribute to the recovery from the Covid pandemic.
Press release from the Ministry of Agriculture, Climate Change and Environment