Statement by Ambassador Heiko Thoms at the Event to celebrate the Deposit of Instruments of Ratification of the Paris Agreement

Oct 7, 2016

Mr. President,

Minister, Commissioner, Excellencies,

Ladies and Gentlemen,


Submitting our national ratification document for the Paris Climate Agreement the day before yesterday was a very special moment in my diplomatic career. By doing so, we paved the road for one of the greatest achievements of multilateralism in recent years – the entry into force of the Paris Climate Agreement in 2016.

We are all aware, that this is not the end – it’s the beginning of a process. But it is a good reason to celebrate that we have made our commitment against climate change irreversible.

We all need to work together now to implement this Agreement and make a difference – and you can count on Germany and the German people’s support for an ambitious implementation of the Paris Agreement. The worldwide temperature records call us all to action. In Germany, we have agreed to abandon nuclear energy, and we are taking steps to generate between 80% and 95% of our electricity demand in 2050 by green energy sources- like wind energy and photovoltaics.

I would like to recall another point: The Security Council under German chairmanship recognized in a Presidential Statement in 2011 that climate change may threaten world peace and stability. We are strongly interested in continuing this debate here at the UN.

Allow me to close with a word of gratitude to the Secretary General, who is in Hamburg as we speak, where he has received the German Sustainability Award for his leadership in the fight against climate change. It was Ban Ki-moon who realized early on that peace and security depend on the protection of our planet’s climate.  The Paris Agreement is also part of his legacy. He has made the fight against climate change a priority for the UN, and he has given it a voice, as no country alone can cope with the challenge we are facing.

The European Union and its member states have shown unity and leadership in rapidly ratifying the Paris agreement and I am honored to have had the opportunity to be part of this historic moment.

Thank you.

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