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Home > News > World News > Article > World on thin ice as UN climate report gives stark warning

World on ‘thin ice’ as UN climate report gives stark warning

Updated on: 21 March,2023 07:27 AM IST  |  Berlin
Agencies |

The United Nations chief said it more bluntly, calling for an end to new fossil fuel exploration and rich countries quitting coal, oil and gas by 2040

World on ‘thin ice’ as UN climate report gives stark warning

The report provides a sobering reminder that time is running out. Pic/AP

Humanity still has a chance, close to the last one, to prevent the worst of climate change’s future harms, a top United Nations panel of scientists said Monday. But doing so requires quickly slashing carbon pollution and fossil fuel use by nearly two-thirds by 2035, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change said. The United Nations chief said it more bluntly, calling for an end to new fossil fuel exploration and rich countries quitting coal, oil and gas by 2040.


“Humanity is on thin ice — and that ice is melting fast,” UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said. “Our world needs climate action on all fronts — everything, everywhere, all at once.” Stepping up his pleas for action on fossil fuels, Guterres not only called for “no new coal” but also for eliminating its use in rich countries by 2030 and poor countries by 2040. He urged carbon-free electricity generation in the developed world by 2035, meaning no gas-fired power plants too.


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That date is key because nations soon have to come up with goals for pollution reduction by 2035, according to the Paris climate agreement. After contentious debate, the U.N. science panel calculated and reported that to stay under the warming limit set in Paris the world needs to cut 60% of its greenhouse gas emissions by 2035, compared with 2019.

With the world only a few tenths of a degree away from the globally accepted goal of limiting warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit) since pre-industrial times, scientists stressed a sense of urgency. After 1.5 degrees “the risks are starting to pile on,” said report co-author Francis X. Johnson, a climate, land and policy scientist at the Stockholm Environment Institute. “We are not on the right track but it’s not too late,” said report co-author and water scientist Aditi Mukherji. “Our intention is really a message of hope, and not that of doomsday.’’

“1.5 is a critical critical limit, particularly for small islands and mountain (communities) which depend on glaciers,” said Mukherji.

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