UN Secretary-General visits UNIS
Top image: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon met with the members of the student council at UNIS. From left to right:Johannes Lose, Benedikte Jarstø, Mari Berg, Max Janson, Marie Føreid, Benjamin Merkel, Ban Ki-Moon, David Hammenstig, Matilda Hallerstig, Alexander Pilditch. Photo: Christian Katlein.
The Secretary-General of the United Nations, Ban Ki-moon, visited UNIS today after seeing for himself the melting ice in the waters north of Svalbard. – I am troubled and alarmed by what I have seen, he said while visiting UNIS.
2 September 2009
Text: Gunnar Sand
While in Longyearbyen, the Secretary-General visited UNIS today and led a panel discussion about the melting Arctic. The topic was entitled “Global impact from a melting Arctic”.
The Arctic could be ice free by 2030, Ban Ki-moon said, and expressed deep concern about the development of the world climate. The Secretary-General said that he would deliver the message to the world leaders in upcoming conferences.
– We have the answers. We have the means. I hope you will all join me in the effort to save the world climate, for the sake of future generations and for our own, he said in front of a packed auditorium at UNIS this morning.
Former Chair of the Inuit Circumpolar Council, Sheila Watt-Cloutier, spoke on behalf of the indigenous peoples of the world and urged world leaders to act now. She stressed that there must be more focus on humanity in years to come, not just industry.
Environmental advisor to the President of the Seychelles, Rolph Payet, said during his presentation that the Seychelles would be badly hit by a changing climate and asked world leaders to deal with the problem. To the audience of Longyearbyen he added that it was cold on Svalbard and he wanted it to remain cold.
The Norwegian Minister of Environment, Erik Solheim, addressed the students of UNIS during his presentation: – You are at the right place for studying the most important issue of our time. We need more knowledge in a variety of fields, Erik Solheim said.