MADRID: The recently concluded United Nations climate summit in Madrid did not result in an overall consensus, but “we must not lose hope”, Minister for the Environment and Water Resources Masagos Zulkifli said on Sunday (Dec 15).
Despite the inconclusive summit, the discussions “offered countries a better understanding of one another’s positions”, he said in a Facebook post.
“This places us in good stead as we work on moving forward.”
The 12-day COP 25 summit sought to resolve issues in implementing the Paris Climate Accord. It ended with a global warming battle plan that fell well short of what science says is needed to tackle the climate crisis.
READ: UN talks deadlocked, detached from climate emergency
Mr Masagos co-facilitated the overarching decision texts for the conference, which were “successfully adopted”.
“With this, we will keep the drive to address Climate Change alive and take up new areas of concern like the Ocean and its climate impact,” he said.
The summit is “a reminder of the importance of support for multilateralism as a key framework, for diverse countries to jointly advocate common causes such as climate change, free trade and peace”, Mr Masagos added.
He also expressed regret that one of the key deliverables, carbon markets, did not come through.
“(Carbon markets) would enable countries and industries with deficit carbon credits to buy from countries that have an excess of them,” he said. “Countries with excess credits are usually those with green lungs and such a system would incentivise them to maintain them.”
He added that this would also help fund vulnerable and developing countries to cope with the future impact of climate change.
Last week, the minister reaffirmed Singapore’s commitment to the 2015 Paris Agreement to curb global warming. Singapore had pledged to reduce carbon emissions by 36 per cent from 2005 levels by 2030, and stabilise its emissions with the aim of peaking around that year.
“Let us not be defined by our differences, but our common objective of safeguarding our planet for future generations,” he said.
“We will work with the incoming UK COP-26 Presidency to achieve a good outcome in Glasgow.”