The UN system has a crucial role to play in supporting Member States in their efforts to turn what the Secretary-General has called the “greatest collective challenge facing humankind today – climate change – into the greatest opportunity for common progress towards a sustainable future”.

The HLCP Working Group on Climate Change seeks to bring to bear the UN system’s diverse operational, technical and normative support to climate action in a coherent and coordinated manner in order to generate momentum for an ambitious climate agreement; catalyze sustained climate action on the ground; and help ensure a convergence of the climate and sustainable development agendas.

This brochure has been jointly written and produced by the nearly 40 UN specialized agencies, funds, programmes and other bodies that coordinate their respective activities on climate change through the HLCP Working Group on Climate Change. It aims to show Governments and the public how the diverse entities of the UN system work together to support ambitious action on climate change globally, regionally and nationally.

Read the Article on IISD's Climate Change Policy and Practice: "CEB Publication Highlights UN System’s Climate Change Efforts" here.

Foreword by the UNSG

More than any other institution or organization in the world, the United Nations has been at the forefront of efforts to address climate change. The UN has been a leader in assessing the state of the science through the reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
It has brought countries together through the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), and is currently working to negotiate a universal and meaningful climate agreement.
And it is working with countries on strategies, policies and projects to promote a low-carbon economy.

Towards a carbon-neutral future

Climate change and sustainable development are the central challenges of our time. They are inseparably linked and need to be addressed together. Action to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and adapt to climate impacts is essential for ensuring sustainable development. At the same time, only sustainable development can provide the stable political, economic, social and environmental conditions that all countries need to address climate change successfully and build carbon-neutral economies.

Reducing emissions, building resilience

Climate change affects, and is affected by, all economic and social sectors. The UN system supports a wide variety of national efforts to reduce GHG emissions and adapt to climate change.
While UN agencies and programmes pursue many activities within their own mandates, increasingly they combine their respective expertise to support cross-cutting initiatives.
These joint efforts are also increasingly underpinned by the ability of Governments and UN organizations to leverage the new international climate institutions launched under UNFCCC. These

Empowering governments to act

In addition to UN-wide coordination in the above sectors, most of which are climate sensitive and sources of significant emissions, the UN system collaborates on providing an enabling environment
for taking climate action. Resources, science, technology, education and training, capacity development, partnerships, and data and information are all essential to empowering countries to take action on all climate-related sectors. They also make countries more effective in their pursuit of sustainable development.

Preface

This brochure has been jointly written and produced by some 40 United Nations (UN) specialized agencies, funds, programmes and other bodies that coordinate their respective activities on climate change. The brochure has one simple purpose: to show Governments and the public how the diverse entities of the UN system work together to support ambitious international action on climate change.