The Strategic Approach represents a unifying vision for collaborative UN action on climate change and serves as a driver and tool for the UN system to reinforce and operationalize the CEB Common Core Principles for a UN system-wide Approach to Climate Action; to encourage and guide integrated action in the areas of climate change and sustainable development; to identify and foster action in key impact areas; and to ensure coherent and, where possible, joint approaches to the UN’s country-level work on climate change.
Climate change is the defining issue of our time. It is the ultimate test for the global community to unite and meet a challenge that respects no borders. It exacerbates nearly every other development challenge. At the same time, taking climate action will help solve many other social, environmental and economic problems as well. In fact, by acting on climate change we can significantly advance the sustainable development agenda.
More than any other institution or organization in the world, the United Nations has been at the forefront of efforts to address climate change. The UN has been a leader in assessing the state of the science through the reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. It has brought countries together through the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), and has facilitated the agreement of a universal and meaningful climate agreement: At the conclusion of the twenty-first session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP 21), held from 30 November – 11 December 2015 in Paris, Member States adopted the Paris Agreement, a historic commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and combat climate change globally.
In a joint statement, issued prior to COP21, the UN System Chief Executives had pledged to provide strong and coherent support to Member States in addressing climate change as an integral part of the implementation of the transformative 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. To this end, the UN system is strengthening its coordinated approach to supporting climate action in the context of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. As a first step, in April 2016, the UN System Chief Executives Board agreed on "Common Core Principles for a UN System-wide Approach to Climate Action".