Abu Dhabi – 8 May 2014: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon this week challenged nations to “take the lead” on the fight against climate change and not to get “left behind…on the losing side of history”. He was speaking at the closing of the Abu Dhabi Ascent, a global meeting organized to ramp up national commitments and ambitions on climate in advance of the September 2014 Climate Summit being held in New York City.
Dialogue at the Abu Dhabi Ascent was forward looking, seeking to drive much-needed national government climate action in the run up to both the Climate Summit and UNFCCC COP20, to be held in Lima in December. The dialogue also reinforced reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD+) as a key pillar of a future climate agreement.
In her summary of the meeting, UNDP Administrator Helen Clark reaffirmed that “reducing emissions from deforestation represents 22 per cent of the mitigation potential by 2030, with significant additional environmental and social co-benefits.” She also noted that government, business, and indigenous and civil society leaders discussed “practical ways forward” on REDD+.
She predicts, in her summary, that governments will express “higher levels of ambition and pledges for concrete action” at the Climate Summit. She also noted that with this strengthened commitment from tropical forest nations, that deforestation can be slowed radically, but that it must be supported by “financial and technical assistance from developed countries and action by the private sector, and where the rights and roles of indigenous peoples are fully respected”.
The UN-REDD Progamme, its collaborative UN agencies (UNDP, UNEP, FAO), its private sector partners and its donors will continue to work together to play this vital role supporting nations as they progress REDD+. The Programme is also already exploring how it can respond to the growing level of ambition and action from tropical forest nations as it begins developing its post-2015 strategy.
For more information:
UN Secretary-General Abu Dhabi Ascent closing remarks: http://bit.ly/QhDxNN
UN News Center -- Abu Dhabi Ascent: http://bit.ly/1l1crWx
UNDP Administrator Helen Clark, Abu Dhabi Ascent meeting summary: http://bit.ly/1iuBJId