Summit Statement


The Plenary Session of the 2nd Day of the Summit at the World Bank

Statement Agreed by the 2nd GLOBE Climate Legislation Summit - 27th-28th February 2014 Washington D.C. 

"As legislators from 40 countries, we met in Washington DC on 27-28 February, hosted by Senator Edward Markey and the World Bank, to receive, consider and act on, the results of the 4th edition of the GLOBE Climate Legislation Study.

The study shows that:

In the 66 study countries, together responsible for 88% of global GHG emissions, almost 500 climate laws have been passed as at the end of 2013, an increase of 450 since 1997;

  • Laws cover a range of categories including both mitigation and adaptation, including disaster risk reduction and risk resilient development;
  • Encouragingly, it is developing countries and emerging markets, which are advancing climate change laws and regulation at the fastest pace;
  • The passing of national laws is creating a strengthened foundation for monitoring and verifying national actions for a new post-2020 climate change agreement, due to be discussed in Lima later this year and concluded in Paris in 2015;
  • However, the cumulative ambition of this legislation is not yet enough to prevent the 2 degrees Celsius rise in global average temperatures, the agreed goal of the international community.

Having considered the study, heard from countries that have advanced laws over the past year, and with a commitment to maximise the chances of securing an effective international agreement in 2015, there is extreme urgency to strengthen commitments, and for countries that have not yet passed climate change laws and/or regulations to do so. There is also a need to measure the performance of existing legislation, support appropriate budget allocations and derive lessons learned.

Consequently we, as legislators, commit to intensifying our own efforts to advance climate change legislation in the run-up to the UN negotiations in Lima later this year and in Paris in 2015, and to strengthen our oversight of government implementation. That is also why GLOBE, with the support of the United Nations and World Bank, has launched the Partnership for Climate Legislation. The Partnership for Climate Legislation has been forged in recognition of the central role of legislators and national legislation in mitigating and responding to climate change.

The Partnership will support legislators to develop and advance nationally appropriate climate legislation and, importantly, help legislators to oversee implementation and performance. The Partnership for Climate Legislation will be underpinned by a UN-administered Trust Fund at UNOPS; we jointly call on governments to contribute to this vital work.

During the 2nd GLOBE Climate Legislation Summit, we heard national updates from more than 30 countries. We welcome the contributions from all participants and in particular the leadership being shown by countries most affected by the impacts of climate change and the positive engagement by the USA, China and the Council of Europe who between them account for over half of global emissions. We discussed the role of national climate change legislation within the UN negotiations.

We acknowledged the importance of seeking consensus across political divides and that acting on climate change brings benefits in terms of public health, security and economic development. We discussed with the National Academy of Science and the Royal Society the latest science of climate change, demonstrating the value of greater interaction between scientists and legislators. We emphasised the importance of effective collaboration between governments, legislators and national and UN specialised agencies, including data sharing.

In line with the challenge from Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary of the UNFCCC, GLOBE plans to expand the next edition of the Climate Legislation Study to cover 100 countries. In our dialogue with the World Bank President Jim Yong Kim, we discussed the Bank’s new focus on climate-proofing its work programmes.

Going forward

At the invitation of the presidents of the Mexican Chamber of Deputies and Senate, GLOBE will convene the 2nd World Summit of Legislators from the 6-8 June 2014. The Summit will share best practice on legislation and oversight of government implementation across the whole range of sustainable development issues, with an emphasis on climate change, forests and natural capital accounting. This will be the first time legislators from the world’s Parliaments will have come together to agree common positions on these issues. The outcome will be a GLOBE Legislation Resolution.

We invite speakers, chairpersons and presidents of all parliaments and congresses around the world to participate and to take their rightful role at the heart of the challenge to put all of our countries onto a sustainable pathway. And we call on governments and international organisations, including the World Bank, to recognise the critical role of legislators by putting engagement with parliaments and congresses at the centre of their engagement strategies and programmes. No strategy to deliver sustainable development, understand and reduce disaster risk will be credible, or effective, without the central involvement of national legislators and no international agreement will be credible, or effective, without underpinning by national legislation.