'Do not fail this time. Do your job' - Geldof warns world leaders that climate change will kill millions if action not taken
Published 19/11/2015 | 15:37
Bob Geldof has issued a stark warning to global leaders and their citizens, stating that climate change it will be responsible for the death of millions of people unless immediate action is taken.
The human rights activist didn't hold back as he addressed world leaders directly.
"You failed previously, all of you.
"That's a disgrace.
"You should be ashamed.
"Do not fail this time. Do your job," he said.
Speaking at the One Young World summit in Bangkok, he announced the launch of a major international campaign named Call On COP (COP21).
The campaign calls for world leaders to make a firm commitment in tackling climate change in advance of the 21st Conference of Parties in Paris.
Geldof recalled observing the flags of 190 nations at the summit's opening ceremony and said some of these countries will have disappeared completely over the next 50 - 100 years because of climate change and the poverty that it causes.
"The poor will be the first affected and the worst affected," he said.
He acknowledged the political difficulty that exists in reaching consensus on issues involving climate change but says the time for arguing has now passed and it's time for implementation of policies.
Geldof said he remembers witnessing the destructive nature of climate change with his own eyes during the famines in Africa in 1984, 1985 and 1986.
"What I saw was 30 million people potentially dying of starvation because it was too hot to grow anything," he said.
He warned that what the repercussions of climate change have become even more serious in the intervening years.
"That's small compared to what very well may happen if you men and women don't arrive at a critical compact which we require right now," he said.
"I've been to many of these conferences and the problem is the sense of urgency dissipates quickly.
"That can't be allowed to happen this time - it's make or break time," he warned.
Running over 48 hours, Call On COP sees One Young World delegates and Counsellors deliver back-to-back speeches as part of an ambitious campaign to pressure global leaders into making significant concessions at COP21.