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United Nations urges governments to make climate and sustainability issues central to COVID-19 recovery plan

Mon 23 March 2020 | Back to news list

The United Nations Secretary General, António Guterres, has called on governments and international financial institutions to put the clean energy transition at the heart of stimulus packages, once the human tragedy associated with the COVID-19 pandemic eases.
Guterres said: “We have a framework for action – the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Agreement on Climate Change. We must keep our promises for people and planet”.
Laurence Tubiana, CEO of the European Climate Foundation and an architect of the Paris Agreement said (reported by Climate Home): “We can make the right choices and address the short economic crisis at the same time as making sure we don’t lock in the economy in Europe into a fossil fuel economy. 
“There are many areas where we could take the elements of the Green Deal and quick start them with massive investments that governments are ready to go for anyway.” she added.
European Union leaders are reported to have agreed that the bloc's coronavirus economic recovery plan should take heed of its aim to fight climate change.
Although the details of a plan - agreed during a six-hour video conference - still have to be worked out (according to a report in The Guardian), a statement said they had agreed that it should be consistent with the "green transition", the phrase the EU uses to describe the aim of reducing emissions that heat the planet.
The report says that the EU's executive commission wants its 27 member states to sign up at a summit in June to plans to make the entire bloc greenhouse gas neutral by 2050.

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