The United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS)

Agir en faveur des objectifs climatiques : atteindre un avenir à zéro émission nette

Allocution de Jorge Moreira da Silva, Secrétaire général adjoint des Nations Unies et Directeur exécutif de l’UNOPS, à l’occasion de la conférence « Agir en faveur des objectifs climatiques : atteindre un avenir à zéro émission nette » organisée par l’UNOPS à la COP28 (en anglais).

[Check against delivery]

Excellencies, dear colleagues and friends,

It is a pleasure to be here today - in this inaugural event - of what is going to be a very exciting COP-28 for UNOPS. This year, we are hosting over 20 events with partners and experts to explore the practical solutions needed to advance climate action.

The range and breadth of these events showcases our commitment to advancing global climate action and building resilience against climate change.

And I think all of us in this room are convinced about the urgency of the situation.

We have seen how climate induced disasters are severely impacting lives and livelihoods around the world.

Study after study is showing that our world is falling behind on climate targets.

The Global Stocktake, The IPCC Sixth Assessment Report (AR6), UNEP’s latest emissions gap report. They all make it clear that while there has been some progress since the Paris Agreement, so much more needs to be done - and done urgently - to usher in climate-resilient and low-carbon development that leaves no one behind.

In different ways - these reports also point to an implementation gap in climate action - which needs to be bridged urgently.

And this is why we - UNOPS - are here, in this COP, talking to leaders, to our partners, to young people and to everyone that we can join hands with in the collective effort to deliver the people and the planet. Our work at UNOPS is very much centered on trying to help our partners bridge that implementation gap.

The urgency of the climate emergency demands immediate action on the ground.

UNOPS is ready to support this action - and we are well-placed to do so. We have decades of experience in operations, in implementing projects on the ground, no matter how challenging the environment.

We know that developing countries, especially the most vulnerable, need effective support in driving climate-resilient development. We have developed the tools and the experience to efficiently and effectively support these countries, ensuring our collective efforts drive meaningful and sustainable change.

And we understand the importance of partnerships, because that is how we work. Throughout the years, we have, together with our partners, achieved urgent and tangible results on the ground. We have supported countries in reducing emissions, built capacity to adapt to climate impacts and enhance resilience, and helped rebuild livelihoods after disaster hits.

In partnership with prominent global climate funds, financial institutions and partner countries, including those on this panel, we've achieved significant global progress and aspire to continue supporting their ambitious agendas.

And I think it’s very apt that this event kicks off our packed COP-28 agenda.

Our distinguished panelists bring together robust expertise and experience in global climate action.

My colleagues at our Water, Environment, Climate (also known as WEC) global portfolio- that are hosting this event- are uniquely placed to add a UNOPS voice to this debate.

The portfolio of WEC - which is managed from our office in Vienna - very much focuses on capacity support to developing countries for their climate resilient pathways, their ability to access climate finance and to make a just transition to climate neutrality, while leaving no one behind.

For over 15 years, the WEC Portfolio, worth over USD 450 million, has supported its over 130 partners in about 80 countries in their global efforts to advance climate action and reduce the effects of climate change on vulnerable communities.

WEC’s Action for Climate Targets - also known as WEC ACT- is the dedicated climate action pillar of this portfolio. It is channeling its climate related operational expertise and experience for tailored support, and the ability to coordinate between partners and initiatives, where needed.

This work takes on many forms:

From acting as an enabler of action on the ground, to facilitating access to technical assistance to help countries make the challenging transition to climate resilient development of their economies and societies in a fair and equitable way.

But it also involves offering technical support to countries to enhance and expedite access to climate finance. For example, with the GCF, for whom we are working with over 200 national and regional implementing partners globally to accelerate transformative climate action.

Importantly - their work also helps bridge the implementation gap. Often, there is a difficulty translating targets and political commitment into the formulation of projects, investments and action on the ground. My colleagues at WEC ACT help our partners to ensure that projects have the technical and operational capacity to deliver on time and on budget.

Let me stop here - as I know we have a fantastic panel ahead of us.

Thank you again - for being here, and for being our partners in the important years and decades ahead. UNOPS stands ready - fully prepared and committed to working collaboratively with all of you - to act together for a net-zero future.

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