This was how Secretary-General of the United Nations, Antonio Guterres, described the latest chapter of the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report published Monday.
Mr Guterres did not mince his words as he addressed the virtual news conference to unveil the landmark report’s third chapter, which focuses on how the world can limit global heating to under 1.5C as outlined in the Paris Agreement.
In a speech, the UN chief accused some governments and businesses of “lying” and said it was the countries that are increasing production of fossil fuels, not climate activists, that are “truly dangerous radicals.”
“We are on a fast track to climate disaster; major cities under water, unprecedented heat waves, terrifying storms, widespread water shortages, the extinction of a million species of plants and animals,” he said Monday. “This is not fiction or exaggeration, it is what science tells us will result from our current energy policies.”
Mr Guterres accused high emitting governments and corporations of not just turning a blind eye, but of adding fuel to the flames when cheaper renewable solutions provide green jobs, energy security, and greater price stability.
His remarks and the publication of the UN’s assessment as to how the world can reduce the rate of climate change, come at a politically sensitive moment as governments around the world assess their energy policies following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
The UK government is expected to publish its own energy security strategy in coming days, which will seek to shift away from Russian fossil fuels and to ease the squeeze on British household budgets. Boris Johnson has indicated that his plan will include an expansion of renewable and nuclear power, but will also include energy from UK fossil fuels.