2015 global climate agreement - As governments prepare to meet in November for the 2013 UN climate negotiations in Poland, the UN climate top official says the meeting in Warsaw is an essential step towards the new and universal climate agreement which governments will deliver in 2015.
According to Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), the meeting will be a prime opportunity to showcase the groundswell of action and policy across governments, business and civil society that will underpin that agreement and take the world from a high-carbon, high-risk world to low-carbon, low-risk way of living and doing business.
“This year’s UN Climate Change Conference in Warsaw is the opportunity for governments and businesses to both demonstrate their will to step up climate action and demonstrate what they are already doing. People around the world need to be inspired and get a better sense of what exactly is possible today to fight climate change in all areas of society,” Figueres stated in a statement released ahead of the negotiations in Warsaw.
She said global talks need to harness and reinforce the momentum building towards low-carbon and high-resilience at national, regional, municipal and business level in strategic and effective ways.
This, she said, can be accomplished, if countries meeting in Warsaw progress on three core tasks.
This involves continuing work to define details of the universal climate agreement set to conclude in Paris in 2015 and to raise current ambition to fight climate change for the world to stay below the internationally-agreed maximum two degrees Celsius temperature rise.
Figueres noted that this effort is critical to reinforce and boost political and business action on climate at all levels of society.
Secondly, governments will look to progress on crucial finance and technology support that developing countries require to green their economies and build resilience. She pointed out that new channels of technology and finance support to developing nations are coming online soon, notably the Green Climate Fund and Technology Mechanism.
“Now governments need to move toward full implementation of support and ensure that finance is ramped up towards the agreed goal of US$ 100 billion annually by 2020 - money which is needed to catalyse and redirect greater investments.”
The third core task is for governments to further enable developing countries respond to climate impacts.
Figueres said the poorest and most vulnerable who already keenly feel the impacts of climate change, such as increased incidences of droughts and floods and extreme weather, will be even harder hit in the future.
Above all, concrete institutional arrangements to better protect the most vulnerable populations against loss and damage caused by slow onset events such as rising sea levels need to be firmed up, the UN climate top official stressed.
The 19th session of the Conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC (COP 19) and the 9th session of the Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol will take place from 11-22 November.