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UN Climate Action Summit 2019: The Major announcements

At the Opening of the UN Climate Action Summit 2019 on  23rd  september 2019, ahead of the 74 UN General Assembly,  leaders of the developing and developed countries made commitments. New initiatives  have been designed to be scaled-up to deliver impact at the global scale needed. The Secretary-General urged governments, businesses and people everywhere to join the initiatives announced at the Summit, and promised to “keep pushing” for greater ambition and action. The Secretary-General committed the UN system to support implementation of plans presented at the Summit, with an initial report to be delivered at COP25 in Santiago, Chile.

 

What are exactly  the commitments?

  • France announced that it would not enter into any trade agreement with countries that have policies counter to the Paris Agreement.
  • Germany committed to carbon neutrality by 2050
  • 12 countries  made financial commitments to the Green Climate Fund, the official financial mechanism to assist developing countries in adaptation and mitigation practices to counter climate change.  This is in addition to recent announcements from Norway, Germany, France and the United Kingdom who have recently doubled their present contributions.
  • The United Kingdom made a major additional contribution, doubling its overall international climate finance to L11.6 billion for the period from 2020 to 2025
  • India pledged to increase renewable energy capacity to 175gw by 2022 and committed to further increasing to 450GW, and announced that 80 countries have joined the International Solar Alliance.
  • China said it would cut emissions by over 12 billion tons annually, and would pursue a path of high quality growth and low carbon development.
  • The European Union announced at least 25% of the next EU budget will be devoted to climate-related activities.
  • The Russian Federation announced that they will ratify the Paris Agreement, bringing the total number of countries that have joined the Agreement to 187.
  • Pakistan said it would plant more than 10 billion trees over the next five years.

The private sector take the lead

  • A group of the world’s largest asset-owners — responsible for directing more than $2 trillion in investments — committed to move to carbon-neutral investment portfolios by 2050.
  • 87 major companies with a combined market capitalization of over US$ 2.3 trillion pledged to reduce emissions and align their businesses with what scientists say is needed to limit the worst impacts of climate change – a 1.5°C future.
  • 130 banks – one-third of the global banking sector – signed up to align their businesses with the Paris agreement goals     

For the Energy Efficiency

  • Michael Bloomberg will increase the funding and geographic spread of his coal phase out efforts to 30 countries. Already, his work has helped to close 297 out of 530 coal plants in the US.
  • Countries, including France and New Zealand, announced that they will not allow oil or gas exploration on their lands or  off-shore waters.
  • Heads of State from  Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland,  Italy, Netherlands, Portugal, and Slovakia, are among those that  announced that they will work to phase out coal. The Republic of Korea announced it would shut down four coal-fired power plants, and six more will be closed by 2022, as well as the doubling of its contribution to the Green Climate Fund.
  • The Summit also delivered critical platforms for improving energy efficiency and reducing the growing energy needs for cooling, with the “Three Percent Club” coalition working to drive a three percent annual global increase in energy efficiency and the Cool Coalition setting ambitious national cooling targets for its members with the potential to deliver up to 1 degree on the pathway to a 2050 net zero carbon world.

Climate finance

  • Many countries announced new contributions to the Green Climate Fund, the official financial mechanism to assist developing countries in adaptation and mitigation practices to counter climate change, with several countries, including France, Germany, Norway and the United Kingdom, announcing that they would double their present contributions.Further,
  • the Climate Investment Platform officially announced at the opening of the UN Climate Action Summit,  will seek to directly mobilize US$ 1 trillion in clean energy investment by 2025 in 20 Least Developed Countries in its first year.
  • Summit initiatives were designed to ensure the actions undertaken would be fair for all, supporting jobs and clear air for better health, and protect the most vulnerable, as well as new initiatives on adaptation, agriculture and early warning systems will protect 500 million additional people against the impacts of climate change.

By Era Environnement

 

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