by Felix von Geyer, Madrid
Urgency was the key message at the opening of the High-Level Summit of environment ministers in Madrid Tuesday.
“We need your decisions, we need your agreements, we are out of time,” Patricia Espinoza, UNFCCC executive secretary told the summit after Petteri Taalas, secretary general of the World Meteorological Organization told the plenary that continuing to burn the world’s fossil fuels could take average global warming temperatures to 8 degrees Celius above pre-industrial levels.
Taalas pointed towards carbon prices and taxes for “people with lots of fossil fuel fleets” to address mitigation of emissions.
Spain’s Environment Minister Teresa Ribera Rodriguez underlined a ten-year window to address climate change, stressing the importance of saving water resources and that a prosperous future remains possible only through ambition.