Climate change needed to be sorted soon, leaders in Brussels


Brussels, Belgium: Political leaders from all regions are multiplying their public calls for nations to step up immediate climate action and to conclude robust guidelines to implement the Paris Climate Change Agreement at the next UN climate talks in Poland in December.

Last week, ministers from 36 governments from around the world met in Brussels, Belgium, where they reiterated their commitment to achieving a “balanced, comprehensive, pragmatic, robust and operational set of implementation guidance” under the Paris Agreement Work Proramme at the upcoming UN Climate Change Conference in Katowice, Poland (COP24).

At the Ministerial on Climate Action (MoCA) convened by the European Union, Canada and China, ministers stressed the importance of multilateralism and confirmed that “the Paris Agreement is irreversible and it is not to be renegotiated.”

EU Climate Action and Energy Commissioner Miguel Arias Cañete, China’s Special Representative for Climate Change Xie Zhenhua and Canada’s Minister of Environment Catherine McKenna called on the world to put forward more ambitious commitments under the Paris Agreement.

In his opening remarks, Commissioner Miguel Arias Cañete said:

“Last Thursday, EU negotiators agreed to increase the 2030 renewable energy target to 32% up from the original 27% target on the basis of which our at least 40% emissions reduction target in our NDC was modelled. And yesterday evening, EU negotiators agreed on a new 32,5% energy efficiency target by 2030 up from the 30% original target. […] Both new targets would de facto mean that the European Union would be in a position to raise the level of ambition of the NDC and increase its emissions reduction target from the current 40% to slightly over 45% by 2030.”

Catherine McKenna, Minister of Environment and Climate Change, said:

“Canadians expect our government to take ambitious action to fight climate change at home and abroad. These meetings with other international climate leaders were essential to continue building momentum toward the ambitious global action we need to keep our climate safe and realise the opportunities of the transition to cleaner economic growth. We will continue to work with our national and international partners to ensure we can all meet our Paris commitments to protect our planet for our kids and grandkids.”

Xie Zhenhua, China’s Special Representative on Climate Change Affairs, said:                                    “Our purpose is to achieve low-carbon economy ant to build up a community of common destiny for human beings. In December, we are going to have COP24 and UN Secretary-General Guterres has invited us to different summits including the international summit on biodiversity [UN Biodiversity Conference]. All these summits and platforms can be supplementary to achieve our final goal which is sustainable development through synergies of political will among all countries”.

Sustainable peace needs climate action

Only one day after MoCA, the European Union High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini hosted a high-level event that stressed the urgency and importance of tackling the risks that climate change poses to security and peace.

Ministers from around the world, top United Nations officials, and leading experts testified to the many real and potential security threats deriving from climate change.

(Courtesy: Global Governance Watch)

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