World is ‘standing on the precipice’ of a number of crises

Former U.N. Secretary-Common Ban Ki-moon has spoken of the a number of disasters the world is presently dealing with, which have solely been accentuated by the continued coronavirus pandemic. 

Ban, who led the U.N. from 2007-2016, known as on international leaders to boost their ambition as a way to keep away from failures on a variety of various points, together with local weather change and the shortage of water.

“There are nonetheless 2 billion individuals who lack protected ingesting water, greater than 1.5 billion individuals who do not need electrical energy and there are greater than 60 million schoolchildren who don’t go to high school, even elementary faculty … That is unhappy, that is actually heartbreaking,” Ban informed CNBC’s “Sustainable Future” in March, talking round World Water Day.

“We’re standing on the precipice of all these crises … I hope that international leaders ought to have far-reaching international visions, that we’re on this world collectively, we’re all on this collectively, in any other case, we are going to all be a failure. Subsequently, I am actually urging political leaders to do their greatest, lead by instance,” he added. 

Ban stated the approaching 10 years can be crucially essential for international leaders to work on the U.N.’s Sustainable Growth Targets. These are 17 targets created by the New York-based group that are a name for motion on financial, social and environmental sustainability by the yr 2030.

Narrowing it down, he stated that the continued Covid-19 disaster had additional highlighted the influence of a world water scarcity.

“The pandemic after all has thrown a highlight on this challenge and it has additionally actually demonstrated that water is a connecting thread linking the myriad of impacts of our crises, whether or not that is round infectious ailments or meals safety, the final yr has seen us expertise all of them,” he stated.

“When trillions of {dollars} are being spent for controlling the coronavirus, I feel we have to see a much bigger, larger image, investing properly in water, that can actually assist our life. That is some of the essential pressing gadgets of (the) Sustainable Growth Targets now,” he added.

Ban was talking alongside the CEO of the World Heart for Adaptation, Patrick Verkooijen. Ban can be the chair of the GCA, which describes itself as a “options dealer to speed up, innovate and scale adaptation motion for a climate-resilient world.”

Verkooijen informed CNBC that the pandemic had been a “wake-up name.” “We’re totally unprepared for the following disaster, the local weather emergency … 90% of all pure disasters are water associated, extra floods, extra droughts, extra storms, extra fires. Within the final 20 years, these local weather disasters have doubled. Half one million individuals misplaced their lives and over 2 trillion in financial losses,” he stated.

“In 2017, three storms value the USA financial system $265 billion. Final yr in 2020, one storm, over $55 billion in financial losses. I feel (U.S. Particular Presidential Envoy for Local weather) John Kerry stated it very nicely, we’ve now crossed the purpose that investing in prevention is far more efficient than cleansing up afterwards. That is why investing in water and local weather adaptation is the best way to go,” he added.

Ban, who led efforts for the signing of the Paris Settlement for Local weather Change in 2015, stated that motion on addressing all these points wanted to be sped up.

“Now we have to essentially expedite and lift the ambition stage notably by political leaders … Folks know that local weather change is essential, very severe and wishes pressing motion,” informed CNBC.

“However on the similar time, we’ve to handle all of the meals shortages and gender empowerment, water shortages, high quality schooling, resilient cities.”

Former UN Secretary Common Ban Ki-Moon.

Thomas Trutschel | Photothek | Getty Pictures

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