Dutch climate envoy, Prince Jaime de Bourbon de Parme, sees growing “momentum” to fight global warming. He hopes that humanity will follow the example of the great athlete Sevan Hasan, who fell in 1500 meters, but then ran for Olympic gold in 5 and 10 kilometers. “We faltered as a team, but we can still win.”
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If we still want to curb climate change, we must “work together,” Princess Irene’s son said during a meeting of the Royal Dutch Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW). Jaime was appointed in April. He will attend the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow early next month with Prime Minister Mark Root.
Expectations for that summit are high, in part due to the recent report of the United Nations IPCC Climate Committee. The Committee of Climate Scientists warned that the climate is changing faster and faster. According to scientists, it is now quite clear that this is due to humans, who emit more and more carbon dioxide (CO2) into the atmosphere.
The climate envoy, King Willem-Alexander’s nephew, noted that some people still preferred to look away. “And that is understandable. You prefer to hide from bad news. If your doctor tells you you have cancer, you can also ask for a second opinion. But the picture is getting sharper.”
Prince Jaime noted that in 1989 the first attempt was made to conclude agreements in Noordwijk on reducing carbon dioxide emissions. “Only if he succeeds then.” According to him, the current situation is “not very nice”. He sees many obstacles to good deals on combating climate change, such as economic interests and China that “would not lecture”. It also sees an “unwillingness” among rich countries to pay the costs that poor countries incur to defend themselves against rising sea levels and more drought.
However, according to the envoy, there is also “a lot of momentum”. The fact that the United States under President Joe Biden wants to rejoin after four years of stalemate under Donald Trump who scrapped the Paris climate agreement, Jaime calls “very positive”. This also applies to China’s recent decision not to build coal-fired power plants in other countries. Turkey may still sign the climate agreement, as the climate envoy sees positive developments in countries such as South Africa and Indonesia. “It’s not enough yet, but we’re accelerating and that’s a good sign.”
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