New York, 18 May 2023
Following is the text of UN Secretary-General António Guterres’ message on the International Day for Biological Diversity, observed on 22 May:
On the International Day for Biological Diversity, we reflect on our relationship with humanity’s life-support system. From the air we breathe and the food we eat, to the energy that fuels us and the medicines that heal us, our lives are wholly dependent on healthy ecosystems.
Yet, our actions are devastating every corner of the planet. One million species are at risk of extinction — the result of habitat degradation, skyrocketing pollution, and the worsening climate crisis. We must end this war on nature. Last year’s agreement on the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework marked an important step — but now is the time to move from agreement to action.
This means ensuring sustainable production and consumption patterns, redirecting subsidies from nature-destroying activities towards green solutions, recognizing the rights of Indigenous peoples and local communities, the strongest guardians of our world’s biodiversity, and pushing Governments and businesses to take stronger and faster action against biodiversity loss and the climate crisis.
Let us work together across Governments, civil society and the private sector to secure a sustainable future for all.
Source – UN