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COP President Alok Sharma to address leaders and ministers at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Rwanda, to press for implementation of the Glasgow Climate Pact

  • He will lead a high-level climate event to discuss progress on the Glasgow Climate Pact, and the importance of keeping the 1.5C goal alive
  • The COP26 President will also visit the Kigali hub of the Africa Center of Excellence for Sustainable Cooling and Cold-Chain (ACES), spearheaded by UK experts and £16 million of DEFRA funding

COP President Alok Sharma will attend the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM 2022), this week, June 22-23, in Kigali, Rwanda, as part of a UK government delegation led by the Prime Minister.

Mr Sharma will co-host a high-level Commonwealth climate event on Thursday 23 June with the Government of Rwanda to underline the importance of limiting global temperature rises to 1.5C, reiterate the action that was committed at COP26, and set out the steps already being taken by Commonwealth members to achieve this.

This will feature the agreement to revisit, strengthen and implement their 2030 climate action plans and long-term strategies towards net-zero, providing a spotlight on the commitments made in Glasgow and the action that must be taken by COP27.

Mr Sharma will announce at the event that the UK has doubled its funding to £10 million for the NDC Partnership’s new Partnership Action Fund (PAF), as part of the UK’s drive to work with developing countries to implement and enhance their climate commitments outlined in their Nationally Determined Contributions.

Commonwealth leaders, United Nations organisations, civil society, the private sector and young people will also discuss progress on the Glasgow Climate Pact, accessing climate finance, the desired outcomes of COP27 in Egypt and how Commonwealth Member States can work together to achieve them.

Mr Sharma will then speak at the Commonwealth Business Forum at CHOGM to outline the ambitious trajectory set in Glasgow, and the need for businesses to continue the momentum on the road to global net zero.

Finally, the COP President will visit the Kigali hub of the Africa Center of Excellence for Sustainable Cooling and Cold-Chain (ACES). Currently seven per cent of the world’s emissions come from cooling – anything from food and vaccine storage to air conditioning to high-tech innovation – and demand for cooling will only grow as global temperatures increase.

Spearheaded by UK experts and £16 million of DEFRA funding, ACES is dedicated to generating ideas, technology and capacity building to support sustainable cooling or all that need it using renewables, climate friendly refrigerants and energy efficient equipment.

As temperatures hit record highs globally, this work will support those most vulnerable to heatwaves, accelerating the transition in Africa and other developing markets to sustainable refrigeration and reducing food waste and improving vaccine supply chains.

Ahead of his visit to CHOGM 2022, COP President Alok Sharma said:

“The Commonwealth has an important role to play in delivering the Glasgow Climate Pact, and keeping 1.5 degrees alive.

“It comprises both major emitters and some of the most climate vulnerable countries in the world.

“So, it is clearly in our collective interest to work together to take action and tackle the challenges we face.

“We should also recognize the economic growth opportunities the green transition has for job creation and sustainable development.

“Our collective voice can be a powerful force and it is time to honor the promises that we made in Glasgow, and turn commitments into action.”

Notes to Editors

  • The theme for CHOGM 2022 is ‘Delivering a Common Future: Connecting, Innovating, Transforming’, with a focus of ‘A Global Reset’, dealing with the impact of the pandemic and the Commonwealth’s role in rebuilding and reinvigorating the global economy. Commonwealth Leaders will meet in Rwanda to reaffirm their common values ​​and agree actions and policies to improve the lives of citizens.

  • The UK has doubled its funding to £10m for NDC Partnership’s new Partnership Action Fund (PAF), which will support developing countries implement and enhance their climate commitments outlined in their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs).
  • NDC Partnership launched PAF at COP26 to accelerate deployment of technical expertise and capacity building for developing countries to mobilize finance that will support the implementation of climate ambitions.
  • Through the NDC Partnership, the UK supports developing countries to turn their NDCs into specific strategies and actions, support their implementation, as well as help coordinate major climate donors to more effectively meet the needs identified.
  • The Africa Center of Excellence for Sustainable Cooling and Cold-Chain (ACES) was established in 2020 by the Governments of the United Kingdom and Rwanda, the Center for Sustainable Cooling, United Nations Environment Program’s United for Efficiency initiative and the University of Rwanda. UK academic partners include University of Birmingham, London South Bank University, Center for Sustainable Road Freight and Cranfield University.
  • ACES will be at the forefront of developing pan-Africa food loss solutions delivering sustainable cool corridors for food across Africa and beyond, empowering farmers and underpinning food security. From the hub in Kigali, “spokes” across the continent will showcase and provide the training in how these solutions can be deployed in practice.
  • Sustainable cooling tackles highly polluting refrigerants – hydrofluorocarbons – and provides energy efficient solutions to cool people and goods, including food and vaccines, without causing spikes in electricity demand or contributing to climate change further. This includes using cooling devices and services that are affordable, reliable and use environment-friendly refrigerants.

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