• "Our commitments are not conditioned on international support, but the role of international cooperation will be decisive in achieving our objectives," said Minister Carlos Eduardo Correa.
• "It was a very profitable agenda, we returned to our country extremely satisfied with the work done," said David Olarte, from the Ministry of Environment.
Washington D.C., July 16, 2021 -MADS-. The Minister of Environment and Sustainable Development, Carlos Eduardo Correa, successfully completed the agenda that he led for three days in Washington D.C. with an important meeting with Jonathan Pershing, senior advisor to the special presidential envoy for climate, John Kerry, with whom he conversed environmental agreements for the protection of Colombia's natural resources.
With Pershing, he discussed the updated Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) and the strategies that the country will present at the Twenty-sixth Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), which will be hosted by the United Kingdom in the city of Glasgow, from October 31 to November 12, 2021.
“We welcome the efforts of the United States, under the leadership of Special Envoy John Kerry, to enhance climate action commitments around the world. By committing to mitigate our Greenhouse Gas emissions, we attained a challenging goal. This is an unprecedented effort in our country that will require significant investments, for which reason the National Government has identified the immediate financial resources necessary to translate the objectives of the Colombian NDC into action”, said Minister Carlos Eduardo Correa.
The official also had a meeting with Mark Plotkin, co-founder of the Amazon Conservation Team, an organization that works with indigenous and local communities for the protection of tropical forests. They specified actions for the restoration and conservation of the Amazonian biodiversity and its forests. Similarly, he attended an interview with Zach Coleman, on the Whitepaper, a strategy that establishes a framework that guides environmental policy in Colombia until 2030, to shape the decisions that have been and will be taken as part of the environmental agenda in the administration of President Iván Duque.
Important meetings, big steps
The minister also met with representatives of international organizations and US entities, with officials from the Environmental Protection Agency, congressmen, the diplomatic corps of Colombia, with directors of the International Conservation Caucus Foundation (ICCF), Oceans and Climate Solution and the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF).
Among the different activities carried out by Correa in the US capital was the meeting with Sebastian Troëng and Jamie Cross, directors of Conservation International, an entity that promotes and supports various projects implemented in favor of the environment in the country. He also met with Jane Nishida, Administrator in Charge of the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and her team; participated in a discussion with Thomas Lovejoy, Principal Investigator for the United Nations Foundation, whose leadership is to protect biodiversity.
Carlos Eduardo Correa stated that the main objectives of the visit were fulfilled, which were to make visible the achievements that the country has obtained in environmental matters and seek assistance, management, and support to face the challenges and achieve the goals. The minister's interventions contributed to the construction of the synergy in which the National Government has been working with the President of the United States, Joe Biden.
The minister reached agreements that will contribute to the achievement of the environmental goals proposed by the National Government and the Ministry of the Environment and Sustainable Development, such as reducing greenhouse gas emissions in 51% by 2030, as well as zero deforestation by 2030, achieving carbon-neutrality by 2050, plant 180 million trees by 2022 and plant a million corals that will enrich Colombian biodiversity, among others.
"There are important reasons for bilateral cooperation”
Climate change is one of the greatest challenges facing the country. Although Colombia is responsible for only 0.6% of global GHG emissions, due to its geographic location and its immense biodiversity, it is highly vulnerable to the impacts of this scourge. Hence, the minister has developed an intense agenda in the United States in search of allies and partners. “Although our commitments are not conditioned on international support, the role of international cooperation will be decisive in achieving our objectives. We believe that there are important reasons for bilateral cooperation and to strengthen them based on environmental and climate issues”, added Correa. According to, David Olarte, head of International Affairs Office, at the Ministry, who accompanied the minister on his visit to Washington, affirmed that, being the Minister’s first official international trip, it has been extremely productive for the promotion of the environmental agenda. “We found an especially good reception from the different organizations and entities with whom we met. We began to emphasis on support for declaration on protected areas, support for the country's climate change agenda and a strengthening of the air quality monitoring system through the Environmental Protection Agency. This is to enrich the activities of the Institute of Hydrology, Meteorology and Environmental Studies (Ideam). It was a very profitable agenda, we returned to our country extremely satisfied with the work done”, said Olarte.