Sunday, May 31, 2015

World Has No Choice but to Decarbonize: U.N. Climate Chief

Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), listens during a news conference after a week long preparatory meeting at the U.N. in Geneva February 13, 2015. (Credit: Reuters/Denis Balibouse) Click to Enlarge.
"It makes fundamental economic sense" for countries to push forward on tackling climate change because of the benefits it will bring in terms of food, water and energy, as well as employment," Christiana Figueres told a carbon market conference in Barcelona.

This, together with the speed at which businesses are acting on climate change and efforts to put a price on carbon, mean "a decarbonized world is now irreversible, irrefutable," the head of the U.N. climate change secretariat told the conference.
Rachel Kyte, the World Bank's special envoy for climate change, said to decarbonize economies, "we will need to begin with extraordinary ambition at the end of this year" in Paris where countries are due to agree a new global deal to tackle climate change.
Market Mechanisms Needed
Market mechanisms, such as carbon taxes and emissions trading schemes, would be key in mobilizing a global response on a big-enough scale, Kyte said.

"Every country will need to manage an orderly transition to low-carbon growth and resilient development," she said, adding that carbon pricing would be one necessary element of that transition.

On Tuesday, the World Bank said in a report that emission trading schemes were worth an estimated $34 billion on April 1, up from $32 billion in 2014, while the value of carbon taxes around the world amounted to about $14 billion.

Countries introducing such initiatives include developing nations such as China, Mexico and South Africa.

Putting a price on carbon would be the foundation for unlocking investment in low-carbon economies "with hope for jobs and competitiveness - not a picture of sacrifice and of loss and giving things up", Kyte said.

Read more at World Has No Choice but to Decarbonize:  U.N. Climate Chief

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