“The continuation of our civilisations and the natural world upon which we depend, is in your hands,” he said.
The world is currently on course to overshoot by far the limits for global warming agreed in the landmark 2015 Paris accord on climate change, which were intended to prevent more extreme weather, rising sea levels and the loss of plant and animal species.
The Katowice talks are billed as the most important U.N. conference since Paris, coming ahead of an end-of-year deadline to agree a “rule book” on enforcing action.
Yet political and U.N. leaders have been struggling to inject urgency into two weeks of haggling on how to move on from fossil fuels to give practical effect to the Paris accord.
Representatives of some of the most powerful countries and biggest polluters were conspicuous by their absence, and the United States is quitting the U.N. climate process.
To maximise the chances of success in Poland, technical talks began on Sunday, a day early, with delegates from nearly 200 nations debating how to meet the Paris target of limiting global warming to between 1.5 and 2.0 degrees Celsius (2.7 and 3.6 Fahrenheit).
Known for countless nature films, Attenborough has gained prominence recently with his “Blue Planet II” series, which highlighted the devastating effect of pollution on the oceans.
“Leaders of the world, you must lead,” said the naturalist, given a “People’s seat” at the two-week U.N. climate conference in the Polish coal city of Katowice alongside two dozen heads of state and government.
Source: Naturalist Attenborough urges climate meet to tackle ‘greatest threat in thousands of years’ : Reuters