"Our world is in big trouble. Divides are growing deeper. Inequalities are growing wider. And challenges are spreading farther," Guterres said while addressing the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) before the opening of the debate.
"We need action across the board," he said and warned that the international community is gridlocked in colossal global dysfunction, saying it is "not ready or willing to tackle the big dramatic challenges of our age."
Guterres pointed out that crises like the conflict in Ukraine, climate emergency and biodiversity loss, and the dire financial situation of developing countries threaten the very future of humanity and the fate of the planet.
Watch history unfold during the 77th session of #UNGA!
"Geopolitical divides are undermining the work of the Security Council, undermining international law, undermining trust and people's faith in democratic institutions, undermining all forms of international cooperation. We cannot go on like this," he stressed.
The UN Secretary also called on all developed economies to tax the windfall profits of fossil fuel companies, and re-direct the funds to countries suffering loss and damage caused by the climate crisis and to people struggling with rising food and energy prices.
"We need to hold fossil fuel companies and their enablers to account," he pointed out, asking for a transition to renewable energy, which generates three times more jobs, is already cheaper than fossil fuels and is the pathway to energy security and stable prices.
On Monday, the United Nations General Assembly held a meeting to commemorate the life and work of South African leader Nelson Mandela. In this context, Guterres stated: "Mandela showed that we have the capacity and responsibility to build a better future" #NelsonMandela#UNpic.twitter.com/eBitodXbKy