Ban Ki-moon Calls for Urgent Action on Climate Adaptation together with Bill Gates and Kristalina Georgieva

On September 11th, as a leader of the Global Commission on Adaptation (GCA) along with Bill Gates, the Co-chair of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and Kristalina Georgieva, CEO of the World Bank, BKMC Co-chair Ban Ki-moon called on global leaders and experts from both government and business sectors to take urgent action to innovate and advance climate adaptation solutions.

The commission launched its report on “Adapt Now: A Global Call for Leadership on Climate Resilience” in Beijing, China.

“Climate change doesn’t respect borders: it’s an international problem that can only be solved with co-operation and collaboration, across borders and worldwide,” – Ban Ki-moon

Ban also said,

“It is becoming increasingly clear that in many parts of the world, our climate has already changed, and we need to adapt with it. Mitigation and adaptation go hand-in-hand as two equally important building blocks of the Paris Climate Change Agreement. Adaptation is not only the right thing to do, it is also the smart thing to do to boost economic growth and create a climate resilient world.”

According to the Global Commission on Adaptation report, investing $1.8 trillion globally from 2020 to 2030 in five areas of climate adaptation could yield $7.1 trillion in net benefits. This would be the only means left to avert climate apartheid, where the rich escape the effects and the poor do not, but this investment is far smaller than the eventual cost of doing nothing.

“People everywhere are experiencing the devastating impacts of climate change. Those most impacted are the millions of smallholder farmers and their families in developing countries, who are struggling with poverty and hunger due to low crop yields caused by extreme changes in temperature and rainfall. With greater support for innovation, we can unlock new opportunities and spur change across the global ecosystem. Adaptation is an urgent issue that needs support from governments and businesses to ensure those most at risk have the opportunity to thrive,” said Gates.

Ban expressed his concern about “lack of vision of political leaders,” criticizing that “they are much more interested in getting elected and re-elected, and climate issues are not in their priorities.”

“It’s true that many governments have been paying more to invest in mitigation, trying to reduce greenhouse emissions. But it’s equally important that we do more, if not more, equally on adaptation. If we invest one dollar today on adaptation, particularly on infrastructure resilient to climate, we can expect at least four dollars return,” said Ban.

On the margins of the GCA launch event, Co-chair Ban Ki-moon had a bilateral meeting with Minister Li Ganjie of the Ministry of Ecology and Environment of China.

Minister Li said that China has implemented a national strategy to actively respond to climate change.

“As we try our best to carry out mitigation actions, we have constantly strengthened our adaptation ability, such as issuing national strategies and making them as long-term plan. Infrastructure construction and other projects like forestry, agriculture, marine areas will take climate change into account,” he said.

Ban said,

“Mitigation and adaptation go hand-in-hand as two equally important building blocks of the Paris Climate Change Agreement. Adaptation is not only the right thing to do, it is also the smart thing to do to boost economic growth and create a climate resilient world.”

Read more about the GCA report here, and watch Ban Ki-moon’s interview on CGTN.

Sources

www.washingtonpost.com/news/powerpost/paloma/the-energy-202/2019/09/10/the-energy-202-bill-gates-ban-ki-moon-and-other-leaders-propose-ways-to-adapt-to-a-warming-planet/5d766d4e602ff171a5d734d0/?noredirect=on

www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/sep/10/climate-crisis-world-readiness-effects-gravely-insufficient-report

www.gca.org/global-commission-on-adaptation/adapt-our-world?fbclid=IwAR060tzLjCBH2Lzla-1rfCeFL9C1r9BLQB7J2khTH2Qil1jxqzzOcb5em6U

http://global.chinadaily.com.cn/a/201909/11/WS5d7889a3a310cf3e3556afd3.html

© CGTN

BKMC Co-chair Heinz Fischer meets with Vice President Wang Qishan of China

BKMC Co-chair Heinz Fischer met with Chinese Vice President Wang Qishan on September 11th in Beijing, China. During the meeting, BKMC Co-chair Heinz Fischer spoke of China’s remarkable development achievements and congratulated on the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China.

Vice President Qishan said that “the current pragmatic cooperation between China and Austria has been further advanced and the friendly strategic partnership has been deepened.”

