Statement of Germany, UN Security Council Open Debate on “The Impact of Climate Change and Food Insecurity on the Maintenance of International Peace and Security”, 13 February 2024

13.02.2024 - Speech

The statement was delivered by Ambassador Thomas Zahneisen, Deputy Permanent Representative.

Mr President,

At the outset, I wish to thank Guyana for organizing this important and timely debate.

I also thank the Secretary General and all other briefers for their valuable insights.

Germany aligns itself

· with the statement delivered by the European Union.

· with the statement delivered by Nauru on behalf of the Group of Friends on Climate & Security,

· and by Ireland on behalf of the Group of Friends of Action on Conflict and Hunger

I will add a few remarks in my national capacity.

Mr President,

Germany fully supports placing climate change on the agenda of this Council.

During our most recent term on the Council, we consistently advocated for more ambition in this important policy field.

The climate crisis is one of the greatest security risks of the 21st century. It fuels conflict and contributes to destabilising states.

In response, at national level, we have launched our first whole-of-government Strategy on Climate Foreign Policy in fall 2023.

We continue to remain active on this file outside the Council too, for example by co-chairing the Group of Friends on Climate & Security and by supporting the work of the UN Climate Security Mechanism.

The interlinkages and mutually reinforcing dynamics between climate change, food insecurity and threats to peace and security have rightly been highlighted by many previous speakers. We share this assessment.

The Council itself has recognized the need “to break the vicious cycle between armed conflict and food insecurity” in 2018 with Res. 2417.

In that regard, we once again condemn the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine, which provoked a severe spike in food insecurity and malnutrition in various regions worldwide.

Mr President,

Allow me to focus on three distinct aspects which any comprehensive strategy in the climate-food-security nexus should address:

First, unlocking the full potential of food systems is a key contributor towards more stability and peace.

To achieve this objective, agriculture and food systems must be transformed towards sustainability and resilience. An integrated, rights-based and community-led approach is, we believe, the basis of any successful transformation.

Strengthening local value chains for food production will remain a cornerstone of Germany’s international cooperation.

Second, the most severe consequences of climate change and food insecurity on peace and security are in fact predictable.

We must make more systematic use of early-warning systems and comprehensive, cross-sectoral risk analyses to better anticipate and prevent. In order to do so, we need to share data and ensure the interoperability of our data collection systems.

Third, let us collectively invest more systematically in Anticipatory Action. It not only saves lives and livelihoods, it also helps to reduce humanitarian needs in the mid- to long run by up to 70 % where such approaches are applied.

In 2023, Germany has more than doubled preventive action funding to 140 million USD. We will continue to invest at least 5 % of our humanitarian budget into anticipatory action.

Mr President,

In conclusion, Germany strongly supports your initiative and we hope this topic will remain centre to the Council’s agenda.

We would also welcome a deepened exchange of this Council with the Peacebuilding Commission and other relevant bodies of the UN systems on this issue.

We stand ready to work with you, Mr President, other Council members and with affected countries to address the challenges posed by climate change and food security on peace and security.

Thank you.

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