Minister of Environment and Urbanization Murat Kurum met with U.S. President Joe Biden’s Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, John Kerry.
Mr.Kurum met with U.S. Climate Negotiator Kerry at the historical Royal Palace of Naples (Palazzo Reale), where the "G20 Environment, Climate and Energy Ministers Meeting" was held in Naples, Italy.
During the meeting lasted about an hour, Minister Kurum stated that they value long-established relations with the United States and that the alliance established between the two countries greatly contributes to the peace and stability of the Euro-Atlantic region.
Mr. Kurum stated that President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan had a very productive meeting with U.S. President Joe Biden at NATO Leaders' Summit on June 14. This meeting will contribute to the strengthening of cooperation between the two countries before the ministries.
Minister Kurum said, "Turkey is one of the countries that feel the effects of climate change. Since it is located in the Mediterranean Basin, the severity and impact of precipitation and floods are increasing day by day."
Reminding the flood disasters in Europe, Mr. Kurum emphasized that a year's precipitation can fall in an hour and that climate change is not only an environmental but also a global and economic problem.
Mr. Kurum said they had prepared Turkey's Climate Change Action Plan, implemented a 14-item action plan, and increased the number of protected and green areas.
Stating that Turkey has commitments for the reduction of greenhouse gas, Mr. Kurum said that a greenhouse gas emission had occurred even below the commitments so far.
Emphasizing that they are efficiently carrying out the Zero Waste Project, which is carried out under the auspices of President Erdoğan's wife, Emine Erdoğan, Mr. Kurum stated that 52 percent of Turkey's installed power in energy consists of renewable energy sources and that Turkey is the 5th largest country in Europe and 12th in the world in this sense.
Minister Kurum said:
"All these studies point to our fight against climate change, even though Turkey has little or no historical responsibility. At this point, we are fortunate since both President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his wife Emine Erdoğan support environmental projects. As a country, we have a justified request. As a developing country, we are placed in Annex-1. We repeat this justified request for Turkey to make its fight against climate change more effective. We signed Paris Agreement in 2016, but we did not become a party. Although we are not a party, we take and maintain more constant steps than many countries. As Turkey, we expect your support in this justified struggle."
Stating that they would help in climate financing during negotiations of President Erdoğan with both the World Bank and the head of states in Germany and France, Mr. Kurum said that they had a productive meeting during the visit of COP26 President Alok Sharma to Turkey and that they discussed the future of the Paris Agreement.
Mr. Kurum said, "There are Memorandum of Understanding negotiations on Turkey's access to finance. All our Ministers agree on the point of reaching this agreement." said.
Emphasizing that the signing of the agreement before the meeting to be held in Glasgow will speed up the Paris Agreement process in Turkey, Mr. Kurum said, "This issue is at the discretion of the Grand National Assembly of Turkey. I think there will be no negativity if this injustice is eliminated and the justified request of Turkey is met. I suppose this issue may speed up with your initiatives. I hope this issue will be clarified before Glasgow."
Saying that Turkey is a country with a high potential for reducing emissions, Mr. Kurum said, "We agree with what you say. If we do not take care of the world, adversity awaits our generations to come. Hopefully, we believe that we will make the necessary decisions together."
"IT IS VERY IMPORTANT FOR G20 TO APPEAR WITH A STRONG STATEMENT"
U.S. President's Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, John Kerry, also stated that he knows that Turkey does not want to be considered as an Annex-1 country due to financial issues.
Noting that they think that 1.5 degrees target in the Paris Agreement should be met now, Kerry said that they could not do everything promised in Paris, that even if they did, the temperature of the planet would still have increased by 2.5-3 degrees. The planet's temperature was threatened to rise to 4 degrees since the promises made in the Paris Agreement were not kept.
Stating that it is the responsibility of the whole world to eliminate the harmful consequences of the climate crisis, Kerry said, "G20 must appear with a strong statement."
Kerry emphasized that he knows that Turkey would undertake important works for emission reduction and that they want to work together to solve the problems.
Kerry expressed his condolences to Turkey for those who lost their lives due to floods in Rize.