August 18, 2016
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is holding its first seminar on climate diplomacy and low-carbon development at the Institute of Diplomacy and International Affairs August 18 and 19.
The seminar, organized by the Taiwan Institute for Sustainable Energy (TAISE), combines the efforts of local governments and nongovernmental organizations to help the Republic of China (Taiwan) promote its meaningful participation in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. The event also echoes the spirit of climate diplomacy espoused by President Tsai Ing-wen in her inauguration speech, when she stated that “we will also not be absent on the prevention of global warming and climate change.” In accordance with the Paris Agreement reached at the 21st Session of the Conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC, Taiwan regularly reviews its goals for cutting greenhouse gas emissions and works with friendly nations to better ensure a sustainable earth.
Seminar speakers include Paul Wen-liang Chang, secretary general of MOFA; Dr. Jing-Tang Yang, head of the Executive Yuan’s Energy and Carbon Office; and Dr. Eugene Chien, chairman of TAISE. Over 100 persons, including related central and local government officials, NGO representatives and experts, and members of the business community, are attending the event. Their discussions are expected to lead to consensus on strengthening public-private cooperation to advance Taiwan’s meaningful participation in the UNFCCC.
Secretary General Chang mentioned that climate diplomacy is a good example of steadfast diplomacy that will engender more bilateral, multilateral, and international cooperation opportunities for Taiwan. Dr. Yang explained that his office integrates resources from all facets of society to better formulate strategies on sustainable development, nuclear safety, and low-carbon energy.
In addition, Chairman Chien stated that the Paris Agreement symbolizes a crucial milestone along the path toward a low-carbon and sustainable era. Therefore, the government should map out a national development strategy, advance comprehensive carbon-reduction and energy policies, and seek help from diplomatic allies to establish good relations with UNFCCC peripheral organizations, allowing Taiwan to keep abreast of international trends.
The speakers stressed the spirit of mutual assistance embodied in steadfast diplomacy, as well as the hope that Taiwan can fulfill its role as a responsible member of the international community by responding to UNFCCC goals and activities, participating in international environmental affairs, and moving toward the goal of low-carbon development.
The two-day seminar, comprised of eight courses and two discussion sessions, will also shed light on topics to be covered at the 22nd Session of the Conference of the Parties in Morocco at the end of the year. Other seminar topics cover the development and direction of the government’s climate diplomacy, Taiwan’s participation in international organizations, the development of the UNFCCC and other conventions on climate change, UNFCCC low-carbon strategies, exchanges of experience by government agencies engaging in UNFCCC affairs, contact points and cooperation channels for UNFCCC peripheral organizations, Taiwan’s regulations and low-carbon strategies in the context of the Paris Agreement, and examples of participation in international environmental conventions by government agencies, NGOs, and private enterprises. (E)