OECD countries commit to work towards a climate deal for 2015


07/05/2014 - The OECD’s 34 member countries today affirmed their common resolve to work towards a deal on combating climate change at the COP21 talks in Paris in 2015. OECD accession countries Colombia and Latvia joined the statement issued at the Organisation’s annual Ministerial Council Meeting, attended by finance, economy, trade and other ministers.

Describing climate change as one of today’s greatest economic challenges, ministers or representatives of the 36 countries agreed to step up efforts to achieve the economic transformation necessary to deliver sustainable growth, including through incentivising private investment in low-carbon infrastructure, fostering green goods and services and phasing out fossil fuel subsidies. Full OECD Ministerial Statement on Climate Change here.

Climate change could lower world GDP in 2060 by at least 0.7 to 2.5 percent, according to new preliminary OECD estimates included in a synthesis report on New Approaches to Economic Challenges released following the meeting.

“Cutting net emissions to zero in the second half of the century is a tough call but there is no way out if we are to achieve the 2°C target while simultaneously supporting the economic recovery,” said OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría. “There are as many opportunities as there are difficulties, but governments must make sure tomorrow’s technologies are not obstructed by yesterday’s regulations.”

The ministers also asked the OECD to work with its partner agencies in energy and transport – the International Energy Agency, the Nuclear Energy Agency and the International Transport Forum – to look at ways to help member countries to better align their economic, social and environmental policies towards low-carbon growth.

The statement precedes the high-level United Nations Climate Summit in September and the 20th Conference of Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change in Lima in December. Any commitment made at the 2015 Paris talks would come into force in 2020.

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