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UN Secretary-General says countries aren’t doing enough to combat climate change


The head of the United Nations on Saturday pressed countries around the globe to step up their efforts to combat climate change and further curtail their use of fossil fuels. 

At a U.N.-led virtual summit, UN Secretary-General António Guterres said the pledges the world has made since the Paris Climate Accords that were signed five years ago have been insufficient. 

“Five years after Paris, we are still not going in the right direction … the commitments made in Paris were far from enough to get there and even those commitments are not being met. Carbon dioxide levels are at record highs,” he said

“Can anybody still deny that we are facing a dramatic emergency? That is why today, I call on all leaders worldwide to declare a State of Climate Emergency in their countries until carbon neutrality is reached. Some 38 countries have already done so, recognizing the urgency and the stakes. I urge all others to follow.” 

The Saturday summit was completely virtual to comply with health guidance during the coronavirus pandemic. 

Leaders from across the globe, including from Argentina, Canada, the U.K. and the European Union all rolled out new emissions promises, though President Trump did not make an appearance.

President-elect Joe Biden has vowed to rejoin the U.S. in the Paris Climate Accords, and plans to implement a policy to cut the U.S. to net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

“Five years ago today, the world gathered to adopt the Paris Agreement on climate change. And in 39 days, the United States is going to rejoin it. We’re going to rally the world to push our progress further and faster and tackle the climate crisis head-on,” Biden tweeted.

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