Christiana Figueres
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Christiana Figueres was the Executive Secretary of the United Nations Climate Change secretariat (UNFCCC) between 2010 and 2016. She is currently a candidate in the race to become the next Secretary-General of the United Nations.

At the UNFCCC she was responsible for driving forwards the annual UN climate change conferences, which eventually lead to the 2015 Paris Agreement on Climate Change -- the most ambitious climate agreement in history.

Entries by Christiana Figueres

Restaurando la esperanza

(0) Comments | Posted July 18, 2016 | 1:00 AM

Las ONU fue fundada hace 70 años en medio de la agitación y el trauma causados por la Segunda Guerra Mundial, con la firme convicción de que un futuro mejor era posible, y que dependía de nosotros crearlo.  

Y, de hecho, es mucho lo que se ha logrado desde su...

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Restoring Hope

(4) Comments | Posted July 14, 2016 | 8:56 AM

The United Nations was founded 70 years ago in the turmoil and trauma of World War II with the firm conviction that a better future was possible, and it was ours to create.

Much has been achieved in the intervening years that has certainly kept the world on a...

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Klimawandel: Wir sehen uns mit einer neuen Realität konfrontiert

(0) Comments | Posted January 26, 2016 | 1:53 PM

Wer diesen Monat zu den Vereinten Nationen nach New York reist, zum zweimal jährlich stattfindenden Investor Summit on Climate Risk (27. Januar), sieht sich mit einer neuen Realität, mit einer neuen Welt konfrontiert.

Das globale Klima-Abkommen, das im Dezember in Paris unterzeichnet wurde, hat festgeschrieben, dass...

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Investors Have A Big Opportunity for Accelerating Clean Energy

(1) Comments | Posted January 25, 2016 | 9:12 AM

Those gathering at the UN in New York on Wednesday for the biennial Investor Summit on Climate Risk are facing a new world and a new reality.

The Paris global climate agreement, inked in December, has confirmed that every nation is now on an irreversible path...

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COP21: An Open Letter of Gratitude

(3) Comments | Posted December 18, 2015 | 10:51 AM

To Remarkable People from All Walks of Life Who, for Over Two Decades, Made Their Contribution -- Both Humble and High -- to the Success of Paris:

To those who walked, to those who prayed,
To those who sang, to those who cried,
To those who challenged, to...

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Thanks for the Memories, Fossil Fuels, but Now It's Time to Change

(36) Comments | Posted November 13, 2015 | 12:46 PM

For the past 250 years, fossil fuels have been the primary driver of development and growth. Burning fossil fuels has provided us with outstanding progress and opportunities, and I for one am grateful to the many generations of men and women who have so sincerely labored in this sector.


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Turning Points in Finance

(0) Comments | Posted November 6, 2015 | 7:07 AM

There is no doubt that significant transformation in the finance sector is paramount to a global warming that stays safely under 2 degrees Celsius. This transformation needs to be both orderly and effective. Fortunately it is well underway and while it is mainly invisible to most people, the scale and...

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This Is the Turning Point

(0) Comments | Posted October 30, 2015 | 12:30 PM

Change is created by turning points. Whether through evolution or revolution, turning points in history have changed the way we think, move, communicate, live.

We are at a turning point now. A decisive hour when a historical event occurs, when a decision must be made, when we have understood that...

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Let's Go Climate Neutral Now!

(1) Comments | Posted September 29, 2015 | 5:18 AM

If I were a magician I would, like a character in a JK Rowling novel, wave a wand and cut everyone's emissions to zero--or near zero as possible--overnight.

But I am not: which is why I am working tirelessly with countries, cities and companies on a new universal climate agreement...

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Our Common Future Conference Needs Long-Term Vision

(1) Comments | Posted July 7, 2015 | 3:57 AM


By Christiana Figueres and Joseph Alcamo

Over the past 12 months the number of countries signaling support for a long term vision on climate change has risen dramatically - this is an exciting development indeed.

Many now recognize that our best bet for...

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Un accord climatique à Paris - L'opportunité d'un siècle durable pour l'Afrique

(0) Comments | Posted July 1, 2015 | 1:17 PM

CLIMAT - Un investissement classique équivaut à prendre un risque pour récolter une récompense plus tard. La beauté de l'action climatique est que la récompense vient d'abord et que le risque futur est réduit.

Cela peut se vérifier tout particulièrement en Afrique, où les ministres se réunissent à la mi-avril...

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The Success of COP21 Also Depends on Businesses

(0) Comments | Posted May 19, 2015 | 8:26 AM

By Laurent Fabius and Christiana Figueres

This week, major business leaders will gather in Paris for the Business and Climate Summit. This meeting is being held around six months before the Paris Climate Conference, COP21, the aim of which is well known: to reach a universal agreement limiting the rise...

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Accord climatique à Paris: l'opportunité d'un siècle durable pour l'Afrique

(0) Comments | Posted April 18, 2015 | 8:37 AM

Un investissement classique équivaut à prendre un risque pour récolter une récompense plus tard. La beauté de l'action climatique est que la récompense vient d'abord et que le risque futur est réduit.

Cela peut se vérifier tout particulièrement en Afrique, où les ministres se réunissent à la mi-avril pour un...

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A Paris Climate Agreement - Africa's Opportunity for a Sustainable Century

(0) Comments | Posted April 9, 2015 | 7:28 AM

Traditional investment means first taking a risk to reap a reward later. The beauty of climate action is that the reward comes first and future risk is reduced.

