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Josh Frydenberg - Liberal for Kooyong
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Australia’s National Statement - High Level Segment, UNFCCC COP23

Date: Friday, 17 November 2017 5:25 AM
Location: Bonn, Germany

Mr President, Ministers, Colleagues 

I thank Fiji for taking on this important role – a welcome first for a Pacific nation – and Germany for hosting this meeting. 

Australia is committed to the Paris Agreement and strong, meaningful international action on climate change. 

Australia is playing its part. We beat our first emission reduction target under Kyoto, we are on track to beat our second, and we have ratified the Doha Amendment to the Kyoto Protocol. 

We are making headway on our 2030 target to reduce emissions by 26 to 28 per cent below 2005 levels – an ambitious target that will see us halve our per capita emissions and reduce the emission intensity of our economy by two-thirds. 

We will do this through innovation, while keeping the Australian economy strong and ensuring a secure, reliable and affordable energy supply.

Australia is proudly one of the first ten countries to ratify the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol to phase down hydrofluorocarbons. We will start this phase down early in 2018 and make deeper cuts.

Mr President we welcome the leadership you have already shown in guiding our efforts to implement the Paris Agreement, where all countries, all major emitters must seek to play their part.

I will highlight the key principles to guide our deliberations toward adoption of the Rulebook at COP24 in Poland next year.

First, the Rulebook must include clear rules and guidelines to account for nationally appropriate, nationally determined emission reduction targets. 

This includes a strong, common transparency framework to provide public confidence that we are meeting our commitments and providing support to others. 

Australia is committed to working with partners to build capacity to measure and report on emissions. With results already being delivered through our long-standing partnerships with Indonesia and Thailand. 

Secondly, the Facilitative or “Talanoa” Dialogue should help drive practical action so we realise our collective ambitions under the Paris Agreement. 

Third, we welcome progress on a range of initiatives to better engage Indigenous peoples and women as part of our action on climate change.  

Mr President strong guidance for mitigation actions will provide certainty and increase global confidence for investment, supported by a framework that facilitates finance flows.  

In its short life, the Green Climate Fund has achieved a great deal. The funds have started to flow and the GCF Board has adopted a new simplified approval process. 

Australia is also delivering on our 2015 commitment of $1 billion climate finance over five years, which includes $200 million for the Green Climate Fund, and a $300 million package for the Pacific. 

While governments can provide strong policy signals, we must work with the private sector to support innovation and harness capital and investment. In Australia, through our Clean Energy Finance Corporation, we have leveraged finance for projects worth more than $11 billion. 

Australia supports partnerships that foster innovation, build national capacity and mobilise resources to scale up global mitigation and adaptation efforts. 

For example, we are doing this through our support and leadership of the Asia-Pacific Rainforest Partnership, the Global Forest Observations Initiative and the International Partnership for Blue Carbon.

We do this through our work on next generation energy technologies with China, India, Germany and Japan, including through our commitment to Mission Innovation. 

Mr President innovation is also at the core of our efforts at home.

Whether it’s large-scale wind and solar, battery development, demand-side response, or Snowy Hydro 2.0, the largest pumped hydro project in the southern hemisphere, we are harnessing new technology to create a better energy system. 

Given the significant energy transition already underway in Australia, the Government has also announced a new National Energy Guarantee for the national electricity market. 

The Guarantee will help ensure Australia meets its commitments under the Paris Agreement, while delivering reliable and affordable energy at home. 

The Guarantee has been called highly innovative, it will guide much-needed investment by the private sector to drive the uptake of a new wave of technologies.

 Mr President lastly, we welcome the progress made under your leadership, are pleased to see the increased pace of our work, and will continue to work hand in hand with you – in the spirit of Talanoa – to harness global momentum to deliver effective climate action.

Thank you.

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