Britain's Prince Charles currently in Brazil on a South American tour warned on Thursday that mankind has 100 months or less to save the planet from a climate-caused disaster.
The Prince of Wales told some 150 business leaders in Rio de Janeiro that the best projections tell us that we have less than 100 months to alter our behaviour before we risk catastrophic climate change and the unimaginable horrors that this would bring.
Any difficulties which the world faces today will be nothing compared to the full effects which global warming will have on the worldwide economy, he said. It will result in vast movements of people escaping either flooding or droughts, in uncertain production of foods and lack of water and, of course, increasing social instability and potential conflict.
It will affect the well-being of every man, woman and child on our planet, the Prince added, calling for urgent steps to curb deforestation and greenhouse gas emissions. Failure to adequately tackle the causes of the problem is gambling away our future he pointed out.
The heir to the British throne said the global economic crisis is the worst in generations, and said sustainable development was the best and perhaps only way to ensure future economic growth.
Doesn't the global crisis in which we find ourselves tell us that sustainable development will be, indeed can only be, the primary driver of economic and industrial development in the future?
”As the world's economy heads further into recession, it would be easy to lose sight of the bigger picture - to commit the sin, as we say in English, and if you would pardon the terrible pun, of 'not seeing the wood for the trees'.
On Wednesday Prince Charles met in Brasilia with President Lula da Silva, Foreign Minister Celso Amorim and the presidents of the Senate and the lower house Chamber of Deputies.
He is also scheduled to visit the Amazon jungle cities of Manaus and Santarem before heading to Ecuador on Sunday.