Achieving sustainable development goals

achieving broad-based sustainable development and achieving sustainable development and promoting development cooperation
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Achieving Sustainable Development and Promoting Development Cooperation United Nations This book presents the key debates that took place during the 2008 high-level segment of the Economic and Social Council, Achieving at which ECOSOC organized its first biennial Development Cooperation Forum. The discussions also revolved around the Sustainable Development theme of the second Annual Ministerial Review, “Implementing and Promoting the internationally agreed goals and commitments in regard to Development Cooperation sustainable development”. Dialogues at the Economic and Social Council Published by the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs Cover design by Graphic Design, Outreach Division, DPI Printed by the Publishing Section, DGACM ISBN 978-92-1-104587-1 Sales No. E.08.II.A.11 08-45773—December 2008—2,105 United Nations v CONTENTS Glossary of Acronyms xii Preface 1 Introduction 3 1. Achieving Sustainable Development 9 Overview 9 Overcoming Global Obstacles to Achieve Development Goals 11 Mr. Ban Ki-moon Secretary-General United Nations Delivered by Mr. Sha Zukang Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs United Nations Reaffirming Development Priorities: Uniting to Combat Obstacles to Progress 14 H.E. Mr. Léo Mérorès President of the Economic and Social Council United Nations Battling Climate Change by Promoting Environmentally Sustainable Development 17 Dr. Rajendra K. Pachauri Chairman, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Director-General, The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) Towards a Global Deal on Climate Change 23 Lord Stern of Brentford Author of the Stern Review 2. High-Level Policy Dialogue on Current Developments in the World Economy and International Economic Cooperation 31 Overview 31 Living in a Time of Insecurity and Enormous Challenges 35 Mr. Sha Zukang Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs United Nations A Call for Concerted Action to Address the Unprecedented Confluence of Several Crises 38 Mr. Supachai Panitchpakdi Secretary-General United Nations Conference on Trade and Development Urgency of Completing the Doha Round more Acute than Ever 43 Ms. Valentine Rugwabiza Deputy Director-General 3 INTRODUCTION This year’s High-level Segment was a rich and productive session, which covered a range of topical issues, including the crisis in food and fuel, financial turmoil and the threat of climate change, especially in vulnerable countries. This session also marked the full implementation of two new mandates given to Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) by the 2005 World Summit; in addition to the Second Annual Ministerial Review, the Council also convened the first Development Cooperation Forum (DCF), which highlighted issues relating to aid commitments, aid quality and effectiveness. The opening session of the Council was enriched by the very compelling keynote addresses by the Nobel Laureate, Dr. Rajendra K. Pachauri and Lord Nicholas Stern on the need to urgently address the challenges of climate change. The opening session also set the stage for productive and interactive discussions during the high-level policy dialogue with the international financial and trade institutions on sustainable development in the context of climate change, development cooperation and the threats to the global economy. Participants emphasized the need for greater coordination among the institutions. The first DCF was a success. An important objective was to establish ECOSOC as a principal forum for global dialogue and policy review on the effectiveness and coherence of international development cooperation. The participation of a large number of high- level delegations, including ministers and directors-general from diverse areas (development cooperation, foreign affairs, finance, economy, planning, social development and trade) and stakeholders, such as NGOs, local governments, parliamentarians and global funds, among others, confirmed the promise of the Forum as a universal and inclusive platform for dialogue. Keynote addresses by eminent personalities, such as Mr. Trevor Manuel, the Secretary-General’s Special Envoy on Financing for Development, the European Commissioner, Mr. Louis Michel, and the Secretary-General of UNCTAD, Mr. Supachai Panitchpakdi, set the stage for frank and interactive debates. The DCF has contributed to the Doha review conference on the International Conference on Financing for Development and the Accra High-level Forum on Aid Effectiveness. A summary of the DCF was forwarded to these two events so that the political messages from the Forum could have an impact on their decisions. A key message of the Forum was the need to build a broader consensus around the aid effectiveness agenda. This would include promoting advances in such areas as untying aid, reducing conditionality or maximizing concessionality and predictability. Another message was that the implementation of the Accra Action Agenda will need to demonstrate that it goes beyond mere procedural changes by initiating real change in donor behavior towards sustainable development results. The Forum was appraised of a report of the Secretary-General on “Trends and progress in international development cooperation”. The report noted that progress on the global partnership for development has not been sufficient to ensure that development 4 Introduction cooperation would be in a position to produce rapid progress towards the realization of the internationally agreed development goals, including the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Most donors are not on track and are also not sufficiently planning ahead to meet the targets they have set for themselves. It also noted that increased flows from non-Development Assistance Committee sources are helping to diversify sources of financing while also adding to the complexity of international development cooperation. The report points to the fact that growing aid flows to the social sectors and governance have also mirrored declines in allocations to infrastructure and production. Particularly significant is the decline in agricultural aid, which has had clear consequences on the current food crisis. The report also urges all stakeholders to address the impact of climate change on the rural poor and to design and develop concrete, cost-effective adaptation