Friday, 03 May 2024 17:17

Ilham Aliyev: We will make all efforts for COP29 to become a success story

The Caspian Sea (a unique and the world’s only saline water body with no outlet to the ocean), of which Azerbaijan is an integral part, will be in the spotlight of the world community during the 29th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 29) to be hosted in Azerbaijan on November 11-22, 2024. Around 70-80,000 foreign guests and tourists are expected to visit the country during COP29.

The Caspian Sea region forms the so called energy ellipse which contains around 70% of the global oil reserves and 40% of natural gas reserves, Dmitry Medvedev said while Prime Minister of Russia. So far, it has been one of the most important areas of cooperation for the quintet of countries surrounding the Caspian Sea. The Caspian Sea region is located at the intersection of continental routes. The territories of the region’s states have direct access to South Asia and Asia-Pacific region in the East; to the Black and Mediterranean Seas in the West; to the Middle East (through Iran) in the South; across Russia and farther - to the Baltic Sea coast.

Environmental aspects in the Caspian Sea region have not been large-scale so far, but have been limited to one-time campaigns and focused on preservation of sturgeon fish populations. For instance, in 2014, the leaders of 5 countries - Nursultan Nazarbayev together with President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev, President of Iran Khasan Rouhani, President of Russia Vladimir Putin, and President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhammedov – released beluga fish juveniles into the Volga River. A total of 500 beluga species were then released into the natural marine environment by the state leaders.

The realities of the present-day world made it possible to view the resources of the Caspian Sea and Azerbaijan, in general, from a different angle. Preliminary estimates suggest that just in the Azeri sector of the Caspian Sea, 157,000 MW of electricity can be generated, which is 20 times higher than the total capacity of all power plants of Azerbaijan.

Azerbaijan has 9 out of 12 climate zones within its territory where the wind blows and the sun shines almost all the time, making it possible to generate green energy. Solar energy can be produced almost all over the country. As to the wind energy, the most promising areas are Khizi, Khazar, Absheron, and Gobustan districts, as well as the capital city Baku, that is to say, the eastern part of the country.

There is also big potential in Karabakh and East-Zangazur economic regions where restoration operations are underway. Solar energy abounds in Kalbajar, Lachin, Gubadli, Zangilan, Jabrail (the whole East-Zangazur economic region) and Fuzuli. Meanwhile, Kalbajar and Lachin are famous for their strong winds ranging up to 8 meters per second.

On December 17, 2022, the leaders of Azerbaijan, Georgia, Hungary and Romania signed the Agreement on strategic partnership in the field of development and transmission of green energy, which provides for the implementation of a submarine cable project that will run under the Black Sea and deliver Azerbaijan’s green energy to Europe.

The agreement provides for the laying of a 1,100km long (685 miles) electricity cable with the capacity of 1000MW which will stretch from Azerbaijan to Romania across the Black Sea.

The European Commission has allocated 2.3 billion EUR for its laying. The project implementation will take several years.

“The agreement on strategic partnership in the field of development and transmission of green energy between Azerbaijan, Georgia, Romania and Hungary will be another common contribution to the energy security of Europe”, President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev said in Bucharest.

He noted that the agreement was an important step in the creation of a green energy corridor.

During his speech, President of Azerbaijan added that in the year 2021 Azerbaijan’s export of natural gas to the European Union market was 8.2 billion cubic meters, and in 2022, 11.3 bcm. In 2023, it was expected to total at least 11.6 bcm.

Addressing the meeting in Bucharest, Ilham Aliyev also noted that at least 3 gigawatts of additional transmission capacity should be created for the first phase of Azerbaijani export.

“To integrate a growing share of renewables, we need, indeed, stronger electricity interconnections, and this is why the Black Sea electric cable between Romania, Georgia, and Azerbaijan is so important”, President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen said.

“It will help reinforce our security of supply by bringing electricity from renewable sources to the European Union via Romania and through Hungary,” Ursula von der Leyen said.

“As evidenced by the recently signed energy agreement between the EU and Azerbaijan, Azerbaijan is not the only, but the most important partner which will be involved in Europe’s energy supply”, Péter Szijjártó, the Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs, wrote on Facebook earlier.

The minister said that Hungary would partly use and partly transfer green electricity supplied by Azerbaijan. The construction of the world’s longest electricity cable will be another bridge linking Caspian energy resources and the EU, and another contribution of Azerbaijan into the energy security of Europe. 



