UN Secretary General calls on more ambitious climate action

Image credit: Reuters

UN Secretary General calls on more ambitious climate action

Citing the recent Kerala floods, UN Secretary General called on the world leaders to take urgent climate action

September 11, 2018: UltraTech Cement, Mahindra Vehicle Manufacturers Ltd, Mahindra Heavy Engines Ltd, and Godrej Industries Limited and Associate Companies (GILAC) – and the South African chemical giant Sasol – have today pledged to put energy efficiency at the heart of their business growth strategies by joining EP100. EP100 is a global collaborative initiative on energy productivity led by The Climate Group in partnership with the Alliance to Save Energy. Including the new joiners, EP100 now brings together 20 major businesses from 12 countries and seven sectors, with a combined revenue of over US$200bn.

On joining the Climate Group’s EP100 program Mr. Jarnail Singh, India Director, The Climate Group, said, “These unprecedented announcements exemplify India’s corporate leadership on energy productivity – which fuels economic growth while driving down carbon emissions. As we optimize our energy use, the business case for renewables becomes even more evident. This paves the way for India’s long-term transition towards a cleaner and prosperous energy future.”

These commitments come on the same day as the United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres’s speech calling for increased and urgent action. Citing recent extreme weather events around the world including the Kerala floods, he said, “Climate change is the defining issue of our time – and we are at a defining moment. We face a direct existential threat. Climate change is moving faster than we are – and its speed has provoked a sonic boom SOS across our world”.

Reacting to UNSG’s speech Dr Ajay Mathur, Director General, TERI said, “We find ourselves at an important moment where we must ensure that intergovernmental political leadership is strengthened in order to support climate action with real and ambitious results on the ground. In India, the energy transitions that are ongoing will achieve a lot on the pathway to decarbonisation, but will achieve even more if they are boosted by renewed leadership at the global level and lifted by the zeal of global momentum”

UNSG’s speech comes just after the Bangkok climate talks which ended with progress but without resolution. The implementation guidelines for the Paris Agreement look more and more like international law and a timely adoption seems increasingly feasible. However, progress on climate finance and ambition will require political will and diplomatic efforts, particularly among developed countries and the Polish presidency.

The Global Climate Action Summit, scheduled to begin this week, in San Francisco will be another opportunity for negotiators to iron out differences. The summit aims to reinstall momentum in climate action as well as bring together leaders from Government as well as private institutions and companies to take up more climate commitments. Several Indian companies will announce their commitments at the summit.

On GCAS, Dr Arunabha Ghosh, CEO, Council on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW) said, “The Global Climate Action Summit, with its focus on sub-national and non-state climate actors, is critical to maintain the momentum when the U.S. federal government is shirking its responsibility and commitment to the world. We must assess the impact of this summit by monitoring if it helps to increase ambitions or showcases innovations that can be taken to scale. Moreover, India must use this opportunity to demonstrate its climate actions, by virtue of its power of resistance to inequities in climate politics, its power of example set through domestic policies and actions, and its power of leadership at the international level, such as the International Solar Alliance.”

For more information, contact:

Nithya Devaraj, +919739314019, NDevaraj@theclimategroup.org

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