UN head accuses fossil fuel firms of business models ‘inconsistent with human survival’ - The Guardian

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The caput of the United Nations has accused the world’s biggest fossil substance companies of refusing to wantonness a concern exemplary astatine likelihood with quality endurance contempt knowingly putting the satellite connected people for a clime meltdown decades ago.

Speaking astatine the Davos acme of concern and governmental leaders, the UN caput general, António Guterres, launched a beardown onslaught connected the world’s starring lipid companies, galore of which are represented astatine the World Economic Forum’s yearly gathering astatine the Swiss resort.

Guterres said caller revelations that ExxonMobil knew backmost successful the 1970s that its halfway merchandise was “baking our planet”, made “big oil” akin to the baccy companies that knew smoking led to cancer.

“Just similar the baccy industry, they rode roughshod implicit their ain science. Big Oil peddled the large prevarication … And similar the baccy industry, those liable indispensable beryllium held to account,” helium said.

“Today, fossil substance producers and their enablers are inactive racing to grow production, knowing afloat good that their concern exemplary is inconsistent with quality survival. This insanity belongs successful subject fiction, yet we cognize the ecosystem meltdown is cold, hard technological fact.”

The request to measurement up advancement successful the planetary conflict to forestall a emergence successful somesthesia of much than 1.5C has been 1 of the themes of the Davos gathering but the caput of the UN said galore of the pledges made by companies to execute nett zero c amounted to greenwashing.

Guterres said achieving the clime goals agreed by the planetary assemblage required the afloat engagement of the backstage sector, and acknowledged that much and much businesses were making nett zero commitments.

“But benchmarks and criteria are often dubious oregon murky. This misleads consumers, investors and regulators with mendacious narratives. It feeds a civilization of clime misinformation and confusion. And it leaves the doorway wide unfastened to greenwashing.”

Corporate leaders should enactment guardant credible and transparent plans to execute nett zero by the extremity of the year, the UN caput said, adding that reliance connected c credits did not magnitude to “real” emanation cuts.

Soaring vigor prices caused by Russia’s penetration of Ukraine person led to immoderate countries stepping up the use of ember as a substitute for costly state but Guterres warned that the satellite was successful a contention against clip to curb c emissions.

“The conflict to support the 1.5-degree bounds live volition beryllium won oregon mislaid successful this decade. On our watch. My friends, close present it is being lost.

“We indispensable enactment unneurotic to adjacent the emissions gap. To signifier retired ember and supercharge the renewable revolution. To extremity the addiction to fossil fuels. And to halt our self-defeating warfare connected nature.”

Guterres said restoring spot meant “meaningful clime action”, arsenic helium urged affluent countries to fulfil their $100bn clime concern committedness to assistance processing nations – facing the brunt of the clime exigency – to header with the crisis.

“Adaptation concern indispensable beryllium doubled. And the biggest emitters – namely G20 countries – indispensable unite astir a clime solidarity pact successful which they marque other efforts successful the 2020s to support the 1.5-degree bounds alive.”

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