At the opening ceremony of the United Nations-sponsored COP24, Antonio Guterres, UN Secretary-General, did not mince his words when he said that Climate change was already "a matter of life and death" for many countries. He went on to add that the world has to gear up and extend support to a low-carbon economy. He feels the present conference would help to give direction to the movement.

BBC reports that Sir David Attenborough remarked about the ill effects of climate change. He has a major role to play because he will be acting as a link between the public and policy-makers at the meeting. He cautioned about the possible collapse of civilization unless the phenomenon is arrested.

He was speaking at the climate talks in Katowice, Poland, which is in continuation of the 2015 Paris agreement.

Countries must be serious

Climate change is a subject that must get the seriousness it deserves. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) wanted to limit the global temperature rise to 1.5C and governments were to bring down emissions of greenhouse gases by 45 percent by 2030. However, a recent study has revealed that CO2 emissions are again rising after stalling for four years. It is possible to arrest this trend by implementing renewable energy like solar or electric power. There is a gap between planning and implementation, which can be plugged by assigning suitable priorities.

Meanwhile, the World Bank has announced $200bn in funding over five years to support countries taking action against climate change.

China and the EU are determined to show that international co-operation is necessary. America has withdrawn from the 2015 Paris agreement, but it cannot leave until 2020. Hence, it could be participating in COP24 even though President Donald Trump continues to be in favor of promoting fossil fuels.

From COP21 to COP24

COP stands for Conference of Parties. COP21 held in 2015 led to the landmark 2015 Paris Agreement. This is a legally binding agreement meant to fight climate change. Under this agreement, countries made certain commitments and at COP24, they must finalize guidelines for implementation. The conference will conclude on December 14.

CNN adds that in the opinion of UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres “political will and more far-sighted leadership” is necessary to tackle a global issue of this nature. Arnold Schwarzenegger also spoke on the occasion. Austrian President Alexander Van der Bellen invited him to the podium, and the actor and former Governor of California explained that it is not correct to say America has dropped out of the Paris Agreement.

There is work going on at the macro level in the US to tackle climate change because people realize that it is a threat to humanity.

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