“We still cling with parts of our minds to the infantile belief that the world was made for our gratification and pleasure,” he said. “And we combine this narcissism with an assumption of our own immortality.”
“We believe that someone else will clear up the mess, because that is what someone else has always done,” he added. “We trash our habitats, again and again, with the inductive reasoning that we’ve gotten away with it so far, and therefore, we’ll get away with it again.
“My friends, the adolescence of humanity is coming to an end and must come to an end.”
World leaders need to arrive in Scotland ready to make necessary commitments, he said. It’s already “too late” to stop the rise in global temperatures, but the world can still “restrain that growth” to 1.5 degrees Celsius.
To prevent crossing that threshold, “we need to pledge collectively to achieve carbon neutrality, net zero, by the middle of the century,” Johnson said on Wednesday. “We need all countries, every single one of you, to step up the commitment to very substantial reductions by 2030.”
The Prime Minister held a closed meeting with UN Secretary-General António Guterres and other world leaders Monday to urge nations to pledge funding to help developing nations move away from fossil fuels.
In a meeting with Biden on Tuesday, Johnson hailed the US President’s speech as “the most important thing today.”