Despite the trials, tests and challenges, this is not the time to stand by – it is a time for grit, determination and hope. This was confirmed on Monday by the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Antonio Guterres, in a press conference at the end of the year 2022, calling for resistance to despair and finding solutions to bring about tangible change in people’s lives, telling reporters at the permanent headquarters that he is determined to make 2023 a “year of peace” and “a year of the work”.
Secretary-General António Guterres said: “We owe it to the people to find solutions, to resist, to act. Sometimes, discreetly but always persistently, we will fight back.”
Building on his public call to action, Mr. Guterres has announced that he will convene the Climate Ambition Summit this September. In this context, he called on every leader—from governments, businesses, cities, regions, civil society, and finance—to advance ambitious programs and plans that rise to the challenges.
Despite the pledges made at COP27 in Egypt and the Convention on Biological Diversity, it is clear that the fight to limit emissions to an increase of only 1.5 degrees above pre-industrial levels is still “moving in the wrong direction”, with the widening global emissions gap.
The Secretary-General drew attention to the Action Plan launched this year, which aims to have access to early warning systems for every person in the world within five years.
He said he would continue to push for a Climate Solidarity Pact, with all big emitters making an extra effort to reduce emissions this decade in line with the 1.5C target and ensuring support for those who need it.
The Secretary-General did not hold back from his frankness about the imperative of confronting this existential threat, saying that he would not relent.
In this context, he announced the holding of the Climate Ambition Summit in September 2023, calling on every leader – from governments, businesses, cities, regions, civil society and finance – to get involved in the action.
“They must come up with new, concrete and credible climate measures to accelerate the pace of change,” he said. The invitation is open.”