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SG/SM/20598
24 February 2021

Marking Second Year of Costa Rica’s National Decarbonization Plan, Secretary-General’s Message Urges All Countries to Turn Net-Zero Emissions Pledges into Concrete Action

Following is UN Secretary-General António Guterres’ message marking the second anniversary of Costa Rica’s National Decarbonization Plan, today:

I send best wishes to Costa Rica — a long-standing environmental leader — on the second anniversary of its National Decarbonization Plan, a key element in the country’s work towards a green and inclusive future.

I also congratulate Costa Rica on its recently updated nationally determined contribution, which further enshrines its commitment to reach net zero by 2050 and raise climate ambition by ensuring that, by 2030, all new buildings will be low‑emissions and climate-resilient, all coastal wetlands in the country’s national registry will be protected and all electricity will be generated from renewable sources.

I also commend Costa Rica on committing to develop a just transition strategy to create stable and well-paying green jobs, and to turn the current moratorium on exploring and exploiting fossil fuels into law.

This year is pivotal for climate action and our efforts keep the 1.5°C objective within reach.  A central objective for the United Nations for 2021 is to create a truly global coalition for net‑zero emissions by 2050.  Countries representing 70 per cent of the world economy and 65 per cent of the global carbon‑dioxide emissions have committed to net zero.

As we strive to expand this coalition, the international community must also turn those pledges into concrete plans.

I call on all Governments to present, well before COP26 [twenty-sixth session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)] in November in Glasgow, more ambitious, concrete and credible Nationally Determined Contributions with targets that will allow us to cut global emissions by 45 per cent by 2030 based on 2010 levels.  I also ask them to take immediate action, as part of our recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, by investing in a sustainable and resilient economy.

The Paris Agreement and the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda are our pact with future generations to safeguard the planet and build lives of prosperity for all.  We have much work to do, and I will continue to count on Costa Rica’s vision and engagement.

For information media. Not an official record.