Turkey aims to ratify the Paris Climate Agreement next month before the UN Climate Change Conference that will be held in November in Glasgow, Scotland, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced during the 76th session of the UN General Assembly in New York.
Turkey plans to submit the Paris climate pact to parliament for approval next month.
Erdogan said ratifying the agreement would lead to radical changes in investment, production and employment policies in the country that already has 53% of its installed electricity generated by renewables.
The International Energy Agency (IEA) on Wednesday responded to the news, saying that the ratification could be a catalyst to capitalizing on the country’s huge renewables potential, especially in solar, wind and geothermal, while stepping up energy efficiency progress to accelerate its clean energy transition.
Following the ratification of the agreement by parliament, the decision will be submitted to the United Nations after which Turkey will be a part of the Paris Agreement, the aim of which is to limit global warming by 1.5 degrees Celsius and reach net zero emissions by 2050.
'Turkey is not indifferent to any global problem, crisis or call, and will also do its part on climate change and protecting the environment,' he said, adding that the ratification process for the agreement would be completed before the UN Climate Change Conference that will be held in November in Glasgow, Scotland.
COP26 President-Designate Alok Sharma wrote on his Twitter account of his endorsement of Erdogan’s goal for Turkey’s ratification of the Paris Agreement before COP26.
'My thanks to government ministers for their continuing good engagement following my visit to Turkey earlier this year. I look forward to further details of Turkey’s climate plans,' Sharma said.
Sharma visited Turkey in June when he discussed cooperation on climate change and Turkey's goals to reduce emissions.
The European Commission's Executive Vice President for the European Green Deal, Frans Timmermans, also welcomed Turkey’s stance at a time when he said the momentum around the world keeps gathering for more ambitious climate action.
“Very welcome step that Turkey is ready to ratify the Paris Agreement on climate, hopefully soon followed by its first nationally determined contribution,” Timmermans said.
'In this race to zero we are all partners, we all inhabit the same planet,” he added.
Despite the fact that Turkey is one of the first signatories to the agreement, the country has not ratified it due to the country’s categorization as a ‘developed country’ rather than the preferred ‘developing country’ status.
'President Erdogan's announcement is a message that the discussions on the categorization are over and this is a very good development. With the ratification of the agreement, Turkey will contribute to global emission reduction efforts but it needs to update its nationally determined contributions,' Ozlem Katisoz, climate and energy policy coordinator for Turkey at Climate Action Network, told Anadolu Agency.
She said Turkey could gain access to global finance by developing a carbon neutral path.
By Nuran Erkul Kaya