Weak climate deal would jeopardize new development goals – ‘Zero poverty and zero emissions within a generation’Posted by Jim at Saturday, May 16, 2015
By Laurie Goering; editing by Megan Rowling
15 May 2015
LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – The world's chances of achieving new international development goals will be slim without more ambitious action to curb climate change, researchers said.
Pakistan, for example, is unlikely to be able to end poverty by 2030 if accelerating climate change brings worse weather disasters, water scarcity and other problems, a new report from the UK-based Climate and Development Knowledge Network said.
But if global warming is held to 2 degrees Celsius – the aim of negotiations toward a new U.N. climate deal at the end of the year in Paris – Pakistan would have only a "low" risk of failing to eradicate poverty, the report said.
Planned new sustainable development goals (SDGs) aimed at ending poverty, improving gender equality, and giving access to water and clean power have a much higher chance of being achieved if action to limit climate change is ambitious, the report's authors said.
But if weaker efforts on climate change put the world on track for a 3 to 5 degree Celsius temperature rise, Asia and sub-Saharan Africa could see poverty rates 80 percent to 140 percent higher, the report found.
If the new sustainable development goals, expected to be agreed in New York in September, have strong targets, they could lift ambition in the year-end climate deal, the report said.
"There's a simple message: Climate action is developmental action," said Ulric "Neville" Trotz, a science advisor at the Caribbean Community Centre for Climate Change in Belize.
Countries need to fully incorporate climate action into national development plans, he added. […]
At the climate negotiations in December, leaders will aim to put in place an agreement, which would take effect in 2020, to curb carbon emissions and help poorer countries adapt to climate change and adopt a cleaner development path.
There are huge areas of overlap, experts say, not least because climate change impacts – such as water insecurity and more weather-related disasters – can cut harvests and incomes, and lead to children leaving school, as well as forcing governments to divert development funds to disaster relief.
Investing in cleaner, cheaper energy could not only cut climate risks but also improve health and provide the power needed to spur economic growth, the researchers said.
Many Caribbean islands, for example, rely on expensive imported fossil fuels, making their economies uncompetitive.
They are also extremely vulnerable to climate-related impacts, such as sea-level rise and stronger storms, said economist Anil Markandya, one of the report's authors.
“Unless we change the architecture of our energy sector, we might as well forget development under the SDGs,” Trotz said. […]
Ilmi Granoff, a researcher with the Overseas Development Institute in London, said public support for an ambitious climate deal and strong sustainable development targets could be won by focusing on a new, understandable aim for all countries: "zero poverty and zero emissions within a generation". [more]
13 May 2015 (CDKN Global) – This year, governments will agree post-2015 sustainable development goals and a new global climate agreement. Together, these could set the course for environmental sustainability and human wellbeing to 2030 and beyond. These agreements together offer a once-in-a generation opportunity to end extreme poverty and set the world on a pathway toward a zero net carbon and climate-resilient society.
A high ambition climate agreement that provides a clear policy framework for action on climate change, incentivises international cooperation, and mobilises additional resources for mitigation and adaptation activities is essential to give us the best chance of achieving the SDGs by 2030. If the global climate agreement is weak on climate mitigation, then we will lose our ability to achieve the SDGs, particularly on poverty and energy.
This downloadable infographic shows – in images – which SDGs could be particularly at risk under a low-ambition global climate agreement. Readers are welcome to use the infographic in their work, as long as they do not alter it, and they give full credit to the authors, a team from HR Wallingford, Metroeconomica and CDKN. Copyright CDKN 2015.
Find the full report detailing the research, with methodological notes, on www.cdkn.org/climate-and-sdgs