Lawmakers link global development agenda

Source
United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction
Ms. Margareta Wahlström, Head of the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, addresses the GLOBE Summit (Photo: UNISDR)
Ms. Margareta Wahlström, Head of the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, addresses the GLOBE Summit (Photo: UNISDR)

PARIS, 4 December 2015 – Hundreds of legislators from around the world have gathered on the sidelines of the COP21 climate summit to focus on harnessing low carbon development to eradicate poverty and better protect people against disasters.

The 300 representatives from 67 countries met at the two-day GLOBE Summit in Paris to discuss how to build a more sustainable world by making policies more coherent and relevant.

“The year 2015 has been historic for the development world, with a succession of important UN agreements starting with the Sendai Framework on Disaster Risk Reduction in March in Japan, the post-2015 Sustainable Development Goals in New York last September and the climate change agreement that will be adopted in Paris next week,” said Mr. Graham Stuart, Chairman of the board of organizers GLOBE International -- short for Global Legislators Organisation for a Balanced Environment.

The trio of agreements, which will set the tone of development for at least the next decade and a half, are of particular relevance for legislators from all over the world who “will have the task to enact new laws to implement them and ensure that their outcomes are mutually reinforcing,” he said.

The GLOBE Summit, which always coincides with annual UN climate conference, is primarily attended by legislators but also by leading members of the judiciary, policymakers, and members of intergovernmental and multilateral organisations, academia, business and the scientific community.

“We are here to learn from each others and to understand what others are doing. COP 21 and the Globe Summit are very important for us and we hope to gain a lot of knowledge and to go back home with a new climate agreement so legislators can continue working on a zero carbon development economy,” said Mexican Senator Ms. Silvia Guadalupe Garza Galvan.

Mexican legislators are currently working to pass a new law on energy transition that stipulate that 30-35 percent of their country’s energy should come from clean sources by 2024.

African parliamentarians, who were well represented at the summit, also came with the intention to take ideas back home.

“For us, the climate change negotiations are important as we are already suffering heavily from their negative impacts but we need to continue developing to get out of poverty. We are ready to adopt new policies, adopt new energies, but we need help,” said Mr. Roger Nkodo Dang, a Member of Parliamentarian from Cameroon and President of the Pan African Parliament.

Among the day’s keynote speakers was Ms. Margareta Wahlström, Head of the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR).

“The list of convergences and examples of complementarity between the three agreements is wide and clear,” she said.

“To really achieve the goals of the post 2015 agendas, there is a need for strong will to holistically implement, monitor and report their provisions. Local communities are now entrusted to be more active in building up their resilience and parliamentarian have a decisive role to play establishing the link between national and local policies.”

Ms. Wahlström called on parliamentarians to seize this historic opportunity to act with responsibility to their constituents, inviting them to address the root causes that persistently prevent communities from achieving sustainable development and eliminating poverty.

She also strongly encouraged parliaments to engage more young people in the post 2015 agenda, and said women had a critical part to play in its implementation.

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