THE HAGUE, NETHERLANDS (October 16, 2018) — On the heels of one of the deadliest summers of climate-related weather disasters affecting countries all over the world, an unprecedented gathering of global leaders today launched the new Global Commission on Adaptation to catalyze a global movement to bring scale and speed to climate adaptation solutions. The Global Commission on Adaptation is led by Ban Ki-moon, 8th Secretary-General of the United Nations, Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and Kristalina Georgieva, CEO, World Bank. It includes 17 convening countries and 28 commissioners, including Mr. Li Ganjie, Minister of the Ministry of Ecology and Environment (MEE) of the People’s Republic of China.
As indicated in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5 °C, damaging climate change impacts are being felt now, much sooner and more powerfully than previously projected. Adaptation is about managing the risks associated with climate change – from floods and droughts to sea level rise and storms. The work of the Commission will elevate the visibility and political importance of climate adaptation and encourage bold solutions like smarter investments, new technologies and better planning to become more resilient to climate-related threats. Global Center on Adaptation and World Resources Institute are the managing partners of the Commission.
Dr. Li Lailai, Chief Representative of WRI (USA) Beijing Representative Office, said “China is significantly affected by climate change, and is facing worsening climate risks which pose serious challenges to the sustainable development of economy and society. With the establishment of the Commission, WRI will strengthen its research on climate adaption, and will have better advocacy and implementation. We will work to build a platform for climate adaption exchanges, enhance visibility of climate adaption for all sectors in China to tackle the global issue of climate change.”
There are four major roadblocks slowing adaptation that the Commission will work to address:
Decision makers and the wider public are not yet aware of all the opportunities to be gained from becoming more resilient and less vulnerable to climate impacts and natural hazards;
Governments and businesses fail to incorporate climate change risks into their social and economic development plans and investments;
Adaptation efforts fall short of those who need them most, the world’s poorest and most vulnerable people; and
Although adaptation is a global challenge, global leadership on the issue is scarce. In short, the world is falling short of the transformation required to adapt to a changing climate.
In its first year, the Commission will oversee preparation of a flagship report and present its findings and recommendations at the 2019 UNSG Climate Summit. The report will be informed by input from the world’s leading scientific, economic and policy analysis institutes; and will set out why adapting to climate risks and accelerated action is essential, what new actions are needed and what must be done differently; and how governments, companies and citizens can start working today to make the world a safer, better place.
THE CONVENING COUNTRIES
Argentina Bangladesh Canada China Costa Rica Denmark
Ethiopia Germany Grenada India Indonesia Marshall Islands
Mexico Netherlands Senegal South Africa United Kingdom