David Attenborough: Civilisation is on the brink of collapse

Nations must triple efforts to achieve Paris climate goals: Study

Antonio Guterres, United Nations Secretary-General delivers a speech during the opening of the COP24 summit on climate change in Katowice, Poland, on December 3, 2018. They aim to establish rules, figure out financing and build ways to verify that nations are meeting their commitments. "The continuation of our civilisations and the natural world on which we depend is in your hands".

"The world's people have spoken", Attenborough told the crowd, which included leaders and diplomats from around the world.

"Even as we witness devastating climate impacts causing havoc across the world, we are still not doing enough, nor moving fast enough, to prevent irreversible and catastrophic climate disruption, " Guterres told delegates from nearly 200 countries who gathered in the city of Katowice.

The Talanoa Dialogue, established last November at the COP23 meeting overseen by Fiji, aimed to create "an inclusive and positive atmosphere for the exchange of experiences and ideas in support of the global effort", boosting ambitions to achieve the Paris accord's goal.

Political leaders on Monday began arriving in the Polish coal city of Katowice where two weeks of talks have begun to revive the landmark Paris 2015 deal on climate change as dire warnings mount about a lack of action.

The two-week 24th conference of the parties to the UN Climate Change Convention (UNFCCC) marks the deadline for the 197 parties that signed the Convention, to adopt guidelines for the implementation of the historic 2015 Paris Agreement.

"We have a collective responsibility to invest in averting global climate chaos", he said.

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He said a lack of American and European leadership over the last 30 years had contributed to the malaise. Security Council meeting at United Nations headquarters in New York, Nov. 26, 2018.

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"A failure to act now risks pushing us beyond a point of no return with catastrophic consequences for life as we know it", Amjad Abdulla, chief negotiator for the Alliance of Small Island States, said in the AFP report. "So I think it is perfectly normal that his Holiness the Pope, not only this Pope, it comes from the past, have a very positive position in relation to climate action", he said.

However, host country Poland, which is heavily reliant on energy from coal, will push its own agenda: a "just transition" from fossil fuels that critics say could allow it to continue polluting for decades.

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.

Fiji's prime minister, Frank Bainimarama, who presided over last year's United Nations climate summit, said the "just transition" proposal should not just consider the fate of fossil-fuel workers but all people around the world whose lives were affected by climate change. "Climate change is running faster than we are, and we must catch up sooner rather than later before it is too late", he warned.

UN Secretary-General António Guterres has asked decision-makers to focus on four key things - a solid plan, stepping up climate action, more funding and smart investment in the future of the planet. "More than that, it sends a signal of trust that nations are serious about addressing climate change".

The conservationist is serving in the "People's Seat" during the conference, a role in which he will present comments from members of the public affected by climate change to the dignitaries and officials present at the summit. It was dwarfed by marches in Brussels, Berlin and Cologne over the weekend calling for greater action to curb climate change.

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