President Sebastián Piñera of Chile on Thursday, April 11, 2019 launched the COP25 climate change summit, which the South American nation will host in December. The logo of COP25 – or the 25th session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change – was also unveiled.
President Piñera called for tougher and more ambitious steps to be taken, and for appreciation of the urgent need for change in order to protect the planet.
“This summit will be a great opportunity for Chile and the world to truly acknowledge the fact that time is running out, and that the ever-increasing urgency of our objectives requires that we be more ambitious and demand more of ourselves. The time has come to act,” stated the President.
The ceremony took place in La Moneda Palace, where the President was accompanied by Chilean Environment Minister and President of COP25, Carolina Schmidt, along with other ministers, members of parliament, mayors, councilors, civil society organisations, environmental NGOs, young people and children.
The President stressed Chile’s commitment to the move towards sustainable development and emphasized the importance of civic engagement and education in combating climate change, as well as implementation of mitigation and adaptation policies.
The main themes that will be covered during the summit were announced, including oceans, Antarctica, renewable energy, circular economy, ecosystems, biodiversity and electromobility.
It was announced that the event will be held in the Cerrillos Bicentenary Park, a civic hub that offers green spaces and excellent connectivity.
For Environment Minister, Carolina Schmidt, “to host COP25 and lead the international negotiations for climate change action is proof that Chile can play in the big leagues. It is an opportunity to make care for the environment a national concern in which each and every one of us has a role to play.”
It was also announced that Gonzalo Muñoz Abogair, environmental expert and co-founder and executive director of TriCiclos – the first certified B Corporation in South America – will be the COP25 Champion, in charge of advising the COP Presidency and communicating the event’s message both locally and internationally.
“In this role I hope to help to mobilize climate action on the part of all interested parties – cities, companies, investors and civil society – in order to bring them closer to the agenda and the sense of urgency that brings governments, scientists and NGOs to COP25,” said Muñoz.
Chile is said to have taken an active role in combatting climate change, recognised by Bloomberg as the first country to invest in renewable energy, ban plastic bags, and lead the way in the move to electromobility. After Beijing, Santiago has the largest number of electric buses of any city in the world.
COP25 will take place in Santiago, Chile between December 2 and 13, 2019, and the pre-sessional period will run from November 26 to December 1 of the same year.
The COP is bringing together 196 countries, the European Union, and various environmental organisations. The UN hopes that the event will achieve tougher and more ambitious commitments to protection of the planet.