UN chief blasts governments as COP25 gets underway

‘If we don’t urgently change our way of life, we jeopardize life itself,’ Guterres says.

By Kalina Oroschakoff

MADRID — U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres on Monday blasted the world’s big emitters for failing to cut greenhouse gases.

“All the main emitters must do more,” he said at the formal opening of the COP25 climate summit. That includes boosting climate commitments under the Paris Agreement next year, adopting carbon neutrality as a long-term target, and decarbonizing major sectors such as energy, transport and construction.

“Without full engagement of big emitters, all our efforts will be undermined,” Guterres said, calling for a “transformational” change to “how we generate power, how we build cities, how we move.”

“If we don’t urgently change our way of life, we jeopardize life itself,” he said.

Hoesung Lee, chair of the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, underlined the growing climate challenge.

“Our IPCC assessments show that climate change stabilization implies greenhouse gas emissions must start to peak from next year, but emissions are continuing to increase with no sign of peaking soon,” he said. “We are clearly in a crisis.”

The summit was opened by Chile’s COP President Carolina Schmidt; the event had to be shifted from Santiago to Madrid due to anti-government protests.

The two-week summit is meant to wrap up outstanding chapters of the Paris Agreement’s rulebook and prepare the ground for next year’s COP26, when countries will be under pressure to boost their climate pledges.

(c) Politico


  1. ‘If we don’t urgently change our way of life, we jeopardize life itself,’ Guterres says.

    Hmm, and what was the contribution to the CO2 emmissions by flying all these people from around the world to Madrid, to add even more greenhouse gas into the atmosphere? I suggest the UN concentrate on more pressing problems, like putting these terrorist states back in the holes, or you won’t have a world left to worry about the fucking climate.

  2. The rulers won’t change as long as big companies keep paying them money and as long as their villas are not burning or drowning. But in the long run we will pay more to fix the damages of climate change than it would cost us to fight it.

    • Nobody is going to cut back on production. All I hear is about the US pulling out of this Paris agreement, no mention of the Chinks, who are pumping out twice as much pollution as the US.

    • One of the serious environmental problems is gas flaring. It is barbaric and wasteful. Due to imperfect technology, part of the gas is burned and released into the atmosphere, increasing greenhouse gas emissions.

      According to the World Bank, Russia is the world leader in gas flaring; in 2018, Russia’s share of gas flaring amounted to 21.3 percent of global emissions.

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