Credit: © Cour grand-ducale

His Royal Highness the Grand Duke of Luxembourg has called for greater commitment to the fight against climate change at the opening of the COP24, taking place from 3-14 December 2018 in Katowice, Poland.

On the occasion of COP24, the 24th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, the representatives of over 190 states met to discuss the theme of "changing together". The meeting aims to facilitate the adoption of directives of application of the Paris Agreement, ratified on 12 December 2015 in Bourget at the end of the COP21, which aimed to contain global warming levels below 2°C and continue global efforts to reach a limit of 1.5°C.

The opening ceremony of this COP24 saw the participation of some twenty Heads of State and Government, including His Royal Highness the Grand Duke, accompanied for the occasion by Carole Dieschbourg, Minister of the Environment. In his address, the sovereign immediately thanked the Republic of Poland and its representatives for its efforts to contribute to the success of COP24. 

However, the Grand Duke, who is known for his interest in the protection of the planet, expressed some concern about the issue, emphasising that: "Three years after the adoption of the Paris Agreement, we are tackling this central challenge for humanity that is the fight against climate change in a position that is becoming more fragile from month to month." In support of his statements, HRH the Grand Duke noted that one year after the COP23 in Bonn, the concentrations of CO2, methane and other greenhouse gases in the atmosphere continued to increase whilst the consequences of climate change are intensifying and multiplying. Hence his call to "redouble our efforts and raise our level of general ambition."

The Grand Duke also insisted on Luxembourg's efforts in terms of global warming, which he maintained was "fully engaged", as evident from the recent introduction of near-zero energy standards for new building construction and efforts to promote electric mobility. The Head of State finally noted that it was necessary to accelerate the transition towards a sustainable economy and that this implied in particular a "consequent transfer of investments towards alternatives to zero emission". He concluded that Luxembourg has already made plans in the domain of sustainable finance and will continue to show "solidarity with the most vulnerable countries".