Plenary statement by Prime Minister Mark Rutte at COP28

Prime Minister Mark Rutte of the Netherlands held this speech at the COP28 World Climate Action Summit, Dubai, 1 December 2023

Your Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen,

In preparing for this Conference of the Parties, I asked the youth members of our delegation, future leaders from the Netherlands, what they expected me to bring home from Dubai.
Their answer was clear.
They expect us – today’s leaders – to deliver on the commitments already made, and to step up our efforts on phasing out fossil fuels. So we can get on track to reach our 1.5 degree target.
I consider that to be our common task over the next two weeks.

As you may know, the Kingdom of the Netherlands consists of a low-lying delta country in Europe and six islands in the Caribbean. 
So we know what it’s like to be vulnerable to climate change.
And how urgent it is that we take action.

As the Global Stocktake shows, we need to step up our efforts on all pillars of the Paris Agreement: on mitigation, on adaptation and on climate finance.

On climate finance, it’s crucial that all parties support the recommendations made by the Transitional Committee on Loss and Damage.
All the warning lights are flashing red after yet another year of climate extremes.
So we need to set up a fund and help the most vulnerable countries. 
The Netherlands will provide 15 million euro to the startup costs of this fund.

On adaptation, it’s imperative that we all agree, here in Dubai, on a specific goal. 
And a key part of every adaptation strategy must be far better management of flooding, drought and water pollution.

And on mitigation, too, we urgently need to scale up our efforts. 
In my country, the 2030 goal of a 55 per cent reduction in emissions now seems to be within reach, for the first time.
I won’t deny that it’s a painstaking and costly process, but the good news is: it can be done.

In the Netherlands, we’re committed to accelerating our efforts.

In the Netherlands, we’re committed to accelerating our efforts.

We’re investing in large-scale renewable energy, with a special focus on green hydrogen both in the Netherlands and abroad.

By 2030, we want to provide 100 million people in Africa with access to clean energy.

But millions of people need to become billions of people.

So I urge all of you here to step up your efforts as well, in support of the proposed goal of tripling renewable energy by 2030.

The young people of the world are calling upon us. Let us work tirelessly to secure their future.

Esteemed colleagues,
the young people of the world are calling upon us.
To deliver on our promises.
To step up our ambitions.
And to work together in embracing our collective responsibility.
Let us work tirelessly to secure their future.

Thank you.