It is an honor to be here amongst such esteemed company.
I want to thank Prime Minister Sanchez and President Sall for their diplomatic work in getting this effort off the ground and bringing us all here today.
Dr. Thiaw, you and your team at UNCCD will be critical to the success of this alliance.
I am excited to announce that the United States is joining the International Drought Resilience Alliance.
We must change the way the world approaches drought.
Our planet and our people are being hit with shocks and disasters on a regular basis.
In the last few months alone, we have seen record-breaking and life-threatening droughts in Europe, the Horn of Africa, the Sahel, and the American West.
We can no longer react to drought.
We must act before drought occurs.
We must build resilience in our societies, economies, infrastructure, and food systems to better withstand ever-increasing events.
We need to expand the scope and use of early warning systems to help us forecast and prepare for droughts.
The President’s Emergency Plan for Adaptation and Resilience, or PREPARE, is one of the vehicles through which the United States is responding.
PREPARE includes a sectoral focus on water. We seek to assist partner countries in planning for rising water stress and ensure water availability through improved water efficiency. We aim to scale up the use of nature-based solutions to address extreme- and slow-onset water-related events.
Through PREPARE, we are aiming to help more than half a billion people in developing countries adapt to and manage the impacts of climate change, including drought, by 2030.
The launch of this alliance during the Leader’s Segment of COP27 demonstrates the political will to refocus drought policies worldwide is there. Now we must galvanize this political will into action.
You can count on the United States to do just that.