01.09.2016 - Social and Human Sciences Sector

Signature of the Agreement to launch the preparation of a Declaration on ethical principles in relation to climate change

© UNESCO

UNESCO and the Kingdom of Morocco signed, on 1 September 2016, at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, the Agreement for holding the first meeting of the Ad Hoc Expert Group (AHEG) in Rabat to launch the preparation of a preliminary text of a non-binding Declaration on ethical principles in relation to climate change.

The Agreement with Morocco, host country of this meeting, was signed by Mr Eric Falt, Assistant Director-General of UNESCO for External Relations and Public Information, and by Professor Abdeljalil Lahjomri, Secretary-General of the National Commission of the Kingdom of Morocco for UNESCO.

The Director-General of UNESCO has accepted with gratitude the invitation of the Government of the Kingdom of Morocco to host this first meeting of the Ad Hoc Expert Group in Rabat, at the Academy of the Kingdom of Morocco, from 20 to 24 September 2016.

Indeed, the 38th session of the General Conference of UNESCO (November 2015) invited UNESCO to start preparing, in close cooperation with the World Commission on the Ethics of Scientific Knowledge and Technology (COMEST) and in consultation with Member States, a non-binding Declaration on ethical principles in relation to climate change.  The aim is to complement the existing reference instruments, taking into consideration the outcome of negotiations within the framework of the 21st and 22nd sessions of the Conference of Parties (COP-21 and COP-22) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). This preliminary text is to be submitted to the 39th session of the General Conference in 2017.

In the light of this decision, the Kingdom of Morocco – host-country of COP-22 (Marrakech, 7-18 November 2016) - expressed its readiness to support this work of UNESCO.

Mr Eric Falt underlined during the ceremony that the signature of this Agreement will reinforce the co-operation between UNESCO and Morocco to achieve the objectives defined by the Climate Change Agenda and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

This important first meeting of high-level international experts is organized under the auspices of the National Commission of the Kingdom of Morocco for UNESCO, with support of UNESCO and, in particular, its Social and Human Sciences Sector, UNESCO’s Cluster Office in Rabat and UNESCO’s Climate Change Task Force.

Professor Abdeljalil Lahjomri, in his turn, noted the global character of climate change which necessitates strong solidarity of the international community.

The organization of this first expert meeting confirms the commitment of the Kingdom of Morocco to promoting effective climate change adaptation, founded on a sound ethical basis. The Kingdom of Morocco will benefit on this occasion from the presence of UNESCO’s high-level climate change experts, scientists and ethicists in order to organize a Public Round-Table on the topic of the “Ethical Principles in Relation to Climate Change: Foundations and Perspectives” in Rabat, on 24 September 2016.

The ceremony was attended by H.Exc. Ms Zohour Alaoui, Permanent Delegate of the Kingdom of Morocco to UNESCO, Ms Najat Rhandi, Deputy Permanent Delegate of Morocco to UNESCO, Mr Mohammed Benabdelkader, Deputy Secretary-General of the National Commission of the Kingdom of Morocco to UNESCO, Mr Badarch Dendev, Director of the Division of Social Transformations and Intercultural Dialogue, representing the Social and Human Sciences Sector, Mr Douglas Nakashima, Chief of the Small Islands and Indigenous Knowledge Section, representing the Natural Sciences Sector, Mr Noureddine Ellaouzi, representative of the Moroccan Press Agency MAP in Paris, as well as other members of the Secretariat of UNESCO.




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