Gov’t to ratify Paris Climate Change Agreement

South Sudan will ratify the Paris Climate Change agreement, and pass other legislations in order to protect the environment, the Minister of Wildlife Conservation and Tourism said on Monday.

“The government will ensure that all necessary laws are in place to protect our environment including the ratification of international conventions and treaties such as the Paris agreement,” Jemma Nunu Kumba said at the celebration of World Environment Day in Juba.

She added that South Sudan will remain committed to implement the provisions in the domestic laws and the international conventions.

She said if the environment is not protected, human activities would lead to disappearance of the ecosystem, which would in turn destroy the existence of humanity.

“We should always remember that our lives depend on the environment and it is a responsibility of every one at all levels to protect our environment, because we need it, our lives depend on it,” she said.

The Undersecretary in the Ministery of Environment and Forestry, Joseph Africano Bartel who participated in the negotiations of the Paris Climate Change Agreement said South Sudan is saddened with the decision of the United States to withdraw from the Paris climate change agreement signed by 195 countries in 2016.

He said even though the country’s carbon emission is negligible, it is being affected by the actions of the developed countries including the United States.

According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 2017 report, South Sudan is the fastest warming country in the region. The Paris agreement strives to limit temperature rise to 1.5 degree Celsius.

Bartel said the Paris agreement is synonymous to climate justice where the big carbon emitters are to pay for the adaptation and mitigation projects of least developing countries like south Sudan.

He noted that the country cannot protect and preserve nature without the financial support, capacity building and technology transfer from the developed countries.

He said South Sudan will work with the other 193 countries to save the nature after the United States quits the Paris Agreement. “We have one planet; we have to protect it for the future generation.”

Jean-Yves Roux, French Ambassador to South Sudan, assured South Sudan of the commitment of France and the remaining countries to implementing the Paris Climate Change accord.

Roux said climate change threatens the existence of animal resources in the country and livelihoods of communities which cause conflict amongst the communities that can be mitigated.

He said the Paris agreement in 2016 is a solution of climate change because it prepares the future and contains solutions such as limiting the increase of temperatures to below 2 degree Celsius, and supporting developing countries to adapt to climate change.

He said USA’s decision to pull out of the agreement will not stop the fight for climate change. “My country will not allow it,” he said.

The French Ambassador encourages South Sudan to ratify the Paris agreement in order to benefit from millions of dollars to be donated by the developed world according to the Paris Agreement, to the developing world for climate change projects.

The United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) Country Program Manager Arshan Khan said the government should also pass the national environment bill which has been stacked in the ministry of justice since 2015.

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