Informal talks on climate change reveal broad support for ‘durable’ deal in …

28 Sep 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Islam, faith, and climate change.

AMMAN—The Islamic Declaration on Climate Change, endorsed in August by Islamic scholars from around the world, calls on countries to phase out greenhouse-gas emissions and switch to 100-percent renewable energy.

They include wiping out extreme poverty through a combination of active programs and annual contributions of $100 billion to the world’s underdeveloped nations. With 1.6 billion Muslims worldwide, the collective statement sent a strong signal days before the United Nations Sustainable Development Summit was held last Sept. 25-27, and ahead of the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris to be held come December. President John Dramani Mahama says that if our definition of “developed” is shopping malls, glitzy neon lights and KFC, “then we will need two more planets, the size of our earth, to maintain and sustain the human race.” Mahama says that if the world wants the tide of young Africans seeking work in Europe to stay at home, it will have to relocate more industry and production to the African continent. Released during a two-day symposium on Islam and climate change in Istanbul, the declaration explains why Muslims should be responsible activists for the welfare of the planet, and sets out a series of demands to world leaders and the business community.

France’s president says he’s earmarking an additional $4 billion annually for development programs aimed at fighting climate change and other global goals agreed to at a U.N. summit this week. Noting that France is hosting a global summit on combating climate change later this year, Francois Hollande said France “wants to set an example” and that as host of the climate summit Nov. 30-Dec. 11 in Paris. Additionally, prosperous countries and oil-producing states should phase out their carbon-dioxide emissions no later than the middle of the century; turn away from “unethical profit from the environment”; and invest in a green economy. Care for creation is a fundamental part of the Islamic message, the declaration notes, and humans are currently responsible for squandering gifts bestowed by Allah. Hollande said “there is work to do” to match leaders’ desires for a deal in Paris with the conditions need to make it “credible and capable of settling questions about warming for decades to come.” Also Sunday, Britain pledged $8.8 billion (5.8 billion pounds) in climate finance from 2016 to 2021, a 50 percent increase in spending for climate change-related projects.

The Koranic ayah 24:45 tells us how Allah created every living creature from water, and the Hadith instructs us that we are “stewards of the Earth”: “The Earth is green and beautiful, and Allah has appointed you his stewards over it. On Friday China announced it would provide $3.1 billion to help vulnerable countries tackle climate change while the Asian Development Bank said it would double its annual climate finance to $6 billion by 2020. Obama told delegates that 800 million men, women and children scrape by on less than $1.25 a day and that billions of people are at risk of dying from preventable diseases.

If a Muslim plants a tree or sowed a field and humans and beasts and birds eat from it, all of it is love on his part.” This message echoes and affirms examples found in the doctrines of many faiths, which call on us to be kinder and wiser in how we use this planet, and to advocate for all creatures. Peng is a World Health Organization goodwill ambassador for tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS and on Saturday spoke at an event promoting the health of women, children and adolescents. These statements of faith are both historic and timely, as the world’s countries seek to implement global agreements in areas ranging from climate change to Sustainable Development Goals, to the establishment of marine reserves on the high seas.

Mentioning family means consisting of a married man and woman.” He asserted his country’s right to not follow any rules that relate to any “deviations” from that belief as the world moves forward on the new development agenda. The ocean’s health is now largely dependent upon lowering CO2 emissions within the next few decades, before runaway ocean acidification occurs and sea levels change radically. As an “Ocean Elder,” I was also heartened by Francis’ emphasis in “Laudato Si” on the need for strict mechanisms of regulation and control on the open seas—a real step forward in this regard. The goals aim to eliminate poverty, but Tsipras says the world can’t tackle that “unless we can discuss how to build or improve welfare states instead of destroying them.” Tsipras told the U.N. gathering that the Eurozone economic crisis cut his country’s GDP by 25 percent.

He called debt a challenge “at the center of our global financial system.” Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov is urging the United States to lift its embargo on Cuba and to end other sanctions which “bypassed the UN Security Council.” The United States and Europe Union have imposed targeted sanctions on Russia for its take-over of Crimea and backing for rebel forces in eastern Ukraine. Restoring and regenerating the abundance and diversity of species across one of our planet’s critical life-support systems are essential to building the entire planet’s resilience in the face of climate change. Commenting on a newly adopted program for combating global poverty, Lavrov reaffirmed Russia’s commitment to supporting the global agenda “despite the challenging economic environment.” The foreign minister said Russia was a global leader in the cumulative reduction of the greenhouse gas emissions.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel is equating advances in women’s rights to development in all sectors of society and is urging all nations to translate lip service into action in granting women full rights. Security Council resolution passed 15 years ago focused on women’s rights and prevention of gender-based violence, in saying more must be done to protect women and promote their status. And she called for more concrete action to reach the goals of full elimination of inequality between the sexes, saying “Signals are good, actions are better.” Ukraine’s president says the fighting in the eastern part of his country against pro-Russia separatists costs about $5 million a day that Ukraine could be putting into development. The Belarus president is warning of another world war “if we make one more step toward global conflict,” and the ally of Russia made a not-so-veiled attack on Western efforts to address the conflict in Syria. “Why are you throwing a president out of office? He said China will also finance 100 projects to send poor girls to school, train 30,000 women from developing countries in China, and provide training opportunities for 100,000 women in other developing countries.

Francois Hollande spoke at a hastily arranged statement to reporters a few minutes before the beginning of a day of speeches by President Barack Obama and many others.

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