International Climate Justice conference announced

​Businesses and civic society will join forces in Edinburgh this October to progress the climate justice agenda ahead of crucial global talks later this year.

The International Conference on Climate Justice will take place at Dynamic Earth on October 9, 2013. It will bring together international businesses, civic society and leading thinkers from across the globe to collaborate on climate justice - a central issue for human rights in the 21st century - complementing the economic case for a swift transition to a low carbon economy.

First Minister Alex Salmond and former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Mary Robinson will speak at the conference which will highlight the opportunities and challenges for businesses ahead of climate talks in Warsaw in November, helping to drive ambition for an equitable global climate agreement in 2015.

Speaking at a Carbon Capture and Storage event in Edinburgh today, Minister for Environment and Climate Change, Paul Wheelhouse said: "The economic case for a swift transition to a global low carbon economy is compelling - delivering jobs, investment, trade and economic growth. But if we are to truly make a difference and help the world’s poorest communities it’s important that we also tackle the inequalities brought on by climate change.

"That is why Scotland is championing climate justice – our innovative Climate Justice Fund, which is a world’s first, illustrates how we are taking our international obligations seriously and demonstrating how climate justice can be delivered on the ground. This conference pushes that agenda further bringing businesses and civic society together to tackle climate justice. It will help them to consider how to share the benefits and burdens of climate change fairly so as to avoid the worst impacts falling on the poor and vulnerable who have done least to contribute to the problem.

"Coming ahead of climate talks in Warsaw, the conference will highlight the many opportunities and challenges for business to encourage the private sector to commit to playing their part in progressing this crucial agenda. I firmly believe, based on my experience at the Doha talks last year, that an inclusive climate justice dialogue, supported by business, civic society and of course governments across the world, will help drive ambition for an equitable global climate agreement in 2015. I look forward to welcoming all nations to Scotland in October to help shape our global future."

Professor Alan Miller, Chair of the Scottish Human Rights Commission said: "The Commission very much supports this timely initiative to host an international conference on climate justice.

“Climate change arguably poses the 21st century's starkest challenge to human rights - including the rights to life, livelihood and way of life. This is particularly the case for many people in the developing world who have contributed the least to causing climate change but are disproportionately suffering the impacts each and every day.

“This conference is an opportunity for Scotland to further promote climate justice through sharing with other countries its own practical commitments at home and abroad, and encouraging steps towards a 2015 legally binding international agreement on carbon emission reduction. The event will also engage the domestic and international business sector in contributing to the development of a low carbon and sustainable model of economic development for all.”

Read more about climate justice.