UN Climate Summit: World leaders under pressure to deliver

Ahead of today's Climate Summit, environmental activist groups have been making headlines with bold statements about the future of the planet.

The UN Climate Summit, convened by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, takes place in New York all day today (23 September)

The UN Climate Summit, convened by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, takes place in New York all day today (23 September)

Edie has sifted through the hyperbole to bring you a quick summary of what activist groups are doing and saying in New York.

Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit - Low carbon economy is socially imperative and economically viable

ECIU board member Professor Michael Grubb said: "As the New Climate Economy report showed last week, decarbonisation is not only affordable, it is economically rational.

"Costs of solar power are tumbling faster than anyone envisaged; other renewables are also getting cheaper, and we're learning how to reduce demand for energy through smart technology and smart policies. We're also seeing more starkly than ever the economic damage that would result from unabated climate change.

"What world leaders in New York can most usefully do is to show that they fully endorse the rationale for a low-carbon society, and give investors the confidence they need to turn the vision into reality."

Friends of the Earth- Burden falls on Cameron and rich nations 

Friends of the Earth's campaign and policy director Craig Bennett said: "Hundreds of thousands of people took to the streets this weekend to urge the world to end its reliance on coal, gas and oil - our leaders must listen and urgently act. 

"David Cameron's warm words on climate change are completely undermined by his policies at home - massive tax breaks for oil exploration and support for fracking will simply keep our economy hooked on dirty fossil fuels. 

"Wealthy nations who have caused this crisis must now take the lead in building a cleaner, safer future based on energy efficiency and clean renewable power." 

Christian Aid - Need for climate action unites religions

Christian Aid's senior climate advisor Mohamed Adow said: "We see religious conflict and division around the world, yet on the issue of climate change, faith leaders from different traditions are speaking with one voice.
"Irrespective of religion, creed or race we all share one planetary home and anything which threatens that is a common enemy.

"The people's climate marches around the world have shown the popular demand for action, faith leaders have made the moral case, and we now need our political leaders to pledge their commitment to act at the Climate Summit."

Stockholm Environment Institute - Specific measures, country by country

Sivan Kartha, senior scientist at Stockholm Environment Institute said: "The latest reports on climate change have made even clearer how little additional climate pollution the earth can tolerate before we're risking irreversible catastrophic climate change.

"Based on those limits, it is striking just how quickly emissions need to come down. It may be hard to do, but it's dramatically easier than surviving 2,3,4 degrees of warming.

"The UK would need to reduce emissions by 65%-75% on 1990 levels by 2025 and in addition would need to transfer up to 49 billion dollars as a fair contribution.

"The US would need to cut emissions by 55%-65% on 1990 levels by 2025 but would have to transfer up to $634 billion to make a fair contribution.

"China, given its population, wealth and limited historical responsibility, could be seen to have a fair share that allows it to increase its emissions on today's level by about 40% by 2025, but if the world is to make the 1.5 C of warming guardrail then it needs to cut its emissions on today's levels by 25-45% percent. That difference could cost up to $497 billion - transfers which would need to be made via access to technology."

Stay tuned to edie for full coverage of the Summit and follow @edie for live updates throughout the day. 

Brad Allen


| coal | David Cameron | Energy Efficiency | low carbon | solar


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