"(note: this is a copy of an official UK government speech, the direct link to the original PDF is below. Additional links in text were added later and are not from the original UK government source)
Paris 2015: Securing our Prosperity through a Global Climate Change Agreement- Speech by UK Climate Change Secretary Edward Davey
In 15 months time, the world will gather in Paris to secure a new legally binding global climate change agreement with emissions reductions commitments from all countries. Failure in Paris would see our chances of limiting climate change to manageable levels go down and the costs of doing so go up.
Global emissions are on track to be, by 2020, someway short of the most cost effective pathway for keeping climate change to below the 2 degree rise the scientists judge is needed to avoid the most catastrophic effects. And if we do not reach agreement in Paris the vector of action needed becomes increasingly steep with each passing year; and the economic cost increasingly expensive.
So everything we can humanly do between now and then to make an ambitious agreement in Paris possible must be done.
For the UK, the main direct risks from climate change are likely to come from flooding and disruption of services. But we are also an open trading nation and our prosperity is inextricably linked to world markets. More extreme climate change impacts in other parts of the world – from food and water shortages – to the mass migration of people fleeing the worst effects – these are our problem too. And they will cost us.
Only those with the hardest hearts and the meanest minds would be prepared to gamble their children’s future given what we already know. Nobody with even the most rudimentary understanding of managing risk would conclude that doing nothing is an option.
The mere act of the Governments of the world, the businesses of the world, the people of the world coming together as one to tackle a shared problem, would set an example for the future.
That we can unite – and we can overcome the most complex and demanding of problems. If we have the will. And that is unity of purpose. Unity of purpose here at home is in our domestic politics and civil society – and increasingly our business community. And the same unity of purpose is increasingly evident in many countries across the world – including the key heavy carbon economies of the US, China, India and here in Europe.
国际形势 International momentum
For the very first time we have the key ingredients in place that give us a real chance of a truly global deal. In 2009, at Copenhagen many felt that momentum was lost – and with that faith in the international process. But over the past few years, momentum has shifted decisively.
If a legally binding international agreement is the top-down requirement – to provide stability, certainty and an equitable rules-based framework. What we are seeing, increasingly, is bottom up climate change action – with national climate change legislation proliferating, carbon pricing mechanisms spreading and new policies and regulations being introduced.
Almost 500 climate laws have been passed in 66 of the world’s largest emitting countries. And it’s not just the rich industrialised nations taking action.
Last year alone Bolivia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Kenya, Mozambique and Nigeria passed climate change legislation. Mexico has followed the UK’s example and put in place a comprehensive climate change law, with medium and long term targets.
Carbon markets – which can reduce the cost of emissions reduction – have now been put in place in over 40 countries – and it is happening at sub-national level as well – counties, states, local governments are acting.
And business is increasingly seeing the opportunity too of a burgeoning global green marketplace that is worth trillions of pounds and growing all the time. Investment in renewables has outpaced investment in fossil fuels for the fourth year running. Of course there are regrettable examples of backsliding – from Canada for instance – and worrying signals from Australia and, more understandably, Japan.
And we will work constructively with these countries to draw them back into step with the other major economies. Their targets in the new global deal is the opportunity for them to do so. But the facts on the ground are changing – and this is putting a global deal within reach.
四大经济体 The big four
In China, President Xi Jinping has been pursuing his vision of ecological civilization that softens its tread upon the earth. The vision embeds climate action in its national planning process and created tough sanctions for officials and companies flouting environmental legislation. And China has set tough new targets for coal consumption. China is working to decarbonise its energy demand and is already the world’s largest non-fossil fuel energy producer. And is one of the world’s leaders on sub-national carbon markets.
And in the US, since Kyoto in 1990, many have seen the United States as part of the problem rather than the solution. But many US states have been acting where Federal Government has previously not done so. More than 20 states have energy efficiency targets and over 30 have set renewable energy targets. And now under President Obama, the Climate Action Plan of 2013 should enable the US to get back on track, including by proposing robust emissions regulations for power plants, so filling the gap at the national level.
Historically the EU has been one of the world’s leading advocates of climate change action. And has been living up to its reputation by exceeding its Kyoto obligations with emissions set to reduce by more than 20% by 2020. The challenge for Europe is to maintain its course, despite the obvious economic problems in the Euro Zone.
已成立的绿色增长集团I (Green Growth Group I)，现拥有13个成员国，代表了75%的欧洲人口，85%的欧洲GDP以及欧盟部长理事会60%的投票，以期就低碳、促进增长的政策立场达成共识，从而形成巴黎大会上强有力的谈判立场。并且下个月，欧盟开会同意新的2030能源框架时，我们将在一项宏伟的协议中看到努力的成果——欧盟境内温室气体排放量降低至少40%的目标。
The Green Growth Group I set up to build consensus around a low-carbon, pro-growth policy position and consequently a strong negotiating position for Paris, now boasts 13 member states representing 75% of Europe’s population, 85% of Europe’s GDP and 60% of the votes in the Council of Ministers. And next month, when the EU meets to agree the new 2030 Energy Framework, we will see the fruits of that effort in an ambitious deal for a domestic greenhouse gas target of at least 40%.
So India, China, US and the EU are all demonstrating in their national and regional policies, the kind of action we need to formalise in Paris.
国内行动 Action at home
The UK has been at the forefront of helping to shape the right kind of climate change architecture that can work.
The 2008 Climate Change Act was the world’s first long-term, legally binding national framework for reducing emissions. Our five year carbon budgets – that will eventually reach out to 2050 – are now being looked at as a potential model in other countries. The 2013 Energy Act is creating the world’s first low-carbon electricity market. And we are attracting record amounts of investment in renewables and our low carbon business sector is booming.
巴黎之路 The path to Paris
Our vision is of a successful agreement in Paris that reflects the environmental and economic realities. That reflects individual countries ability to make contributions, is sensitive to their industrial development and the standard of living of its people. We need an agreement that is credible – and fair – with emissions reductions from all countries – but with commitments that reflect the ability of countries to make reductions.
The most advanced economies have to make the most ambitious commitments – reflecting their responsibility for emissions and their capacity to absorb change.
The EU should show a lead by agreeing this year an ambitious 2030 framework with a domestic target of at least 40%. The G7 and G20 should follow suit – so that by the time we reach Paris, there are no surprises and we are clear about what is on the table.
A global agreement needs a rules-based system that tracks progress, creates trust and allows us ratchet up ambitions to meet the science.
We must mobilise support for the poorest countries so that there is no doubt that climate change action and development can go hand in hand.
Above all else, we will need to maintain the political will to secure an agreement in Paris. And we will need to sustain momentum after Paris too. Because Paris is not the end of the road. This is an inter-generational challenge that will require successive political generations to renew their commitment.
更多信息 Further information:
巴黎2015：达成全球气候变化协议方能永葆繁荣 Paris 2015: Securing our Prosperity through a Global Climate Change Agreement