UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called on every country to declare a “climate emergency” on Saturday, as world leader marked the fifth anniversary of the Paris climate accord.

At the summit, dozens of leader speaking offered tweaks to existing commitments and promises of bolder moves before Glasgow in late 2021, a breakthrough to hasten new policies for ending fossil fuels.

“Can anybody still deny that we are facing a dramatic emergency?” Guterres said via video.

“That is why today, I call on all leaders worldwide to declare a State of Climate Emergency in their countries until carbon neutrality is reached.”

Impacts of climate change increasingly stark since the Paris deal was struck, including wildfires in Australia and Californian to collapsing ice sheets in Antarctica, and pressure has grown over world leader to listen to warnings from scientists.

Britain also declared to stop direct government support for overseas fossil fuel projects, as campaigners move on putting pressure on G7 economies to restrict support for oil and gas companies.

Campaigners hailed the move for putting pressure on other G7 economies to restrict support for oil and gas companies.

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani also talked on importance of removing dangerous emissions, but stressed on the ongoing activities on the government level is going to emit this process.

“Afghanistan is one of the most vulnerable countries in the world in terms of climate change,” Ghani told an online climate change summit.

“Afghanistan is located right in the heart of Asia and we have the capacity to become a platform for environmental cooperation at the regional level,” he added.

Climate change is not only a problem at the national level, but also at the global level, and solving this problem requires collective regional and global efforts.

President Ghani has emphasized that green energy can lead to the mobilization of green industry in Afghanistan, so work is underway in this area.

Projects in energy areas such as the Tapi gas pipeline and the CASA-1000 hydro power project transmission line are being implemented.

“Afghanistan has a great capacity to produce clean energy and create a green industry, and we have abundant sources of solar, hydropower and wind energy,” he said.

If these resources are properly managed, Afghanistan will have a total generating capacity of 300,000 megawatts of electricity.

Britain, China, Japan, South Korea, Pakistan, Argentina, Barbados, Canada, Colombia, Iceland and Peru pledged their support in regards to reducing climate-warming emissions.

“It is the melting of permafrost; forest fires that hit closer to the home of the climate crisis deniers; droughts that ransack living beings of their resources; floods that reminded many of us that we have no escape,” Selina Neirok Leem, a campaigner from the Marshall Islands, told the summit.

“Major emitters Australia and Brazil did not make ambitious enough pledges to qualify to speak”, Reuters quoted diplomates.

Guterres also pointed on G20 countries that they had spent 50% more of their stimulus on sectors linked to fossil fuels than on clean energy, he said “This is unacceptable, trillions of dollars needed for COVID recovery is money that we are borrowing from future generations.”

Earlier, Guterres mentioned that humanity is waging, what he describes as a “suicidal” war on the natural world.


  • Mohammad Haroon Alim holds a BBA degree from Kardan University. He works as a sub-editor for Khaama Press.