Despite the Glasgow agreement, Guterres warns: the climate catastrophe is still present

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned that “the climate catastrophe is still looming” despite a deal reached Saturday at the COP-26 climate conference in Glasgow.

Guterres – who earlier left Glasgow for the organization’s headquarters in New York – said in a statement that the World Climate Conference ended with “welcome steps forward, but that is not enough.”

Guterres touched on the goals that were not achieved, noting in particular “an end to exemptions on fossil energy sources, dispensing with coal and imposing a carbon tax”, in addition to securing financial assistance for the poorest countries.

He added in his statement that “the texts that were adopted are a settlement that reflects the interests, the situation, the contradictions and the state of the current political will in the world,” stressing that “it is unfortunate that the common political will was not sufficient to overcome the deep contradictions.”

The Secretary-General of the United Nations continued, “It is time to move to the emergency mode,” noting that the current commitments to reduce emissions do not allow maintaining the goal set by the Paris Agreement in terms of containing global warming “below” two degrees Celsius, compared to the pre-industrial era.

The “Cop 26” climate conference, Saturday, adopted the “Glasgow Charter” aimed at accelerating the pace of combating global warming, but without confirming that it will be kept within the 1.5 degree Celsius ceiling or meeting the requests for assistance from poor countries.

The final adoption of the text came after two weeks of arduous negotiations and a warning by the British Presidency of the World Climate Conference, and after last-minute amendments made by China and India on the issue of fossil energy sources.

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