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September 17, 2019
Expert ActionAid spokespeople are available for interview at UN General Assembly summits, side events and strikes

NEW YORK, 17 September 2019 – Ahead of the UN Climate Action Summit, ActionAid International demands ambitious climate action to avert catastrophic global warming.

The international social justice organisation will be at the make-or-break summit calling for three ways to breathe life into the Paris Agreement – to limit global temperature rise to no more than 1.5C of warming.

Harjeet Singh, ActionAid’s global lead on climate change, says: “Governments are approaching this emergency at a snail’s pace, while every scientist in the world is warning that we are on track to a 3C warmer world that will be catastrophic for people and the planet. 

“The wealthiest few may be able to insulate themselves from the impacts of climate disasters. But billions of people in the Global South, who are the least to blame for this crisis, are already losing their lives and livelihoods.

“We need a fundamental system change if we are to detox from fossil fuels and meet meaningful emissions targets.”

ActionAid’s three demands for UN Climate Action Summit: 

  1. Fair and urgent emission reduction targets: Keeping global temperature rises below 1.5°C can only be achieved if countries deliver their fair share of reductions in national emissions. This requires fundamental system change. Rich countries must kick their addiction to fossil fuels and industrial agriculture, and urgently transition to green economies.
  2. Ensure that climate actions protect human rights and the natural world: As countries put in place new climate policies to shape industries, food systems and forests, these must work with nature and not against it. At the same time the rights of rural communities, particularly women farmers and indigenous peoples must be protected.
  3. Rich countries meeting and exceeding the promised $100bn per year: Rich countries must make good on and exceed their commitment to provide $100bn per year in climate finance to help developing countries cope with the impacts of climate change and reduce their carbon emissions.


ActionAid spokespeople are available at UNGA:

Harjeet Singh is ActionAid’s global lead on climate change. He specialises in the impacts of climate change on the Global South, including migration and urgent need for climate finance. He is on the board of the Climate Action Network (CAN) and coordinates the working group on adaptation and loss & damage. Harjeet will be analysing outcomes from the UN Climate Action Summit. He speaks English and Hindi. Follow him on Twitter @harjeet11.

Teresa Anderson is ActionAid’s climate policy coordinator. She leads ActionAid’s climate policy work on land, food and agriculture. She coordinates the Climate Action Network (CAN) working group on agriculture. She will be analysing outcomes from the Nature Based Solutions workstream at the Climate Action Summit. Follow her on Twitter @1TeresaAnderson

Farah Kabir is country director of ActionAid Bangladesh. She has represented the climate and resilience work of civil society organisations in Bangladesh at high level forums both internationally and nationally. She is the Chair of the Global Board of the Global Network of Disaster Risk Reduction (GNDR) since 2015, and was elected as a Board Member of Climate Action Network South Asia (CANSA) in 2019. She focuses on climate justice for women on the frontline of climate change. She speaks English and Bangla. Follow her on Twitter @kabirfarah

Brandon Wu is ActionAid USA’s director of policy and campaigns. He leads work on international climate justice, approaching the problem of climate change from the perspective of sustainable development and the rights of impacted people. He specialises in climate finance for developing countries, fairness and equity in the global climate regime, and energy democracy in the Global South. Brandon recently completed a two-year term on the governing board of the Green Climate Fund. Follow him on Twitter at: @brandoncwu.


Representatives from across the ActionAid federation will be in New York to follow developments around Climate Action Week, including supporting the 20 September Climate Strikes. They are available for comments, interviews and briefings. More information is available at 

Contact: Kate Donovan, ActionAid,  Cell and text: +17183620606


ActionAid is a global movement of people fighting for women’s rights, social justice and an end to poverty. An international federation of 45 countries, we work with climate-affected communities around the world, and have over a decade of experience in monitoring global climate negotiations.