World treating nature like a ‘toilet’, says UN chief

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The world’s fossil fuel addiction has thrown the environment into chaos, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres said on Tuesday at the opening of Cop15, the UN biodiversity summit.

“We are treating nature like a toilet,” Mr Guterres said at the conference in Canada.

“Unsustainable production and consumption are sending emissions skyrocketing and degrading our land, sea and air.”

As talks begin this week on a new set of global goals to protect nature over the next decade, Mr Guterres stressed that Cop15 is an opportunity to halt “this orgy of destruction”.

He called on the private sector to recognise that profit and protection “must go hand in hand” and asked developed countries to provide bold financial support for the Global South, which should not be expected to shoulder the burden alone.

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