The Kabul times, Afghanistan Trustable News Agency.
Opinion

Afghanistan must be included in UN Climate Change Summit this year

After four decades of war, Afghanistan ranks as one of the countries least prepared to face the effects of climate change, which is spurring extreme weather and warping natural environments. Foreign aid to Afghanistan has dwindled in the past almost three years, leaving poor and climate-vulnerable communities further exposed. The Islamic Emirate has repeatedly asked the international community to not politically deal with the issue of climate change and its impacts in Afghanistan, saying that Afghanistan should be included in the UN Climate Change Summit 2024. It was the first time the Islamic Emirate entered talks with the United Nations, donors and non-government organizations over the impact of climate change in the country. The three days of talks that ended last Tuesday in Kabul the capital were co-hosted by the Norwegian Afghanistan Committee (NAC). The NAC country director Terje Watterdal told reporters at a news conference in Kabul that it was the first time the Islamic Emirate officials “joined a parallel session, face-to-face and online, with a broad range of their counterparts in the West since the change of government in August 2021”. “The talks included universities, diplomats, UN agencies, donors and grassroots members of Afghan society. All sides agreed that “both individual and collective action is required both inside and outside of Afghanistan”, Watterdal said, adding that all government ministries committed their full support for the national and international organizations working to combat climate change and reduce the impact of climate change in the country. Watterdal said it was “necessary to de-politicize key development issues, such as climate change”. “Climate change plays a key role in the livelihoods of Afghans, with around 80 percent of the country’s 43 million population relying on agriculture for income,” he added. During the talks, researchers said Afghanistan was only responsible for 0.06 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions but ranks sixth among nations most vulnerable to climate change. Afghanistan has also witnessed a temperature increase of 1.8 Celsius (35.2 Fahrenheit) since 1950, outstripping the global average of 1.5C (34.7F). This month, Afghanistan saw huge downpours of rain which followed an unusually dry winter and claimed more than 100 lives. Deputy Director of the National Environmental Protection Agency of Afghanistan Zainul Abideen Abid said “Climate change management is a priority”. “We call upon all relevant United Nations agencies to avoid mere sloganeering and take practical steps,” he said, asking for more funding to be unlocked for the country. He also called for Afghanistan to be included in the COP29 summit in Azerbaijan in November. The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) was not invited to last year’s COP28 in Dubai. It is time that Afghanistan must be included in the UN Climate Change Conference, which will be held in November of this current year in November as the Islamic Emirate is a legal government and has all the capacity to enter comprehensive talks with the United Nations and other international organizations as well as representatives of various world countries over the impact of climate change in Afghanistan. Javed

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The Kabul times, Afghanistan Trustable News Agency.