1 Climate Change and the UN
Climate Change is an urgent challenge for developed and developing countries alike, as it threatens human security across all borders. The international community needs to strengthen its collective efforts against climate change with a sense of urgency. The UN system is expected to play a crucial role in systematic efforts to tackle this global issue.
The United Nations Framework on Climate Change and the Kyoto Protocol to the UNFCCC, which stipulate concrete targets for developed countries to reduce the emission of greenhouse gases, were adopted as international legal frameworks to address climate change. There are also negotiations underway concerning the reduction of emissions beyond 2012 and the establishment of the next international framework on this issue, as the first period of Kyoto Protocol will conclude at the end of 2012.
Seventeenth Session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP17) was held in Durban, South Africa in December, 2011. At this conference an agreement was reached to launch the Ad-Hoc Working Group on the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action, in order to complete the preparations for the implementation of the framework as early as possible, and no later than 2015, so that it will come into effect from 2020.
2 Japan’s efforts
In September in 2009, then Prime Minister of Japan, Mr. Yukio Hatoyama, announced that Japan aims to reduce by the year 2020 the emissions by 25% compared to the 1990 level, on the condition that a fair and effective international framework is established and their ambitious targets are agreed upon by all major countries. Japan also announced that by the end of 2012 it would provide approximately USD 15 billion for those countries which are taking active emissions reduction and other climate change measures and which are vulnerable to the negative impact on climate change, while keeping an eye on the progress of international negotiations. Based on this principle, Japan has already implemented more than USD 12.5 billion of this assistance as of October 2011. Despite the tragedy of the Great East Japan Earthquake, which struck Japan in March last year, Japan continues actively working to tackle climate change. At the COP 17 in last December, Japan proposed “Japan’s Vision and Actions toward Low-Carbon Growth and a Climate Resilient World” and the “African Green Growth Strategy (Draft Elements)”which aimed to effectively address global warming thorough international cooperation.