United Nations Secretary General António Guterres has said that climate change is the defining issue of the time and that the world’s at a defining moment.
Speaking to an audience of young people, business leaders, diplomats and journalists on the eve of the Global Climate Action Summit in San Francisco, the secretary general said, “we face a direct existential threat” and that “climate change is moving faster than we are”.
The secretary-general also called for greater ambition and leadership on climate change saying: “What we still lack, even after the Paris Agreement is leadership and the ambition to do what is needed.”
The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) administrator, Achim Steiner, welcomed the speech by the secretary-general, saying, “The danger signs are all around us. We have seen carbon emissions reach 32.5 gigatonnes in 2017, an historic high. We have seen the world’s average surface temperature rise 0.6 to 0.9 degrees Celsius in the century leading up to 2005, and we know they will rise further.” Steiner added that 17 of the last 18 warmest years have occurred since 2000.
“These are not just interesting statistics. Climate change is having a profound and disruptive impact on the people of the world, especially those who are among our most vulnerable citizens,” he said.
“For those who say climate challenge is too great or too expensive to tackle, I disagree. Taking action on climate presents us with an enormous opportunity to create jobs, save money on energy, boost food production, and breathe clean air,” Steiner said.
Source: Daily Trust