Friday, July 31, 2015

Fabius and climate talks in Tehran

Tehran has been hosting high level diplomatic delegations since the nuclear settlement. One after the other political and economic figures have arrived to enhance and strengthen relations. Lauren Fabius, the French Foreign Minister, was the most recent among them. He arrived on Wednesday to meet, Dr. Zarif, President Rouhani, ministers of industry and petroleum. 
As Fabius is the future President of the COP21, the climate negotiations that must lead to a new agreement by the end of 2015, he also came to visit me at Pardisan Park later in the afternoon.
Areas of bilateral cooperation, green technologies, renewable energy and air pollution control were discussed . We also spoke on the various hurdles ahead of the climate negotiations. The issue of common but differentiated responsibilites eluding to the historical responsibility of industrialised countries which have a long history of GHG emissions was brought up. I also noted of the need to take more practical steps and commitments by countries of the North. A balanced, equitable and sustainable deal which addresses mitigation as well as adaptation and the damages countries are facing is required. I noted that our government will collaborate to achieve those ends. I also made note of the steps Iran is taking for energy efficiency as well as renewable energies. The damages Iran faces now due to climatic changes including higher temperatures, lower precipitation and less snow resulting in degradation of natural resources and agriculture were also discussed. I mentioned that the episodes of dust storms were also  increasing in incidence and intensity. Mr. Fabius invited me to attend a consultation session with ministers in Paris ahead of the COP21 session. I also asked him finally whether he thought the COP talks would be more difficult than the nuclear negotiations.

We moved to the lobby of the main building of the DOE to  meet the large group of reporters and respond to some questions.

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