Bangladesh signals moves to transition away from coal and submit an ambitious climate plan during COP26 President’s visit
COP26 President-Designate Alok Sharma visited Bangladesh, following successful visits to Viet Nam and Indonesia
He met Prime Minister of Bangladesh, Sheikh Hasina as well as government ministers, climate experts and youth to discuss shared aims
A joint statement on UK-Bangladesh climate action was signed, laying the foundations for long-term climate partnership
The COP26 President-Designate Alok Sharma has welcomed strong climate commitments from Bangladesh during a visit to the country from 2 – 3 June.
Alok Sharma held constructive discussions with government leaders, including Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen and other senior government representatives.
He heard about the prospect of Bangladesh transitioning away from coal to clean and renewable energy, which will create economic growth and sustainable jobs, and a commitment from Bangladesh to submit an ambitious updated nationally determined contribution (NDC) in the coming weeks, with a net zero target in the near future.
He met Prime Minister of Bangladesh, Sheikh Hasina, as well as government ministers and young people to discuss shared aims.
A joint statement on UK-Bangladesh climate action was signed, laying the foundations for long-term climate partnership.
The COP26 President also spoke to leading climate experts and youth leaders and activists on climate priorities for Bangladesh and COP26 and approaches to inclusive decision-making.
During his recent visit to Bangladesh, which coincided with the British Council’s launch of the Climate Connection, a session was held between the Rt Hon. Alok Sharma MP COP26 President-Designate and five youth climate activists from the British Council’s networks, he said “Young people are critical contributors to climate action as agents of change, entrepreneurs and innovators, so I have been delighted to hear from climate activists here in Bangladesh.
The next decade will be make, or break, and we need everyone in if we are to tackle the worst effects of climate change and protect our planet for future generations. The British Council’s Climate Connection will crucially unite people from across the world around this important goal.”
The Climate Connection will run until the COP26 summit in November to bring together people from around the world to share their ideas and perspectives on climate change, and to look for solutions using education, art and culture, and science. It will offer global conversations, art and science showcases, university scholarships, funding, research, and training opportunities.
Mr Sharma reinforced that helping communities and countries adapt to the worst effects of climate change by stepping up access to funding and expertise for resilience and adaptation is a priority for the UK COP26 Presidency, alongside action to address climate loss and damage. As one of the countries most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, Mr Sharma saw the impacts on Bangladeshi agriculture, health and livelihoods, as increased flooding in both rural and urban areas is displacing people from their homes. The country has become a global leader on adapting to a changing climate, and since 2016 has invested more than $6 billion dollars into adaptation activities.
The COP26 President’s visit follows successful visits to Viet Nam and Indonesia. In Vietnam, Mr Sharma welcomed the prospect of accelerating Viet Nam’s transition away from coal to clean and renewable energy under the upcoming Power Development Plan 8 (PDP8). The UK and Viet Nam both welcomed recent announcements on reaching net zero emissions across the region, and Viet Nam confirmed its intention to reach net zero emissions as early as possible based on further international support.
In Indonesia, Alok Sharma underlined the opportunities to boost green growth, focus on clean energy transition and deliver new jobs in place of coal. Work is ongoing across the Indonesian Government towards a net zero target.