The global effort to tackle climate change is doomed, the head of the UN climate body has said.
In a rare public address, Sir Andrew Woodford said the global strategy will be fatally flawed unless it starts to reflect what he called the “true costs of inaction” on climate change.
In his speech at the UN’s climate summit in Paris, Woodford called on governments to put forward a bold global plan to tackle carbon emissions and the consequences of their inaction, but said that was not enough.
“Failure is not an option.
There is no alternative to the true costs of action on climate and its consequences,” Woodford told the UN assembly.”
We are witnessing a world-wide crisis of inaction on climate.”
Woodford said he expected countries to agree to a “bold global plan” at the Paris talks, but the lack of such a plan could prevent a “sustainable transition” to a low-carbon economy.
The head of a global body representing more than 200 countries said it was important to set a target to cut carbon emissions in 2030 and “to put forward ambitious measures to tackle the challenges of climate change”.
“It is time for us to start to put a concrete plan for how we are going to achieve this goal,” he said.
“There are more than 3,000 climate change policies on the books, but we have only started to implement some of them.”
I believe we need to look at all of them and put forward bold plans for how to achieve a world of clean air, cleaner water and better lives.
“Woodfords speech comes after the head the UN body’s climate programme said India had been slow to embrace climate change, even though it has pledged to do so in a landmark deal last year.
The United Nations’ climate chief, Christiana Figueres, said India’s climate policy has not been “fully inclusive”.
She said the government had not been sufficiently transparent about its commitment to tackling climate change in India and its failure to follow through on pledges to reduce emissions.”
What is happening now is that we are seeing governments in India, in particular, who have made some very strong commitments to climate change but they are not fully inclusive in their implementation,” she told the BBC.”
In some cases, they are saying that they will not be reducing their emissions in 2020, but they have not done that, so we are talking about a policy that is very very slow in its implementation.”‘
A great shame’The US has pledged $5bn to India to help fund climate change mitigation projects.”
The United States is one of the largest emitters of carbon dioxide, but it’s the only one of these three that has not taken significant action on reducing emissions,” Woodfords chief said.
Woodford also highlighted the lack, for example, of concrete plans for reducing emissions from power plants and vehicles.”
It’s a great shame that the Indian government has not followed the lead of the United States, which has a global climate policy that covers everything from coal to gas,” he told the gathering of world leaders.”
That’s a big issue for the rest of the world.