Alliance of top universities urge G20 leaders to prioritise net zero emissions18 November 2020
The University of Reading has joined an international coalition of leading climate research universities in issuing its first declaration ahead of the G20 Summit on 21 and 22 November 2020.
The International Universities Climate Alliance member universities span all populated continents, representing one-third of the 100 highest-performing climate research universities and a quarter of the top 100 environmental research universities worldwide.
Its Declaration implores world leaders to use the post-COVID recovery to implement measures to counteract climate change, warning that failure to do so will lock in catastrophic consequences for generations to come.
University of Reading Vice-Chancellor Professor Robert Van de Noort is among the signatories.
At a media Q&A event on Wednesday (18 November) Professor Ian Jacobs, President and Vice-Chancellor of UNSW Sydney in Australia, a founding member of the Alliance, said he and his colleagues recognised the need for experts with diverse voices to speak out about the climate crisis.
UK climate experts have a long history of supporting national and international decision-makers with the evidence-base for climate action including contributions to United Nation Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) negotiations, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports, UK Climate Change Risk Assessments, UK carbon budgets and regional climate assemblies.
Six University of Reading scientists were named in 2018 as lead authors on the upcoming IPCC Sixth Assessment Report, with a seventh a co-ordinating lead author.
The Climate Alliance is unprecedented in scale and scope and will support world leaders, policy makers and industry in planning for, and responding to, climate change. The advent of the Climate Alliance comes at a time when momentum is building for countries to decarbonise their economies. In recent months there have been moves by various nations to fortify incremental efforts with policies and actions equal to the urgency of the situation.
The Alliance will provide a central hub for universities to share the latest climate research and enable greater collaboration between leading research teams.