UN chief to COP26: We are digging our own graves on climate change

At the opening of the World Leader Summit at COP26 in Glasgow on 1 November 2021, United Nations Secretary General António Guterres told world leaders, “we’re digging our own grave” and that the world must take immediate action at this climate conference to avert it.

While he cited stark examples of the rapidly changing planet due to “our addiction to fossil fuels,” which he said is pushing humanity to the brink, he also highlighted what can be accomplished to this keep the 1.5 degrees Celsius goal alive.

As countries make progress, Guterres said the private sector must add to it.

“I will establish a group of experts to propose clear standards to measure and analyze net zero commitments from non-state actors,” which will go beyond mechanisms already established in the Paris Agreement, Guterres said Monday.

“We face a stark choice: Either we stop it or it stops us,” he said. “ It’s time to say, ‘enough.’ Enough of brutalizing biodiversity. Enough of killing ourselves with carbon. Enough of treating nature like a toilet. Enough of burning and drilling and mining our way deeper. We are digging our own graves,” he said at the opening ceremony. “We need maximum ambition from all countries on all fronts to make Glasgow a success.”