climate diplomacy

Renewable energy, the green economy, and city diplomacy are among this week's headlines.

More than 500 cyclists from both Lao and international organizations gathered on Saturday morning for a cycling event to mark Climate Diplomacy Week in the capital. Held with an aim to raise awareness on the impacts of climate change and advocate for the strongest possible initiatives and actions to mitigate these impacts, the cycling event was organized by European Union (EU) Delegation to Laos with joint support coming from the EU Member States and Lao Cycling Association.

Under Xi Jinping China has made no secret that it aspires to bigger roles on the global stage, including taking on leadership in global governance and multilateral cooperation. Xi’s recent speech at Davos World Economic Forum, though a little ironic, came as a timely boost for international trade and economic cooperation. In the case of climate change, should China become the next champion, this is not only because it seeks international status, but there is also concrete convergence of domestic interests and international commitments.

While the administration of US President Donald Trump is distancing itself from global climate action, European Union foreign affairs ministers adopted on March 6 conclusions on EU climate and energy diplomacy as part of the implementation of the EU Global Strategy. The objective is to strengthen synergies and links between the relevant elements of EU climate diplomacy and energy diplomacy and to establish priorities for 2017, the European Council said.

A gathering of about 200 nations working to combat climate change wrapped up on Friday in Morocco with a call to U.S. president-elect Donald Trump to join the fight against global warming. Trump’s election shocked delegates and activists assembled in Marrakech for two weeks of talks. [...] With the role of the federal government in doubt, some see American cities and states serving as a place-holder for U.S. participation.

Global climate diplomacy began on Monday with the opening of the 22nd session of the Conference of Parties (COP22) by lighting a small solar lamp. President COP21, Segolene Royal handed over the baton of climate change negotiations to President COP22, Salaheddine Mezouar, along with the responsibility to keep the global temperature rise well below two degrees.

The logic of climate diplomacy is that the best way to encourage others to do more is to reduce emissions more rapidly yourself. But Singapore is limited in what it can offer in terms of cuts because its small land area restricts the availability of domestic renewable energy.

With the swing of a gavel on Saturday, the world’s nations adopted the first international agreement to limit the causes of anthropogenic climate change. For the first time in history, more than 150 countries have promised to reduce the amount of carbon dioxide they emit into the atmosphere and to increase these reductions over time.  

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