On 14-15 January 2013, senior legislators from 25 developed and developing countries met in London at the first GLOBE Climate Legislation Summit. We recognised the responsibility we have as legislators and parliaments to respond to changing national and international demands by developing and passing laws and to scrutinise government performance on matters of climate change and green economic development.
We were addressed by Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, the Speaker of the UK House of Commons, UK Secretaries of State for Energy and Climate Change and International Development and senior legislators from 25 countries in the spirit of cooperation, understanding and mutual learning. We were moved and inspired by Ms Figueres’s characterisation of the fundamental role of national legislation and legislators in delivering the action required to avoid dangerous climate change and creating the political conditions for success in the international negotiations under the Durban Platform.
As the 3rd edition of the GLOBE Climate Legislation Study shows, national legislation on climate change is advancing at a rapid pace. Significant advances have been seen in 2011-12 in Australia, Bangladesh, Brazil, Chile, China, Colombia, El Salvador, EU, India, Indonesia, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, Pakistan, South Africa, South Korea, the US and Vietnam.This reflects the increasing understanding that creating the right legislative and regulatory response to climate change brings real benefits, including increased energy security, improved resource efficiency, better air quality and improves the resilience of our economies to the impacts of climate change. There is a clear correlation between robust, long-term legislation and the amount of investment generated in the clean energy sector.
It is also clear that no strategy to avoid dangerous anthropogenic climate change would be credible without a strategy to reduce emissions from deforestation and sustainable forest management. In addition to positive domestic benefits, national legislation can also be an enabler, helping to create the right political conditions for a global deal in 2015 under the Durban Platform.
A global deal will only be possible if the national frameworks are in place in a critical mass of countries to measure, manage and report carbon. That is why GLOBE has launched the GLOBE Climate Legislation Initiative (GCLI), a new high-level policy process involving senior legislators from 33 countries. The GCLI will support legislators to advance the legislative response to climate change. By sharing knowledge, experience and by moving together, in a consistent fashion, legislators can magnify the benefits of moving towards a low carbon economy and minimize the competitive distortions. We are committed to advancing the legislative response to climate change and will work continuously to adopt and implement climate change-related legislation.