Pacific Islands Forum says don’t use COVID-19 as Delay on Climate Action

Pacific Islands Forum Secretary General Dame Meg Taylor urges countries not to use COVID-19 as a reason to delay climate action and the submission of their revised NDC targets. Her comments are in response to the release of the findings of the Initial National Determined Contribution NDC Synthesis Report from the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Secretariat. One area of concern confirms that current levels of climate action are not enough to put the world on a “1.5°C pathway” by the end of this century.

Dame Meg, who also serves as a member of the UN Secretary-General’s High-Level Advisory Group on Climate Action says, “this report raises a red flag to vulnerable Small Island Developing States and is a wake-up call for the rest of the world to reflect and change course before it is too late. It reaffirms the need for urgent ambitious climate action now to address the severity of the climate change emergency facing our Blue Pacific Continent, and for the international community not to be bystanders as the climate crisis deteriorates.”

Pacific Islands Forum Chair and Prime Minister of Tuvalu, Kausea Natano says citizens everywhere “should be alarmed by the growing gap between words and action when it comes to honouring the Paris Agreement. It is frustrating to read the latest updates showing our national actions towards 1.5°C are clearly inadequate to prevent the warming of our Blue planet beyond a point of no return.”

He says this has resulted from indifference and inaction by the world’s biggest polluting countries towards their moral obligation in ensuring Small Island Developing States and other countries facing the brunt of climate change, are able to have a future.

The Paris Agreement, an international treaty on climate change, was adopted by 196 parties at COP 21 in Paris, on 12 December 2015 and entered into force on 4 November 2016. The goal is to limit global average temperatures to well below 2°C  (3.6 °F) above pre-industrial levels, with the aim being less than 1.5°C (2.7 °F).

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