Climate change is no longer a threat to just the future — we are seeing its effects in the present

While the planet rightfully continues its battle against Covid-19 and developing effective vaccines to eliminate it for good, the fight against climate change remains, and will remain, the single biggest threat to humanity in the 21st century, and warrants the highest priority.

To that end, the Leaders’ Summit on Climate, as hosted by US President Joe Biden where he invited 40 world leaders, including Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, to join the virtual summit in a bid to galvanize efforts to tackle the climate crisis is the kind of urgency we wish to see from world leaders on a regular basis in the fight against climate change.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina must also be commended for her prudent suggestions at the summit, which included major economies, international financial institutions, and private sectors coming forward with plans for concessional climate financing, investing in carbon-neutral technologies with a provision of technology transfer among nations, and finally, ensuring the annual target of $100 billion, balanced between adaptation and mitigation.

What must also be reiterated are the economic benefits of taking strong actions against climate change, with numerous opportunities available for good jobs, advancing certain technologies, and ultimately, creating a more equitable world by safeguarding countries such as Bangladesh, which are most vulnerable to the effects of climate change.

However, it must be said that, while there continue to be lively discussions, oftentimes, the world has collectively failed to show the urgency when it comes to taking concrete next steps. This is what must change. Climate change is no longer a threat to just the future — we are seeing its eects in the present, and if we do not act immediately, it will be too late.

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