Climate vulnerable countries demand new ambitous targets to meet 1.5°C temperature limit

Climate Vulnerable Forum leaders on Thursday urged a ministerial gathering of the “High Ambition Coalition” in New York to take the concrete steps needed to accelerate global climate action, on the eve of the signature ceremony for the Paris Agreement on climate change at UN Headquarters where over 165 countries are expected to participate. Speaking at the gathering, Secretary Emmanuel M. De Guzman of the Climate Change Commission of the Philippines said: “We agreed in Paris to work together to limit warming to no more than 1.5 degree, a temperature limit that represents the very foundation of the accord. Ambition must translate into concrete steps to meet the 1.5 degree objective, which means all countries must resubmit far more ambitious contributions under the Paris Agreement by 2020, at the latest. Swifter progress to reach the $100 billion mark while respecting additionality with ODA commitments is equally urgent for enabling ambition globally.” Minister of Foreign Affairs of Costa Rica Manuel Gonzalez said “The new 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda and SDGs cannot be achieved if we fail at the 1.5 degree temperature goal. Ambition in climate policy clearly will be crucial to enable ambition in sustainable development goals and enhance enjoyment of fundamental human rights globally. Furthermore, ambition is not only confined to emissions controls, because we also need ambition to achieve early a clear balance in international climate finance, and to increase funds available to support poor and vulnerable groups to adapt to climate change.” The High Ambition Coalition emerged at the UN Climate Change Conference at Paris (UNFCCC COP21) as an alliance of developing and developed countries that together demanded strong outcomes at COP21, including inclusion of the ambitious 1.5 degree Celsius limit in the Paris Agreement. On 22 April, member countries of the Climate Vulnerable Forum, currently chaired by Philippines, many of which have led on ratification of the Paris Agreement, with Fiji, Palau, Marshall Islands and Maldives the first nations to ratify, are also actively participating in the High-Level signing ceremony at UN Headquarters. Climate Vulnerable Forum (CVF) is an international partnership of countries highly vulnerable to a warming planet. The Forum serves as a South-South cooperation platform for participating governments to act together to deal with global climate change. The Climate Vulnerable Forum brings together government leaders representing 43 developing countries vulnerable to climate change. The Forum is guided by operational modalities that characterize its open, inclusive and semi-formal approach. The 20 countries active in the Forum during 2011-2015 also formed the Vulnerable Twenty. The Manila Communique, Manila-Paris Declaration and the High Level Meeting at COP21 gave recognition to the current membership of the Forum’s 43 participating nations.   Editor's Note: This article is re-posted from Climate Reporters. Red Constantino, iCSC's Executive Director, is in New York to support the Philippine delegation. The photo used as the featured image is also from the original post.