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11月份對話訊息: 全球最大的人民氣候大遊行 / November Dialogue Newsletter: "The World's Largest People's Climate March"

當下許多國家面臨的最重要也最急迫的挑戰之一,就是如何能夠推進經濟的成長與發展,同時可以舒緩天候變遷的問題。

史上最大的氣候大遊行於2014年的9月21日舉行。全球超過四十萬人走上街頭,加入人民氣候大遊行,呼籲大家減少排碳量,並激勵政治力,希望能在全球超過125位領袖在聯合國氣候高峰會開會之前就能讓各國承諾加入,促成各國的行動,簽署有意義的氣候變遷協議。

示威者上了街頭,因為他們發現光是倚賴政府的作為是不夠的,全球各地針對氣候變化的行動是從底層社區的領導者、企業體、市長和州長所發起,因為他們最有立場在現場帶來改變。 

人們發現,那些所謂人民無法參與氣候變遷等複雜的議題,這樣的想法其實是迷思。

對話具備讓大家了解整體大局、在思考氣候變化議題時改變態度與行為的潛能。公民的參與可以配合法令的修改,促成真正的改變,催生政府的行動。

當我們讓大眾參與決策的過程,以及計畫的設計,政府就能夠促進大眾在態度與行為模式上產生需要的改變。

 

對話

無論是對於政策決策者或是參與者,審慎的對話都會帶來正面的效益。

普遍來說,決策者認為對話的效益之一,就是讓他們在制定政策時更有信心。其它的效益包括訂定出更好的政策、節省時間與金錢、提升大家的認知,促進更多的學習。對於參與者而言,參與對話可以強化影響力、學習,對於政府和社會福利的觀感、也提升個人滿意度。參與者因為可以帶來改變而看見效益,也因為透過集體參與和貢獻,看見成果而感到有價值。

針對氣候變化的議題,可以讓公民參與的工具包括:

  • 公共預算 – 讓公民可以瞭解公共資源的分配,並影響決策,監督開支,並確認政府相關人士為公共財物資源負起責任。

  • 公共辯論 – 讓公民們知道他們的權益與責任,可以集體談論重要的議題,而且/或者表達他們的意見與關切點。

  • 公共資訊 – 讓民眾可以針對政府政策、決策與行動掌握相關資訊。

  • 公共監督 – 讓公民們可以監督政治人物與公共官員的行為,找出貪腐、督導公共行動,並針對不公義與錯誤的行為要求修正。

  • 公共政策 – 讓公民們可以和政策決策者一起有建設性地參與公共議題。

  • 公共服務 – 讓公民們可以監督並評估公共服務的普及率、品質與效益。

氣候變化代表的是一個「棘手」的政策問題 – 這是一個非常複雜,同時又充滿爭議性的問題。許多區域性和國家階級政府的人員,還有國際性的政治組織,都認為此問題的答案就是更好的溝通,能夠與公眾有更多的共鳴。

地方階級的人士是主要的利益關係人,是氣候變化、能源變化直接影響到的人們,委員會是當地社區的領導者,他們在規劃與維持當地基礎建設方面扮演要角,並建立夥伴關係,支持當地綠色經濟體的發展,他們負責照顧當地社區的健康與健全狀態。讓人們投入參與的對話,讓公民們有機會透過公共政策過程來參與決策,成為當地、都市和日常生活中,促成改變的人。

當下許多國家面臨的最重要也最急迫的挑戰之一,就是如何能夠推進經濟的成長與發展,同時可以舒緩天候變遷的問題。

在接下來的十五年中,預計全球經濟將會增加一半以上,大約90兆美元的金額會投資於基礎建設,因此,因為全球經濟將會經歷重要的變革,接下來的十五年將是關鍵期,在這段期間所投入的投資,會直接影響到全球氣候系統的未來。

在2014年7月17日,第五屆聖彼得堡氣候對話(Petersberg Climate Dialogue)展開,主題為:面對問題的急迫性:增強我們的貢獻,在聯合國氣候協商時推動新的想法。在這次的對話中,德國總理梅克爾宣布將投入7.5億歐元於氣候變化的議題以及綠色氣候基金(Green Climate Fund GCF)。

 

對話將焦點集中於:

  • 針對未來氣候體制的關鍵元素中取得共識,在2015於巴黎的COP21會談中達成「企圖心強、有效且公平的氣候協議」;

  • 確認所有國家都在充足的時間內,提交各國的國家預期氣候貢獻(INDC),可以遵守2°C限制,與民眾溝通,讓他們了解這些舒緩與調整措施對於經濟是有正面效益的;並且

  • 訂定激勵措施,鼓勵開發低碳排放量的科技。

 

這場對話顯示出,大家已經越來越能體認出,經濟成長與降低氣候變化風險這兩件事,是可以彼此互利的。

 

