Video Message by António Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations, on World Environment Day 2019
World Environment Day highlights how much we all rely on nature and on our planet’s health.
The quality of the water we drink, the food we eat and the air we breathe – all depend on protecting the natural world.
But the environment is facing unprecedented perils caused by human activity.
One million species are at risk of extinction.
Oceans are under stress.
Air pollution is claiming seven million lives every year and damaging children’s development.
Many air pollutants also cause global warming.
And climate change is an existential threat.
In my recent visit to the South Pacific, I saw first-hand the severe and worsening impacts of the global climate emergency.
There is no time to lose.
This is the battle of our lives. We must win. And we can.
Tax pollution, not people.
Stop subsidizing fossil fuels.
Stop building new coal plants.
People everywhere are demanding action.
On World Environment Day, let us heed their call.