Fiji endorses Under2 Coalition

Author:
William Brittlebank
Reading time: 5 minutes
14 June 2017

SACRAMENTO: Fiji became the latest endorser of the Under2 Coalition on Tuesday, with Prime Minister and incoming COP23 President, Frank Bainimarama, joining leading US Governors at a special signing ceremony in California.

The Coalition, for which The Climate Group act as Secretariat, is a leading network of international sub-national governments that are working together to find shared solutions to climate change, limiting the increase in global average temperature to well below 2 degrees Celsius.

The ceremony took place in the city of Sacramento and Prime Minister Bainimarama was joined by California Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr., who was also named Special Advisor for States and Regions for this year’s COP23.

BOLD CLIMATE ACTION

The Coalition was founded in 2015 by California and the German state of Baden-Württemberg to galvanize bold climate action from states and regions and now includes 176 jurisdictions across six continents and 36 countries.  Members commit to reducing their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 80-95% on 1990 levels, or two metric tons of carbon dioxide-equivalent per capita, by 2050.

Libby Ferguson, States & Region Director, The Climate Group, said: “The role of sub-national governments in advancing global climate action and developing innovative, effective climate policy is vital.

“Members of the Under2 Coalition are demonstrating global leadership and commitment on the defining challenge of our era, and the endorsement of Fiji, which will hold the Presidency of COP23, is a significant moment as we build towards the conference in November.”

Fiji's Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama (sitting) signed his country's endorsement of the Under2 Coalition in Sacramento, California (Photo Credit: John Larimore, Governor's Office of Emergency Services)

Prime Minister Bainimarama said: “As the incoming President of COP23, Fiji looks forward to working with this group of states and regions in the global effort to advance climate action at every level of society. This is true now more than ever following the Trump Administration's announcement that the US will be withdrawing from the Paris Agreement. This decision has redoubled our commitment to forge a Grand Coalition that includes all levels of government, businesses and civil society, to take climate action forward with the urgency it deserves.”

RAISING AMBITION AND COMMITMENT

Coalition members include sub-national governments from around the world. It is also endorsed by 15 nations.

Denmark became an endorser earlier this month at a special event in the Chinese capital Beijing. The Under2 Clean Energy Forum – a side event of the eighth Clean Energy Ministerial – was convened by The Climate Group brought together subnational government and business leaders together to discuss global climate action.  

The event also saw Christiana Figueres, former Executive Secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), and Convenor of Mission 2020, announced as Under2 Global Ambassador. New signatories to the Coalition were also announced, including the State of Chhattisgarh (India), Region of Brittany (France) and South African Provinces KwaZulu-Natal and Western Cape.

The announcement follows last week’s meeting in San Francisco between Governor Brown and Barbara Hendricks, Federal Minister for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety. They issued a joint statement of intent to boost climate cooperation and support members of the Under2 Coalition in reducing their GHG emissions and scaling up renewable energy deployment.

 

(Header image Photo Credit: John Larimore, Governor's Office of Emergency Services)

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