London, 27 January 2009 - The creation of a low-carbon economy will be high on the agenda at an April summit of the leaders of 20 major economies (G-20), according to a senior British official.
The G-20 leaders, including U.S. President Barack Obama, will meet in London on 2 April to discuss ways to address the financial crisis. The heads of state ill thrash out the outlines of a new international framework to govern global finance, following the banking crisis that has plunged the global economy into the worst recession in years.
Simon Fraser, Director General for Europe and Globalization at Britain's Foreign and Commonwealth Office, told Kyodo News that the fiscal stimulus measures will also lead to the creation of a low-carbon world economy.
"We must make sure that the actions that we take in dealing with this crisis help to equip us in the long-term for a low-carbon, more effective, cleaner global economy going to the future," Fraser said.
"If we are pumping money out now as governments, then let's make sure that that money is going to be used in ways that promote long-term sustainable growth," he added.
The United Kingdom, the United States, Japan and the Republic of Korea are the latest in a growing number of countries that are turning to a 'Green New Deal', a plan advocated by UNEP Executive Director Achim Steiner and UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.
The Global Green New Deal and Green Economy Initiative, launched by UNEP in October, is a plan to tackle the economic slump by investing in a high job-generating and better-managed global economy.
The idea is to address the economic crisis and tackle climate change by spurring investments in green technology, creating green jobs, and developing a low-carbon, low-impact and better-managed global economy.
As the G-20 represents around 90 per cent of the world's Gross Domestic Product, Fraser said policy coordination at the April summit could feed into the UN negotiations for a new international climate change treaty to be adopted at the key UN climate talks in Copenhagen in December.