Russia Vetoes UN Climate Resolution That Cited Global Security
(Bloomberg) -- Russia vetoed a United Nations Security Council resolution Monday that sought to make climate change a central concern of the top UN body by linking it to global security.
The resolution, drafted by Niger and Ireland, attempted to incorporate “information on the security implications of climate change, to enable the council to pay due regard to any root causes of conflict or risk multipliers which may represent a challenge” to the council’s efforts.
“By vetoing this resolution, Russia has stopped the world’s most important body from maintaining international peace and security from taking a small, practical, and necessary step to combat the impacts of climate change,” Linda Thomas-Greenfield, the U.S. ambassador to the UN, said. “Only the Security Council can ensure that the security impacts of climate change are integrated into the critical work of conflict prevention and mitigation, peacekeeping, peace-building, disaster reduction, and humanitarian response.”
The text had the support of 12 of the council’s 15 members. India voted against it, and China abstained. India, China and Russia argue that the UN already has appropriate bodies to address climate change and the issue doesn’t belong on the agenda of the Security Council, where it could become politicized.
The resolution requested that the UN secretary-general submit a report within two years “on the security implications for relevant country or region-specific contexts on the council’s agenda of the adverse effects” of climate change as well as recommendations on how climate related security risks can be addressed.
“We know very well that this resolution would have been a historic and important, not to mention necessary, move for the council at a critical point in time,” the missions of Ireland and Niger said in a statement following the resolution’s failure. “This resolution is about looking at the Security Council’s role in our current world. Research and evidence on the ground show clearly that climate change is creating insecurity and instability.”
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