Secretary General Ban Ki-moon reported that ahead of an upcoming United Nations climate conference in Paris, world leaders have voiced broad support for reaching a durable agreement that will accelerate investments in clean energy and spur a global, low-carbon transformation well before the end of the century, consistent with a below 2 degrees Celsius pathway.
“Leaders expressed their resolve to finalize a durable, meaningful agreement in Paris that applies to all countries,” Mr. Ban told reporters following a high-level working lunch held on the margins of the UN Sustainable Development Summit, which opened in New York on Friday.
The Summit, which has adopted the landmark new sustainability blueprint, Transforming Our World: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development – composed of 17 goals and 169 targets to wipe out poverty, fight inequality and tackle climate over the next 15 years – is also being seen as an opportunity to continue momentum ahead of the Twenty-first meeting of States Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), informally known as COP 21, taking place in the French capital this December.
“Our meeting today was not a negotiation, but an informal gathering to inject greater political energy,” explained the UN chief at a press conference alongside Peruvian President Ollanta Humala and French President François Hollande, who both had participated in the working lunch and welcomed the generally positive nature of the discussions.
Stressing that the points of political convergence that had emerged must be translated into tangible action, the Secretary-General said that leaders had noted that a Paris agreement must be a turning point that sends a clear signal to citizens and the private sector that the transformation of the global economy is inevitable, beneficial, and already underway.
“There was also consensus that the agreement must strengthen resilience to climate impacts, with a focus on the poorest and most vulnerable. Leaders agreed that Paris must be the floor, not the ceiling, for collective ambition,” said Mr. Ban, adding that they had also agreed that a review process is needed to strengthen national commitments over time in order to limit global temperature rise to below 2 degrees Celsius.
While noting that collectively, national contributions are still not enough, the UN chief said he was pleased to hear leaders pledge to continue working closely with each other and with other leaders to remove political roadblocks.
The Secretary-General went on to highlight several upcoming meetings that “can help us cross the finish line in Paris,” including the October meeting of finance ministers in Lima, Peru; the G20 Summit in Turkey; the Cochabamba Summit and the Commonwealth Heads of Government in November.
Source: UN News
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