IRENA members reiterate ‘Call for Action’ and to drive action at COP28 and beyond |25 January 2023
In order to accelerate the energy transition in the coming years and correct the 1.5°C pathway to 2050, we need to accelerate our efforts.
This was the message sent by energy leaders from governments, private sector and international organisations at the 13th IRENA Assembly held in Abu Dhabi from January 13 to 15, 2023.
The event started with the Pre-Assembly on Friday January 13, 2023 with a series of high-level discussions under the theme ‘World Energy Transition – The Global Stocktake’ where IRENA members took stock of energy transition progress towards Paris Agreement goals and provided insights on priority actions needed over the next few years and beyond to meet our emissions targets and achieving the sustainable development goals.
One of these high-level discussions was the SIDS-Ministerial Meeting titled ‘Climate Pledges to Action: Amplifying Energy Transition for Sustainable Development in SIDS’. This meeting brought together heads of state, cabinet ministers and energy decision-makers from small islands, who recognised and emphasised the immense impact that climate change has on small island developing states (SIDS).
“Likewise, I voice encouragement to our islands sisters and brothers. Despite current difficulties let us not lose hope, but let’s continue to be the torchbearers for climate action and look toward COP 28 as an inflection point, where action overtakes global discussion,” said Seychelles’ Minister Flavien Joubert to his fellow SIDS leaders. “The world is not on track to reach climate and development goals and is even regressing in some instances. Action cannot be delayed and must be taken.”
Francesco La Camera, director-general of IRENA, reaffirmed IRENA's commitment to providing tailored solutions to address the unique needs and conditions of SIDS. And through its SIDS Lighthouses Initiative, the Agency has supported the island nations across a wide spectrum of activities in particular working with small islands towards accelerating the development of renewable energy projects.
The official opening of the 13th session of the IRENA Assembly took place on Saturday January 14, 2023, with high-level statements from India who was elected as President of the thirteenth session. The country was represented by its Minister for Power and New & Renewable Energy, Raj Kumar Singh; the IRENA director-general, Francisco La Camera; and representatives of the Assembly's vice-presidents -- Belgium, Indonesia, Zimbabwe, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. Conducted over 2 days, the Assembly and related meetings updated members of the work programme and budget of IRENA, its annual report, its Medium-Term Strategy 2023-2027 as well as opportunity to participate in numerous discussions on the Global Stocktake to assess the collective progress towards achieving the Paris Agreement goals, sharing of experiences example the Southeast Asia Energy Transitions, as well as presentations on financing facilities such as the new Energy Transition Accelerator Financing (ETAF) Platform.
Comprising 168 members, the Assembly is a supreme decision-making organ of IRENA which provides a strategic global platform for inclusive and diverse discussions on all facets of the energy transition. Given the urgent need for extraordinary levels of political momentum and international cooperation, the discussions at the Assembly addressed pressing issues related to the energy transition in the coming years. Moreover, it allowed for exchanges of perspectives, including among countries that are most impacted by climate change, and in tandem with heads of international and regional organisations, public and private entities and civil society representatives.
Minister Joubert in his statement to the Assembly highlighted the measures Seychelles has taken in combating Climate Change, progress made in transitioning to a low-carbon energy sector as well as the country plan to accelerate the transition.
In concluding, the minister thanked IRENA for its leadership and all the works it is doing to support countries especially SIDS in the development of its energy sector more specifically renewable energy.
The minister also thanked UAE for its hospitality and expressed support to UAE COP28 presidency.
Besides Minister Joubert, the Seychelles delegation at the 13th Assembly of the IRENA included Tony Imaduwa, principal secretary for Climate Change and Energy; Joel Valmont, chief executive of the Public Utilities Corporation (PUC), Vincent Amelie, chief executive of the Seychelles Meteorological Authority (SMA) and Bernice Charles, acting chief executive of the Seychelles Energy Commission (SEC).
Press release from the Ministry of Agriculture, Climate Change & Environment