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Rise to Meet the Global Climate Action Summit Challenges

By UN Climate Change News

Momentum for climate ambition is reaching new heights as business leaders, non-profits, citizens, and local government representatives prepare to gather for the Global Climate Action Summit (GCAS) in San Francisco, California from 12-14 September 2018.

All actors around the world are invited to participate in this moment by demonstrating the depth and range of climate action in their sectors and geographies to achieve the goals of the Paris Climate Change Agreement.

The Summit is focused on taking ambition to the next level through five key issue areas: healthy energy systems, inclusive economic growth, sustainable communities, land and ocean stewardship and transformative climate investments. All of these five pathways have critical challenges to overcome in order to limit the global average temperature rise to well below 2°C from pre-industrial levels.

The Executive Secretary of UN Climate Change and GCAS Co-Chair, Patricia Espinosa, said, “The summit is an historic opportunity to foster a new form of inclusive multilateralism that is vital to achieving our goals. It recognizes the key role of non-party stakeholders in climate action in addition to that of governments. We need everyone on board.”

The abundance of climate action announcements and achievements by cities, regions, business and citizens is already narrowing the gap between current emission levels and those outlined in the Paris Agreement. For example, California recently announced that it reached its 2020 emissions reduction goal four years ahead of schedule in 2016.

The momentum of this historic summit will be strongest when everyone, regardless of their physical attendance at the Summit, takes on these challenges.

Here are the five core Summit challenges and examples of the actions you can take to help rise to the collective challenge:

Healthy energy systems can prevent dangerous effects from climate change. They can be achieved through a shift toward clean and equitable energy in addition to building a decarbonized energy and transportation system aligned with scientifically founded action requirements.

  • Action you can take: Accelerate the transition to electric vehicles (EVs) and make electric transport the new normal by 2030 by joining the EV100 initiative.

Inclusive economic growth requires climate leadership in business, clean technology, and an energy transition that fosters good jobs while spurring inclusive global economic development.

The sustainable communities challenge is an effort led by cities to create buildings, communities and infrastructure that are clean, healthy, and livable. Cities can encourage community driven climate projects, a transition to net zero carbon buildings through the World Green Buildings Council and a progression towards zero waste.

Land and ocean stewardship focuses on the role that forests, food, lands and other ecosystems must play in mitigating climate change and making our world more resilient, while also ensuring sufficient food supplies for a growing population. This climate action pathway requires support of sustainable food systems, conservation of resilient landscapes that deliver climate solutions, technical and financial support for new stewardship projects, and transparency, engagement, and investment from industry actors.

  • Action you can take: Implementing climate friendly land use, conservation, and agriculture policies. The 30X30 Forests, Food and Land Challenge’s goals is to achieve 30% of climate solutions by 2030 through improved agricultural and land use practices.

Transformative climate investments will require the mobilization of investment on an unprecedented scale to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement. Investors, considering their financial duties to clients and beneficiaries, are encouraged to act in one or more of the following four areas: Investment, corporate engagement, investor disclosure, and policy advocacy.

  • Action you can take: Commit to the use of green bonds for infrastructure investment and ask investors to invest in them. The Green Bond Pledge coordinated in part by Ceres is an initiative you can join.

Lastly, if you wish to inspire others who may wish to participate in the Global Climate Action Summit challenges, you can:

  1. Encourage your firm or community to find ways to take part in one of the five key climate action challenges.
  2. Share this video with your colleagues and business network so that they can also join the movement in raising global climate ambition.
  3. Follow the action on social media through the UNFCCC and the Global Climate Action Summit accounts:

UN Climate Change on Instagram: @UNFCCC

Information taken from: https://unfccc.int/news/rise-to-meet-the-global-climate-action-summit-challenges

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