António Guterres (Secretary-General) on the State…

António Guterres (Secretary-General) on the State of the Global Climate report launch 2024

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Video message by António Guterres, United Nations Secretary-General, on the State of the Global Climate report launch , 19th of March 2024.
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"Earth's issuing a distress call.

The latest State of the Global Climate report shows a planet on the brink.

Fossil fuel pollution is sending climate chaos off the charts.

Sirens are blaring across all major indicators:

Last year saw record heat, record sea levels, and record ocean surface temperatures. Glaciers likely lost more ice than ever before.

Some records aren't just chart-topping, they're chart-busting. And changes are speeding-up.

Sea level rises are accelerating – threatening coastal communities.

And last September, Antarctic sea ice was one million square kilometres smaller than the previous record low for the time of year. That's an area almost 25 times the size of Switzerland.

The impact of all this is stark, brutal and accelerating with a deadly force.

The report from the World Meteorological Organization details extreme weather around the world in 2023, and the trail of destruction left in its wake:

Thousands killed, millions displaced, crops failing, and vast economic losses.

The impact on sustainable development is devastating.

Every fraction of a degree of global heating impacts the future of life on Earth.

This report shows that in 2023 we came perilously close to the global temperature temporarily rising 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.

The good news is that we can still keep our planet's long-term temperature rise below that limit, and avoid the worst of climate chaos.

And we know how to do it. 

By matching the speed of climate change with radical climate action – that aligns with sustainable development:

By accelerating the inevitable end of the fossil fuel age – with the G20 leading a just global energy transition;

By countries producing national climate plans by 2025 that cover the whole economy and align with the 1.5 degree limit;

By delivering finance for climate action in developing countries, including to adapt to extreme weather;

By protecting every person on Earth with an early warning system by 2027;

And by putting meaningful resources into the new Loss and Damage Fund.

There's still time to throw out a lifeline to people and planet.

But leaders must step up and act – now".

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