This can be especially true in Africa where ministers meet in mid-April for a special high-level event of the

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Climate Action in 2015: The Year of Transformational Change

(0) Comments | Posted February 26, 2015 | 8:02 AM


This year is shaping up to be an historic one for the future of our planet.

Never before has the need to address climate change been so urgent. But never before has the response gathered so much momentum.

I will never forget being...

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Four Conclusions from Davos

(0) Comments | Posted January 26, 2015 | 12:00 PM

With promising milestones on the horizon for climate change and the development agenda this year, much of the discussion among public and private sector leaders at the World Economic Forum 2015 Annual Meeting focused on the role of energy in transforming our growth model. Four days in Davos lead me...

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It's Time to Deploy This Special Weapon on Climate Change

(0) Comments | Posted December 15, 2014 | 1:36 PM

We are here to tell you a secret that we feel needs to be told: there is a special weapon in the fight against climate change. Information and communications technology (ICT) solutions are transforming the way we do business, run our cities, spend our leisure time, access information and keep...

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Recognizing On-the-Ground Climate Solutions: Lighthouse Activity Awards

(0) Comments | Posted November 26, 2014 | 7:04 AM


As governments across the world prepare to arrive in Lima, Peru, to advance international cooperative climate action I would like to highlight the transformative power of entrepreneurial citizens and communities across the globe.

Today I have the honour to present to you the...

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UNFCCC Teams Up With Ian Somerhalder to Produce Climate Action Documentary

(1) Comments | Posted September 26, 2014 | 11:12 AM

Where there was once a dearth of good news on climate change, there is now a deluge. Not that I'm complaining! In fact, I'm pleased to add some of my own good news to the ever-lengthening list: this week the United Nations Climate Change secretariat released a new documentary that showcases inspiring stories of climate action.

The documentary, Climate Heroes: Stories of Change, takes the viewer on a trip around the world to see on-the-ground action on climate change, in communities large and small. The documentary is narrated by Ian Somerhalder, an actor best known for his work on the international hit TV series The Vampire Diaries and on the critically acclaimed drama Lost. Mr. Somerhalder is also a United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) Goodwill Ambassador who is passionate about tackling climate change.

UNEP Goodwill Ambassador Ian Somerhalder narrates Climate Heroes: Stories of Change

The documentary couldn't come at a more opportune time. I'm writing this from New York City, where the growing global appetite for real action on climate change is on full display. These past few days have been nothing less than a climate love-in - the likes of which the world has never seen before.

Hundreds of thousands of people in New York, and cities like Berlin, London and Rio, marched in the streets over the weekend to call for a cleaner, greener world, hundreds of climate-themed events and activities are taking place across New York, and dozens of leaders from business and government announced bold new pledges at the UN Climate Summit on Tuesday.

With Marshall Islands President C. Loeak and my daughters Naima and Yihana at Peoples Climate March in New York

Climate Heroes: Stories of Change amplifies the positive messages coming out of New York City.

"Action on climate change is not some far-off event," Ian explains in the film's opening minutes. "There is an enormous groundswell of action already underway to fight climate change. It's happening right now, all over the world."

Not only is this action helping the climate, it is creating green jobs, inspiring entrepreneurship and improving lives at the same time. The stories in our documentary are inspirational examples that can be replicated elsewhere, increasing the overall level of ambition towards reaching an international agreement on climate change.

The documentary was produced by our Momentum for Change initiative, which shines light on some of the best examples of climate solutions - to inspire increased climate action around the world. Momentum for Change is distributing the documentary to public TV stations globally, free of charge.

The nine stories of climate action featured in the film are:

• India: Pollinate Energy, bringing solar energy to Bangalore's slums while creating green jobs
• Ghana: Bamboo Bikes Initiative, women leading on climate change by building high-quality bamboo bicycles
• Australia: 1 Million Women, building a movement to get one million women to take small steps in their everyday lives to cut pollution and lead change
• Bangladesh: Climate Change Adaptation and Disaster Risk Reduction, a women-centered initiative to address extreme weather conditions in vulnerable communities
• Kenya: The BOMA Project, enabling vulnerable women to adapt to climate change by building small businesses
• Ghana: Recnowa Initiative, empowering disadvantaged people to turn recyclable waste into a low-carbon business opportunity
• Mexico: EcoCasa, unlocking financing to build low-carbon housing and increase the number of green mortgages
• Philippines: Sustainable Energy Finance Program, an innovative financing scheme to bolster resources needed to address climate change
• China: China CDM Fund, supporting low-carbon growth and climate resilience through levies on clean development mechanism projects

Each of the stories featured in the film was also a 2013 Momentum for Change Lighthouse Activity winner. In November, we'll showcase a new round of climate change success stories when the 2014 Lighthouse Activities are announced. It's my belief that sharing these stories helps raise ambition and scale up the global commitment to act on climate change.

All these stories feature different people in different circumstances. But they all share the same goal: to build a low-carbon, climate-resilient future. Help us create that future by downloading, watching and sharing Climate Heroes: Stories of Change here:

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Shining a Light on Transformational Climate Action in 2014

(0) Comments | Posted March 31, 2014 | 10:03 AM

The Guangzhou bus rapid transit system in China,
one of the largest integrated bus rapid transit systems in the world

One of the questions I struggle with on a daily basis as Executive Secretary of the UNFCCC is this: how...

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