By Vugar Khalilov
The Turkish parliament has adopted the draft law to join the Paris Climate Agreement, which aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions at the global level, Yeni Shafak newspaper has reported.
The bill was passed with the votes of all parties in the General Assembly.
Addressing parliament, AK Party Deputy Chairman and MP from Samsun Cigdem Karaaslan described as extremely important the parliamentary discussion of the Paris Agreement and climate change issues, which are closely related to Turkey.
"In the current period, the international community is struggling with many problems such as the Covid-19 pandemic, wars and conflicts, terrorism, migration, climate change due to global warming, and strives to find a common way. Major exams are given in these areas, but unfortunately, we have not achieved any concrete success in any of them yet," Karaaslan said.
She stated that while the opportunities provided by technology are increasing and accessibility and interaction are getting stronger day by day, social, spatial, and economic inequalities between societies are growing at the same rate and this gap is becoming more evident.
"While humanity is facing the greatest tests of the age, it is also facing its greatest failures," Karaaslan stressed.
She underlined that climate change is a common problem for the whole world and it will undoubtedly affect all nations sooner or later.
"We know that today the geography of the earth is a whole for humanity, even though the nations have drawn their geographical boundaries and separated," Karaaslan said.
She stressed that the solution of these problems requires fair and sincere approaches, as well as cooperation and there is no success when one of them is missing.
"This is the understanding on which we have based our struggle on every national and international platform since the first day we came to power as the AK Party under the leadership of our President and Chairman Mr. Recep Tayyip Erdogan," she added.
Furthermore, the deputy chairman informed MPs about the legal steps that Turkey had taken with regards to the climate change issues and the agreement itself.
"The issue of combating the climate change has been negotiated every year under the auspices of the United Nations and with the participation of all member states since the 1992 Rio Summit. The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, which sets the long-term aim of climate change policies and the principles and procedures for this purpose, was also signed this year. The Paris Climate Agreement, which we are talking about here today, is essentially an extension of this agreement," she said.
The MP added that the agreement aims to limit the global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius until the middle of the century.
"To achieve this goal, each country has responsibilities and concrete steps to take. Here I would like to remind you of the basic principle of the Framework Convention, 'Common but differentiated responsibilities and relative capabilities',” Karaaslan said.
Speaking about the drawbacks of the global climate change policy, she said that Turkey is one of the countries that polluted the world the least throughout history and did not want to be in the same category as the countries that polluted the world the most and failed to take responsibility.
The MP added that only 10 countries are responsible for 68 percent of carbon emissions currently, which means that if only 10 developed countries did their job, a large part of the issue would have been resolved.
“Of course, Turkey's decision to ratify the Paris Agreement today does not mean that all this injustice has disappeared. This decision will carry Turkey's global climate change discussions to another platform for a fairer, healthier, cleaner, and the more livable world as a result of the diplomatic traffic and successful negotiations that our country has carried out so far,” Karaaslan concluded.
After the speeches, the proposal for the adoption of the Paris Agreement was approved.
The Paris Agreement, often referred to as the Paris Climate Accords, is an international treaty on climate change, adopted in 2015, near Paris, France. It covers climate change mitigation, adaptation, and finance policies.
The agreement envisages keeping the global temperature rise at 1.5 degrees Celsius. In this context, it is foreseen that the use of fossil fuels such as oil and coal will be reduced and ultimately replaced with renewable energy sources.
The agreement also includes non-binding voluntary targets determined by the parties within the framework of their national conditions. Within this framework, a distinction was made between the types of mitigation actions for developed and developing countries.
Thus, the agreement identifies gas emissions reduction “targets” and “efforts” respectively for developed and developing countries, although there are no sanctions defined in case of non-compliance with the provisions of the Paris Agreement.
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