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Time to curb global warming, no room for climate delay: UN chief Guterres

We're still pouring 110 million tonnes of global warming pollution into the atmosphere around our planet like it's an open sewer, says Antonio Guterres

AFP|PTI  |  Majuro (Marshall Islands) 

Secretary-General of the United Nations, Antonio Guterres
Secretary-General of the United Nations, Antonio Guterres. Photo: Reuters

The world is not moving fast enough to curb and needs immediate action to address the issue, UN Antonio told an conference Thursday.

issued the call to arms ahead of next month's climate talks in the southern Polish city of Katowice, which will attempt to revive a global climate deal reached in in 2015.

Addressing the Virtual Climate Summit, urged world leaders to limit to 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial levels.

He praised the online summit, which has been organised by the using to remain carbon neutral, as an example of the innovative thinking needed to combat

"We need more such creativity to transform our economy and limit to as close to 1.5C as possible," he said.

"is moving faster than we are and we cannot afford any more delays. The world counts on all nations to ensure that next month's climate conference in is a success." Former US vice said the way humanity was treating the planet was "unimaginable".

"We're still pouring 110 million tonnes of global warming pollution into the atmosphere around our planet like it's an open sewer," the Nobel laureate said.

"All of the extra trapped by man-made global warming pollution... is now equal to the amount of that would be released from 500,000 Hiroshima-class atomic bombs exploding on Earth every single day."

had her own bleak statistics, telling the that carbon dioxide levels were now the highest in 800,000 years.

She also pointed out that 17 of the 18 hottest years on record had occurred since 2001 and that the cost of climate-related disasters in 2017 topped $500 billion.

Yet Espinosa said it was not too late to act.

"When numbers such as these cause us to panic, there are other reasons to be encouraged," she said.

"My message today is not one of dismay but one of hope -- that we can come together as a global community and work as one to protect and heal our planet and preserve it for future generations."

The consists of a rolling, 24-hour livestream that will hear addresses from world leaders including France's and of before organisers issue a declaration early Friday. It can be viewed at

First Published: Thu, November 22 2018. 06:30 IST
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