TIme is up for our planet

It's climate-crunch time, says UN Chief

“It’s climate crunch time” when it comes to tackling rising carbon emissions warned UN Secretary General, António  Guterres when marking World Environment Day 2024 on Wednesday this week.

As events were held around the world under the rallying call ‘Our Land. Our Future. We are #GenerationRestoration’ António Guterres stressed that while the need for action was unprecedented, so too were the opportunities for prosperity and sustainable development.

Choosing the iconic Family Hall of Ocean Life at the American Museum of Natural History in New York to deliver his impassioned plea to grasp the solutions at hand, he warned that we stand at “a moment of truth”.

“In the case of climate, we are not the dinosaurs. We are the meteor. We are not only in danger – we are the danger. But we are also the solution.”

Citing the latest European Commission Copernicus Climate Change Service report showing last month was the hottest May in history, the UN chief said global emissions need to fall nine per cent every year just to keep the 1.5℃ temperature rise limit above pre-industrial levels alive.

Last year they went up by one per cent!

The UN World Meteorological Organization also reported on Wednesday  that there is an 80 per cent chance the 1.5℃ limit – the target established in the Paris Agreement in 2015 – will be passed in one of the next five years.

We are playing Russian roulette with our planet...We need an exit ramp off the highway to climate hell. And the truth is – we have control of the wheel,said Guterres.

Pulling back from the brink “is still just about possible”, he continued, but only if we fight harder. It all depends on decisions taken by political leaders during this decade and “especially in the next 18 months.”

Meanwhile more than 3600 officially registered events were held on Wednesday (June 6) to mark World Environment Day, an all-time high.

The festivities included everything from a high-level gathering in host country, Saudi Arabia, to the reveal of North America’s largest mural.

Tens of millions of people joined the online global conversation, with #WorldEnvironmentDay trending on social media.

(BANNER PHOTO by Markus Spiske on Unsplash)