The United Nations Secretary-General's Message

On this World Meteorological Day, humanity faces a difficult truth: climate change is making our planet uninhabitable.

Every year of insufficient action to keep global warming below 1.5 degrees Celsius drives us closer to the brink, increasing systemic risks and reducing our resilience against climate catastrophe. As countries hurtle past the 1.5-degree limit, climate change is intensifying heatwaves, droughts, flooding, wildfires and famines, while threatening to submerge low-lying countries and cities and drive more species to extinction.

This year’s theme — The Future of Weather, Climate and Water Across Generations — compels us all to live up to our responsibilities and ensure that future generations inherit a better tomorrow.

That means accelerating actions to limit temperature rise to 1.5 degrees, through scaled-up mitigation and adaptation measures.

It means radically transforming our energy and transportation systems, breaking our addiction to fossil fuels, and embracing a just transition to renewable energy.

It means developed countries providing a revolution of financial and technical support to developing countries as they mitigate emissions, adapt to a renewable future, build resilience against extreme weather events, and address the loss and damage resulting from climate change.

And it means living up to the promise made last World Meteorological Day to ensure that early warning systems against climate disasters cover every person in the world. Thirty countries have now been identified for accelerated implementation this year.

2023 must be a year of transformation, not tinkering.

It’s time to end the relentless — and senseless — war on nature, and deliver the sustainable future that our climate needs, and our children and grandchildren deserve.