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Finnish President Sauli Niinistö is one of 16 heads of state to sign an initiative calling for determined and swift action to stop climate change and adapt to its adverse effects. (Credit: Antti Aimo-Koivisto – Lehtikuva)
Finnish President Sauli Niinistö is one of 16 heads of state to sign an initiative calling for determined and swift action to stop climate change and adapt to its adverse effects. (Credit: Antti Aimo-Koivisto – Lehtikuva)

 

President Sauli Niinistö and 15 of his fellow heads of state have signed an initiative for more climate ambition.

Spearheaded by Austrian President Alexander Van der Bellen, the initiative urges all parties to the Paris Agreement, an agreement within the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), to take joint, decisive and swift action to stop the global climate crisis.

“Current measures taken by the international community […] are not sufficient to reach the long-term goals set out in the Paris Agreement. More has to be done – and action needs to be quick, decisive and joint,” it reads.

“We, the heads of state and governments signing this declaration, are convinced that effective measures to combat climate change are not only necessary in their own right, but will bring about additional co-benefits and new opportunities for our economies and societies. We are confident that substantial measures will help us lead our planet into a safe, peaceful and prosperous future.”

The other signatories include the presidents of Germany, Iceland, Italy and Switzerland, and the prime ministers of Sweden and the Netherlands.

The initiative was launched on the eve of the UN Climate Change Conference in Katowice, Poland, which according to the signatories is of particular significance as it will determine implementation guidelines for the Paris Agreement.

Its signatories urge all parties to the agreement to formulate and communicate by 2020 their respective strategies for reducing greenhouse gas emissions in accordance with the long-term goals of the agreement. Global average temperatures, they highlight, have already risen by roughly 1ºC above pre-industrial levels, signalling an unprecedented increase in the history of humankind.

“The climate crisis is a concern to all of us. Global warming impedes the global economy. It threatens various sectors including agriculture, forestry, tourism, energy and water supplies and, inevitably, it is a serious threat to peace and stability around the globe,” they emphasise.

Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Source: Uusi Suomi

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