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Breaching climate goals could be ‘disastrous’, UN chief warns

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Tuesday called on governments to keep their pledge and act against climate change.

“The International Panel on Climate Change tells us that breaching 1.5 degrees, even temporarily, could be disastrous,” he told the Petersberg Climate Dialogue meeting via video link.

Guterres warned that the temperatures are set to rise 2.8 degrees by the end of the century if countries maintain their present policies.

He called for closer cooperation to end dependence on fossil fuel, and underlined that industrialized nations should deliver on their promises and provide financial support to less developed countries to invest in clean energy.

“The climate crisis demands honesty. We can only solve problems if we name them and look them squarely in the eye,” Guterres said.

“The truth is, on climate, we know what to do, when to do it, and why. But for too long, we have looked the other way,” he added.

Germany is hosting the two-day climate conference, which brings representatives from around 40 countries, to discuss concrete steps toward overcoming the climate crisis.

The conference aims at preparing the ground for successful negotiations at the COP28 Climate Change Conference in the United Arab Emirates later this year.

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