The United States climate change conference also known as COP21 began on Monday, November 30, in Paris – with over 140 world leaders and about 40,000 delegates meeting to reach an agreement on ultimately reducing carbon emissions and environmental pollutions with a view to solving the rising problems of climate change.
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The first day of the conference witnessed several world governments and leaders within the private sectors agreeing to develop policies and take proactive actions that will bring climate solutions and heal our Earth.
“Three out of four humanitarian disasters are now climate-related,” said UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon who together with 13 UN agencies agreed to put initiatives that will protect vulnerable countries of the world from the ravages of climate encroachments in place.
“Economic losses have increased by more than half over the past decade. Ecosystems, and food and water supplies are under increasing pressure. The hardest hit are the poor and vulnerable – including small farmers, fishing communities and indigenous peoples,” Mr. Ki-Moon said.
The new effort to protect vulnerable countries and build strong climate resilience shall be known as “Anticipate, Absorb, Reshape” which actually means that countries must develop the abilities to expect hazards, absorbs shocks created by the environmental hazards, and reshape factors that will beat the effects of climate risks.
Representing nearly 10% of the world’s population residing in coastal regions prone to floods, or about 634 million people who are at risk of some great environmental risks would be protected under the new UN initiative.
Put up by France and India, the UN Secretary-General also joined the newly launched International Solar Alliance, which is aimed at making developing countries rich in solar resources to better exploit free and abundant natural resources.
“The broad support for this international coalition is testament to the resonance of your vision of a solar-powered path to prosperity,” said Ki-Moon. “As the Prime Minister (of India, Narendra Modi) has said, we need ‘development without destruction.’ Solar energy offers major potential for reducing poverty and limiting greenhouse gas emissions.”
Meanwhile, 11 donor countries pledged to raise about $250 million to be used for the Least Developed Countries Fund (LDCF), and the fund will be held and managed by the Global Environment Facility (GEF).
According to Mary Robinson, the UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy on Climate Change, “I have seen for myself how people from across the developing world are leading the way to climate solutions. But the scale and international nature of climate change requires an unprecedented level of international solidarity and support. So today’s announcement should be seen in that context: they are not just about dollars and cents and accounting. They are about supporting millions of people across the world.”
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There are lots of pledges from participating countries at the COP21, and it is expected that more will be made within the two weeks that the summit will last.