STATEMENT BY AMB (DR.) AMINA MOHAMED OPENING STATEMENT BY H.E AMBASSADOR (DR) AMINA MOHAMMED, EBS, CABINET SECRETARY FOR SPORTS, CULTURE, AND HERITAGE, GOVERNMENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF KENYA ON THE OCCASION OF THE BLUE ECONOMY SIDE EVENT “BUILDING PARTNERSHIPS FOR BLUE ECONOMY, SPORTS, AND ENVIRONMENT”
DATE: JUNE,3 2022, TIME: 15:15-16.30
VENUE: STOCKHOLMSMASSAN, ROOM 3 (SWEDEN)
I join in welcoming you to this side event on the blue economy, sports, and environment, jointly organized by the Government of Kenya and the Stockholm Environment Institute, (SEI).,
The Blue Economy envisages and presents related investment opportunities in a myriad of sectors, including maritime shipping and global connectivity; fisheries, tourism around coastal cities; deep-sea mining, and actions that ensure adaptation and mitigation against the reality and vagaries of climate change among many challenges. Most of these opportunities are yet to be realized in most parts of our world. Most specifically especially in my home continent of Africa. A continent surrounded by water and deep-sea resources with their infinite possibilities for exploitation and development.
However, as we are all clearly aware, they require massive investments in terms of technologies, finances, and human capacity and expertise.
Ladies and Gentlemen
Most of you who were in Nairobi in November 2018 also know that the conversation around a sustainable Blue Economy is one that the Government of Kenya is extremely passionate about. It is for this reason that we seek to walk this journey with like-minded partners like Sweden and Portugal, and with all our brothers and sisters within Africa and from the Small Island States to ensure that together we are able to harness the promise of the Blue economy.
Kenya has already identified a number of bankable Blue Economy projects. It is my hope and that of the Government of Kenya, that the conversations that we are having here will trigger partnerships and collaborations that will turn these opportunities to actionable investments.
This side event is also focusing on Sports and Environment. A recent report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) noted that the world is not on track to meet the 1.5 degrees warming target agreed upon under the Paris Agreement.
It is incumbent upon all of us to help the world understand the magnitude of such environmental challenges as air pollution and climate change and their impact on human health and help identify innovations and solutions to overcome these challenges.
The United Nations General Assembly Resolution 75/18 on Sports as an enabler for sustainable development, highlights the call to integrate sports and physical activities into national strategies for sustainable development, taking note of the contributions that Sports makes to health and human wellbeing.
The sports community we are determined to be solution providers in the fight against environmental deterioration. In our conversation today, therefore we will demonstrate how athletic federations are tackling air pollution and climate change through unique and innovative partnerships that bring together sports entities.
I am delighted with the collaboration between Athletics Kenya, the Swedish Athletics Association, and World Athletics, which has culminated in the Global Air Quality Campaign “Every Breath Counts.” These sustainability efforts have received tremendous support from the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI) with whom we are co-hosting this Side Event.
This event is taking place two months after the Commemorative Run at Karura Forest in Nairobi in March 2022 organized to mark the 50th anniversary of the founding United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). We were able at that time to showcase our commitment to using sports for environmental conservation. I hope that moving forward, there will be many such opportunities for the Sports community to promote environment and climate actions and have some of our celebrity athletes, such as David Rudisha who is here, speak on Environment issues, to motivate and inspire young people across the globe.
With these remarks, I want to wish for fruitful and rewarding deliberations.
THANK YOU FOR YOUR ATTENTION!