IRENA and small island states sign renewable energy financing agreement at COP26

The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) and the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) have signed an agreement that will seem them work closely to mobilise climate finance and to advance the deployment of renewable energy across Small Island Developing States (SIDS).

The signing ceremony took place today at the COP26 climate conference in Glasgow between IRENA director-general Francesco La Camera and Molwyn Joseph, Minister of Health, Wellness and the Environment of Antigua and Barbuda and Chair of AOSIS.

AOSIS represents 44 small islands and low lying coastal developing states representing 39 SIDS across the Caribbean, Pacific and Atlantic, Indian Ocean and South China Sea. According to climate experts, the future of many of these island states is threatened by global warming and rising sea levels.

Speaking at COP26 today, former US President Barrack Obama told delegates that wealthy nations have an ‘added burden’ to ensure help is provided to those most vulnerable to the effects of climate change. “Our islands are threatened more than ever,” he said.

Meanwhile, IRENA’s La Camera said: “The plight of small islands around the world must serve as a continual reminder of the urgency to act. The enthusiasm witnessed at this COP must now be translated from commitments to action in the months and years ahead of us.

“In that context, IRENA and AOSIS will redouble efforts to maintain the energy transition leadership shown by island nations since the signing of the Paris Agreement by working to mobilise climate finance and bolstering the implementation agenda.”