Davos, Switzerland

24 January 2014

Secretary-General's remarks at World Economic Forum on Climate, Growth and Development [as prepared for delivery]

Recently I visited the Philippines.

I saw yet again how climate change is – quite literally – an existential threat.

I have seen the same threat in the Sahel, Kiribati and many other places.

We have to limit global temperature rise or we will never achieve sustainable development and eradicate extreme poverty.

The risks are global.  To communities.  To businesses, small and large.  To the security of nations.

But addressing climate change is also a great opportunity support all our sustainable development goals.

At the same time, the actions we take on sustainable development can help tackle climate change.

The two are interdependent and mutually supporting.

Investment now will result in major savings in the future, and can propel economic growth today.

It can support universal energy access, sustainable cities and well-being for people and the planet.

That is why I will host a Climate Summit in September for global leaders from government, business, finance, and civil society.

The Summit has two goals.

To catalyze ambitious action on the ground to reduce emissions and strengthen climate resilience.

And to mobilize political will for a meaningful global legal climate agreement by 2015.

The next two years are critical.

2015 is also the deadline for the Millennium Development Goals and defining a post-2015 development agenda.

Our objectives will need the ambition and participation of all actors.

For those of you that are not already members, I commend to you the Global Compact Caring for Climate initiative.

The finance community is a key player.

We need trillions of dollars of investment to move from the brown to the green economy.

I see four areas for action.

First, we need investors, banks and other financial service providers to increase finance flows into low-carbon energy and climate-resilient infrastructure, including through setting portfolio targets and increasing the deployment of climate bonds.

Second, we need to decrease the flow of finance to carbon-intensive and obsolete technologies and business practices.

Third, investors and banks should work to increase transparency regarding greenhouse gas emissions from the assets and businesses that they finance.

Finally, investors and banks and regulators should work together to ensure that rules that govern financial markets are conducive to sustainable development.

I look forward to working with all leaders to ensure the Climate Summit catalyzes major action on the ground and on an ambitious global climate agreement.

Together, we can build a better, more secure world for this and future generations.

Thank you.