programmes for them while mobilizing additional financial support to better assess and deal with the risks associated with climate change. A number of factors account for the success of the first Development Cooperation Forum, including the high quality of the high-level symposiums held under the auspices of the Forum: the professionalism and political balance of the analytical work, including the Secretary-General’s report; the ability to attract key development cooperation actors; and the strong public support from stakeholder groups, such as parliamentarians, civil society and local governments. The DCF, in fact, is seen as having established its comparative advantage in organizing multi-stakeholder consultations on aid issues. At the same time, the Forum also faces several challenges. One is to strengthen the ‘distinct identity’ of the DCF as a leading global forum for dialogue among senior policy makers dealing with development cooperation at the country level. A related challenge is to further raise awareness of the DCF amongst practitioners at the country level, especially since adding experiences from the local level to the debate at the global level is a particular comparative advantage of the Forum. Overall, the promise of the DCF is clear. It has positioned the United Nations as a forum for in-depth discussions among a range of development cooperation stakeholders on development cooperation issues. The 2008 Annual Ministerial Review (AMR) focused on sustainable development, which encompasses economic growth, social development and environmental protection. This year’s Review was designed to help spur the efforts of countries to implement the global consensus on sustainable development at the national level and provided practical guidance to assist in those efforts. The AMR also served to advance the on-going work on climate change, which was also bolstered by the climate change and development event organized in the run up to the substantive session. This meeting discussed ways on how developing countries can cope with climate change and how to reduce the world’s carbon footprint. In his report to the Council on the theme of sustainable development, the Secretary- General underscored a number of principles, namely: (i) integration of the three pillars of sustainable development (economic growth, social development and protection of the environment) into national planning and policymaking is a difficult process but can, and should, be done; (ii) given the nature and scope of the sustainable development agenda, governments alone cannot meet all the challenges and, as such, the participation of civil society, local authorities, the private sector and the general public is critical to sustainable Achieving Sustainable Development and Promoting Development Cooperation– Dialogues at the ECOSOC 5 development planning and implementation; (iii) climate change is the challenge of our lifetime and, if left unchecked, it may roll back hard-won progress in advancing the United Nations Development Agenda; (iv) adequate attention should be paid to fighting environmental deterioration, as this process could contribute to addressing climate change, as well as challenges related to poverty reduction and economic growth; and (v) greater efforts are required to promote the transfer of energy and resource-efficient modern technologies and affordable and renewable energy systems on a concessional and preferential bases. One of the highlights of this year’s AMR was the active participation of developed countries, namely: Belgium, Finland, Luxembourg and the United Kingdom in the national voluntary presentations (NVPs). It was seen as a step forward in promoting accountability in the fulfillment of international commitments in development cooperation and aid assistance. While volunteering developing countries Chile, Kazakhstan, Lao People’s Democratic Republic and the United Republic of Tanzania shared their unique experiences in development, in particular, their success stories and the specific constraints to implementation at the country level, developed countries, on their part, acknowledged the gaps in their development cooperation strategies. The success of the NVPs is reflected in the large number of volunteers for 2009 and 2010. It is clear that the national presentations continue to be seen by Member States as a very important mechanism for strengthening accountability for the fulfillment of the development goals. The AMR also examined the concept of ecosystems services and the potential benefits of these services for economic growth and sustainable development. Natural ecosystems have a fundamental role in providing goods and services on which humanity depends, for example, food and water, the regulation of climate, nutrient cycles and crop pollination. They also provide spiritual and recreational benefits and preserve diversity. The maintenance of healthy ecosystems is essential to achieve the goal of ensuring environmental sustainability, while improving the livelihood of the world's poorest, who depend mostly on fields, forests and waters. The roundtable looked at ways of promoting a proper valuation of the ecosystem services by markets and possible incentives to conserve ecosystems. Several case studies demonstrated that economic growth and sustainable development can be achieved together, including in least developed countries. The choice of the theme “Promoting an integrated approach to rural development in developing countries for poverty eradication and sustainable development, taking into account current challenges” for the thematic debate was very timely. It allowed the Council to follow up in concrete ways the outcome of its special meeting held in May 2008, and the FAO High-level Conference on World Food Security held in Rome in June 2008, which both addressed the global food crisis. Member States and other stakeholders in both meetings emphasized the importance of immediately boosting the production of food by smallholder farmers as a way to improve food security and improve livelihoods and the need to ensure that bioenergy does not compromise food security and negatively impact efforts to tackle climate change. 