Climate change affects everyone, as Swiss President Doris Leuthard told delegates at the UN climate summit in Cancun on Wednesday.
She pointed out that while doing something costs money, doing nothing costs far more. She cited poverty, hunger and violence as potential consequences of failing to take action.
Leuthard called on every nation to cooperate, pointing out that climate policies must not cease at national borders. The Swiss president suggested that a price be put on CO2 and that all countries set reduction targets.
“We in Switzerland have the technological know-how in water protection, in buildings, energy use and air quality management. Wealthy countries have to support poorer countries. Efforts in research and technology development have to be strengthened,” said Leuthard, who is the cabinet member responsible for the Swiss environment ministry.
She noted that Switzerland intended to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 20 per cent by 2020.
“Together with other industrialised countries it should even be possible to raise this threshold to 30 per cent. In addition, we are committed to the goal of limiting global mean warming as a result of the greenhouse effect to under two degrees,” Leuthard said.
The climate summit wraps up on December 10.
swissinfo.ch and agencies