Background Towards climate neutrality: challenges and opportunities

Most developing countries and emerging economies face major challenges: they must end poverty and hunger, expand their health and education systems and sustainably develop their economies so that the population as a whole achieves a standard of living that is worthy of human dignity. Some years ago, a further problem began to emerge: the steadily worsening and sometimes dramatic impacts of global warming.

These impacts are already particularly severe for many developing countries – even though most of these countries produce very low greenhouse gas emissions and their past contributions to human-induced climate change have been minimal.

In order to address this additional challenge, developing countries and emerging economies must take comprehensive measures to adapt to the impacts of climate change and reduce their greenhouse gas emissions while strengthening and developing their economies.

The transition to social and economic systems that are characterised by climate neutrality, climate resilience and climate justice requires broad-scale reforms and investment. It is beset with risks, including job losses, price increases and growing resource demand. International support is essential if the developing countries are to respond successfully to these risks while also benefiting from the opportunities afforded by structural change, such as a sustainable, resilient and needs-based energy supply for all, increased participation in global value chains, new economic sectors and business segments that offer future-oriented employment opportunities, and fresh impetus for the conservation of a healthy environment with clean air and cleaner water.

The wealthy nations have a responsibility to support the developing countries as they undertake the necessary restructuring. Germany is aware of this responsibility and is a dependable source of support for its partner countries.

As at: 11/09/2023