9 Chapter 1 ACHIEVING SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT Overview The Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) organized its second Annual Ministerial Review (AMR) and first Development Cooperation Forum (DCF) during the High-level Segment in 2008. The two new functions of ECOSOC mandated by the 2005 World Summit are intended to advance the implementation of the United Nations Development Agenda (UNDA), including the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by the 2015 target date. The AMR addressed the theme of "Implementing the internationally agreed goals and commitments in regard to sustainable development," and identified major challenges and the need to take actions. The DCF, a principal forum for promoting dialogue and partnership among various development partners, discussed the technical aspects of development cooperation issues with a view to contributing to discussions of the high- level development meetings in Accra, Ghana, and in Doha, Qatar, in 2008. This chapter presents some of the challenges and actions considered at the AMR and DCF. The following is a synopsis of the contributions outlined in this chapter. Mr. Sha Zukang, Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs, delivering a message by the Secretary-General, said that despite demonstrable progress, the world is facing delays in reaching the goals of the United Nations development agenda. Moreover, new challenges require urgent attention and collective action. Such challenges include weaknesses in global financial markets that have lead to the slowdown of the global economy and rising food and energy prices. Additional concerns about the threat of climate change, the deterioration of our natural environment, and continued skepticism regarding globalization due to rising inequalities must also be addressed. Mr. Sha also stressed the importance of strengthening the global partnership for development, and he welcomed the launch of the new Development Cooperation Forum. H.E. Mr. Léo Mérorès, President of the Economic and Social Council, underscored the potential of the Development Cooperation Forum to facilitate inclusive policy dialogue and policy review on key development cooperation issues and to contribute to the Accra meeting on aid effectiveness and the Doha Conference on Financing for Development. He called on the Annual Ministerial Review to contribute to the latest efforts for promoting collective solutions, including strengthening governance, creating markets for sustainable development, strengthening global cooperation, increasing financial assistance and promoting transfer of technology. Dr. Rajendra K. Pachauri, Chairman, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, stressed the urgent need for mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions and highlighted potential targets. He emphasized that adaptation to the impacts of climate change and promotion of sustainable development share common goals and determinants, including building access to resources and equity; stocks of human and social capital; access to 10 Achieving Sustainable Development risk-sharing mechanisms; and institutional capacity. In this connection, he underscored the importance of putting in place policies to improve sustainability and adaptive capacity, and called on the international community to contribute. Lord Stern of Brentford, author of the Stern Review on the Economics of Climate Change, underlined that climate change and development are the two greatest challenges of our time. He said that if urgent actions are not taken, the situation could lead to massive migration and huge conflict over resources. He underlined the need to generate political will to put prudent policies into action, especially towards the low-carbon growth, and he made a proposal for stabilizing greenhouse gases levels. Achieving Sustainable Development and Promoting Development Cooperation– Dialogues at the ECOSOC 11 Overcoming Global Obstacles to Achieve Development 1 Goals By Mr. Ban Ki-moon Secretary-General United Nations Delivered by Mr. Sha Zukang Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs United Nations We are at a critical juncture in our implementation of the UN development agenda. Despite demonstrable progress, we confront delays in reaching the goals, coupled with new challenges, many of which require our urgent attention and collective action. Today is an occasion to focus on four of the most pressing challenges we face. First, the fragile state of the major developed market economies, persistent global imbalances and soaring oil and non-oil commodity prices are slowing growth of the global economy. The financial turmoil of the past year is not incidental, but a reflection of systemic weaknesses in global financial markets. These conditions threaten to undermine efforts towards the development goals. Second, rising food and energy prices are hitting hard on the livelihoods of poor and vulnerable people. Progress so far towards our developmental goals could easily be reversed if we do not find workable solutions to the twin crises in the food and energy markets. Third, we are facing the profound threat of climate change and the deterioration of our natural environment. I believe that, if not addressed timely and adequately, this threat can bring all our development efforts to naught. It will bear down on the lives of our children and grandchildren. The pernicious impacts will be deep and pervasive. Finally, scepticism about globalization continues. There has been concern for some time that globalization is leaving behind the vulnerable and poorest communities, and the added worry now is that the middle classes are beginning to feel the effects of a much more insecure world. No social or economic order is secure if it fails to benefit the majority of those who live under it. From this perspective, we all should have serious concerns about a system whose wealthiest 400 citizens command, as a group, more resources than its bottom billion. Yet we also need to beware of the risks of a severe backlash against globalization, which could significantly curtail the opportunities and benefits of a more closely integrated world. At the same time, challenges also offer opportunities. Leaders, economists and bankers have come together to find short-term remedies to avert financial meltdown. They are also deliberating on long-term solutions to address the systemic inadequacies. The need 12 Achieving Sustainable Development to engage all key actors in this process is widely recognized. We must persist in pursuing truly concerted action to redress the woes of the global economy. Only then may we hope that a more robust global financial system will emerge from this credit crisis. I am also heartened by the collective efforts to deal with the food crisis. The Commission on Sustainable Development addressed agriculture and related issues at its annual session in May. ECOSOC itself