Meeting the people’s growing needs for a better life has determined that China must adhere to peaceful development and unswervingly follow the path of socialism with Chinese characteristics. Qishan said China will continue to further integrate into the international community, not only to achieve its own development but also to contribute to the world.

As President of Austria-China Friendship Association and Former Austrian President, Fischer said,

“The friendly strategic partnership between Austria and China has been cooperative in enhancing mutual trust and understanding as well as jointly safeguarding world peace and sustainable development.”

He said that the Austrian-Chinese Friendship Association is willing to continue to play an active role in consolidating the foundations of Austria-China and EU-China relations and jointly safeguarding world peace and development.

Watch the report on CCTV

Source: XINHUANET
Source: Austria-China Friendship Association

© Xinhua/Yao Dawei & BKMC

Co-chair Heinz Fischer and CEO Monika Froehler feature the “Meet SDGs” High-End Forum No. 7

Today, Co-chair Heinz Fischer and CEO Monika Froehler featured at the “Meet SDGs” High-End Forum No. 7 taken place at the School of Public Policy and Management (SPPM) at Tsinghua University.

As the 11th Federal President of Austria and the President of the Austrian-Chinese Association, Fischer shared with the audience the best practices of SDG Implementation in Europe and how China could advance the Global Goals for Sustainable Development in a localized context.

Together with Co-chair Fischer, CEO Froehler also answered the questions asked by representatives from various youth organizations, including Youth for CTBT and UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network-Youth.

The opening was chaired by Professor & Associate Dean Zhu Xufeng of SPPM, who also serves as Executive Director of the Institute for Sustainable Development Goals at Tsinghua University (TUSDG) that hosted this event.

Co-director Wu Hongbo of TUSDG, who served as an Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations, delivered an opening remark, followed by Co-chair Fischer’s appointment ceremony as a member of the International Advisory Committee for the TUSDG.

Ban Ki-moon speaks at the 2019 Global Infrastructure Cooperation Conference (GICC)

On September 3rd, Co-Chair Ban Ki-moon gave a keynote speech at the opening ceremony of the 2019 GICC held in Seoul.

In his speech, Co-Chair Ban Ki-moon highlighted the environmental aspects must be considered when promoting the development of the infrastructure industry in order to improve the quality life and respond to climate change.

“The construction industry accounts for 40% of the total energy consumption and generates more than 39% of the world’s greenhouse gases,” he explained.

“The infrastructure industry has a huge impact on climate change, which also gives a big responsibility for the construction industry.”

In addition, he said that while infrastructure development improves the quality of life for our humanity, the development of infrastructure industry is also bringing in side effects that melt glaciers and threaten biodiversity due to climate change such as global warming.

“Government and construction industry should cooperate in building a sustainable infrastructure. Sustainable development and climate change are not possible only with the help of government and international organizations. Partnerships that are closely coordinated by leaders, such as organizations, are important as well.”

Hence, Co-chair Ban Ki-moon stressed the importance of cooperation among diverse entities and experts on the urgent task of climate change.

© International Contractor Association of Korea GICC 2019

CEO Monika Froehler moderates a session on “Voices of Youth” at the 4th GCED Conference

On September 3rd-4th, BKMC CEO Monika Froehler attended the 4th International Conference on Global Citizenship Education that was co-organized by UNESCO APCEIU, Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Korean Ministry of Education in partnership with UNESCO in Seoul, South Korea.

“I dream of a world in which young people are heard and empowered to be the changemakers they want to be,” said Froehler.

She moderated a plenary session “Voices of Youth” with youth representatives.

  • Olha Bondarenko, Member of the Financial Department, European Youth Parliament Ukraine
  • Diego Manrique, Core Member & Coordinator, GCED Youth Network
  • Priscilla Kini, Gender and Research Lead, Open Dove Children’s Foundation

The panelists touched the participants of the Conference with their inspiring stories.

Bondarenko from Ukraine spoke about her experience as an internally displaced person and how it led to her volunteer work with Afghan and Syrian refugees.

Being an IDP herself and having lost her home in Eastern Ukraine, Olha movingly spoke about forcibly displaced children and her own experience of teaching GCED.

