Ban Ki-moon terms Paris deal ‘monumental triumph’ for planet Earth

By: | Published: December 13, 2015 11:31 AM

UN chief Ban Ki-moon has termed the historic climate change agreement reached in Paris as a "monumental triumph" for planet Earth that will set the stage for achieving an end to poverty and development for all.

UN chief Ban Ki-moon has termed the historic climate change agreement reached in Paris as a “monumental triumph” for planet Earth that will set the stage for achieving an end to poverty and development for all.

“In the face of an unprecedented challenge, you have demonstrated unprecedented leadership,” the UN Secretary General said taking the COP21 stage just minutes after the adoption of the agreement.

“You have worked collaboratively to achieve something that no one nation could achieve alone. This is a resounding success for multilateralism.”

In a landmark deal, 195 Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change pledged to curb emissions, strengthen resilience and take common climate action.

“The Paris Agreement is a monumental triumph for people and our planet,” Ban said in a tweet, immediately following the adoption of the new Paris Agreement. “It sets the stage for progress in ending poverty, strengthening peace and ensuring a life of dignity and opportunity for all.”

Recalling that he made climate change one of the defining priorities of his tenure, Ban said that most of all, he has listened to people – the young, the poor and the vulnerable, including indigenous peoples, from every corner of the globe.

“They seek protection from the perils of a warming planet, and the opportunity to live in a safer, more bountiful world,” he said. “They have demanded that world leaders act to safeguard their well-being and that of generations to come.”

Turning to the agreement itself, the Secretary-General said negotiators reached “solid results on all key points,” with an agreement that demonstrates solidarity and “is ambitious, flexible, credible and durable.”

“All countries have agreed to hold global temperature rise to well below 2 degrees Celsius. And recognizing the risk of grave consequences, you have further agreed to pursue efforts to limit temperature increase to 1.5 degrees,”he said.

In addition, a review mechanism has been established whereby every five years, beginning in 2018, Parties will regularly review what is needed in line with science.

“Governments have agreed to binding, robust, transparent rules of the road to ensure that all countries do what they have agreed across a range of issues,” Ban added.

“When historians look back on this day, they will say that global cooperation to secure a future safe from climate change took a dramatic new turn here in Paris,” Ban said.

“Today, we can look into the eyes of our children and grandchildren, and we can finally say, tell them that we have joined hands to bequeath a more habitable world to them and to future generations.”

Several other top UN officials joined the Secretary- General in welcoming the new Agreement, including President of the UN General Assembly Mogens Lykketoft.

The “agreement signals nothing less than a renaissance for humankind as we collectively embrace the global challenge of climate change and endeavour to transition to a more sustainable way of living that respects the needs of people and our planet,” Lykketoft said in a statement.

Echoing this message, President of the UN Economic and Social Council Oh Joon said the world has reached a key milestone in collective action for sustainable development.

“Bold action against climate change will contribute to poverty reduction. The United Nations Economic and Social Council will take part in follow-up efforts,” he added.

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