State Secretary and Special Envoy for International Climate Action Jennifer Morgan issued the following statement on 31 October 2023 prior to leaving for climate policy talks in Singapore, Vanuatu, Australia, New Zealand and the Cook Islands as well as to attend the 52nd Pacific Islands Forum Leaders Meeting in Rarotonga:
I am travelling to the Pacific region just a few weeks before COP28 in Dubai. The Pacific island states are at the epicentre of the climate crisis. They are crucial partners for greater ambition in international climate change mitigation. In the Cook Islands and Vanuatu, global warming is an existential threat: houses are being destroyed, fields and roads washed away. Rising sea levels are threatening to swallow up many people’s homes. Hardly any other place bears such tangible witness to how urgently we need to take courageous decisions in the climate negotiations in order to prevent even worse consequences.
I will be attending the 52nd Pacific Islands Forum Leaders Meeting (PIF) in the Cook Islands. In Rarotonga I will talk to partners who are particularly badly affected by climate change. We need to take the necessary steps to change our course to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius. That is why we will be working with our ambitious partners from the Pacific island states and the EU at COP28 to achieve a successful outcome from the negotiations.
My meetings in Singapore, Australia and New Zealand will also centre around the impact of the climate crisis. Here, however, the focus will be on transforming our economies. I will report to our partners on the implementation of the energy transition in Europe and Germany with the aim of driving forward this process also in these countries. Holding talks with various stakeholders in society – activists, NGOs, businesspeople and scientists – will be one of my priorities in all the countries.