Prime minister Boris Johnson has called climate change the real world’s ‘doomsday device’, as he welcomed world leaders ahead of two weeks of climate negotiations at COP26 today.
“We are in roughly the same position, my fellow global leaders, as James Bond today, except that the tragedy is that this is not a movie, and the doomsday device is real,” he said.
“I was there with many of you in Copenhagen 11 years ago when we acknowledged we had a problem. I was there in Paris six years ago when we agreed to net zero and to try to restrain the rise in the temperature of the planet to 1.5C.”
The prime minister, who will be playing host at the landmark climate conference, added that “all those promises will be nothing but blah blah blah”, if leaders fail to “get serious” about climate change.
Johnson said that the phasing out of fossil fuel-reliant cars, which use internal combustion engines, by 2035 is a doable feat.
While the use of coal fired power plants can also be done by 2040 for developing nations and by 2030 for wealthier states.
The $100bn that was promised in the 2015 Paris Agreement to help the developing world pursue a just transition to more climate-conscious practices will be delivered by 2023, Johnson noted, three years after its proposed timeline.
“If we don’t get serious about climate change today, it will be too late for our children to do so tomorrow.
“The worse it gets and the higher the price when we are eventually forced by catastrophe to act, because humanity has long since run down the clock on climate change.”