As the COVID-19 global virus emerged, the focus largely shifted from other global issues, such as climate change, to the fight of the coronavirus. In some countries and regions, it was even reported that the air pollution had dramatically decreased during the lockdown, implying falsely that a positive change in the fight against climate change had happened. However, while many temporarily neglect the risks and significance of the topic, the UN warns of the growing danger of the climate emergency to global and regional peace.
Assistant Secretary-General Miroslav Jenča in his speech on Friday raised awareness to the fact that “the failure to consider the growing impacts of climate change will undermine conflict prevention and peace-making processes” in the regions most affected by the issue. The most vulnerable areas can be found in sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia, Latin-America and the Middle East, many of the world’s territories where peace and democracy are fragile phenomena. He urged the implementation of the Paris Agreement and asked the international organisations, NGOs and member states of the UN to act collaboratively to strengthen partnership and thus, peace. The UN World Meteorological Organization (WMO) have also raised their voices in the issue at the same meeting. Chief Scientist, Professor Pavel Kabat introduced new scientific data on the severity of climate change.
Global climate change is a phenomenon that does not attract most people’s attention until they are directly affected by it. The latest coronavirus pandemic has taught humanity a great lesson. It also seemed far away from non-Asians when the news about the infections was only covering Asia. However, it soon reached other parts of the world as well and the whole population has become heavily affected by it. Climate change is no different. Even in times like this, when the fear from coronavirus lingers among us, we have to stand up and do everything in our power to prevent the worsening of the situation and help those who are already affected by the consequences of the climate change.
The Paris Agreement was signed by many states in 2015. It pledges member states to act together to fight against climate change and its consequences and to sustain regions where climate change has already caused harms to the economy, agriculture, water distribution and therefore, in the political sphere. The agreement covers financial policies, technological advancements, emission cuts and other mechanisms to reach its goals. President Trump has decided to leave the Paris Agreement recently which proves the ongoing negligence of the topic worldwide. On the other hand, many experts are warning of not just a threat that endangers the nature, but something that will also influence politics, economies, and will cause human catastrophes that will eventually affect the developed world as well.
All in all, further lack of action will result in the destabilization of regions resulting in the displacement of millions of people causing refugee waves, starvation, water conflicts, natural disasters and more wars. Therefore, world leaders should no longer avoid the problem. Moreover, us, citizens also have to start thinking more responsibly when shopping, when consuming anything and urge our politicians to act.
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