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Statement By UN Climate Change Executive Secretary Patricia Espinosa At The G20


UN Climate Change News 23 July 2021 – Speaking to the
Environment and Energy Ministers of G20 nations in Naples,
Italy, UN Climate Change Executive Secretary Patricia
Espinosa called on countries to provide the necessary
leadership to achieve the central goal of the Paris Climate
Change Agreement, which is to hold the global average
temperature rise to as close as possible to 1.5 degrees
Celsius.

This is in order to prevent the worst impacts
of climate change, which include ever more frequent and
severe droughts, floods and fires of the type the world is
witnessing right now.

The UN’s top climate change
official recalled that the G20 was founded in response to
the 2008 financial crisis, with the goal of achieving global
economic stability and sustainable growth.

“The G20
accounts for 80 per cent of all global emissions. There is
no path to 1.5C without the G20,” she
said.

“Climate change is — without exception —
detrimental to that goal. It is therefore in the best
interests of all G20 nations to harness its collective
diversity to build consensus and work in a unity of purpose
to address the most significant challenge standing in the
path of that goal,” she added.

Only 97 countries
have submitted updated Nationally Determined Contributions
(NDC), which are national climate action plans under the
Paris Agreement – less than half of all signatory
countries of the Paris Agreement. Patricia Espinosa called
on G20 nations to show leadership by presenting more
ambitious NDCs in line with science.

And she reminded
developed countries of their pledge to mobilize $100 billion
annually to developing nations by 2020, a commitment made in
the UNFCCC process more than a decade ago.

“It’s
time to deliver. How can we expect nations to make more
ambitious climate commitments for tomorrow if today’s have
not yet been met?”, she said.

Ms. Espinosa
highlighted the fact that resources for adaptation and
resilience building are critical for the vast majority of
developing countries. Because of this, 50 per cent of the
total share of climate finance needs to be allocated to
adaptation and resilience.

And she called on nations
and businesses to align their portfolios and activities to
the goals of the Paris Agreement.

Regarding the
upcoming UN Climate Change Conference COP26 in November, the
UN Climate Change Chief urged governments to achieve
consensus in areas where differences remain, including
Article 6 of the Paris Agreement (relating to carbon
markets), transparency of climate action and capacity
building for developing countries.

“Each of these
issues must be resolved in order to fully implement the
Paris Agreement. We’ve been working on implementing the
agreement for five years. We have run out of time. (…) I
ask you to come to COP26 determined to succeed,” she
said.

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