新的氣候經濟體

全球經濟暨氣候變遷委員會也因此創立,幫助政府、企業與社會,針對氣候與經濟有更完整的資訊來做決策。此委員會由七個國家召集 – 哥倫比亞、衣索匹亞、印尼、挪威、南韓、瑞典與美國,這個委員會是一個獨立的倡議,將會向國際發表報告,並以墨西哥前總統卡爾‧德隆(Calderon)擔任主席。委員會於2014年9月提出報告,並提出行動與政策的建議(網址:http://newclimateeconomy.report)。報告的結論為:

 

都市是全國與全球成長的引擎

都市地區是全球一半人口的居住地,但是創造出全球經濟產量的80%、全球能源使用量和能源相關溫室氣體排放量的70%。在接下來的二十年,全球的人口成長應該也都會在都會地區產生,每星期大約增加140萬人,相當於荷蘭斯德哥爾摩的人口。但是經濟成長、生活品質和碳排放量的風險已經不能再升高。因此,我們所建立的基礎建設,包括道路與建築物,都可以至少繼續超過一個世紀,設定溫室氣體排放量的軌道,在當下是一個關鍵的時間點。


更好的能源與更好的氣候

如果要因應這逐漸成長的需求,就必須投入大量的投資,而這筆錢要如何花,就會帶來很大的不同:這筆投資可以幫助建設豐富、有彈性的能源系統,可以在未來的數十年服務許多國家,它也可以讓能源基礎建設卡住,讓未來的市場有更多的波動,帶來更多的空氣汙染、以及環境和社會上的損害。由於能源的生產已經是全球溫室氣體排放量的三分之二,而且還繼續在增長,因此對於氣候與經濟體都有很大的影響。

投資於低碳的未來

從高排碳量的經濟體轉換成低排碳量的經濟體,需要投資。企業、地主、農夫與居家都需要投資設備來改善能源效益,能源生產業者也需要轉換成低碳的器材。政府需要增加基礎建設的生產力,並透過法令、優惠措施、共同投資方案、風險分享的工具,還有其他措施來影響私人的投資行為。

透過合作創造更好的氣候

在過去的25年來,全球化的經濟是高碳與低碳排放量成長的主要導因。國際貿易和投資讓全球的製造力大幅度擴充,增加了溫室氣體排放量,但是也幫助低碳經濟的成長。舉例來說,太陽能發電與風力發電的元件,因為供應鏈在全球的整合,也讓成本大幅度下降。

低碳經濟已經成為全球性的趨勢。每年全球在環保物品與服務的交易接近一兆美元,約為總貿易額的5%。單是低碳、節能的技術,預計在2020年可以達到2.2兆美元,是現今的三倍。這市場的五分之二預期會在新興經濟和開發中的國家產生,供應商則是來自全球各地。

 

如欲了解促進新氣候經濟體成長的十項行動領域,可上網: http://newclimateeconomy.report/global-action-plan/

這份報告提供了很有說服力的說法,提議可以建立持久的經濟成長,同時降低氣候變化的風險。但是現在需要的是行動,而行動就要從街頭開始。

The World's Largest People's Climate March

The largest climate march in history took place on September 21, 2014. More than 400,000 people stood up around the world to join for the People's Climate March to call for reductions in carbon emissions and to galvanize political will for new global climate treaty commitments days as over 125 of the world's leaders gathered at the United Nations climate summit to champion an ambitious vision anchored in action that will enable a meaningful global agreement on climate change.

People came to the streets because they realised that relying on national governments alone to deliver results is not enough, the real action on climate change around the world is coming from the bottom-up - from community leaders, businesses, mayors and governors, because they are the ones best positioned to make change happen on the ground.  People realised it’s a myth that ordinary citizens cannot be engaged in complex issues such as climate change.

Public engagement complements legislative changes and the government’s agenda; and dialogue is a useful method for engaging multiple stakeholders in complex issues, to increase understanding of the big picture and to shift attitudes and behaviours towards resolving public issues.   

 

Dialogue

Deliberative dialogues benefits both policy makers and participants. For policy makers dialogue enables greater confidence in public policy making, better policy, savings in time and money, higher awareness and learning about issues. For dialogue participants, benefits include increased influence and personal satisfaction in seeing that something has happened as a result of their collective input, as well as social benefits resulting from their input.

Some public engagement tools for addressing climate change include:


• Public budgets – Enabling citizens to understand and influence decisions about the allocation of public resources, monitor public spending and hold government actors accountable for their management of public financial resources.

• Public debate – Enabling citizens to be aware of their civic rights and responsibilities, collectively deliberate on priority issues and/or express their opinions and concerns.

• Public information – Enabling citizens to have access to relevant information about government policies, decisions and actions.

