On Tuesday, September 25, 2018 the United Nations General Assembly President Fernanda Espinosa advocated for environmental protection and cited the example of floods in the state of Kerala in India, where at least 400 people were killed.
In the inaugural address of 73rd General Debate of UNGA Espinosa said, “We will work to give greater attention to environmental protection and to make progress on the agreements aimed at slowing climate change. Heat waves, forest fires, storms and floods are leaving behind a trail of death and destruction”.
She said, “In August, the state of Kerala in India suffered its worst monsoon flood in recent history, which killed 400 people and displaced a million more from their homes. Hurricanes killed thousands of people in 2017, making them one of the deadliest extreme climate disasters in history”.
UNGA president cites Kerala floods to urge countries to slow down climate change https://t.co/r0J6vY8jZy
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Espinosa was elected as President of UNGA this year, the fourth women to lead the UNGA in 70 years. She said in her speech that she will work for gender equality and empowerment of women, implementation of new global compacts on migration and refugees, creation of decent work opportunities for all as well as attention towards environmental protection.
She said, “Around the world, millions of people are suffering from violence, war and the effects of climate change. We have a responsibility to slow the production and consumption policies and habits that are destroying our planet”.
In her speech she stressed that multilateralism can bring the stability in the world, she said, “The reality is that the work of the UN remains as relevant as it was 73 years ago. Multilateralism is the only possible answer to the global problem we face. Weakening or putting it in question only generates instability and bewilderment, distrust and polarization”.
Assembly President Espinosa urged the world leaders to build a more peaceful, secure and humane world order that guarantees the dignity of people. She said, “Let us then build a United Nations that is more relevant to all people”.