Effects of climate change have emerged earlier and in a harsher form in the Carpathian Basin than in several other regions in Europe, President János Áder said on Monday at the First National Interdisciplinary Scientific Conference on Climate Change.
Áder said one of the weighty issues was to raise public support for climate issues in Hungary in a way that motivates individuals and communities to take action rather than sink into “climate depression”.
At the same time, Áder warned that curbing the effects of climate change warranted significant change in sectors like the industry, agriculture, transport and even everyday life. “It would be foolish to deny that this will harm certain interests,” he said.
FactThe aim of the First National Interdisciplinary Scientific Conference on Climate Change, held online due to the coronavirus pandemic, was to discuss those effects in Hungary and the Carpathian Basin, to assess the knowledge accumulated over the past years and to start working on a national report on climate change, to be published in 2023. The report will attempt to provide clear answers to issues such as climate threats and emission trends, adaptation and mitigation opportunities as well as the economic, regulatory and budgetary aspects of climate change.
László Palkovics, the minister of innovation and technology, said in his address that climate change’s adverse effects in the Carpathian Basin can only be forestalled through cooperation. International treaties and Hungary’s commitment to climate goals provide the baseline for finding sustainable industrial solutions as well as energy efficient construction and transport models, he said.
Last year, the coronavirus pandemic forced the issue of sustainable economy to take a back seat, Palkovics said. Nevertheless, Hungary had an effective year in creating a circular economy, he said. The government drafted a climate protection action plan and adopted its energy and climate strategy. The latter was also enshrined in law, Palkovics added.
Sustainability is inseparable from industry policy, and so the government has probed the development needs of the most important sectors, Palkovics said. Hungary has great development potential in energy industry, biotechnology, hydrogen technology, energy storage and innovative raw materials, he said.
Hungary will be able to fulfil its climate protection commitments only if political decision makers, economic players and private individuals all contribute, Palkovics said.
The conference runs between April 12 and 15, organised by the Hungarian Scientific Panel on Climate Change, the Hungarian arm of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
Featured photo by Tibor Illyés/MTI