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Message of the parliamentary participants to the Asia-Europe Climate Dialogue event to the Heads of States and Governments attending the ASEM 6 – summit
                                                                                                                                        Climate change is a severe threat to the future of humankind and biodiversity. In 1992 in Rio most nations of the world committed themselves to tackle climate change by signing the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Five years later the Kyoto Protocol brought the first emission reduction targets to the industrialized countries. These important first commitments, however, are not enough to reduce global CO2 emissions and to prevent the destabilisation of the climatic system. Further steps are urgently needed, building on the architecture of the Kyoto Protocol.

Today we are already experiencing adverse signs of climate change in the form of severe floods, droughts, storms and other extreme weather events. Glaciers are shrinking all over the world. The adverse consequences of climate change will severely affect developing countries and especially the poorest groups within them. Therefore adaptation to climate change is essential and needs to be emphasized. At the same time climate change can be slowed down and future threats can be decreased by reducing greenhouse gas emissions and by shifting to sustainable energy systems and lifestyles. The ultimate long term objective is to avoid dangerous climate change and stabilize the climate system.

Against this background, our message to the ASEM 6-summit is:

  • Comprehensive action on climate change is urgent and vital. We strongly recommend that climate change becomes a top priority on the European and Asian leader’s agenda. Energy security is intrinsically linked to climate security and the solutions must be found in parallel.
  • We emphasise the objective of establishing a limit for a maximum temperature rise of 2 degrees compared to pre-industrial level to avoid dangerous climate change.
  • Several technologies for climate protection and energy security are already available; we urge the leaders to commit themselves to action to accelerate the transfer and use of climate friendly technologies and in the rapid deployment and commercialisation of sustainable technologies.
  • Adaptation to climate change requires urgent attention.  Climate change poses a significant threat to the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals and financial resources need to be multiplied to support adaptation in low income countries, where severe adverse effects are already being felt.
  • Climate protection and adaptation should be integrated and mainstreamed within national sustainable development strategies.
  • We urge the leaders to actively support the research and development of new energy efficient and climate friendly technologies as well as raising public awareness.
  • Future energy investments that are necessary to meet the energy demand of developing countries need to be directed to climate friendly technologies.
  • The World Bank Investment Framework on Clean Energy is an example of a way to achieve this and should be strongly supported by the ASEM governments as well as the Regional Development Banks.  It is important that the Framework forms part of a range of funding mechanisms.
  • We urge the European and Asian leaders to continue constructive discussions on the future global climate regime in order to be able to agree on global, equitable climate protection after 2012 in the near future.

This message was formulated/adopted by the  parliamentary participants of a two-day Asia-Europe Dialogue on the Climate Challenge of the 21st century held in Helsinki, 7-8 September, 2006 including senior parliamentarians from India, Portugal, Germany, Italy, UK, Finland, Malaysia, Sweden and the European Parliament.  The discussions were informed by contributions from legislators, scientists and representatives of government, business and civil society organisations from China, Japan, Philippines, Vietnam, Netherlands, Sweden, Indonesia, including  the IPCC, EEA, Vattenfall AB, Nippon Steel Corporation,  Confederation of Indian Industry, CIFOR, the Hong Kong Civic Exchange, WWF, Worldwatch Institute and IEA.                            



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