Minister of Environment Yasmine Fouad held talks on Tuesday with head of the European Union (EU) delegation to Egypt Ivan Surkos – Courtesy of the Ministry of Environment Minister of Environment Yasmine Fouad held talks on Tuesday with head of the European Union (EU) delegation to Egypt Ivan Surkos – Courtesy of the Ministry of Environment

Environment minister, EU’s Surkos talk 2018 Biodiversity Convention

Wed, Aug. 1, 2018
CAIRO – 1 August 2018: Minister of Environment Yasmine Fouad held talks on Tuesday with head of the European Union (EU) delegation to Egypt, Ivan Surkos, about the United Nations Biodiversity Convention set to be held in Sharm El-Sheikh in November.

Egypt will host the 14th Meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the UN Convention on Biological Diversity.

Biodiversity is defined as the diverse types of living organisms existing in an ecosystem. It defines the degree of variation. The community is considered more stable when larger number of diverse forms exists in it.

Fouad also discussed with Surkos ways to enhance mutual cooperation regarding various environment issues, including climate change. Surkos affirmed the EU's commitment to support the Egyptian efforts in the climate field. Scientifically, climate change can negatively affect biodiversity.

Fouad revealed to Surkos a number of issues that should be addressed in the Biodiversity Convention, including equalizing between developed and developing states through activating the Paris Agreement for climate change. According to the Paris Agreement, all member states shoulder common responsibility to combat climate change.

The agreement aims to keep the rise in global temperature below 2 degrees Celsius in the current century in order to combat the threat of climate change. The agreement was signed in 2015.

Concerning Sharm El-Sheikh city, Fouad expressed hope that the EU supports efforts exerted to declare the city located in South Sinai a green city.

Earlier in July, Fouad said that the ministry seeks to announce Sharm El-Sheikh an environment friendly green city.

This came during the minister’s participation with her counterpart, South Africa's Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) Minister Edna Molewa, in the side sessions of the Biodiversity and Sustainable Development Conventions at the United Nations (UN) Headquarters in New York.

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FILE - Naama bay in Sharm El-Sheikh city

Fouad added that a number of projects will be carried out to turn Sharm El-Sheikh into a green city, including waste recycling, reuse of water and the use of environment friendly technology for renewable energy. She also revealed that the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) supports the project by $5 million, which represents the project’s budget.

Sisi follows up on conference preparations
In a meeting between President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi, Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly, and the ministers of housing, local development and environment on Tuesday, Fouad reviewed the preparations for hosting the Biodiversity Convention, which will reportedly receive over 5,000 attendees from different member states.

The decision that Egypt will host the 14th meeting of the conference was taken by the participants in the 13th meeting of the conference in Cancun, Mexico, in 2016, during the term of former Environment Minister Khaled Fahmi.


Egypt is the second African country to host the conference. Kenya hosted the event in May 2000.

Fouad succeeded Fahmi last June to become the third female minister to serve as the environment minister after Laila Rashid Eskandar and Nadia Makram Ebeid.

Fouad is an assistant professor of economy and political science in Cairo University. She has served as the acting director of the Center for Economic and Financial Research and Studies since 2014.

She represented Egypt in a number of international conferences within the framework of the Green Climate Fund. In addition, she headed a committee that managed to get a fund of $54 million to support Egypt's environmental program for renewable energy.
 
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