Ethical principles in relation to climate change
In response to a resolution adopted by the General Conference in 2009, UNESCO has been conducting a major study on the desirability of preparing a declaration of ethical principles in relation to climate change.
Building on the recommendation of COMEST, the 35th General Conference, in October 2009, requested the Director-General to report on the desirability of preparing a draft declaration of ethical principles in relation to climate change. An extensive study on the subject was conducted in 2010, with the active involvement of COMEST.
The report was submitted to the Executive Board in October 2010 (Document 185 EX/13). The Board judged that it was not appropriate, at that point, to start work towards the drafting of such a declaration, and requested a follow-up report, taking account inter alia of the outcomes of the 16th Conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC (COP-16, Cancun, November-December 2010; Document 185 EX/Decisions).
The follow-up report was submitted to the Board in May 2011 (Document 186 EX/9). Noting the new information presented, the Board confirmed its view that a declaration would not be appropriate, a view subsequently noted and endorsed by the General Conference in November 2011 (Resolution 36 C/Res. 36).
In parallel with consideration by the UNESCO governing bodies, COMEST continued its own substantive work, and adopted at its 7th Ordinary Session (Doha, Qatar, October 2011) a Framework of Ethical Principles and Responsibilities for Climate Change Adaptation.
In a decision adopted by its Extraordinary Session in July 2012 in Paris, COMEST proposed that this framework might further be extended in due to cover other aspects of ethical principles in relation to climate change.
Considering the issue in light of new circumstances in October 2012, the UNESCO Executive Board endorsed the proposal by COMEST to pursue background technical work on ethical principles in relation to climate change (Document 190 EX/Decisions).Back to top