launched a swift response by convening a special meeting to deal with the food crisis, which identified some key messages and actions that the international community needs to take. I have made efforts to mobilize the UN system and established the United Nations Task Force on the Global Food Crisis. Also, the High- level Conference on the World Food Security held earlier this month in Rome played a critical role in establishing a Comprehensive Framework for Action. The food crisis has laid bare the need for longer-term planning to improve world food security. Food production needs to rise by 50 per cent by the year 2030 to meet the rising demand. We have a historic opportunity to revitalize agriculture, especially in developing countries where productivity gains have been slow in recent decades. By using small farm holders as a key vehicle to achieve global food security, we also have an historic opportunity to make marked progress towards eliminating rural poverty. Efforts are already underway to bring together producers and consumers at the highest level to find a solution to the challenge of rising fuel prices. Yet, we also need to focus on long-term solutions, encouraging the sustainable production and use of efficient and clean sources of energy, more fuel efficient modern technologies, and changes in overall production and consumption patterns. Unprecedented awareness of the scale and scope of the challenges of climate change has put the need for urgent collective action in sharp relief. In fact, public support for the whole sustainable development agenda is greater than ever before. This session of ECOSOC should give new impetus to the realization of our long-standing goal of achieving economic growth, social development and environmental protection in an integrated and balanced manner, which is the key to the prosperity of humankind. While globalization may be an ineluctable fact of life, all governments have agreed, since the Millennium Declaration, to seek to manage globalization for the benefit of all. All countries certainly need policies and institutions that are flexible and tailored to their changing domestic and external circumstances and their individual challenges. We also need to ensure greater coherence in global policies in the areas of finance, trade, aid and investment. Fortunately, we have some critical opportunities this year to accelerate progress in strengthening the global partnership for development, including the Development Cooperation Forum, which will open its first-ever session this afternoon. The Development Cooperation Forum should become the principal venue for global dialogue and policy review on the effectiveness and coherence of international development cooperation. The inclusion of all relevant development actors in the Forum process provides a unique opportunity to garner a wide range of inputs for a deepened dialogue and understanding of the international development cooperation agenda. These issues are vital to the achievement of all the internationally agreed development goals. Achieving Sustainable Development and Promoting Development Cooperation– Dialogues at the ECOSOC 13 In my report on “Trends and progress in international development cooperation”, which will be introduced this afternoon, I have echoed the concern that the current aid effectiveness framework is not sufficiently responsive to development issues that cut across multiple sectors such as human rights, gender equality and environmental sustainability. The Development Cooperation Forum should give due attention to these cross-cutting imperatives. On all of these fronts, we have to act together and urgently. ECOSOC has proved that it can spearhead such a concerted effort to find pragmatic solutions to complex challenges. Last year, I witnessed the transformation of ECOSOC into an interactive forum where collective solutions to common as well as individual challenges were discussed and debated. This year, we will have even more of such dialogues and, of course, the inaugural session of the Development Cooperation Forum. I welcome the broad participation of parliamentarians, local governments and civil society. They are key partners in helping implement the development agenda and making aid effective at the country level. I congratulate all those countries that have volunteered for national presentations during the Annual Ministerial Review. The strong legislative basis, the enthusiastic involvement of the UN system and the other development actors, will enable the Council to move forward with firm commitment and strong political will to implement. 14 Achieving Sustainable Development Reaffirming Development Priorities: Uniting to Combat 2 Obstacles to Progress H.E. Mr. Léo Mérorès President of the Economic and Social Council United Nations This session of the Council is of special significance, particularly for two reasons. First, we are for the first time operationalizing all new functions of ECOSOC mandated by the 2005 World Summit. Secondly, we are meeting at a time when the world is grappling with emerging threats to the wave of prosperity and economic growth that we witnessed over the last decade or so. In the wake of the rising price of food and fuel, the deepening credit crisis and persisting global imbalances, the declining growth of the world economy, we are facing serious threats to our efforts to lift people out of poverty growth. This crisis situation is further compounded by the challenges posed by climate change. The disruptive effects of climate change are already becoming apparent. This does not augur well for efforts to achieve the IADGs, including the MDGs. Challenges for developing countries, particularly Least Developed Countries and Small Island Developing States are even more serious. There are risks of reversal of the gains made in the area of development over the last decade or so. In fact, some of the countries are already falling behind target dates for meeting the MDGs. Rising food and fuel prices are also leading to social unrest and instability. If we do not take urgent collective action then we may face turmoil in these countries. Threats posed by climate change are existential in nature. Many island states may cease to exist if we do not grapple with the consequences of global warming, especially rising sea levels and increase in the number and intensity of natural disasters. Fortunately, there is a growing realization that measures should be adopted both for mitigation and adaptation to ameliorate the sufferings of these poor and vulnerable countries. But