Sir David Attenborough warns of impact of extreme weather events, saying 'if we don't act now' on climate change 'it'll be too late'
'If we don't act now, it'll be too late,' warns Sir David Attenborough ahead of the COP26 climate summit.
Our conversation ranged from the latest climate science to the importance of COP26 to the pace of his working life.The UN climate science panel recently concluded that it is "unequivocal" that human activity is driving up global temperatures.
And Sir David said that proved that he and others had not been making "a fuss about nothing", and that the risks of a hotter world are real.Image source,Image caption,Extreme weather such as drought will increase as the world gets warmer"What climate scientists have been saying for 20 years, and that we have been reporting upon, you and I both, is the case - we were not causing false alarms.
"And every day that goes by in which we don't do something about it is a day wasted. And things are being made worse".But he said the report had not convinced everyone and that they are acting as a brake on efforts to tackle climate change. headtopics.com
"There are still people in North America, there are still people in Australia who say 'no, no, no, no, of course it's very unfortunate that there was that forest fire that absolutely demolished, incinerated that village, but it's a one-off'.
"Particularly if it's going to cost money in the short term, the temptation is to deny the problem and pretend it's not there."But every month that passes, it becomes more and more incontrovertible, the changes to the planet that we are responsible for that are having these devastating effects."
His call for an urgent response reflects the latest scientific assessment that to avoid the worst impacts of rising temperatures, global carbon emissions need to be halved no later than 2030.That's why the coming years are described as "the decisive decade" and why the COP26 talks are so crucial for getting the world on a safer path now.
As things stand, emissions are projected to continue rising rather than starting to fall, and Sir David was sounding more exasperated than I've heard before."If we don't act now, it will be too late," he said. "We have to do it now." headtopics.com
We turned to the question of responsibility, a highly contentious issue which will loom large at the conference. Developing countries have for years accused the richest nations, which were the first to start polluting the atmosphere, of failing to shoulder their share of the burden.
The argument is that they should be making the deepest cuts in carbon emissions and providing help to those who need it most. A long-standing promise of $100bn a year for low carbon development and to build stronger defences against more violent weather has yet to be fulfilled - reaching that total will be a key test of whether COP26 succeeds or fails.
Image source,Getty ImagesImage caption,Bangladesh, on the UN's list of Least Developed Countries, is battling river erosion due to climate changeFor Sir David, this is one of the most worrying challenges, and he says it would be "really catastrophic" if threats to the poorest nations were ignored.
"Whole parts of Africa are likely to be unliveable - people will simply have to move away because of the advancing deserts and increasing heat, and where will they go? Well, a lot of them will try to get into Europe."Do we say, 'Oh, it's nothing to do with us' and cross our arms? headtopics.com
"We caused it - our kind of industrialisation is one of the major factors in producing this change in climate. So we have a moral responsibility."Even if we didn't cause it, we would have a moral responsibility to do something about thousands of men, women and children who've lost everything, everything. Can we just say goodbye and say this is no business of ours?"
Finally I asked about his own hectic workload at the age of 95 - from filming documentaries to addressing the G7 summit, the UN Security Council and the Duke of Cambridge's Earthshot Prize. Read more: BBC News (UK) »
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BasuAshis It's already too late for excellent results but it's imperative to act now to save most of our planet from total disaster ! It's already too late, humans will have to adapt to a new way of life in the next 100 years and that's a fact. We've taken/used & destroyed far too much & continue to do so in the endless pursuit of money. This world is dying & it's our future generations who will suffer most
Sir, Morality and accountabilty is only for the poor, rich nations are evasive and deceptive. We need to change these people ! Change People, Change Climate! The stench of hypocrisy 🤢
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David Beckham 'agrees £150million ambassadorial deal with Qatar'The England legend was pictured in the country earlier this month, taking in various sights including some of the stadiums to be used for next year's tournament. Even more money for Goldenballs. Wow.. Salah maybe better choice now !! so 6000 deaths is acceptable to him?
David Beckham 'agrees £150million ambassadorial deal with Qatar'The England legend was pictured in the country earlier this month, taking in various sights including some of the stadiums to be used for next year's tournament. How much was his wig. 🤫 more sports washing ,beck should be ashamed of himself,money talks What a pittance, should have negotiated a higher price lol 😂