Manrique from Guatemala shared his deep insights on how to network with youth for GCED.
“GCED to me is simply a tool with a lot of potentials,” he said.

Kini from Ghana expressed her love for promoting peace with children. She has reached hundreds of kids in Ghana and helped them overcome conflicts.

APCEIU Director Hyun-mook Lim said, “GCED will support humanities with slow but unstoppable advancement to peace.”

The Conference also hosted a booth on the “GCED Online Campus” by UNESCO APCEIU. In partnership with the APCEIU’s Office of Education and Training, the Ban Ki-moon Centre has co-developed two online courses this year.

As one of them titled “Becoming Global Citizens for a Sustainable Society” will be launched on the Online Campus platform later in this month, the booth displayed promotional materials and more information on the course. Lots of the Conference participants were curious to know more about this course as well as the other course on gender equality.

Learn more about the Conference: http://gced.unescoapceiu.org/conference/
Learn more about the GCED Online Campus: http://gcedonlinecampus.org

© UNESCO APCEIU

“Beyond the Times, Bridge the World!”

The 2019 Chungju World Martial Arts Masterships kicked off on August 30th, attracting about 4,000 participants from 107 countries.

BKMC Co-chair Ban Ki-moon delivered a welcome remark at the opening in his role as Honorary President of the 2019 World Martial Arts Masterships Committee and as Chair of the IOC Ethics Commission.

At the opening, Ban took the torch to light the mastership flame and delivered a keynote, stressing that sports connect the world with peace and cooperation.

He also encouraged passionate athletes from all over the world and awarded the winners of the women’s Chengguan medals.

Following the opening ceremony, the 3rd World Martial Arts Leaders Forum took place on the next day under the theme of “United through Martial Arts: Peace and Harmony.”

Experts from relevant international organizations and sports affiliates were present to discuss the role of martial arts as well as gender equity.

Learn more: http://www.chungju2019.com/home_eng

© WTO

Ban Ki-moon speaks to OPEC Secretariat

BKMC Co-chair Ban Ki-moon and CEO Monika Froehler visited the OPEC Secretariat in Vienna on August 28th. Ban delivered an address as a former Secretary-General of the United Nations.

“OPEC is an intergovernmental organization which takes the principles of multilateralism seriously … witnessed through the ‘Declaration of Cooperation’ and ‘Charter of Cooperation’ that has been in the interests of producers, consumers and the global economy,” said Ban.

He emphasized that global challenges that we are facing must be solved through global solutions and global partnerships:

“Keep working with others and strengthen the relationships you already have. Listen to consumers. Promote dialogue. Respect all points of view. Reach consensus.”

During a bilateral meeting between Co-chair Ban Ki-moon and Secretary-General Mohammad Barkindo of OPEC, Barkindo said that “Energy is one of the most cross-cutting issues when it comes to sustainability – without energy, there is no industry.” Both recalled the tireless efforts that went into the annual COP meetings that led to the Paris Agreement.

Barkindo praised Ban Ki-moon’s dedication to preventing conflict, peace-making, improving human welfare and fostering sustainable development and said he would be “long remembered throughout the international community.”

Co-chairs Ban and Fischer say: “The UN can not do anything without solidarity”

At the European Forum Alpbach 2019, BKMC Co-chairs Ban Ki-moon and Heinz Fischer were interviewed on August 25th by Der Standard, an Austrian daily newspaper published in Vienna.

Journalist Christoph Prantner asked why multilateralism is essential to meet the major global challenges. The two agreed that the international community must find new unity and that otherwise the big global challenges such as the climate crisis can not be overcome.

Ban stressed the “importance of

multilateralism in solving global challenges,” giving examples on the trade war between the USA and China and the rise of populism in Europe. He said that “regional issues were solved through solidarity and diplomacy in the past.”

Fischer added, “leadership alone is not enough, global challenges are always politicalecological
and ideological.”
He used the Paris Agreement as one of the solutions for current issues.

Giving the World War II and the subsequent creation of the United Nations (UN) and European Union (EU), Fischer pointed out that “sometimes we need a shock/crisis to be able to move towards a bigger goal.”

