Thursday, April 23, 2015

Call for an End to ‘Business As Usual’ Option on Climate

UN special envoy urges a unified approach to global action on tackling the interlinked issues of climate change, sustainable development and human rights.

The devastating effects of typhoons and other extreme weather events are undermining development in countries such as the Philippines. (Image Credit: Henry Donati/DFID via Wikimedia Commons) Click to Enlarge.
Mary Robinson, the UN Secretary General’s special envoy on climate change, has warned that the whole issue of climate is much too important to be left to governments and their leaders.

Robinson, who was the first woman president of Ireland and is now head of the MRFCJ foundation promoting climate justice, said it is a battle for all of us − and that now is the time for action, not for the continuation of business as usual.

Speaking at the Grantham Institute for Climate Change at Imperial College, London, Robinson said that the UN conference on climate change in Paris at the end of this year must achieve concrete, ambitious results.

“Now is not the moment to manage expectations or get cold feet – 2015 is the moment to catalyze a transformation,” she said.

She also called for a more unified approach to global action on the interlinked issues of development, climate change and human rights.

“Till very recently,” she said, “climate change was thought of in terms of the science and the environment – not as a human rights and sustainable development issue.  Now governments and the UN are changing their approach.”

Many countries struggling to develop are having to spend enormous amounts on adaptation measures in relation to climate change, she said.  It means that countries such as the Philippines − hit by typhoons and other disasters − are spending millions just to stand still.

Read more at Call for an End to ‘Business As Usual’ Option on Climate

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