Secretary-General, at Asia-Pacific Commission Session, Notes Region Can Set Pace for Action, Urges Fast-Tracking Climate Efforts

Following is the text of UN Secretary-General António Guterres’ video message for the seventy-ninth session of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), held in Bangkok today:

I send warm greetings to the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific.  I welcome your theme for this session:  “Accelerating climate action in Asia and the Pacific for sustainable development”.  This region accounts for more than half of global greenhouse gas emissions and is home to some of the most vulnerable countries in the world.

It is vital to global efforts to keep temperature rise within the 1.5°C limit.  Most countries in the region have already pledged carbon-neutrality goals towards mid-century.  But we need to accelerate action, with steep reductions in emissions within the next few years.

The Acceleration Agenda will require fast-tracking climate efforts in every sector and on every timeframe.  The ESCAP study that provides the basis for your discussion sets out the necessary transformations and pathways.

ESCAP stands ready to support.  Asia and the Pacific region can set the pace of climate action in the decades to come.  I urge you to be bold, and I wish you a successful session.  Thank you.

For information media. Not an official record.