United Nations (UN) Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has stated that the goal of limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 F) is currently "on life support" with climate talks in Glasgow so far not reaching any of the U.N.'s three goals. Guterres added though that "until the last moment, hope should be maintained."
Goals Not Met
The negotiations set to end on November 12 in Glasgow, Scotland, will "very probably" not yield the carbon-cutting pledges, Guterres has been quoted as saying by The Hindu.
The discussions thus far have not come close to achieving any of the U.N.'s three pre-announced priorities for the COP26 annual conference. One of those is cutting carbon emissions by approximately half by 2030 to reach the goal Guterres alluded to.
Meanwhile, the other two goals are getting rich nations to complete a 12-year-old pledge of issuing $ 100 billion a year in financial climate aid to poor countries and making sure that 50 per cent of that amount goes to helping developing countries adapt to the worst effects of climate change.
'Huge Challenges We Face'
Guterres further added that the Glasgow talks "are in a crucial moment". "The worst thing would be to reach an agreement at all costs by a minimum common denominator that would not respond to the huge challenges we face," the UN Security-General stated.
Within six hours from the scheduled end of the negotiations, Guterres claimed that if negotiators cannot reach ambitious carbon-cutting goals — "and very probably it will not happen" — then there is a need for the national leaders to come up with new pledges for the coming year and in 2023 during high-level meetings.
In August, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) warned that the world may have lost the opportunity to keep global warming to under 1.5 degrees Celsius over pre-industrial levels, which is one of the targets defined at Paris. COP 26, then, possibly represents one of the last chances to keep global warming under 1.5 degrees Celsius through a fair, ambitious agreement, according to several climate experts.