Good morning, Ladies and Gentlemen,
It is a great pleasure to welcome Mayor Michael Bloomberg to the United Nations Headquarters, this time as United Nations Special Envoy for Cities and Climate Change.
Michael Bloomberg has been a strong supporter and he has been supporting the cause of the United Nations during his twelve-year- long mayorship in this great city of New York. Mayor Bloomberg has been more than just a very generous host to the United Nations Headquarters; he has been a strong supporter for many of the United Nations’ goals and ideals and objectives. His foundation – Bloomberg Philanthropies - has been helping with many life-saving [projects] of the United Nations, saving the lives of women and children and girls, and also helping HIV/AIDS patients, and also helping [to fight] non-communicable diseases.
Mayor Bloomberg is much better known for his strong stewardship on environment and climate change. He has made this great city of New York a carbon-free city. It has been his hallmark, and as President of the C40 Mayors Group for Climate Change, he has been making a great contribution to a global effort, together with the United Nations, to make this Planet Earth and our world environmentally sustainable. And I really appreciate it.
That is why I have asked him, after his retirement from Mayor, to serve humanity, to work for humanity, working as Special Envoy of the United Nations for cities and climate change. I am sure that we will be able to benefit a lot from his experience, his global visibility and global leadership and I really count on your leadership. We need such dedicated and visionary leadership when we really try hard to address the climate change phenomenon.
New York was seriously affected by the Sandy storm. These megacities like New York are very vulnerable to climate change impact. At the same time, megacities like New York can provide very good opportunities. They are now doing a lot on making this city resilient against the climate change phenomenon [through] land use, transit and very resilient building codes and sustainable energy. This is what Mayor Bloomberg has been doing when he was Mayor. Now we would like to use his global leadership and power in, first of all, making our UN climate change summit meeting in September a great success, and most importantly, we need to have a global, legal climate change agreement by 2015, next year.
I really count on your strong support and leadership, and welcome, and thank you very much.