Prince Charles Warns International Leaders That The World Only Has 18 Months Left To Halt Climate Change

Prince Charles, Prince Of Wales attends day one of Royal Ascot at Ascot Racecourse on June 18, 2013 in Ascot, England.
Stuart C. Wilson / Getty Images

During his speech at the Reception for Commonwealth Foreign Ministers, Prince Charles stressed the importance of critical U.N. meetings that are set to take place before the end of 2020 in halting climate change before it becomes completely out of our control, reported the BBC.

“I am firmly of the view that the next 18 months will decide our ability to keep climate change to survivable levels and to restore nature to the equilibrium we need for our survival.”

It has become increasingly clearer to climate change experts that the 12-year window the world was given in 2018 to take immediate action to stop climate change has now decreased to just 18 months — or until the end of 2020.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reported last year that to be able to prevent the rise of global temperatures beyond 1.5 Celsius before the end of this century, global carbon emissions would need to be cut 45 percent by 2030. However, in order to successfully make this drastic cut, critical political steps would need to occur before the end of 2020.

Hans Joachim Schellnhuber from the Potsdam Climate Institute has specifically addressed this short window of time.

“The climate math is brutally clear: While the world can’t be healed within the next few years, it may be fatally wounded by negligence until 2020.”

https://twitter.com/UNFCCC/status/617803440996155393

Currently, global heating is headed towards a whopping three-degree increase by 2100, which is double the 1.5-degree increase advised by the IPCC. Without immediate political action, this increase will not be reduced in time.

The next global climate summit to take place will be in New York on September 23, called by U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres. The summit will gather representatives from countries all around the world willing to make significant improvements to their nation’s carbon-cutting plans.

The next summit will be the COP25, which will take place in Santiago, Chile, to follow up on plans made at the U.N. summit.

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Other plans, such as the green deal in the U.S. and U.K. legislation for zero emissions by 2050, hope to also contribute to the reduction of carbon emissions and as a result, the reduction of global temperatures.

Belize Ambassador Janine Felson, who serves as chief strategist for the Alliance of Small Island States group in the U.N., shared Prince Charles’s call to take urgent action by the end of 2020.

“Our group of small island developing states share Prince Charles’s sense of the profound urgency for ambitious climate action,” she said. “All at once we are witness to a collective convergence of public mobilization, worsening climatic impacts and dire scientific warnings that compel decisive climate leadership. Without question, 2020 is a hard deadline for that leadership to finally manifest itself.”