this realization and awareness should be supported by concrete, concerted and collective action. I believe that negotiation on post 2012 arrangements provide an opportunity to launch such action and also enhance financing for developing countries’ efforts on adaptation. In fact, only by taking a long-term perspective can we ensure the well-being of future as well as present generations. It is now more important than ever to put into practice the concept of sustainable development, which integrates economic growth, social development, and protection of the environment. Despite increasing awareness on long-term sustainability problems, we have yet to witness significant movements on issues such as climate change, deforestation, biodiversity and desertification. The situation in these areas continues to deteriorate as we speak. This year’s Annual Ministerial Review should contribute to the latest efforts for Achieving Sustainable Development and Promoting Development Cooperation– Dialogues at the ECOSOC 15 promoting collective solutions, including strengthening governance, creating markets for sustainable development, strengthening global cooperation, increasing financial assistance and promoting transfer of technology. I strongly believe that AMR can contribute to our efforts to generate a coherence response to these challenges of integrating the three elements of sustainable development. The current approach of pursuing development goals through sectoral approaches will never be enough to meet the threats posed by climate change. National governments as well as the UN system need to develop coherent and integrated approaches to development, which place the issue of sustainability at the center of development strategies. Given the growing constraints posed by shrinking natural resources base, it seems that if development is not sustainable, it is not attainable. I urge this session of AMR to send this message in unequivocal terms and issue a call for determined action. Assessing progress and helping to narrow the gap in implementing the United Nations development agenda is an important role entrusted to the Council. The AMR provides a central forum for all stakeholders to assess progress in overall implementation of the internationally agreed development goals, including the MDGs. Linking the discussion of policy options to specific country experiences have resulted in a more hands-on debate. The National Voluntary Presentations during the AMR provide an opportunity to share an assessment of the volunteering country’s progress towards the achievement of the internationally agreed development goals and explore possibilities for addressing the lags in implementation. This year’s AMR is also a manifestation of the growing partnership between developed and developing countries, especially in the pursuit of MDGs. This is perhaps for the first time that in a multilateral forum we have both developed and developing countries reviewing their efforts to realize the development goals in a timely manner. While they have their respective roles in this endeavour, this partnership is a key to our success in achieving these goals. I believe that both developed and developing countries have to assume their obligation in our collective pursuit of prosperity for all. This long cherished goal can only be realized through strengthened global cooperation. I would like to congratulate governments of Belgium, Chile, United Kingdom, United Republic of Tanzania, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Luxembourg, Kazakhstan and Finland for volunteering this year. We look forward to their presentations and hope their presentations would pave the way for further strengthening the global partnership for development. This year’s AMR is also enriched by a regional perspective from West Asia. The regional consultation graciously hosted by the Government of the Kingdom of Bahrain, has produced recommendations for action on sustainable urbanization. By systematically drawing upon regional consultations and country level assessments, the AMR will help bridge the gap between “where we ought to be” and “how much more we have to go”. I am confident that the global discussions enriched by regional and national contributions will help in promoting the integration of the three elements of sustainable development. 16 Achieving Sustainable Development The DCF is envisioned as an inclusive United Nations Forum for ensuring coherence in development cooperation to achieve the internationally agreed development goals. At a time of growing uncertainty regarding the timely realization of the Millennium Development Goals, the DCF is uniquely placed to facilitate policy dialogue among a wide range of development actors. Therein lies its potential to be a leading venue for inclusive global dialogue and policy review on key development cooperation issues. The Stakeholder Forum in Rome and the high-level symposiums in Vienna and Cairo engaged parliamentarians and high-level representatives from civil society and local governments in an open and interactive dialogue on their roles in contributing to effective development cooperation. I thank the Governments of Italy, Austria and Egypt for hosting these important events. The innovative modalities of cooperation established for the AMR and DCF have brought renewed dynamism to the implementation of development goals, by promoting greater interaction among the different constituencies. The inclusion of civil society organizations, parliamentarians as well as local government and private sector representatives is essential in sustaining the engagement and commitment of all stakeholders in bridging the implementation gap. The E-discussions, the Civil society forum and the Innovation Fair provide additional venues for all stakeholders to exchange ideas and experiences. ECOSOC has become much more than just a month-long meeting in New York. The substantive session is a culmination of the various activities which took place in the last six months. Through the meeting on food crisis, the Council has shown that it can play an important role in highlighting the immediate humanitarian needs while emphasizing the need for long-term sustainable solutions. The special event on climate change in May brought together leading environment and development experts and explored the nexus between climate change and development. These preparatory meetings coupled with the deliberation during the substantive session will lay a strong foundation for the forthcoming meetings. I see that both DCF and AMR have lot to contribute