Germany shattered its all-time heat record for June yesterday as Parties sat in air-conditioned rooms debating how to receive the best available science on climate change. Along with Germany, Spain, Belgium, France, Italy, Switzerland and the Czech Republic have issued public health warnings. India is in the middle of the worst water crisis in its history, with 600 million people facing acute water shortage and all the reservoirs dry in its sixth-largest city. Last Friday, 40.000 young people marched in the streets of Aachen to demand bold climate action and an end to coal. And just yesterday, the courts in Kenya listened, and upheld the demands by the people of Lamu to reject a new coal power project.
If this session has taught us anything, it’s that there’s no time for wishy-washy “gentlepersons' agreements” when the world is on fire. True leaders have the courage and determination to offer a credible response to the planetary emergency we face, to phase out fossil fuels and ignite the clean energy revolution with justice and equity. While we could welcome the progress made towards agreeing on the Terms of Reference of the Warsaw International Mechanism for Loss and Damage, and we appreciate your hard work, the political message coming from this conference is far from adequate.
Dear delegates, we call on you to kindly deliver the following message to your leaders back home: We are in the eye of the storm of the climate emergency. We expect your leaders, especially from big emitters, to come to New York in September for the UNSG Summit with nothing less than truly bold commitments that get us to the 1.5-degree goal. We will be there in New York, too. We will mobilize the full power of our network with more than 1,300 organizations in over 120 countries to hold your leaders accountable. We will not stop after New York, please tell your leaders to be prepared for consequences if they continue to fail the people and the planet.