Riga, 30 June 2015. On 29 June, the Latvian Minister for Environmental Protection and Regional Development, Kaspars Gerhards, went to New York (USA) to represent the Latvian Presidency of the Council of the European Union at the high-level event on international climate policy, convened by the President of the United Nations General Assembly.
During the multilateral meeting high-level officials from around the world discussed the upcoming Paris Climate Change Conference. During the conference it is planned to reach an agreement on new, universally-binding post-2020 climate change agreement.
The Minister during his presentation stressed: ''An increasing number of countries express their firm commitment to implement emissions reduction measures. It allows to look at the upcoming Paris Climate Change Conference with optimism. At the same time, there are concerns that the planned measures to reduce emissions will not be enough to achieve the goal – to limit the increase in global average temperature to below 2° C. Therefore, it is essential that all countries conclude the new agreement.''
During the session, active discussions among the UN Member States were held on the new elements of the agreement and their balance, and discussions on how to motivate the non-governmental sector and social partners to commit and implement activities for combating climate change.
The Minister emphasised that a clear framework for the post-2020 climate policy should be outlined at the Paris Climate Change Conference, thus giving a clear message to businesses, inhabitants and other interested parties.
''It is recognised that governments alone, without the help of the private sector, will not be able to implement the measures needed to provide a comprehensive and substantial contribution to combating climate change. To achieve the goal, it is necessary to involve the non-governmental sector initiatives,'' the Minister noted.
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