UN chief Guterres warns of climate chaos amid inaction, war
Vienna, Jun 14 (EFE).- The United Nations secretary general Antonio Guterres on Tuesday warned of a climate chaos, aggravated by governments’ inaction on global warming and the increase in fossil fuel consumption due to the war in Ukraine.
“The war has reinforced an abject lesson: our energy mix is broken,” Guterres said in a video message to the Austrian World Summit.
“The energy crisis exacerbated by the war in Ukraine has seen a perilous doubling down on fossil fuels by the major economies,” he added.
Guterres pointed out that this energy crisis, fueled by the war and the sanctions imposed on Russia in its wake, is hindering the fight against greenhouse gas emissions.
The UN chief called the new funding for fossil fuel exploration “delusional.”
This trend “will only further feed the scourge of war, pollution and climate catastrophe,” he continued.
“The only true path to energy security, stable power prices, prosperity and a livable planet lies in abandoning polluting fossil fuels — especially coal — and accelerating the renewables-based energy transition,” he stressed.
Guterres also called on the world’s richest countries to shut down their coal-fired power plants by 2030, while the rest of the world by 2040.
“To keep the 1.5-degree goal within reach, we must reduce emissions by 45% by 2030 and reach net-zero emissions by mid-century,” he added.
However, Guterres believes that the current national commitments do not guarantee these figures, but instead “will lead to an increase by almost 14% this decade.”
“Meanwhile many governments are dragging their feet. This inaction has grave consequences,” the former Portuguese prime minister continued.
The Austrian World Summit is an initiative of actor Arnold Schwarzenegger that has been bringing together politicians, activists and businessmen in Vienna to discuss climate change since 2017. EFE