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World in 'deep trouble' over climate change, United Nations warns

07 December 2018
World in 'deep trouble' over climate change, United Nations warns

"The world's people have spoken", Attenborough told the crowd, which included leaders and diplomats from around the world. Their message is clear: "Time is running out", Attenborough said Monday. The Paris Agreement was built on the principle that robust information gathering and reporting will provide countries and subnational actors with the feedback they need to continually improve their mitigation efforts, and provide the essential information citizens need to ratchet up pressure on their governments to do more during each of the agreement's successive five-year implementation cycles.

"I remind all Parties that this is a deadline you set for yourselves and it is vital you meet it", Guterres added.

"The continuation of our civilisations and the natural world upon which we depend, is in your hands", he said.

In 2015, the Paris agreement deal saw nations agree to limit global temperature rises to below two degrees Celsius (3.6 Fahrenheit) and under 1.5C if possible. However, since then, progress has been slow - and in some case, things actually regressed. President Donald Trump has announced Washington's withdrawal from the Paris accord, saying it's a bad deal for Americans, and repeatedly questioned the science behind climate change. It was ambitious. It would require among other things no more coal-fired power plants, more efficient cars and trucks and more support for solar and wind.

Katowice is the moment to deliver guidance to countries to implement Paris Agreement. In his usual fashion, Attenborough was eloquent and to the point; however, while we're used to hearing his voice describe the wonders of nature, this time it described a horrific situation - and one that we are responsible for.

But previous year President Trump shocked the global community when he pulled the U.S. out of the agreement, saying he would negotiate a new "fair" deal which would not put American businesses and workers at a disadvantage. "Worldwide cooperation is the only way to address the global threat of climate change".

But even as UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called for action Monday in Poland, telling gathered delegates that "we are in deep trouble with climate change", the United States has been emphasizing its rejection of the Paris agreement and global consensus.

However, on the very same day, his speech was met with the all too familiar stage of empty and outright misleading political promises. But Poland's President Andrzej Duda told a later news conference that the coal-rich country will reduce its reliance on coal but will never entirely give up its "strategic fossil fuel". Unfortunately, there is nothing "clean" about coal, and "clean coal" (as some technologies have been named) just doesn't work. This round of worldwide climate negotiations among partners of the UNFCCC is reputed the most important one following the COP21 in Paris where the parties agreed to pursue an objective of limiting the rise of global temperature well below 2 centigrades aiming for 1.5 centigrades. If that sounds desperate - well, it is.

Just this week, the UN's environment programme said the voluntary national contributions agreed in Paris would have to triple if the world was to cap global warming below 2C.

"This is the challenge on which this generation's leaders will be judged", Mr Guterres said.

FILE - President Donald Trump stands next to the podium after speaking about the USA role in the Paris climate change accord in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, June 1, 2017.

At the framework of a Talanoa Dialogue, the six panelists, including Bangladesh Environmental Lawyers Association (BELA) Chief Executive Chief Executive Syeda Rizwana Hasan, Dr Nahid Rezwana of Dhaka University, Dr Sultan Ahmed of Ministry of Environment and Forests, as well as almost 40 invitees were given a voice to share their stories, ambitions and engagements regarding climate change.