Under2 Coalition leaders issue statement ahead of the G20 Summit

Under2 Coalition leaders issue statement ahead of the G20 Summit

July 5, 2017

The Governors, Ministers and Premiers of Baden-Württemberg, California, South Australia and Catalonia – all members of the Under2 Coalition, the global pact of states, regions, cities and countries committed to limiting global warming – have issued the following statement ahead of the G20 Germany 2017 in Hamburg.

As members of the Under2 Coalition, we welcome that international cooperation on climate change is at the forefront of the agenda of this week’s G20 summit.

We urge the G20 to reaffirm its support for implementation of the Paris Agreement and further action on climate change. The Paris Agreement includes nearly every country in the world and it is essential that international backing for it continues.  At a time when action on climate change must be strengthened, we believe it is critical not to compromise on this commitment, even if it requires a statement from less than the full G20.

We also call upon the G20 to recognise the role of sub-national governments, states, regions, cities, in leading and delivering on climate action.

Our regions control, run, regulate and influence policies, markets and on-the ground action essential to delivering on climate action. Our varying roles across the world include overseeing energy generation and markets, running transport systems and controlling the building codes required to decarbonise our economy. We work to align investment, innovation and economic development with climate action to ensure it creates jobs and prosperity for all. We also are at the forefront of dealing with the consequences of global warming.

As international climate action moves from the phase of agreeing to one of delivering, it is essential that our global leadership bodies recognise the crucial role of the sub-national governments who will make it happen.

Winfried Kretschmann, Minister-President, Baden-Württemberg, said,

“Baden-Württemberg stands ready to support an ambitious approach on climate action and I hope that the heads of state make a strong statement on the importance of global climate action.

“The Paris Agreement is crucial as it aims at keeping a global temperature rise well below 2 degrees Celsius. This is the boundary between a kind of climate change that we can adapt to and a kind of climate change that would change the conditions on our planet fundamentally.”

Edmund G. Brown, Governor of California, said,

“All over the world, momentum is building to deal seriously with climate change. Despite rejection in Washington, California is all in. We are fully committed to the Under2 Coalition and the Paris Agreement.”

Carles Puigdemont, President of Catalonia, said,

“Climate change has an impact on our collective well-being. The effects of global warming are all intricately interconnected and affect different parts of society and different areas of the country in different ways. We need to prevent the appearance of new forms of inequality and poverty that may result from changes, for example, in access to water, in ecosystems, infrastructures, health, migration, and so on. At the same time, we need to guarantee the continued functioning of our economy under new climatic and environmental conditions.”

Jay Weatherill, Premier of South Australia, said,

“Tackling climate change creates great opportunities for those of us taking early action. More and more states and regions, like South Australia, are taking strong action to simultaneously tackle climate change, attract investment and create jobs. World leaders have a responsibility to put the world, and the global economy, on track for a low carbon future.”

Helen Clarkson, Chief Executive of The Climate Group, which acts as secretariat to the Coalition, added,

“States and regions globally have a critical role in delivering the policies and investments needed to implement the Paris Agreement.

“We know that we are at a critical moment to turn the tide on climate change. With US states and cities committing to Paris irrespective of the federal government’s position, the international community needs to find a way of recognising this commitment from subnational governments in order drive the pace of change needed.”

Originally published on TheClimateGroup.org