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Environment

'We Will Be Toasted, Roasted, and Grilled' by Climate Change, Warns IMF Director

"If we don't address those two issues — of climate change and growing inequalities — we will be moving towards a dark 50 years from now," said Christine Lagarde, IMF Director, at an economic conference in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

The International Monetary Fund leader addressed climate change and inequality at the Future Investment Initiative as “two key issues” that world leaders must tackle to safeguard the future of the planet.

"As I've said before, if we don't do anything about climate change now, in 50 years' time we will be toasted, roasted and grilled," Lagarde said.

Take Action: Call on World Leaders to Help Millions of People Affected by Extreme Weather

In 2015, 195 nations signed the Paris Climate Agreement to keep global temperatures from rising more than 2 degrees celsius from 1990 levels. So far, only the US and Syria have decided to opt out of the deal, and Nicaragua became the latest country to join.  

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Lagarde also said that inequeality — financial and gender — needs to be addressed, if the world wants to a future that “looks like utopia and not dystopia,"according to the Guardian.

She then praised Saudi Arabia’s reform efforts allowing women to drive, and the economic effects of low oil prices, which have triggered a deficit amid reliance on oil exports.

However, Saudi Aramco CEO Amin Nasser, who spoke on the same panel, said the switch to cleaner energy will not happen overnight.

“Alternatives, electric cars and renewables, are definitely gaining market share, making a lot of progress and we are witnessing that,” he said. “However, it will be decades before they take a major share of the global energy supply.”

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According to the BP Statistical Review 2017 World Energy report, renewable energy accounts for a fraction of global energy production, roughly around 8%.

Renewable sources, however, are growing at a rapid pace, and accounted for 40% of new global power production in 2016. 

Global Citizen campaigns on the Global Goals, which call for robust climate change action. You can take action on this issue here.