Gov’ts meet to fast forward implementation of Paris Agreement

Governments are meeting in Bonn, Germany, for the 2017 UN Climate Change Conference to push nations towards the next stage in the fight against global warming with the view to ensuring a safer world for prosperous development. The conference seeks to fuel momentum among cities, states, regions, territories, businesses and civil society in support of national climate action plans, the internationally-agreed temperature goal and the wider objectives of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. It comes just two years after the landmark adoption of the Paris Climate Change Agreement, and against a backdrop of extreme weather events that have devastated the lives of millions of people in places like Asia, the Americas and the Caribbean. It is being presided over by Frank Bainimarama, the Prime Minister of Fiji. “The human suffering caused by intensifying hurricanes, wildfires, droughts, floods and threats to food security caused by climate change means there is no time to waste,” said Mr Bainimarama, who takes over as President of the COP23 conference from Morocco during the opening. “We must preserve the global consensus for decisive action enshrined in the Paris Agreement and aim for the most ambitious part of that target – to limit the global average temperature rise to 1.5 degrees above that of the pre-industrial age,” he said. “Wherever we live, we are all vulnerable and need to act,” he added. COP23 in Bonn will respond to that call with new progress and initiatives in the two critical and inter-linked areas of action:  

  • Governments working to increase climate action under the terms of the Paris Agreement and the UN Climate Change Convention
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  • Showcasing, fostering and launching new and expanding global climate action initiatives by all actors with a view towards better coordination that aligns efforts in more efficient, effective and transformative ways.
Patricia Espinosa, UN Climate Change Executive Secretary, said: “COP23 in Bonn will show to the world the two faces of climate change—firstly positive, resolute, inspiring momentum by so many governments and a growing array of cities and states to business, civil society leaders and UN agencies aligning to the Paris Agreement’s aims and goals”. “Secondly, the reality check. The thermometer of risk is rising; the pulse of the planet is racing; people are hurting; the window of opportunity is closing and we must go further and faster together to lift ambition and action to the next defining level, “she said. With 197 parties, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) has near universal membership and is the parent treaty of the 2015 Paris Climate Change Agreement. The main aim of the Paris Agreement is to keep a global average temperature rise this century well below 2 degrees Celsius and to drive efforts to limit the temperature increase even further to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. The UNFCCC is also the parent treaty of the 1997 Kyoto Protocol. The ultimate objective of all agreements under the UNFCCC is to stabilize greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that will prevent dangerous human interference with the climate system, in a time frame which allows ecosystems to adapt naturally and enables sustainable development. By Solomon Wiredu|3news.com.]]>

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