Wednesday, 20 January 2021

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One Planet Summit : Investing to avoid a grey future

 UNSG Guterres at #OnePlanet summit in Paris

13 December 2017. “Those who fail to bet on a green economy will be living in a grey future “, United Nations Secretary-General  António Guterres warned in his speech to the One Planet Summit yesterday in Paris.

 Speaking to more than one hundred heads of states and governments, the UN Secretary-General and French President Emmanuel Macron drew the same conclusion that the “battle for the climate is not won.”

“I have heard it said that the stone age did not end because we ran out of stones. We don’t have to wait to run out of coal and oil to end the age of fossil fuels,” Mr. Guterres said.

The Summit´s aim was to mobilize the financial resources that are necessary to fight climate change.

It was coorganized by the French Presidency, the United Nations and the World Bank on 12 December, the anniversary of the adoption of the historic Paris Agreement.

Jim Yong Kim, the President of the World Bank Group announced that the Group will no longer finance upstream oil and gas after 2019 and that it would be mobilizing finance for climate change impact mitigation and resilience. This is an unprecedented decision by a multilateral banking institution.

The European Commission will provide $318 million to assist the adaptation of developing countries to climate change. The French Presidency announced an increase from 1.2 to 1.5 billion Euros to support  the adaptation of the most vulnerable states to climate change.

The UN called on rich countries to honour their commitment and provide $100 billion a year through 2020 for developing countries.”The developing countries are not responsible for the problem that they are facing and it is only fair that developed countries help them in this fight,” Guterres said.

Close to 240 companies have committed to improve how they take climate risk into account in their activities. Among them are twenty of the biggest banks in the world and 80% of the asset managing companies, such as HSBC and the AXA insurance company.

The Dutch bank ING has committed itself to accelerating the process toward  stopping the financing of coal driven power stations. 

President Macron says that a summit of this kind should take place every year in France or elsewhere to take stock of commitments and their implementation. He announced yesterday  the launching of  the One Planet website to announce actions and make it possible for everyone to see if commitments are implemented.


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