 “We treat our chairmanship in COP29 not only as an opportunity to showcase ourselves and present our country”, President Ilham Aliyev said during the speech at the international forum themed “COP29 and Green Vision for Azerbaijan” organized at ADA University.

“We treat the chairmanship (COP29-ed.) as an opportunity to contribute really to the practical resolution of the most urgent issues on global arena”, the head of state emphasized.

Speaking about the importance of conduction of COP29 in Azerbaijan, the head of state noted: “COP29 is a sign of big respect and support to Azerbaijan from the international community”.

“We want COP29 to be successful from the point of view of tackling the issues of climate change. At the same time, it’s an opportunity to tell our story”, the President said.

Earlier, in February 2024, UAE, Azerbaijan and Brazil - the host countries of the UN climate conferences for the years 2023-2025 - said they were forming a “troika” to promote the achievement of the climate agenda objectives. This is perhaps the first coalition of countries, created not due to the geopolitical tensions but for the solution of environmental and climate challenges. Azerbaijan symptomatically remains at the heart of the peace agenda.

The parties will work over the road map to reach the goal on holding of global temperature rise within 1.5 degrees.

COP28 President Dr. Ahmad Al Jaber called this initiative important, stating “we must do everything to keep 1.5 degrees Celsius within reach”.

“We will be working together... with our friends in Baku and Brazil, to ensure that promises made in Dubai are fulfilled. Together we ensure that new agreements forged at the next COP set us on the path we need to achieve our mission,” he pointed out.

In March this year, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg declared that “climate change matters for security, and therefore, it matters for NATO. Climate change is a crisis multiplier. Therefore, the challenge is that the world needs energy, but at the same time, we need to fight global warming. We need to reconcile the need for energy and environment”.

“Azerbaijan is not only exporting natural gas, but is also investing in alternative energies. So, the COP29 will be an important milestone”, the NATO Secretary General emphasized.

Stoltenberg also welcomed the growing role of Azerbaijan in gas supplies to Europe (almost 50% of Azerbaijan’s gas export goes to Europe and the volume made 11.8 bcm in 2023, according to the data of Interfax). “(…) your country is playing a more and more important role in delivering gas, but also, in the future, electricity to key NATO allies in Europe. Azerbaijan plays an important role for the resilience of our societies”, he added.

The leaders of Caspian littoral countries and of Norway, Türkiye and Denmark have been invited to COP29 in Azerbaijan, and their number is continuously growing.

Azerbaijan’s Foreign Minister Jeyhun Bayramov held an extended meeting with his Czech counterpart Jan Lipavsky at which the parties considered the prospects for cooperation and partnership within the framework of the 29th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 29) to the UNFCCC.  

At the latest Conference of the Parties (COP 28) to the UNFCCC, the countries reached a historical deal that calls for a transition away from all types of fossil fuel and reduction of emissions to zero by 2050. For the first time, the agreement included the commitment to phase out all fossil fuels. None of the previous climate summit agreements mentioned the abandonment of oil and gas which were the bedrock of the global economy for decades.

The agreement calls on the countries to ensure the quick and orderly abandonment of fossil fuel in energy systems. The countries also undertook to contribute to the transition process. How soon the agreement will be implemented depends on the decision that will be made by investors, consumers and national governments because even after the countries agreed two years ago in Glasgow to phase out coal, its consumption kept growing and the world is unlikely to retain the temperature rise within 1.5 degrees fixed in the Paris treaty. The text also includes agreements about tripling of RES introduction and doubling of efficiency growth rates by the end of the decade. 

Therefore, the framework conference in Baku will most likely have to concretize  the agreements already reached in UAE, as well as to call the planet’s attention to the promotion of investments to address such issues as the planet’s dwindling drinking water resources, perseveration of flora and fauna of landlocked water bodies and use them for commercial purposes, raising of the level of environmental responsibility of the entire oil-gas industry with the aim to reduce environmental pollution to net zero and ensure transition to renewable energy sources.

“We will make all efforts for COP29 to become a success story”, President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev wrote in his account on the social network X. 

The President emphasized that Azerbaijan consistently supports global climate action and implements various energy efficiency measures.

“Clean environment and green growth are among our national priorities. Renewable energy is gaining momentum in Azerbaijan”, the head of state underlined. I.Aliyev noted that hosting of the COP29 session in 2024 “stems from Azerbaijan’s firm determination to contribute to global efforts to cope with climate change”.

Read 38 times Last modified on Thursday, 04 July 2024 06:03