Climate change resolution adopted at Asia-Pacific summit

Governments from across Asia-Pacific have endorsed a UN resolution to take urgent action to combat climate change and its impact.

It's the major outcome of the 79th Commission Session of the UN Economic and Social Commission of the Asia-Pacific (ESCAP) which concluded in Bangkok, Thailand over the weekend.

The 10 resolutions include promoting clean energy technologies, improving power system connectivity and low-emission mobility, implementing early warning systems and strengthening the use of climate change-related statistics.

Executive secretary of ESCAP, Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana, said the global climate fight would be won or lost in this decade.

Nine other resolutions aimed at strengthening regional action and partnerships towards achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development were also adopted at the session which drew over 1,000 representatives from governments and stakeholder groups.

Among others, the resolutions underscored commitments towards environmental protection; mitigating and minimising the consequences of disasters in the water basin of the Aral Sea; supporting countries in special situations; promoting digital cooperation and inclusion; advancing the use of space applications; promoting disability-inclusive development; better understanding of the linkages between climate and ocean; and sustainable urban development.

Several of the resolutions at this year's Commission also acknowledged the unique challenges of least developed countries, landlocked developing countries and small island developing States in the region, who find themselves increasingly vulnerable amidst the impacts of climate change, geopolitical tensions, economic headwinds and the Covid-19 pandemic.

During the week, the Pacific Islands Forum chair took aim at global leaders for failing to keep their climate promises.

Mark Brown told the session that the Pacific has been grappling with human-induced climate events for far too long.