Members, Statements

Andrea Meza Murillo – UNGA Event 2020

Andrea Meza Murillo – UNGA Event 2020

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H.E. Andrea Meza Murillo

Minister of Environment of Costa Rica

 

Costa Rica
Source: Climate Vulnerable Forum

H.E. Andrea Meza Murillo, Minster of Environment of Costa Rica

Climate Vulnerable Forum Leaders Event

October 7, 2020

YouTube Video of Speech

Good morning and let me congratulate President Sheikh Hasina of Bangladesh for hosting this event as Chair of the CVF.

 

In many ways, 2020 has been a wake-up call for humanity.  Our fragility as a species has been put to the test, but to a rather small test. Climate change and biodiversity loss are the real tests, yet we have not been doing enough to prepare for them. How we fare on these will determine the survival, or not, of our species.

 

Costa Rica, as a climate vulnerable country, is firmly committed to significant action over the next decades. We are enhancing our NDC to show the radical transformations that we’re willing to undertake to mitigate and adapt to climate change, and to particularly safeguard the well-being of our most at risk communities.

 

Understanding climate vulnerability is not a complex task: it simply requires empathy.

 

I ask world leaders to put ourselves in the shoes of women and girls, indigenous peoples, coastal communities, the elderly and many others that are at a disadvantage in coping with the adverse effects of climate change. They need our urgent help.

 

Internationally, Costa Rica is also working hard to table a resolution on the next session of the Human Right Council to recognize the right to a healthy environment, because there is no doubt that climate change is a human rights issue and we need stronger institutions to aid in our efforts.

 

Let me mention 3 examples:

 

Climate change threatens the human right to food, due to increased droughts, rising sea levels, changing rainfall patterns, changing temperatures and ocean acidification.

 

It threatens the human right to self-determination, because rising sea levels endanger the very existence of several low-lying developing states and communities.

 

And, ultimately, climate change is a direct threat to the right to life. Through extreme weather events, diseases and more, millions of people will lose their lives to climate change by the end of the century if we do not take immediate action[1].

 

Costa Rica will continue to work together with our partners to keep tackling the impacts of climate change, to adopt innovative measures to reduce exposure, such as nature-based solutions, and to increase adaptive capacity, for the benefit of all.

 

Thank you.

[1] Source: http://impactlab.org/research/valuing-the-global-mortality-consequences-of-climate-change-accounting-for-adaptation-costs-and-benefits/ Current WHO estimates (2020) put climate change deaths at 150.00 per year, a number expected to rise steeply in the future (https://www.who.int/heli/risks/climate/climatechange/en/).

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