“Only by acting now and standing together behind a universal climate agreement can we live up to the UN’s founding promise. Only by acting now and standing together can we achieve the results we need in the time we have left. Only by acting now and standing together can we tip the scales and change the course of history.”
Academy Award-winning actor and long-time conservationist, Robert Redford encouraged citizens, corporations, countries and young people around the world to step up and ‘save the world before it is too late.’
Speaking at a High-Level Event on Climate Change in New York held by the President of the UN General Assembly, Sam Kutesa, the actor, and self-proclaimed environmental advocate, spoke of the importance of taking action against climate change immediately for the health of future generations.
The event was held ahead of December’s Conference of the Parties (COP) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), in Paris. Its aim was to support the process that will lead to an agreement designed to succeed the Kyoto Protocol on reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
Mr. Redford said it was a global responsibility ‘to unite behind this common goal’ and solve one of the world’s biggest problems, climate change.
He highlighted the severe effects global warming is having across the world, from droughts and famine in Africa to the hurricanes and extreme flooding in America.
“As temperatures continue to rise so do global instability, poverty, and conflict.”
With only two degrees Celsius separating us from a lack of fresh water across a third of the world’s land surface and severe depletion of agricultural land, it is important to take action now.
Over 500 cities worldwide are already working hard to improve the quality of life for its citizens by investing in clean energy to reduce emissions. Aside from providing cleaner air, this movement has also created an employment boost.
Last year the U.S. and China also agreed to reduce their carbon emissions in order to avoid the production of greenhouse gases.
However, Mr Redford said this is not enough.
“Unless we move quickly away from fossil fuels, we’re going to destroy the air we breathe, the water we drink, and the health of our children, grandchildren, and future generations.“No country can solve this crisis alone. We’ve just got to do more.”
The 78 year old actor also urged the younger generations, via twitter chat, to get involved in the movement suggesting they join organisations to help make a difference.
“We know what to do. We just need to act. If we can harness the energy of youth, then I think we have a chance”.
[tweetthis url=”http://wp.me/p5Mdaw-1EZ”] If we can harness the energy of youth, then I think we have a chance- Robert Redford #action2015[/tweetthis]
Agreeing with Mr. Redford, Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said that development cannot be sustainable if it does not address the challenge of climate change.
“Let us always remember that climate change and sustainable development are two sides of the same coin, with two mutually reinforcing agendas,” the UN chief explained to Member States.