to the Accra meeting on aid effectiveness and the Doha Conference on Financing for Development. These conferences can benefit from the Council’s thorough work based on extensive regional consultations, global consultative forums and above all its broad-based engagement, which provides all perspectives to multilateral deliberations. I believe that Council’s deliberations and debates during this session would greatly enrich discussions and outcomes of the important development related conferences and events. The Council has shown that it is increasingly becoming better equipped to assess progress on the ground and galvanize action at national, regional and international levels. Achieving Sustainable Development and Promoting Development Cooperation– Dialogues at the ECOSOC 17 Battling Climate Change by Promoting Environmentally 3 Sustainable Development Dr. Rajendra K. Pachauri Chairman, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Director-General, The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) It is now becoming increasingly apparent that the global community, over several decades, has pursued a path of development which is clearly not sustainable. In the context of climate change, we are now getting increasing evidence, based on observations, based on data that is available, that the path of development that we have adopted is leading to consequences with changes in the climate that clearly have extremely harmful impacts and hold the potential for far more serious impacts in the future. The IPCC (the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change), which functions under the umbrella of the World Meteorological Organization and the United Nations Environment Program, has been able to come up with the Fourth Assessment Report which was released last year and how we have come up with a number of assessments of various aspects of climate change that go to the heart of this issue. The work of the IPCC is guided by the mandate provided by WMO and UNEP, and its role is essentially to assess, on a comprehensive basis, objectively and transparently, the scientific, technical and socio-economic information relevant to understanding the scientific basis of climate change, its potential impacts and options for both adaptation as well as mitigation measures. The review and writing process of the IPCC is very extensive. Every draft of the report is carefully reviewed. The first draft is reviewed by expert reviewers, and governments and experts review the second draft of the report as well a draft summary for policy makers. Finally, the summary for policy makers of every report of the IPCC is reviewed and approved word by word by all the governments that are members of the IPCC. I want to place before this august gathering the elaborate, transparent and objective manner in which IPCC comes up with its assessment. By way of facts, the Fourth Assessment Report involved a total of 450 lead authors who actually wrote the report. In addition, we got inputs from 800 “contributing authors”. These are specialists who provide very specific inputs on highly specialized aspects of climate change to the authors who actually write the report. There were over 2500 scientific expert reviewers involved in the process. Every single comment that is received on the basis of these reviews is carefully logged and the authors have the choice of either accepting or rejecting each of these comments but they have to record which one was accepted and which one was not. Then, we have to record exactly why a particular comment was not accepted. Let me now turn to some of the economic and social aspects of climate change. I want to refer to the large range of estimates of costs that we have carried out on the basis of the Fourth Assessment Report. If CO concentration was to double, then we could get a loss 2 of GDP ranging anywhere from 1.5 to 20 percent globally and I am sure this is something that Lord Stern of Brentford will address with much greater precision on the basis of the 18 Achieving Sustainable Development work that he and his team have done. We also know that the cost of carbon could increase to a level anywhere between 10 to 350 per ton. The real social cost of carbon will rise from two to four percent per year. Now, the variation between studies is explained by uncertainties in climate sensitivity. Climate sensitivity is defined as the increase in temperature that would take place with doubling of carbon dioxide in the Earth’s atmosphere. It is also dependent on discount rates, the valuation of impacts – and some of the impacts are so difficult to value in precise economic terms that we necessarily have to come up with a range of estimates. The aggregate estimates do mask significant differences in impacts across sectors and regions. We in the IPCC feel very satisfied that in the Fourth Assessment Report we have been able to come up with a very clear estimation of physical and biological costs and impacts related to specific temperature increases that are going to take place in the future. And we have also been able to come up with a great deal of regional detail, because the impacts of climate change are clearly not uniform across the globe. To give an indication, the rate of warming itself is not uniform across the globe. The Arctic region, for instance, is warming at twice the rate of the average for the rest of the world. That is one of the reasons why the rate of melting of ice in the Arctic region is so rapid. There are several impacts of climate change ranging from impacts on agriculture, on human health, on ecosystems, on species, on water resources. I would like to present before you some statistics in terms of estimates on what is likely to happen in the future. Around 1.1 to 3.2 billion people will experience increased water scarcity by 2080 as a result of climate change, and that’s a very large number. Here, again, there are going to be several differences across different regions of the globe. Just to mention one single set of projections: by 2020 itself, we expect that in Africa anywhere from 75 to 250 million people will be affected by increased water stress as a result of climate change. Crop revenues are likely to fall by about 90 percent by the end of the century in several parts of Africa. Again, to give a specific projection, by 2020 there will be several countries in Africa that are likely to see a decline in agricultural yields by up to 50 percent as a result of climate change. There is now growing evidence, based on research that is being carried out, that some crops are