Potsdam symposium urges action on climate change

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Washington, June 1 (ANI): Participants at the Nobel Laureate Symposium Series on Global Sustainability in Potsdam have called for a 'Great Transformation' aimed at bringing about technical, economic, political and cultural changes to meet the double challenge of environmental destabilization and persistent underdevelopment.

According to a report in ENN (Environmental News Network), this Symposium series brings together Nobel Laureates of various disciplines, top-level representatives from politics and Non Government Organizations, and experts on sustainability.

The attendees concluded that the evidence of needed changes is compelling.

"Climate risk avoidance, energy security, sustainable land use, population growth and equitable economic development constitute a key set of interacting challenges for humankind in the 21st century," they said.

"The evidence is increasingly compelling for the range and scale of climate impacts that must be avoided, such as droughts, sea level rise and flooding leading to mass migration and conflict. The robust scientific process, by which this evidence has been gathered, should be used as a clear mandate to accelerate the actions that need to be taken," they added.

Building on the Potsdam Memorandum and the recent advances in the scientific understanding of climate change, the participants of the St James's Symposium identified as key requirements an effective and just global agreement on climate change, low-carbon energy infrastructure and tropical forest protection, conservation and restoration.

Some recommendations include, "Acknowledging the compelling evidence of science we should confine the temperature rise to 2 degrees Celsius to avoid unmanageable climate risks."

"This can only be achieved with a peak of global emissions of all greenhouse gases by 2015 and at least a 50 percent emission reduction by 2050 on a 1990 baseline," it says.

This in turn means that developed countries have to aim for a 25-40 percent reduction by 2020.

Another recommendation is that a robust measure of assessing the necessary emission reductions is a total carbon budget, which should be accepted as the base for measuring the effectiveness of short-term (2020) and long-term (2050) targets.

Also, clear policy frameworks aimed at fostering innovation and the demonstration, scale up and roll out of low carbon technologies including globally coordinated investment frameworks, linked to economic recovery, with the emphasis on 'green growth'. (ANI)

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