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Korea to take part in G-20 environment ministers’ meeting in Italy

Minister Han to reiterate Korea’s goal to reduce more greenhouse gas emissions by 2030

Environment Minister Han Jeoung-ae speaks during the G-7 climate and environment ministers’ online meeting on May 20. (Ministry of Environment)
Environment Minister Han Jeoung-ae speaks during the G-7 climate and environment ministers’ online meeting on May 20. (Ministry of Environment)
Korea’s Environment Minister Han Jeoung-ae will attend the G-20 environment ministers’ meeting and climate and energy ministers’ meeting that kicks off Thursday in Italy, the Ministry of Environment said Wednesday.

As a multilateral forum that addresses major global issues such as international finance, climate change and sustainable development, the G-20 consists of 19 countries and the European Union. The countries are Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Germany, France, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, Turkey, the UK and the US.

Taking place in Naples, this year’s event will mark the first face-to-face forum since the last offline meeting in Japan in June 2019, before the COVID-19 pandemic swept the world. The G-20 states met virtually last year.

The climate sector was established for the first time in the history of G-20 meetings, the ministry said, showing the international community’s strong commitment in responding to climate change.

Leaders of international organizations, including the United Nations Environment Program and the International Union for Conservation of Nature, will also attend the two-day forum.

The environment ministers’ meeting, which is scheduled to take place Thursday, is divided into two sessions that will cover ways to protect and manage natural capitals while trying to figure out how to cooperate with other leading nations in a joint effort for sustainable and circular use of resources.

According to the Environment Ministry, Han is expected to share Korea’s efforts in implementing policies aimed at preserving biodiversity by expanding protected areas to recover endangered species.

Friday’s climate and energy ministers’ meeting will have four sessions: Cities and Climate Action, Sustainable Recovery and Clean Energy Transition, Paris Aligned Financial Flow and Energy Security and Energy Poverty.

During the forum, Han will talk about how Korea will be able to meet a more ambitious goal for its 2030 nationally determined contributions, which indicate each country’s efforts in reducing greenhouse gas emissions in accordance with the 2015 Paris Agreement to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050.

President Moon Jae-in has promised to submit a more aggressive NDC target to the United Nations by November.

She will also introduce the discussions that are taking place for enactment of a carbon neutral law while emphasizing the country’s drive to go carbon-free through development of smart green cities, the ministry said.

The attending parties will resolve two ministerial declarations -- one from the environment ministers’ meeting and the other from the climate and energy ministers’ meeting.

By Kan Hyeong-woo (hwkan@heraldcorp.com)
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