The UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) said it has joined all the other United Nations agencies assembled in Copenhagen to send a clear message that the UN is both “working and delivering as one” on climate change, according to a press release issued today. The commitment, which was said to be respected by all agencies in a highly coordinated manner, was stressed by the UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon, at the UN high-level interactive debate on the role of the UN system in addressing climate change. UNWTO secretary-general elect, Taleb Rifai, represented the travel and tourism industry at the session, which took place on Wednesday 16 December.

What was described as a high-level interactive debate was attended by delegates to the UN Climate Change Summit, observers and the public at large.

Under the leadership of the UN Secretary General, the UN Chief Executives Board for Coordination (CEB), of which UNWTO is a member, efforts are underway to coordinate and align the strengths, capacities and expertise of all UN System organizations to deliver as one in meeting the challenge of climate change.

The UN system is determined to provide coherent and consistent support to the efforts of member states at national, regional and global levels in addressing climate change through action on adaptation, capacity building, technology transfer, reducing Emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries and other areas.

Further to its role within the UN system, UNWTO has embraced the challenge of responding to climate change by establishing collaborative partnerships, raising awareness, developing guidance and providing support to its members and the travel and tourism industry.