 

Read more (GER): https://bit.ly/2k03s1O

© Eugenie Berger

The Third Regional Preparatory Meeting for the GEEF 2020 Took Place at the Margins of the 4th Board Meeting

The third regional preparatory meeting for the upcoming Global Engagement and Empowerment Forum (GEEF) on Sustainable Development took place at the margins of the 4th Board meeting of the Ban Ki-moon Centre in Vienna on August 28th, 2019. Manager Gyeongseok Yang and Dr. Taein Park from the Ban Ki-moon Center for Sustainable Development of the Institute for Global Engagement and Empowerment (IGEE) at Yonsei University joined the Board meeting during which they had a presentation.

The presentation included the outcomes of the previous GEEFs and specific plans for plenary and parallel sessions as well as inviting speakers. Having the previous two preparatory meetings, the GEEF Secretariat together with the Ban Ki-moon Centre came to more concrete ideas and strategic logistics for the upcoming Forum. On behalf of the IGEE, Manager Yang expressed his deepest appreciation for the participation of the BKMC Board members in the previous Forums.

“The first two GEEFs could be successful thanks to the commitment and contribution of the Ban Ki-moon Centre Board members,” said Yang.

Following up on the presentation, the representatives from the IGEE came to the Ban Ki-moon Centre’s office and discussed further details of the objectives and logistics for the Forum with BKMC CEO Monika Froehler and Program Officer Julia Zimmerman. Under the theme of “Planet and Partnership,” GEEF 2020 will focus on some of the most pressing global challenges such as climate change, sustainable cities, youth activism, and more. The next regional preparatory meeting will be held at the margins of the UNGA meeting in September 2019 in New York, USA.

GEEF 2020 will be held on February 26-27th next year at Yonsei University in Seoul, South Korea.

The 4th Board meeting of the Ban Ki-moon Centre takes place in Vienna

“Half of my heart lies in Vienna,”

said Co-chair Ban Ki-moon at the beginning of the 4th Board meeting held on August 27-28th. Following the first Board meeting hosted in Seoul, the second in Alpbach, and the third in Kuwait, the fourth was hosted at the City Hall of Vienna in Austria.

Mayor of Vienna Michael Ludwig welcomed the BKMC Board members and expressed his appreciation for having the Ban Ki-moon Centre based in Vienna as well as its contributions to the city’s development in the field of multilateralism and its leading role in international affairs.

The participants included:

  • Ban Ki-moon, BKMC Co-chair & 8th Secretary-General of the United Nations
  • Heinz Fischer, BKMC Co-chair & 11th President of Austria
  • Márcia Balisciano, Director of RELX Corporate Responsibility
  • Irina Bokova, Former Director-General of UNESCO
  • Maurice Lévy, Chairman of Publicis Groupe
  • Ed Futa, Former General-Secretary of Rotary International
  • Ambassador Kim Won-soo, former UN High Representative for Disarmament Affairs
  • Ambassador Sadiq Marafi, Permanent Representative of Kuwait to the United Nations in Vienna
  • Andrea Pfanzelter, Senior Advisor of the KAICIID International Dialogue Centre
  • Michael Sheldrick, Co-founder and Vice President, Global Policy and Government Affairs at Global Citizen
  • Ambassador Shin Chae-hyun, Permanent Representative of the Republic of Korea to the United Nations in Vienna
  • Jean Todt, President of the FIA and United Nations Secretary General’s Special Envoy for Road Safety
  • Dimitri de Vreeze, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of DSM Netherlands
  • Monika Froehler, Chief Executive Officer of the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens
  • Ambassador Choi Sung-ju, Ban Ki-moon Foundation for a Better Future

CEO Monika Froehler moderated the meeting, briefing the Board on the Centre’s past engagements and development. The Board discussed strategic methods for promoting the activities and projects of the Centre as well as effective ways to amplify the messages through the Centre’s various partnerships and affiliated offices. Ambassador Choi from the Ban Ki-moon Foundation for a Better Future based in Seoul also presented the Foundation’s vision and mission to the BKMC Board and discussed possible collaborations.

 

© BKMC & Eugenie Berger