29 Jun

Statement delivered by Ambassador Katalin Bogyay on Climate Change at the High-Level Event of the United Nations General Assembly, held on 29 June 2015.

Madam Chair, 
Dear Colleagues,

“Crisis” is probably the most frequently heard word in the media, describing the state of economic, social, political and environmental affairs today. And although the history of human civilization is replete with cataclysmic changes, at no point have the challenges that we face today been as global, as complex, and as interconnected as at the current moment.

I refuse to believe in apocalyptic scenarios, and have optimism in the human potential to mend its mistakes and to come up with creative solutions for the survival of the human spirit. History does not predetermine the future, and we need not be submissive to it. We need to learn from it, and continuously try to mold its course towards peaceful and prosperous future. For that we need thinkers with vision and will, and knowledge.

I wish to underscore Hungary’s commitment towards the global effort tackling climate change. In this manner we fully support the French Presidency to organize a successful Conference of Parties in Paris this year, where all Parties will agree on a new global agreement on climate change. We are of the firm belief that the goal of the Framework, which is keeping the rise of the global average temperature under 2 degrees Celsius, can only be reached if all Parties join the efforts.

In this spirit, the President of Hungary is contributing to this effort through joining such leaders as Ban Ki-moon and Al Gore in the initiative “Live Earth” which aims to unite a billion voices to deliver a single message: To take climate action now!

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The next great task ahead of us is building bridges between Parties in Bonn at the next UNFCCC sessions before December. To support this, our delegates need clear instructions from their leaders. Therefore, we call for active engagement in the climate negotiations.

Hungary welcomes the active engagement of Parties and their willingness to work during the past two weeks in Bonn towards a successful outcome. However, it must be recognized that progress has been far too slow, and the negotiating text is lagging far behind the political discussion. If we want a deal in December, we must change gears. Our aim is to adopt a single, global and legally binding agreement at COP21 preferably in the form of a new Protocol based on the principles of the Convention applicable to all. It is of pivotal importance that all Parties have legally binding mitigation contributions under the new agreement and maintain them all times.

As a Member of the European Union, Hungary is dedicated to developing international climate finance measures to fulfill the commitment of developed countries to jointly mobilize 100 billion USD per year by 2020 from a wide variety of sources, public and private, bilateral and multilateral, including alternative sources of finance, in the context of meaningful mitigation actions and transparency on implementation. Our country is currently exploring the possibilities to include climate finance in our international development aid projects. We are planning to adopt a new national strategy on international climate finance in the course of 2015. We also intend to keep a balance in our future financing based on the needs of our partner countries and the capabilities of Hungary.

Regarding the ratification of the Doha Amendment of the Kyoto Protocol, the national processes in Hungary is already concluded, thus we are able to meet the indicated deadlines. In reference to the Kyoto Protocol, we would also like to announce that Hungary successfully participated at the second session of the Multilateral Assessment at the UNFCCC session in June in Bonn, presenting its greenhouse gas emission reduction achievements under the Kyoto Protocol.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Hungary faced quite similar challenges as the developing countries, namely, how to modernize our economies, how to protect our natural resources and how to reduce emissions in both mitigation and adaptation without significant financial sources. It was an important lesson to learn, and now we see it had yielded its benefits. Hungary only emits 1,4% of the aggregated EU emissions, but our country has successfully reduced its emissions by 36% compared to our international base year level (1985-1987) according to our National Inventory Report. Meanwhile our GDP has almost doubled. To support the activities and measures targeting the reduction of the domestic emission of greenhouse gases, Hungary operates its Green Investment Scheme (GIS). Main focus of the GIS at the time is increasing the energy efficiency of residential buildings.

As part of the energy and climate targets of the Europe 2020 strategy Hungary agreed in 2013 to achieve a 10 per cent overall energy saving. Besides, we have targets for renewable energy and energy efficiency by 2020 as well.

Thank you Madam Chair and I also thank the President of the General Assembly for organizing this meeting.

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