Former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan says it is important every country, irrespective of influence in the global economy, must show ample commitment to fighting climate change.
At the inaugural address at the 14th Delhi Sustainable Development Summit (DSDS) on February 5, Mr Annan spoke about the challenge of attaining food, energy and nutrition security and the importance of transitioning from a brown to the green economy.
He said: “We must do more to promote integrated policy-making which addresses social and environmental goals, and not just economic targets.”
According to him, “it is now estimated that by 2030, we will need 30 percent more water, 40 more energy and 50 percent more food.
“Looming above all these challenges and exacerbating them is climate change,” he warned, adding that: “No country or society will escape the impact of climate change but as always, it is the poorest and the most vulnerable who suffer most.”
“These inter-linked challenges cannot be addressed by tinkering around the edges. A fundamental shift to a more sustainable development pathway is urgently required. We must do more to promote integrated policy making which addresses social and environmental goals and not just economic targets. Making the transition from brown to green economy is perhaps the biggest challenge of our age.”
Mr Annan urged that: “We have to act on climate change. We need a robust universal and legally binding agreement to limit temperature rises to less than 2 degree Celsius above which climate change may be irreversible”.
In his view, “for agreement to be reached in Paris next year, every country, whatever their stage of development, must raise their cuts and commit to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, but fairness demands that richer countries lead in the scale of their emission cuts and in providing financial support and adaptation and diffusion of green technology.”
He said: “Internationally and nationally, the right policies and incentives must be put in place to ensure a shift to renewable and efficient sources of energy. This would include putting a price on carbon and phasing out half of fossil fuel subsidies.”
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