Prince Charles has compared the planet to a sick human and says leaders who delay action on climate change are essentially “testing the disease to the patient’s destruction”.
The Prince of Wales says climate change is accepted by every major scientific body in the world.
Even the United Nations, the World Bank, the Pentagon, the UK Ministry of Defence, the CIA and NSA all realise the gravity and immediacy of the threat, he says, and they could “scarcely be accused of being part of some half-baked conspiracy dreamt up by extreme environmentalists intent on undermining capitalism”.
The future king acknowledged the problem of human-induced global warming was of “astonishing complexity”.
“(But) shouting for help is not the same as delivering it,” he told a gathering of health professionals in London.
“Recognising life-threatening illness is not the same as taking life-saving action.
“If the planet were a patient, we would have intervened long ago – not waited until we had tested the disease to the patient’s destruction.”
The British royal, a long-time environmental campaigner, said the UN climate change talks to be held in Paris in December were “perhaps our last opportunity” to set binding targets that would keep the world below 2C of warming.
“Should we miss this moment the chances of success are, I fear, vanishingly small,” the 66-year-old said.
“We must ensure that there is a real willingness to act and that such actions are meaningful in quality and scale.”
Prince Charles said if world leaders reached an agreement, people could then “pray that our sick planetary patient might be placed on a road to recovery.
“Failure to write the prescription, however, might leave us contemplating the death certificate instead.”