Mr Murat Kurum, Minister of Environment and Urbanization said, "We have negotiated and agreed that the climate issue is a supra-political issue amongst all of these issues and that steps should be taken decisively within this framework although we may experience bilateral problems today.".
At the Turkey-EU High-Level Climate Dialogue Meeting, Minister of Environment and Urbanization Murat Kurum said that they agreed that the climate issue is a supra-political issue and that steps to combat climate change should be taken decisively.
Minister Kurum made the remarks after the Turkey-EU High-Level Climate Dialogue Meeting held at the EU Commission building in Brussels.
Stating that Turkey gathered with the EU at a high-level dialogue meeting after a long time, Mr Kurum said that this is a gratifying situation.
Mr Kurum notified that they attended the meeting in Brussels upon the invitation of Frans Timmermans, Deputy Chairman of the EU Commission, and said that they shared Turkey's position on climate change and the conducted projects on this matter with the EU side.
Recalling that the EU has set many goals within the framework of the Green Deal, Mr Kurum said, "We have also explained to them about the projects that our country is conducting at this point with the leadership of our President and all our ministries".
Stating that Turkey is the 12th country in the world in renewable energy, and the 5th country in Europe, and it has increased the number of protected areas to 10.6 per cent in the last 2 years, Mr Kurum stated that they are on their way to achieving the goals to increase this ratio to 17 per cent, which is the OECD data.
Mr Kurum stated that the number of Turkey's renewable energy sources and reforestation efforts in the sink areas has been increased. They have explained the realized projects and supports that are provided to the citizens after disasters and stated that today we clearly experience the impacts of climate change through the issues such as forest fires and mucilage.
Mr Kurum who noted he told Mr Timmermans that climate change is a supra-political and an international issue that concerns the whole world and he expressed that Mr Timmersman emphasised they will support Turkey for the steps to be taken by Turkey in the Treaty of Paris and the issue of access to climate finance in the EU.
Stating that they have carried out many projects with the EU, Mr Kurum said as follows:
"We think that the number and amount of the projects should be increased, whether it is environmental, infrastructure investments either we make with IPA funds or IPARD projects. We will create subject-based delegations with him regarding this. We discussed in detail all the issues related to climate change, emissions trading at the border, and the steps that our country will take. We will create commissions. Within the framework of these commissions, our colleagues will take these steps in detail."
Mr Kurum who said he invited Mr Timmersman to Turkey stated that this visit is expected to be in January or February of 2022 noting that many issues would be resolved during this visit, he continued:
"We have clearly demonstrated Turkey's sincerity on the point of climate change. At this point, we have explained to them about the projects that our relevant ministries have done, the breakthroughs that our country has made under the leadership of our President. They were very happy. We have stated that we have prepared a new climate law, that we are conducting this process with our assembly, and that we will take the steps that need to be taken regarding climate change within the framework of this climate law now before the relevant ministries at the level of responsibility. They also welcomed this attitude of Turkey very positively. We had a very friendly, productive meeting."
Emphasizing that the fight against climate change is a matter of supra-politics, Mr Kurum said:
"We have expressed to them that climate change is a matter of concern to the whole world and that we should consider this issue as a supra-political matter. They are of the same opinion. We have negotiated and agreed that the climate issue is a supra-political issue amongst all of these issues and that steps should be taken decisively within this framework although we may experience bilateral problems today.".