UN chief highlights political will in addressing climate change
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned on Thursday that climate change is the most important systemic risk for the near future, but the political will to address it is slowing down.
In a special address during the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Guterres said the world faces a series of risks ranging from debt, trade tensions to instability in financial markets caused by political events, and climate change is proving to be worse than what scientists had foreseen.
"We need countries to make stronger commitments," Guterres said, calling for more measures to mitigate climate change and adapt to it, along with financial aid for poorer countries."
"We are in a world in which global challenges are more and more integrated and the responses are more and more fragmented, and if this is not reversed, it's a recipe for disaster," he said.
On globalization, he said, "We no longer live in a bipolar or unipolar world but we are not yet in a multipolar world. We are in a kind of chaotic situation of transition."
To win support for multilateralism, Guterres said the UN needs to demonstrate to all those who are not in favor of multilateralism that it cares for them and aims at solving problems of all those who are feeling left behind.
The UN should let people know that it has launched a very substantial, robust program of reform, aiming at decentralization and simplification of procedures, he added.
The UN chief said the Fourth Industrial Revolution, with artificial intelligence taking the lead, will have a huge impact on the economies and societies, with "a massive destruction as well as the creation of jobs."
To better prepare people for the future job market, the educational systems should focus on how people learn instead of how much people learn because people will be doing completely different things in their lives, he said.
(Cover: UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres attends the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland, January 24, 2019. /VCG Photo)