United NationsDepartment of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development

Global Task Force

« Climate and Disaster risk reduction » session - OWG 7
Ronan Dantec, on behalf of the Global Taskforce of Local and Regional Governments
January 10th, 2014
Mr Co-chair,
Distinguished delegates,
I speak on behalf of the Global Taskforce of Local and Regional Governments, which brings together all the networks of local authorities.
Climate change, including resilience as well as disaster and risk reduction, are key issues in development agenda. We are all aware that we won’t be able to respond to development challenges and eliminate poverty, unless we reach an ambitious agreement that will enable us to stabilize climate.
With the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals in September in New York, and the climate negotiation in Paris in December, 2015 will be a crucial year for our common future. It will put to the test if the international community is able to address global issues collectively.
Both negotiations are therefore closely intertwined and we should be particularly mindful of the signals that the SDGs will send to the negotiations on climate in Paris.
SDGs have a fundamental role to play in mobilizing all stakeholders, actors and institutions. SDGs should encourage the implementation of concrete actions, which was part of the success of the Millennium Development Goals. The goals and targets to be defined should create dynamics, mobilize players, as well as connect these efforts to climate issues.
We need to say clearly that reaching an ambitious agreement on climate does not just mean reaching a legally-binding agreement, but it also needs a large mobilization of all kinds of actors as well as concrete actions, significant enough to lead to an important reduction of CO2 emissions.
This is also why we consider that the adoption of a clear goal, on sustainable urbanization addressing also energy and food security, will greatly benefit our inputs to the climate negotiation. The SDGs should include targets and indicators related to climate issues. I would like to recall that 70% of global greenhouse gas emissions come from
cities in the world. We will not achieve global goals for emissions reductions without local actors’ involvement.
In the same logic, as it has already been said today, it’s at local level that adaptation and resilience challenges need to be addressed. Local governments have shown their commitment, particularly through the Durban Adaptation Charter, adopted in 2011. We thus consider that targets on adaptation have to underline the key role played by local governments.
To conclude, we would like to transmit our conviction that climate issues should be addressed transversely in the Sustainable Development Goals and with special emphasis in one urban goal.