• Public oversight – Enabling citizens to scrutinise the conduct of politicians and public officials, identify corruption, oversee public action, seek redress for injustices or misdeeds, ensure that elections are free and fair and hold politicians accountable for their electoral promises.

• Public policy – Enabling citizens to engage constructively with policy makers on public policy issues.

• Public services – Enabling citizens to monitor and evaluate the accessibility, quality and efficiency of public services.


Climate change presents a ‘wicked’ policy problem because it is highly complex and controversial. Many people in local and national government as well as international governance structures recognise that the answers to this problem lies in better communications with the public.

The local level is a key stakeholder in dealing with the direct impacts of climate change and energy challenges; councils are community leaders playing a big role in shaping and maintaining local infrastructure, brokering partnerships to support the development of a sustainable economy and are responsible for looking after the health and wellbeing of citizens.  Facilitating dialogue at the local level gives citizens opportunities to engage in the decision-making of a public policy and therefore to become game changers in their communities, regions and daily lives.

Climate Change

One of the most critical and urgent challenges facing communities today is achieving economic prosperity and development while also combating climate change.

The global economy is expected to increase by half in the next 15 years and about $90 trillion will be invested in infrastructure, transforming the global economy and the future of our world's climate system.

Recognising the critical moment we are collectively now at, on July 2014, the fifth Petersberg Climate Dialogue met under the theme "Addressing the urgency: stepping up our contributions". At this dialogue German Federal Chancellor Angela Merkel pledged €750 million to climate change and the initial capitalisation of the Green Climate Fund (GCF).


The Dialogue focused on how to:

  • reach consensus on key elements of the future climate regime and to adopt “an ambitious, effective and fair climate agreement” at the COP21 meeting in Paris 2015;
  • ensure all relevant States have submitted their intended nationally-determined contributions (INDCs) for the 2015 climate agreement in a timely manner to enable compliance with the 2°C limit;
  • communicate that mitigation and adaptation measures benefit the economy; and 
  • create incentives to develop low-carbon technologies.

This dialogue signifies a growing awareness that economic growth and reducing the risk of climate change can be mutually beneficial.
The New Climate Economy


A Global Commission on the Economy and Climate is established to help governments, businesses and society make better-informed decisions on crucial issues of climate and economy.  Commissioned by seven countries - Colombia, Ethiopia, Indonesia, Norway, South Korea, Sweden and the United Kingdom - as an independent initiative to report to the international community, and chaired by former President of Mexico Felipe Calderón; on September 2014, the commission delivered compelling recommendations on actions and policies in a report: http://newclimateeconomy.report.  In brief the New Climate Economy Report concludes:

Cities are engines of national and global growth

Urban areas are home to half the world’s population, but generate around 80% of global economic output, and around 70% of global energy use and energy-related GHG emissions.  Over the next twenty years nearly all of the world’s net population growth is expected to occur in urban areas, with about 1.4 million people – close to the population of Stockholm – added each week. So the stakes for growth, quality of life and carbon emissions could not be higher; and the structures we build now, including roads and buildings, could last for a century or more, setting the trajectory for greenhouse gas emissions at a critical time for reining these in.

Better Energy Better Climate

A major wave of investment will be required to meet growing demand; and how money is spent makes a difference: it can help build robust, flexible energy systems that will serve countries well for decades to come, or it can lock in an energy infrastructure that exposes countries to future market volatility, air pollution, and other environmental and social stresses. Given that energy production and use already account for two-thirds of global GHG emissions, and continue to rise, much is at stake for the climate and our economies.

Financing a Low Carbon Future

Transitioning from a high-carbon to a low-carbon economy requires investment. Businesses, land owners, farmers and households will need to invest to improve efficiency; energy producers will need to switch to low-carbon generation. Governments will need to increase infrastructure productivity, and influence the direction of private finance through regulation, incentives, co-investment, risk-sharing instruments and other policy measures.

A Better Climate Through Cooperation

Globalisation has been a major driver of both low- and high-carbon growth over the last 25 years. International trade and investment have enabled a huge expansion of global production, raising greenhouse gas emissions, but they have also helped advance the low-carbon economy. The increasingly global integration of supply chains for products such as solar and wind power components, for example, has helped dramatically reduce their costs.

The low-carbon economy is now a global phenomenon. International trade in environmental goods and services totals nearly US$1 trillion per year, or around 5% of all trade. Trade in low-carbon and energy-efficient technologies alone is expected to reach US$2.2 trillion by 2020, a tripling of current levels. Two-fifths of that market is expected to be in emerging and developing economies, and the suppliers come from all over the world.

I highly recommend you read the inspiring and pragmatic New Climate Economy’s 10 action areas for growth: http://newclimateeconomy.report/global-action-plan/

The report show that building lasting economic growth while reducing the immense risk of climate change is both possible and attractive.  
But action is needed now.  

And action often begins in the streets:

 

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