extremely sensitive to temperature increases, but in addition, agriculture will also be affected by increasing frequency as well as intensity of floods, droughts, heat waves, and other such factors. We also know that 22-30 per cent of the species that we have assessed in the IPCC could be at risk of extinction if increases in warming exceed 1.5 to 2.5°C. I would term this as an abrupt and irreversible change. Just as if the Greenland or the Western Antarctic ice sheets were to collapse – and these are huge quantities of ice sitting on large areas of land several kilometers high – if any part of those were to collapse we could get sea level rise of several meters. That is clearly an abrupt and irreversible change. Climate change, as we forecast, as we project into the future, does hold a potential for some of these abrupt and irreversible changes which can be quite devastating. These expressions of risk are determined fundamentally by location in time and space. This is what the work of the IPCC is. Our effort is to project what would happen at different points of time and in different locations, if we don’t take any action. The vulnerability of different regions in the year 2050 is shown here in this map. This is the extent to which we can project the vulnerability of different regions. You would observe that there are Achieving Sustainable Development and Promoting Development Cooperation– Dialogues at the ECOSOC 19 some regions where there are going to be modest to moderate expressions or indications of vulnerability. Then there are other regions which, of course, are much more severely affected. If we look at projections for the year 2100, then there’s a very large area of the globe that would be suffering from extreme or severe vulnerability. Figure 1: Distribution of Vulnerability Year 2050 9 Severe vulnerability 7 Moderate 6 Moderate 5 Modest 4 Modest 3 Little 2 Little No data Year 2100 10 Extreme 9 Severe 8 Serious 7 Moderate 6 Moderate 5 Modest No data Therefore, it is for us, as a society, to ensure that we take actions to ensure that we never get anywhere close to this kind of outcome across the globe. What is it that we need to do? Well, we have to bring about very urgent mitigation of the emissions of greenhouse gasses. The IPCC has examined several stabilization scenarios, and I would like to bring to your attention one set of these scenarios. If we want to stabilize the total mean temperature increase between 2 to 2.4°C, then we would have to stabilize greenhouse gases in the Earth’s atmosphere, in CO equivalent terms, anywhere from 445 to 490 2 parts per million. That, incidentally, is roughly where we are today. If we were to do that, then we would have to ensure that emissions of greenhouse gasses peak no later than 2015. Beyond that date they will have to reduce very rapidly. Now, this gives us a window of opportunity of barely seven years. That is one reason why it is critically important that by the end of 2009, when the Conference of the Parties takes place in Copenhagen, the world has in place an agreement that ensures the rate of mitigation that is implied in the figures indicated here. There are some, of course, who now argue that 20 Achieving Sustainable Development even a 2 to 2.4°C increase in temperature may be a bit too high. Therefore, we must be ambitious to reduce this particular limit that has been established for mitigation purposes. Table 2: Mitigation Targets Global mean temp. Stabilization level Year CO needs to peak 2 increase (ppm CO -eq) 2 (ºC) 2.0 – 2.4 445 – 490 2000 – 2015 2.4 – 2.8 490 – 535 2000 – 2020 2.8 – 3.2 535 – 590 2010 – 2030 3.2 – 4.0 590 – 710 2020 – 2060 We know that the costs of mitigation are certainly not high. In fact, what we’ve estimated is a reduction of GDP of less than 0.12 percent annually. We also know that mitigation can result in several co-benefits. If we were to bring about mitigation of emissions of greenhouse gases, and this will involve more efficient and lower use of fossil fuels, we would certainly be adding to energy security globally. We would also be lowering local pollution – air pollution in particular – and this would add substantial health benefits. Also, if we were to move to greater use of renewable energy resources and the deployment of technologies for bringing that about, then clearly that would also bring about an increase in jobs and economic opportunities. At the same time, it’s important for us to realize that in-built into our system today, there is a certain inertia in terms of equipment, in terms of infrastructure, and even human attitudes. If we have to bring about the level of mitigation that is required, we have to start very early. Only then can we influence the course of events in terms of stabilizing the Earth’s atmosphere. We have also found that all the stabilization levels that we have assessed can be achieved by deployment of a portfolio of technologies that are currently available or expected to be commercialized in coming decades. So, in other words, we can undertake this task with existing technologies and existing “know-how”. Of course, over a period of time, we would have to ensure that there are appropriate incentives and a proper policy framework by which new technologies are developed and diffused through the economic system. We know that 60 to 80 percent of greenhouse gas reductions would come from energy supply and use and industrial processes. In the aggregate, we know today that de-carbonizing power production would require incremental investments of up to 40 billion a year globally and 30 billion a year in non-OECD countries where major expansion of capacity is taking place. But, we could offset these through reduced investment requirements resulting from improved energy use efficiency. We could mention that increased global investment of 2.4 trillion in improved efficiency would be more than offset by 3 trillion in savings from energy investments. Hence, improvements in energy efficiency are clearly a viable set of options that we must deploy as soon as possible. Achieving Sustainable Development and Promoting Development Cooperation– Dialogues at the ECOSOC 21 Now, I would like to indicate the link between actions that are required for climate change and the means by which we attain sustainable development. Adaptation measures for the impacts of climate change and promotion of sustainable development share several common goals and determinants. For instance, access to resources and equity should be insured, stocks of human and social capital should be created, and access to risk-sharing