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Christian Aid hails new era of climate politics at UN summit

23 September 2014 - At Tuesday’s UN Climate Summit Christian Aid praised the new political atmosphere in which heads of state committed to specific actions to tackle climate change.

Responding to Sunday’s record breaking People’s Climate March through New York, world leaders started the process of putting the world on a safe and secure footing.

Christian Aid’s Senior Climate Change Advisor Mohamed Adow, who has seen the impact of global warming on the pastoralist community in his home country of Kenya, was invited to attend the plenary negotiations by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. He said: “The political climate has changed, the plodding politics of lethargy have been replaced with some solid commitments which offer a more hopeful future.

“There is still a long way to go if we are to avoid the worst effects of climate change but we have started on the needed journey.

“Every contribution announced counts towards creating a safer climate for everyone, from the big to the small, the individual and cooperative, they are all critical steps to helping deliver an upward spiral of ambition.

“We’re even starting to see movement from the world’s biggest polluters. China should be commended for putting in place carbon reducing policies and growing its booming renewable energy industry.

“President Obama and John Kerry are to be praised for their new climate diplomacy.  We now need them to translate their activism into concrete actions – carbon cuts and climate finance for the world’s poor.”

Mr Adow added: “The impacts of climate change are getting more acute for people around the world, especially the poor, but crucially also the reluctant rich. This has forced the reality of global interdependence and so both rich and poor are increasingly cooperating to address the climate challenge.

“In the past 12 months we’ve seen the science of climate change settled and the financial case made for a low carbon economy. In the past week we’ve seen the public demand for climate action rewarded with newfound political will.”

The foundations made in New York must now be built upon at December’s climate talks in Lima, Peru, the penultimate gathering before a global deal is to be struck in Paris in 2015.

Mr Adow said: “Here in New York we’ve seen a new crop of climate leaders, from rich and poor countries, help shift the world towards a resilient, low carbon, future.

“They must continue to keep climate change on top of the political agenda.”

Ends

For more information contact Joe Ware jware@christian-aid.org.  24 hour Christian Aid press duty phone – 07850 242950.


Notes to editors:

1. Christian Aid works in some of the world's poorest communities in around 50 countries at any one time. We act where there is great need, regardless of religion, helping people to live a full life, free from poverty. We provide urgent, practical and effective assistance in tackling the root causes of poverty as well as its effects.

2. Christian Aid’s core belief is that the world can and must be changed so that poverty is ended: this is what we stand for. Everything we do is about ending poverty and injustice: swiftly, effectively, sustainably. Our strategy document Partnership for Change explains how we set about this task.

3. Christian Aid is a member of the ACT Alliance, a global coalition of more than 130 churches and church-related organisations that work together in humanitarian assistance, advocacy and development. Further details at http://actalliance.org

4. Follow Christian Aid's newswire on Twitter: http://twitter.com/caid_newswire

5. For more information about the work of Christian Aid visit http://www.christianaid.org.uk

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