New York: On the occasion of International Mother Earth Day, the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres issued a statement calling for urgent action to protect the environment and combat climate change.
In his statement, Guterres highlighted the crucial relationship between humanity and the natural world, stating that our health and survival depend on maintaining a healthy environment. However, he expressed concern over the ongoing destruction of forests, wetlands, oceans, coral reefs, rivers, seas, and lakes, which is putting one million species at risk of extinction.
To address these challenges, Guterres called for accelerated climate action, including deeper and faster emissions cuts to limit global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius. He also emphasised the need for massive investments in adaptation and resilience, particularly in the most vulnerable communities that are least responsible for the crisis.
Guterres underscored the importance of healthy ecosystems in the fight against climate change and urged the protection of 30 per cent of Earth’s land and water by 2030, as outlined in the UN biodiversity agreement.
The UN Secretary-General called on governments, corporations, institutions, civil society, and individuals to work together to demand that leaders take decisive action to protect the environment. He also stressed the importance of drawing from the knowledge and leadership of Indigenous Peoples in environmental stewardship.
In conclusion, Guterres urged people worldwide to take action to protect our shared home and called on world leaders to make peace with nature for the benefit of current and future generations.