Gulf Daily News
By SOMAN BABY
THERE are only 10 years left to take action to stop an "ecological catastrophe" caused by climate change, according to the United Nations.
The stark warning is contained in a report to be unveiled in Bahrain today by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
It is included in its Human Development Report (HDR) for 2007/2008, which is dedicated to the issue of climate change.
"The report warns all people to reflect upon how we mange the environment and the planet Earth we share in common," the UNDP said yesterday.
"The entire human community is required to undertake immediate and strong collective action based on shared values and shared vision.
"Failure to respond to this challenge will stall and then reverse international efforts to reduce poverty.
"The Human development Report 2007-2008 report shows that climate challenge is not just a future scenario."
Increased exposure to draughts, floods and storms is already destroying opportunity and reinforcing inequality.
It is believed that the world is moving towards the point at which ecological catastrophe would be irreversible and unavoidable.
"There is a window of opportunity for avoiding the most damaging climate change impacts, but the window is closing: The world has less than a decade to change course.
"Action taken or not taken in the years ahead will have a profound bearing on the future course of human development."
The report asserts that most wealthy countries are failing to meet their targets for cutting greenhouse gas emissions under the Kyoto Protocol.
But it recognises that developing countries cannot be expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions at the same rate or over the same timeframe."Economic growth and poverty reduction efforts cannot be sacrificed," says the report. "However, developing countries with higher carbon footprints, including Bahrain, will need to start to undertake changes by 2020, but with support from developed countries."
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