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Statement of Rita Schwarzelühr-Sutter at the Side Event "Protecting our Planet and Combatting Climate Change" organized by UNEP

Portrait of Rita Schwarzelühr-Sutter
Statement of Rita Schwarzelühr-Sutter at the Side Event "Protecting our Planet and Combatting Climate Change" organized by UNEP

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Distinguished co-chairs,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

The adoption of the 2030 Agenda is a milestone for the international community. For the first time, all countries have committed themselves to an ambitious framework for sustainable development.

I hope that we will keep the great spirit of the negotiations with us through the implementation of the goals.

I am especially glad that we have been able to anchor the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity as one of the 17 goals in the agreement and include it as a target under other goals such as agriculture, water management and urban development. This reflects the fundamental significance of stable and healthy ecosystems to our planet.

Germany's Federal Government has acknowledged the importance of biodiversity for sustainable development and made it a constant focus of its international cooperation. Since 2013, the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development and the Federal Environment Ministry have made half a billion euros available for biodiversity annually. Our goal is to further increase this funding in coming years.

The International Climate Initiative is the Federal Environment Ministry's instrument for international climate action and biodiversity conservation. Between 2008 and 2014 we mobilised over 1.6 billion euros through it, including almost 600 million euros for conserving biological diversity. We follow three guiding principles with the International Climate Initiative:

First: The International Climate Initiative seeks the greatest possible synergies between climate action and biodiversity. In addition to classic mitigation efforts and nature conservation measures, we also support projects on ecosystem-based adaptation to climate change, as well as projects to protect and restore natural carbon sinks.

Second: The International Climate Initiative is a multi-stakeholder instrument. In addition to government institutions we also very deliberately support projects by non-governmental organisations, the institutions of the United Nations, think tanks and the private sector.

Third: The International Climate Initiative is committed to mainstreaming. We expressly promote projects that integrate biological diversity and ecosystem services in sectoral planning. For example, we want to see better integration of biological diversity in sustainable agricultural and urban planning.

Germany's Federal Government is firmly committed to doing its part to make the 2030 Agenda a global success.

Thank you very much.

30.09.2015 | Speech International Environmental Policy | New York