When it comes to climate change and the need for strong, immediate action to combat it, you can't get much clearer than this statement today by UN Climate Chief Christiana Figueres.
Latest estimates from the International Energy Agency (IEA) showing that greenhouse gas emissions from world energy generation reached record levels in 2010 are a stark warning to governments to provide strong new progress this year towards global solutions to climate change, UN Climate Chief Christiana Figueres said on Monday.
"This is the inconvenient truth of where human-generated greenhouse gas emissions are projected to go without much stronger international action now...and into the future," said the Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
"Governments are meeting next week in Bonn to prepare for the next major international climate conference to be held in Durban at the end of the year. It is clear that they need to push the world further down the right track to avoid dangerous climate change," the UN's top climate change official said. "I won't hear that this is impossible. Governments must make it possible for society, business and science to get this job done," she added.
On a positive note, Figueres points to "two very encouraging trends": 1) "Countries, including the biggest economies, are moving forward with new policies that promote low-carbon prosperous growth;" and 2) "the private sector continues to increase its investment in low-carbon business and renewable energy and wants to do more." In addition, as a recent report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change concluded, "the availability of renewable sources like the wind and sun was virtually unlimited, and could provide up to 77 percent of the world’s energy needs by mid-century." The only question is, how aggressively will government and the private sector turn this potential into reality?