UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Sunday called for a global partnership to tackle climate change and strive toward inclusive green growth.
He made this appeal in a video message at the Partnering for Green Growth and the Global Goals 2030 Summit hosted by South Korea.
"The title of this initiative expresses exactly what the world needs now -- global partnership: partnership to beat COVID-19 and build a better recovery, partnership to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, and partnership to address climate change," he told the summit.
Tackling climate change head-on will help protect the most vulnerable people from the next crisis while sustaining a job-rich recovery from COVID-19, he said.
The first priority is no new coal plants and a phase-out of coal use by 2030 in the countries of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, and 2040 in the rest of the world, he said.
"As well as the emissions gap, I am deeply concerned about the finance and adaptation gaps," said Guterres.
Developed countries have yet to deliver on their commitment of 100 billion U.S. dollars per year for developing countries as adaptation assistance. Public finance is not flowing where it is now most needed -- to support vulnerable communities that are already suffering the consequences of climate disruption. One person in three is still not adequately covered by early warning systems. And women and girls, who make up 80 percent of those displaced by the climate emergency, are all too often excluded from decisions to address the climate crisis, he noted.
"We urgently need a breakthrough on adaptation and resilience. I am asking all donor countries to significantly enhance their financial commitments. That includes allocating 50 percent of climate finance to adaptation and providing a higher level of grants," said Guterres.
The Group of Seven Summit in June needs to deliver on all these objectives. It is not a global partnership if some are left struggling to survive. This is true for COVID-19 and the distribution of vaccines and it is true for the climate emergency, he said.