16 May 2008: The Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural
Rights of the UN Economic and Social Council adopted a statement on the world
food crisis, during its fortieth session on 16 May 2008. The statement
(E/C.12/2008/1) calls on all States to address the immediate causes of the food
crisis and urges them to address its structural causes at the national and
international levels, including by: “implementing strategies to combat global
climate change that do not negatively affect the right to adequate food and
freedom from hunger, but rather promote sustainable agriculture, as required by
article 2 of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.”
May 2008: The ninth Conference of the Parties (COP 9) to the Convention on
Biological Diversity (CBD) was held from 19-30 May 2008, in Bonn, Germany. The
COP addressed a range of issues related to climate change, including ocean
fertilization, biofuels and biodiversity, and forest biodiversity. [Photo: COP 9 President Sigmar Gabriel gaveled the meeting to
a close at 9:00 pm]
23 May 2008: Representatives from 40 donor and developing countries, meeting in Potsdam, Germany, reached an agreement on the creation of two international investment funds that will provide innovative financing for developing countries to pursue cleaner development paths and protect themselves from the impacts of climate change.
24 May 2008: Warning of the potential risks of climate change to human health, the sixty-first World Health Assembly adopted a resolution (WHA61/19) urging member states to take decisive action to address the health impacts of climate change. Climate change was discussed on Thursday, 22 May, when the plenary considered the Executive Board resolution on health and climate change (E122.R4) and a report by the WHO Secretariat.
18 May 2008: The Fifth European Union (EU) / Latin America and Caribbean (LAC) Summit took place in Lima, Peru, from 16-17 May 2008. The Summit developed the “Lima Declaration on Addressing our Peoples' Priorities Together,” which addresses, among others, poverty, inequality, inclusion, climate change, environment and energy.
14 May 2008: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, in his capacity as depositary of the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer, has advised parties that the adjustments made to the Montreal Protocol at the Nineteenth Meeting of the Parties to the Protocol (17-21 September 2007) will enter into force, and become binding to all parties, on 14 May 2008.
5 May 2008: The Asian Development Bank (ADB) announced a contribution of US$40 million for a new Climate Change Fund it is establishing to mitigate and adapt to the impacts of climate change in the Asia-Pacific region.
2 May 2008: An estimated 2000 delegates gathered at UN headquarters in New York, US, from 21 April to 2 May, for the Seventh Session of the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (UNFPII) – a subsidiary body of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). The theme for the session was “Climate change, biocultural diversity and livelihoods: the stewardship roles of indigenous peoples and new challenges.” In its deliberations, the Forum noted that indigenous traditional ways of life have been threatened by climate change, that indigenous peoples continue to be the main custodians of knowledge and biodiversity and that indigenous peoples have largely been kept out of the international dialogue on climate change.
25 April 2008: The twelfth UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD XII), which took place from 20-25 April 2008, in Accra, Ghana, adopted a ministerial Accra Declaration and an Accra Accord, identifying challenges and opportunities of globalization for development and a four-year work plan. The conference, which was attended by approximately 4000 delegates, including UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, considered sustainable development, poverty reduction and related global policies. The conclusions highlighted the challenges facing many developing countries in relation to global economic integration, and set out an agenda for progress in economic and social development. Outcomes included a pledge by member states to resist protectionism, particularly against goods and services from developing countries. The Accra Declaration notes that climate change currently poses a significant challenge, especially to the poor, who are least equipped to adapt. It urges urgent action to address adaptation and mitigation in accordance with the provisions and principles of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, bearing in mind the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities, and taking into account social and economic conditions and other relevant factors. It further states that adequate financing and technology will be critical to help developing countries to rise to this challenge and that the trade and development aspects of climate change are important for development prospects of developing countries, and should be adequately taken into account in mitigation and adaptation strategies.
25 April 2008: The Council of the Global Environment Facility (GEF), which convened in Washington DC, US, from 22-25 April 2008, reviewed a progress report on the implementation of the Resources Allocation Framework (RAF), discussed the Strategic Programme to Scale-up the Level of Investment in the Transfer of Environmentally-friendly Technologies, as requested by the UNFCCC, and approved ten climate change projects.