Law council lobbying governments to change public liability laws so that companies aren’t held legally accountable for the damage caused by their waste.
More on the impact of climate change
Image copyright EPA Image caption Some countries, including Bangladesh, are trying to boost renewable energy
How much does it cost to keep clean?
On 5 September, the International Energy Agency released a report called “Climate Shock: Impacts of Climate Change on Public Health” which revealed that air pollution is increasing in many countries across the world. Many are saying that governments cannot cope with the burden it has placed on them.
It warns that if warming continues unchecked, we could have “a third of the world’s children at risk of underweight by mid-century” â€“ and that many of these children are already vulnerable.
Mr Ban said this “pollution issue” was one that affected the whole world, as the world’s health systems have to meet “this extraordinary challenge”.
He continued: “We need to act now in the international community – and in the country where I live, Japan. It is in our national interest that the health of people everywhere is restored to the standards expected by those who believe in human flourishing.”
The UN’s climate chief, Christiana Figueres, is among those urging governments to come up with a comprehensive climate change plan that aims at averting future disasters in the short term. She said: “A strong climate change strategy must address many issues; however, this will not happen if they are not brought into the context of sustainable development, international cooperation and economic growth.
“We cannot continue to rely exclusively on fossil fuels as our only energy source.”
How the UK has done
Since becoming the first nation to break with fossil fuels, the UK has cut emissions by 2.7% on 2005 levels, or 2,270,000t – well below the 3% of global output the EU hopes to meet by 2030.
In its last UN climate conference in 2014, a joint statement said: “The UK is already responsible for more emissions than the entire global fossil fuel industry. The UK has been a lead in producing the raw materials and fuels for the coal that powers the electric grid and which power some of the cars that make up the vast majority of our fuel supply.”
In recent years the UK has made major commitments to cutting emissions, by around 200,000t over the next 15 years.
On Saturday, David Cameron, the prime minister, said he was in the process of creating a new government to make major changes to the way environmental legislation works, including creating a new ministry dedicated to ensuring responsible development of coal.
The UN climate agency said Mr Cameron was now set to form the new government.
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