Innlegg ved Zerokonferansen 2014

Oslo, 13. november 2014

Utenriksminister Brendes innlegg under bolken «Norwegian interest in promoting and financing an international green shift" ved Zerokonferansen 2014 i Oslo 13. november.

Sjekkes mot framføring

Dear friends of Zero

  • Making the transition to a low carbon economy is possible. It is the opposite that comes with the highest cost. An unacceptable cost.  
  • Impacts of climate change are already felt across the globe. Most severely in poor countries that have done little to cause the problem.
  • Greenhouse gas emissions between 2000 and 2010 were the highest in history. In fact, in the past 800,000 years. This is a reminder of our historical responsibility.  
  • We now know that climate change will threaten food security and access to clean water.  
  • It will increase ill-health and the number of early deaths, especially in low-income populations.  
  • Mortality from air pollution costs the top 15 greenhouse gas-emitting countries 4.5 % of their GDP.  The corresponding figure for China is 11 % of its GDP.   
  • Air pollution, typically from cooking, diesel vehicles, waste burning, forest-fires and brick production, causes one in eight deaths globally.
  • The annual global costs of air pollution are estimated at some 2 trillion dollars.
  • The way we produce and consume energy is the main cause of human-induced climate change.  
  • The availability of energy is extremely uneven.   
  • Low-income countries, with 12 % of the world population, consume only one per cent of global energy.   
  • Energy consumption per capita is one hundred times greater in the highest-consuming countries compared to the countries with the lowest energy consumption.    
  • It is simply unacceptable that 1.3 billion people are without access to electricity. No energy means no development. If we are to achieve an agreement in Paris, this needs to be taken into account.  
  • A growing global population will need more energy.  
  • This is why we need a green shift. Without this shift, we will face an unbearable global temperature rise.  
  • And we can move to a low-carbon economy without compromising development and growth.  
  • No action is not an option. What we do in the coming decade will define our future.  
  • The cost of postponing action far exceeds the
    cost of acting now.  
  • Our focus should be on what must be done. Action now for a greener, low-carbon future is good value for money. 
  • It provides opportunities for nations, their people, and their economies.
  • The green shift will not happen by itself. A successful outcome of COP 21 in Paris next year is needed.
  • The G2 – the United States and China – will play a decisive role in determining the level of ambition for a global agreement.   
  • Together, these two countries account for a third of the global economy, a quarter of the world’s population and close to half of the world’s emissions.  
  • The recent announcement of an agreement between China and the US to limit emission levels is a landmark, even though the ambitions should be even higher.  
  • The announcement is most welcome and might be a game changer in the efforts to reach an agreement in Paris next year.  
  • The new agreement must ensure that there is funding for developing countries to make the green shift.  
  • The lion's share of investment in the green shift must come from the business sector. We as governments must provide the right stimuli and regulatory environment.
  • We must begin to absorb the future costs of today’s emissions. We must internalise the externalities.
  • We must put a price on carbon. A carbon tax: let us get used to the word. And we must develop a sound future energy system. Not country by country, but together.   
  • Harmful fossil fuel subsidies must end. For every dollar spent globally to promote renewable energy, the world spends four dollars on fossil fuel subsidies.   
  • Norway is escalating its efforts in line with the level of ambition that is needed. We have increased our support for climate change efforts in developing countries during the past year.  
  • We will continue our major efforts to save forests and stop deforestation.  
  • We will scale up investment in clean and renewable energy in developing countries.  
  • We are making substantial contributions through programmes and initiatives such as Sustainable Energy for All, Energy+ and Green Africa Power. We actively support the work of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).   
  • Climate finance is another strong priority for this Government.
  • We have proposed increasing the investment capital of the Norwegian Investment Fund for Developing Countries, Norfund, to a total of 1.5 billion Norwegian kroner. 
  • Norfund is our key national instrument for combatting poverty through private sector development. At least half of these funds will be invested in renewable energy.  
  • We will continue to push for the phasing out of fossil fuel subsidies.   
  • Norway will provide substantial support to the Green Climate Fund and do our utmost to ensure its success. The litmus test will be whether it manages to stimulate private investment.   
  • We all have an interest in peaceful, stable societies in which people's needs are met and sustainable development is encouraged.   
  • Norway, and Norwegian investors and businesses, are well-placed to play a targeted and constructive role in implementing a green shift.   
  • Let me conclude by thanking Zero for placing the most pressing challenge of our generation on the conference agenda: the dual challenge of poverty and climate change.   
  • Making the transition to a low carbon economy is not only possible – it will benefit us all.

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