"Time-Bomb": World Reacts To UN Climate Report

The UN's climate panel warned the world is set to cross the key 1.5-degree Celsius global warming limit in about a decade, but noted it's not too late to take action.

'Time-Bomb': World Reacts To UN Climate Report

UN Chief Antonio Guterres said the report is a guide on how to defuse the "bomb". (File)


From leaders of islands threatened by rising seas to climate activists and diplomats, many of those reacting to Monday's UN report on climate change said it's a wake up call for world leaders.

The UN's climate panel warned the world is set to cross the key 1.5-degree Celsius global warming limit in about a decade, but noted it's not too late to take action.

Here are some key reactions:

'Climate Time-Bomb'

"Today's IPCC report is a how-to guide to defuse the climate time-bomb. It is a survival guide for humanity. As it shows, the 1.5-degree limit is achievable," said United Nations Chief Antonio Guterres. "But it will take a quantum leap in climate action."

'More Fragile Than Expected'

"We humans and our societies are more fragile than we thought before. Many more people have lost their lives and livelihoods than originally thought," said Friederike Otto, climate scientist at Imperial College London and lead author of the UN's climate advisory panel report.

"There is no saving future technology that would allow us to just carry on as before. The warmest years we have experienced to date will be among the coolest within a generation."

'Unprecedented Betrayal'

"The fact that the people in power still somehow live in denial, and actively move in the wrong direction, will eventually be seen for and understood as the unprecedented betrayal it is," said Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg.

'We Are Very Close'

"What does this... tell us? It tells us that climate change is here, now. That climate change is a threat to human and planetary well-being, which are one and the same. That we are very close to the 1.5 degrees Celsius limit, and that even this limit is not safe for people and planet," said Inger Andersen, executive director of the UN Environment Programme.

'Climate Breakdown'

"It is a wake-up call for Africa and the world. Africans are experiencing the worst impacts of climate breakdown, from floods, storms and droughts," said Mohamed Adow of the think tank Power Shift Africa.

Fossil Fuel Treaty

"The IPCC notes that staying within a 1.5 degrees C temperature rise is only achievable with urgent action to phase out coal, oil and gas," said Ralph Regenvanu, climate change minister for Vanuatu.

"That's why my home country of Vanuatu was the first to endorse the call for a Fossil Fuel Treaty," he added.

Developed World Responsibility

"Big emitting countries must... (increase) more significantly their financial obligations to the climate vulnerable states whose fortunes have been eroded by the effects of climate change - a situation created by the developed world," said Ghana's finance minister Ken Ofori-Atta.

'Concrete Milestones'

"This year's so-called global stocktake - a process under which countries assess progress towards the Paris goals - is a moment for countries to agree on the concrete milestones that will take us to our 2030 targets," said Simon Stiell, UN climate change executive secretary.

"This roadmap must include detailed steps for all sectors and themes," Stiell added.

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