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Posted on Sustainabilitank.info on May 3rd, 2014
by Pincas Jawetz (pj@sustainabilitank.info)

 

Towards —- “A Catalyzing Action” to —- CLIMATE SUMMIT 2014 —- the UN Secretary General Recommends:

 

 

 

MEDIA ADVISORYAbu Dhabi Ascent
4-5 May 2014Jumeirah Etihad Towers
Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

New York, 2 May—Ministers, experts and officials from government, along with business and civil society leaders will gather in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, from 4-5 May to lay the foundation for a platform that will launch concerted action on climate change at this September’s Climate Summit.

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will attend the Abu Dhabi Ascent which aims to prepare for and build momentum ahead of his Climate Summit on 23 September in New York.  
 
The two-day Ascent, which begins on Sunday, 4 May, will bring together governments, the private sector, civil society and other partners to discuss how to take concrete action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and enhance resilience to climate change.
 
While in the UAE’s capital, the Secretary-General will hold talks with government officials and representatives from a wide range of groups, including business, finance and civil society. The Secretary-General will also visit the Shams Solar Power Plant.
 
The Abu Dhabi Ascent is the only international meeting to prepare for the Climate Summit, which aims to mobilize political will for climate action and catalzye government—private sector-civil society driven initiatives that will target critical areas where climate action is needed.

Abu Dhabi will be the first international meeting to draw on the conclusions from the recently release reports by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which found that the consequences of climate change were already being felt in every continent, and that while present action is insufficient, there are still pathways toward a low carbon future that could minimize the impacts of climate change. Action now, it said, was necessary in order to avoid much higher costs in the future.
 
Participants in the Ascent will learn about the various opportunities to engage in a range of initiatives aimed at expanding the use of renewable energy sources, improving energy efficiency, developing smart agricultural practices, cleaner transport, improving city infrastructure, reducing carbon pollutants, and increasing financing for climate action.
 
Media Opportunities at the Abu Dhabi Ascent:

 Members of the media are invited to the opening of the Abu Dhabi Ascent. Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, Minister of State and Special Envoy for Energy and Climate Change, United Arab Emirates will open the Ascent, followed by remarks by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and John W. Ashe, President of the 68th session of the UN General Assembly.

Al Gore, former Vice President of the United States and Chairman of The Climate Reality Project, will give the keynote speech.
 
There will be a press conference with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and UAE Minister of State and Special Envoy for Energy and Climate Change Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber at 10:45.

A press briefing with Helen Clark, UNDP Administrator, Felipe Calderon former President of Mexico, Jeffrey Sachs, Director of the Earth Institute at Columbia University and special advisor to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, and Kandeh Yumkella, Special Representative of the Secretary-General and chief executive of the initiative Sustainable Energy for All (tbc), will follow.

Journalists can register by using the below link and select media under the drop down box.
abudhabiascent2014.com/abu-dhabi-ascent/register

For more information, please contact Dan Thomas from the Secretary-General’s Climate Change Support Team, daniel.thomas@un.org, 1-917 520-8842  or Dan Shepard, UN Department of Public Information, shepard@un.org, 1 646 675-3286

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PRESS RELEASE

Abu Dhabi Ascent Mobilizes New Engagement for Practical Actions to Address Climate Change 

Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, 5 May—In a major shift from negotiations to engagement on action, more than 1,000 participants, including 70 government ministers voiced support for the development of a range of bold initiatives to address climate change at the Abu Dhabi Ascent which concluded today.
 
The two-day Ascent meeting was co-hosted by United Nations Secretary-General Ban-Ki-moon and the Government of the United Arab Emirates to prepare for the Climate Summit that will be held on 23 September in New York to raise ambition and action for climate change.
 
The Secretary-General said he was leaving Abu Dhabi with the sense that change is in the air. “I challenge you to be part of that change – to be at the head of the race.”
 
But he warned that any government or major business that doesn’t have a climate strategy is in trouble. “Don’t get left behind. Don’t be on the losing side of history.”
 
Calling the meeting informative and inspiring, Mr. Ban said, “Now the hard work begins.
In the coming months, I will count on the wisdom and initiative of all actors.
 
“Those who are prepared to lead can expect considerable returns. The business opportunities of the low-carbon economy are great. The social and environmental benefits for countries in all regions are yet to be realized.”
 
“We have made real progress in the past two days in cementing ambitious partnerships to cut emissions, mobilize investment and help countries adapt to climate change,” said Dr. Sultan Al Jaber, United Arab Emirates Minister of State and Special Envoy for Energy and Climate Change. “The UAE is proud to have played such a central role in supporting Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in his outstanding efforts to lead the global community to real climate action.
 
“We believe more strongly than ever that addressing climate change will demand effective actions across the energy-food-water nexus. It has been encouraging to see that here in Abu Dhabi we have achieved real progress in shaping, scaling up and preparing these initiatives to be announced in September.”
 
Participants at the meeting worked in small groups to share plans around nine key action areas. The best initiatives will be highlighted at the Climate Summit.
 
Wrapping up the meeting this afternoon, Helen Clark, Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme, said the Ascent emphasized that the costs of inaction on climate change exceed the costs of action and that economic growth and reducing emissions are compatible processes.  She said that business is moving to play a decisive role in areas from renewables to deforestation-free supply chains; and civil society and indigenous peoples must be fully engaged in the responses.
 
She said, “The path to the top is beginning to emerge from the mist. We can now see many steps which need to be taken individually and collectively to achieve a successful Climate Summit on 23 September.”

For more information, please contact Dan Shepard, UN Department of Public Information, shepard@un.org, 1 646 675-3286 or Dan Thomas from the Secretary-General’s Climate Change Support Team, daniel.thomas@un.org, 1-917 520-8842

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