The UN chief cautions against a “dangerous disconnect” between what scientists and citizens require to reduce climate change and what governments are actually doing about it.
Secretary-General António Guterres warned on Tuesday of a “dangerous disconnect” between the claims of scientists and people.
Guterres said that global greenhouse gas emissions must fall by 45% this decade but are set to rise by 14% at the moment.
“We are witnessing a historic and dangerous disconnect: science and citizens are demanding ambitious and transformative climate action,” he told an international climate change conference in Austria.
Guterres said that Russia’s war in Ukraine threatens to exacerbate the crisis, because major economies have become “less and less reliant” on fossil fuels, which are responsible for much of the emissions that fuel global warming.
“The new funding for fossil fuel exploration and production infrastructure is delusional,” he said, in a video message to the World Summit of Austria, called because of measures introduced by former California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Guterres called on countries instead to stop all use of coal through 2040, as rich nations are supposed to do until 2030, and concentrate on replacing fossil fuels with renewable sources such as solar and wind power.
The war in Ukraine makes this difficult goal even more difficult, according to experts.
— Arnold (@Schwarzenegger) June 14, 2022