Following is the text of UN Secretary‑General António Guterres’ video message to the Japan National Conference for Realizing a Carbon‑Neutral Society by 2050, held today:
I am pleased to greet you today to recognize Prime Minister [Yoshihide] Suga and the people of Japan for their commitment to reach net zero emissions by 2050. This is a courageous decision and a very positive step in the right direction. I believe Japan has all the necessary tools to achieve this and become a global leader in climate‑friendly technology.
Through this announcement, Japan joins a growing group of major economies committed to leading by example in building a sustainable, carbon‑neutral and climate‑resilient world. Now Japan enters the critical phase of implementation.
I urge the country to identify coherent mid‑term targets for 2030, and design and implement policies that are in line with its long‑term goal. These include setting an ambitious renewable energy target and a path to coal phase‑out. And they entail creating jobs in promising industries that can grow and become a cornerstone for a new prosperous green economy.
I call on all sectors of the Japanese economy to join the work for a sustainable future. Working together, we can end the climate emergency.