Home NewsInternational King Charles urges COP28 to be ‘critical turning point,’ as UAE launches $30bn fund for climate projects

King Charles urges COP28 to be ‘critical turning point,’ as UAE launches $30bn fund for climate projects

by Haruna Gimba

By Muhammad Amaan

King Charles III on Friday urged participants at the COP28 climate conference to take swift and resolute steps to protect the planet, in an impassioned call for action.

The British monarch in Dubai said the world’s hopes rest on heads of state and government as he expressed a desire for COP28 to be a “critical turning point towards genuine transformational action.”

“The Earth does not belong to us, we belong to the Earth,” Charles stressed on the second day of the event, which runs until December 12.

He also warned against indifference to the ecological damage being done saying “records are now being broken so often that we are perhaps becoming immune to what they are really telling us,” Citing data from researchers on ever warmer temperatures.

“We are carrying out a vast, frightening experiment of changing every ecological condition, all at once, at a pace that far outstrips nature’s ability to cope.”

Despite some progress, warning signs of climate change are still being ignored, the 75-year-old king noted that “some important progress has been made, but it worries me greatly that we have lost our way so terribly.

“The amount of CO2 and methane in the atmosphere has increased enormously, which can have devastating consequences for livelihoods around the world,” he said.

King Charles has for decades advocated for the environment and nature, and opened the COP21 in Paris in 2015 while still heir to the throne.

As king, however, he can no longer express himself as pointedly as before, as he is obliged to maintain strict political neutrality.

A few weeks ago, Charles had to announce controversial plans by Britain’s Conservative government to massively expand oil and gas production in the North Sea.

Meanwhile, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has announced a new investment fund worth 30 billion dollars to channel more capital into climate projects in developing countries.

Together with private donors, it is hoped that 250 billion dollars will be mobilised by 2030.

The fund will focus on transitions to green energy and new technologies that offer solutions to the climate crisis.

The UAE made the announcement as the Gulf country hosts the UN Climate Change Conference, COP28, in Dubai.

COP28 President Sultan al-Jaber, who also heads the state-owned oil and gas company ADNOC, will chair the supervisory board of the fund, which will be called ALTÉRRA.

The exact criteria according to which the projects will be selected have yet to be revealed.

A major topic at the two-week conference is how global financial flows can be quickly redirected from oil, coal and gas towards renewable energies, especially in developing countries where financing for projects can be tough to secure.

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