Explanation of Position on a Second Committee Resolution on Climate

Jason Lawrence
Adviser for Economic and Social Affairs
U.S. Mission to the United Nations
New York City
November 28, 2018


The United States affirms our support for promoting economic growth and improving energy security while protecting the environment. Although we join consensus on this resolution, we must take this opportunity to make important points of clarification.

The language on climate change in this resolution and other resolutions adopted at this session of the UN General Assembly is without prejudice to U.S. positions.

With regard to this resolution’s references to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the Addis Ababa Action Agenda, the Paris Agreement, and climate change, we addressed our concerns in a General Statement delivered on November 8. We note that the Administration announced its intention to withdraw from the Paris Agreement as soon as it is eligible to do so, consistent with the terms of the Agreement, unless suitable terms for re-engagement are identified.

With respect to the IPCC special report reference in this resolution and other resolutions at this session of the UN General Assembly, we note that, as the United States stated in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) on October 6, acceptance of the report and approval of its Summary for Policymakers by the IPCC does not imply endorsement of the specific findings or underlying contents of the report by the United States.

Further, we note that references to provisions of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change or the Paris Agreement and decisions by their parties do not change or interpret the meaning or applicability of these instruments and decisions.

As a global leader in innovation, the United States stands ready to continue working with others on these important issues.

Thank you.