mechanisms is necessary. We need to create institutional capacity for us to adapt to the impacts of climate change. In particular, it is vitally important to involve communities, because it is local communities that would be affected, and they are the ones who have to be at the forefront of adapting to the impacts of climate change. Social and environmental issues are often left without effective support when economic growth in a very narrow sense takes precedence. Therefore, we need to ensure that we integrate appropriate climate change strategies with growth policies. In summation, the dominant path to industrialization has been characterized by high concurrent greenhouse gas emissions and pressure on natural resources. This has been a feature of the path of development that most countries in the world have pursued, and if we have to move to alternative development paths, we would have to bring about major changes in economic structure. For instance, the entire transportation system would need to make a transition to more efficient forms, including greater use of public transport and a shift to fuels that are low in carbon intensity. Geographical distribution of activities will be required; even urban development and urban growth would need to change. Consumption patterns will require significant difference including changes in lifestyles and demography. Here again, I am talking about the distribution of population which would need to change. There is now acceptance of the fact that we need to bring about a shift to a more inclusive concept of governance, including cooperation of various levels of government, the private sector and civil society. The challenges we face in climate change require a coalition among all stakeholders. Coherence between policies addressing climate change, economic development, health, employment, energy, security, and local environment is critically important. Therefore, what we need is involvement by relevant parties and policy coherence to ensure that we reach desired goals and assure sustainability. In our economic policies we have to bring about some rapid and major transformation actions. Only then would we be able to meet the challenge of climate change. To give a very simple example of what my institute and I have launched is a program called ‘Lighting a Billion Lives’. Unfortunately, there are 1.6 billion people in the world today who have no access to electricity or modern forms of energy. This is one quarter of the world’s population. As it happens, almost a quarter live in India alone. Now, if we were to wait for electricity from the central grid to be provided to light up these homes, it would take a long time, and it would also be extremely expensive. So what we’ve developed is a set of solar lanterns that can not only offset carbon dioxide emissions and lower local pollution, but ensure that you have cleaner homes, with a durable and sustainable form of lighting. This is something that could be done on a very large scale. To give you an example of how this can be done in villages in India, particularly in the Sunderbans, which is the delta region of the Ganges River. We train an entrepreneurial woman who has a solar panel on the roof of the house. She charges these solar lanterns during the daytime and rents them out to all the villagers in the evening at a low price of 22 Achieving Sustainable Development five rupees which is roughly eleven US cents. This way she generates an income for herself and the village gets much cleaner lighting than they have today. Some of them can extend their working hours and therefore increase their incomes as well. Therefore, I am providing this as only an example of how we need to think out of the box and come up with unconventional methods by which we can ensure that the resources of this planet are utilized efficiently and sustainably. Finally, I would like to quote Mahatma Gandhi. When he was asked whether he expected India to attain the same standard of living as Britain, he replied, “It took Britain half the resources of the planet to achieve this prosperity. How many planets will a country like India require?” Achieving Sustainable Development and Promoting Development Cooperation– Dialogues at the ECOSOC 23 4 Towards a Global Deal on Climate Change Lord Stern of Brentford Author of the Stern Review We all produce Greenhouse Gases (GHGs), people around the world are already suffering from past emissions, and current emissions have the potential to cause catastrophic damages in the future. The global nature of the link between emissions and damages calls for a global response. At present people do not pay for the damages their emissions cause to others. We have a market failure, indeed the biggest market failure the world has ever seen. Thus a key part of the policy must be to fix this market failure, and to establish a price for GHGs. That must be done globally. This would be a major step towards an efficient response. However there are many other profound inefficiencies associated with climate change which good policy must tackle. But a global deal, if it is to be built and sustained, must be more than efficient, it must also be effective, that is yield results on a scale that is necessary, and be equitable, that is take account of abilities to respond and bear cost of responsibilities for past, present and future emissions. Greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere trap energy and thus cause global warming and climate change. They are already approaching dangerous levels. Unless we act quickly as a world we shall soon be in very dangerous territory. Risks, targets and Costs Policy towards climate change must be focused on the management of risk. We are risking the future of the planet and we must ask about the right ways to control these risks, what will be the costs, and who should bear them. Thus the issues concern risks, costs and ethics and all three must be at the heart of an analysis of an effective, efficient and equitable global deal. The relationship between the stock of GHGs in the atmosphere and the resulting temperature increase is at the heart of any risk analysis: it is the clearest way to begin and anchors most of the discussion. Table 1: probabilities of exceeding a temperature increase at equilibrium (per cent) O O O O O O Stabilization Level 2 C 3 C 4 C 5 C 6 C 7 C (in ppm CO2e) (3.6F) (5.4F) (7.2F) (9.0F) (10.8F) (12.6F) 450 78 18 3 1 0 0 500 96 44 11 3 1 0 99 69 24 7 2 1 550 650 100 94 58 24 9 4 750 100 99 82 47 22 9 Source: based on Stern Review box 8.1 (Stern, 2007, p. 220)