Together with German economist Claudia Kemfert, German Development Minister Gerd Müller warned of a catastrophic scenario if the world does not take the climate crisis more seriously.
20 million people have already had to flee drought regions because they no longer had a livelihood, according to Müller. While he praised the Paris Climate Agreement of 2015 as a great success, he highlighted that only 8 out of 193 countries are still on track to reach the set climate goals.
According to Müller, the African continent would be key in the transition to a climate-neutral planet; if the 600 million people without access to any electricity on the African continent were to be provided with electricity through coal-fired plants, we will never achieve our climate goals, he said. Therefore, Müller called for a European investment plan to support the African continent in becoming “the green continent of renewable energy”. Since Europe, North America, and parts of Asia have primarily caused climate change, it is their responsibility to mitigate the crisis and support the African energy transition, Müller emphasized.
Meanwhile, Germany joined heads of state and government from more than 60 countries in signing a joint declaration underlining the countries’ intention to do more to preserve global biodiversity. On the sidelines of the UN General Assembly New York, these heads also jointly adopted a "promise for nature", assuring to act beyond words and take “meaningful deeds and mutual accountability to address the planet's crisis”.
Many large countries, such as Brazil, India, the US, and China were not part of the signatories.