Major Economies Forum Calls for Urgent Climate Action

major-economies9 May 2014: The Mexican Government hosted the 18th meeting of the Major Economies Forum on Energy and Climate (MEF), welcoming 90 delegates from 23 countries to a discussion intended to support progress in climate change negotiations and encourage the adoption of clean energy that reduces greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

The officials and ministers gathered from 8-9 May 2014, in Mexico City, Mexico, and agreed on the need for urgent action to avoid the worst impacts of climate change. Attendees at the event included the Co-Chairs of the Ad Hoc Working Group on the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action (ADP) of the UNFCCC.

The four themes addressed by the meeting were mitigation, adaptation, differentiation, and the path to negotiations in Paris, France, in 2015. Looking ahead to the 2015 climate change negotiations, attendees expressed their desire to achieve a draft negotiating text to be considered in Lima, Peru, later this year. They noted the text should reflect the positions and interests of all countries.

Mexican Secretary of the Environment and Natural Resources Juan José Guerra Abud highlighted several of the measures Mexico has taken to combat climate change, namely the General Law of Climate Change, as well as its Energy Reform, which will encourage the deployment of cleaner fuels throughout the country.

US Special Envoy for Climate Change Todd Stern expressed his satisfaction with the meeting, noting that countries had made important advances on the four key themes. He emphasized that every country should be prepared to propose its actions to reduce GHG emissions by early 2015, while promoting its development.

The 17 major economies participating in the MEF are: Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, the EU, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, the Russian Federation, South Africa, the UK and the US. Countries invited to the meeting were: New Zealand, Peru, Marshall Islands and Saudi Arabia.

Together, MEF member countries are responsible for over 80% of global GHG emissions and make up 75% of global gross domestic product (GDP). US President Barack Obama launched MEF in 2009 with the aim of spurring meaningful discussion about climate change among leaders of major developed and developing economies. [SEMARNAT Press Release, 9 May 2014] [SEMARNAT Press Release, 8 May 2014] [ADP Co-Chairs' Corner] [US Department of State MEF Webpage]