Mexico Current Affairs

Mexican diplomat Patricia Espinosa selected as executive secretary of UNFCCC

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has selected Mexican diplomat Patricia Espinosa as the executive secretary of the UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change).

She will replace the incumbent Christiana Figueres when her term ends in July 2016. Prior to this selection she was serving as Mexico’s ambassador to Germany

Earlier she had served as Mexico’s representative at the UN in New York for drug traffic, human rights, women promotion, social development and children’s rights.

In her new role, she will play an important role in implementing the Paris Agreement on Climate Change that was approved by 195 countries in December 2015 during UNFCCC’s COP 21 held in Paris, France.

About UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change)

  • The UNFCCC is an international environmental treaty negotiated at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in 1992 and entered into force in 1994.
  • It has near universal membership as it has 196 countries and European Union (EU) as its members.
  • It is the parent treaty of the 1997 Kyoto Protocol which was ratified by 192 of the UNFCCC Parties.
  • The ultimate objective of both treaties is to stabilize greenhouse gas (GHGs) concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that will prevent dangerous human interference with the climate system.

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Canada, US, Mexico ink MoU to Cooperate on Climate Change  

Canada, United States (US) and Mexico have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Climate Change and Energy Collaboration to tap into energy cooperation among three countries.

The MoU was signed at the North American Energy Ministers Meeting held in Winnipeg, Canada and hosted by Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources Jim Carr.

Key facts

  • This energy cooperation MoU reflects shared vision of three North American countries for a future where an expanding clean energy sector, a sustainable environment.
  • Under the MoU, the three countries will collaborate and share information in key areas such as clean energy technologies, low-carbon electricity and energy efficiency.
  • They will also share information in areas like carbon capture, climate change adaptation, use and storage and reducing emissions from the oil and gas sector including from methane (CH4).
  • They will also work together to increase policy alignment and ensure that North American energy sector is developed effectively, efficiently and responsibly.

During the meeting, the three ministers also discussed the importance of trilateral cooperation and continental approach to energy. They also launched a web platform featuring new energy maps. These maps for the first time depict North American energy resources, production and infrastructure in a single place.

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Mexico Government approves world’s 1st Dengue fever vaccine named Dengvaxia

Mexico Government has approved world’s first-ever Dengue fever vaccine branded as Dengvaxia for the public use.

Key facts

  • Dengvaxia has been manufactured by French pharmaceutical manufacturer Sanofi Pasteur.
  • It has been designed to protect people in the 9-45 age groups from all four subtypes of the virus.
  • The vaccine was produced as the result of an extensive clinical development programme of the French company than ran for almost two decades.
  • Sanofi Pasteur has requested authorisation to roll out the vaccine in 20 countries.

Comment

Dengvaxia is considered as a historic milestone for the global public health community and, most importantly for half the world’s population that lives at risk of dengue. Prior to introduction of this vaccine, there was no vaccine to prevent dengue fever.

About Dengue Fever

  • Dengue fever is a vector-borne disease caused by a family of viruses that are transmitted by Aedes aegypti mosquitos’ species.
  • It is prevalent throughout the tropics and subtropics. Thus, it is also known as mosquito-borne tropical disease
  • Symptoms: Severe joint and muscle pain, swollen lymph nodes, headache, fever, exhaustion and rash.
  • Dengue triad i.e. presence of fever, rash, and headache is the common characteristic of dengue fever.
  • Prevention: It requires control or eradication of the mosquitoes carrying the virus that causes dengue. There is no known cure and children are at particular risk.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has mentioned that dengue has become the fastest-growing mosquito-borne disease as it infects as many as 400 million people and kills 22,000 people every year.

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