President Cyril Ramaphosa says no country should ever have to choose between developmental aspirations and climate change.
He was speaking at a special Climate Ambition Summit on the margins of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.
UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres says developed countries must act with urgency to accelerate the reduction of emissions.
The world has witnessed untold suffering as natural disasters attributed to climate change continue to ravage a number of countries.
The President says this is the time to accelerate implementation to tackle this phenomenon.
“We are presented with the unique and unprecedented opportunity to set the global economy on an equitable, environmentally sustainable and low carbon developmental path. despite having little responsibility for causing climate change, Africa is warming up faster than the rest of the world like the other parts on the global south. Climate action cant be separated from sustainable development and signs are clear that we wont meet target on the Paris agreement.”
78th Session of UN General Assembly: Update from Sherwin Bryce-Pease:
The UN Secretary General says the world cannot ignore climate change.
“Humanity has opened the gates of hell. We see horrendous effects, farmers are watching crops carried by floods, we see sweltering temperatures, spawning diseases and thousands fleeing in fear as they have fires. If nothing changes we are heading to a 2 or 3 degrees Celsius rise towards dangerous and unsustainable world.”
Meanwhile, some African leaders such as Kenyan President William Ruto say the continent must take advantage of this moment.
Africa has vast resources, our people are activated to play a role, to create clean and energy. We have low gas emissions, this could leapfrog our industrial paradigm shift and set ecologically sustainable path and we have this as the continent and it’s time for our golden moment.”
These discussions are part of raising awareness about the emergency of climate change ahead of the COP28 gathering in the United Arab Emirates from the 30th of November to the 12th of December.
78th Session of UN General Assembly | SABC News International Editor Sophie Mokoena gives analysis: