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#Atoms4Climate: IAEA at COP27 to Highlight Nuclear’s Role in Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation


As world leaders convene at this year's UN Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), commonly referred to as COP27, the IAEA will host and participate in a number of events highlighting the important role of nuclear science and technology solutions for climate change mitigation, adaptation and monitoring.

“Nuclear energy as a clean energy source has a very important role to play to help us get to net zero faster,” said IAEA Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi ahead of the COP. “Nuclear techniques are also helping accelerate adaptation and provide the climate monitoring data we need to make science-based decisions,” he added. “We are providing the tools for countries to protect their water and food security, develop smarter agriculture, and fight ocean acidification and other global climate problems.”

More than 35 000 people are expected to attend COP27 in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, including more than 100 heads of state. The IAEA and its partners will host over 40 events at the IAEA #Atoms4Climate pavilion.

Mr Grossi will officially open the #Atoms4Climate pavilion on Wednesday. The opening event will feature guest speakers, including Matthew Opoku Prempeh, Minister of Energy from Ghana; Kathryn Huff, Assistant Secretary for Nuclear Energy, United States of America, who will deliver a message on behalf of US Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm; Cecilia Nicolini, State Secretary of Climate Change, Sustainable Development and Innovation, Argentina; Petteri Taalas, Secretary-General, World Meteorological Organization (WMO); Mohamed Al Hammadi, President of the World Association of Nuclear Operators (WANO); Dominique Mouillot, President of Women in Nuclear; and more.

Later on Wednesday, Mr Grossi will take centre stage at a special event at the #Atoms4Climate pavilion, breaking open the traditional climate debate with William Kennedy, Senior Executive Editor, Energy and Commodities at Bloomberg. Tackling key issues facing our world today, Mr Grossi will underscore how one common denominator—nuclear—connects them all: from non-proliferation to mitigating and adapting to climate change and ensuring energy security. Later in the day, Mr Grossi and Fatih Birol, Executive Director of the International Energy Agency, will open an event on the contribution of nuclear energy to the clean energy transition and how it provides affordable, resilient and secure energy supply. This will be followed by a panel discussion between high-level experts from Poland, UAE, US and WANO.

Last month, Mr Grossi made a global appeal to advance the benefits of clean and reliable nuclear energy at the International Ministerial Conference on Nuclear Power. The convergence of the global climate and energy crises, which has driven up fuel prices in many regions and highlighted the need for clean and secure supplies of energy, has revived interest in nuclear power around the world, Mr Grossi said at the ministerial conference.

On Thursday, prominent speakers will discuss nuclear science and technology applications to help countries adapt to climate change in a range of areas – food production systems, water resources, marine ecosystems and urban and industrial infrastructure. Joining Mr Grossi on stage, guest speakers will include WMO Secretary-General Taalas; Juergen Voegele, Vice President for Sustainable Development at the World Bank; Peter Thomson, UN Secretary General’s Special Envoy for the Ocean; and Maria Helena Semedo, Deputy Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). Throughout COP27, several IAEA events will feature experts focusing on science for adaptation, with an emphasis on Africa.

All events at the #Atoms4Climate pavilion will be livestreamed.

On Thursday, Mr Grossi will join Olga Algayerova, Executive Secretary of UN Economic Commission for Europe, and Gerd Muller, Director General of UN Industrial Development Organization, to open an official UNFCCC side event on the interplay of low carbon technologies for resilient net zero energy systems.

On 15 November, IAEA experts will join a discussion at the FAO pavilion on integrated resource planning and management for sustainable, climate resilient development. At France’s pavilion, also on 15 November, experts from the IAEA will join panels on the role of nuclear in decarbonization and hydrogen production and competitiveness.

A UN report released on 27 October concluded that the world is falling short of the 2015 Paris Agreement climate change goals, and transformation is necessary. “Wide-ranging, large-scale, rapid and systemic transformation is now essential to achieve the temperature goal of the Paris Agreement,” the report stated.

Follow the IAEA and #Atoms4Climate on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn for updates throughout the week.

See the full list of IAEA events at COP27, and learn more about nuclear solutions for climate change.

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