WED Messages

Message by H.E. Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj, President of Mongolia to the 2013 World Environment Day

Ladies and gentlemen,
Our blue planet is only one for all of us. Yet, our home Earth is visibly losing its vitality and pristineness due to the reckless policies and ruinous acts of its children, the human beings. Its resources are being exhausted and the safe livelihood of the humankind is gravely endangered.

Alarming environmental changes and disasters, unprecedented and unheard of before, occur at a greater rate. Climate change with ensuing water shortage, desertification, soil and vegetation degradation lead not only to depletion of natural resources, but also threaten the social and economic development of the entire world.

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United Nations Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon
“Think.Eat.Save: Reduce Your Foodprint”

We live in a world of plenty, where food production outstrips demand, yet 870 million people are undernourished and childhood stunting is a silent pandemic.  To create the future we want, we must correct this inequity.  We must ensure access to adequate nutrition for all, double the productivity of smallholder farmers who grow the bulk of food in the developing world, and make food systems sustainable in the face of environmental and economic shocks.  This is the vision of my Zero Hunger Challenge, launched last year at the Rio+20 UN Conference on Sustainable Development.

One way to narrow the hunger gap and improve the well-being of the most vulnerable is to address the massive loss and waste inherent in today’s food systems.  Currently at least one third of all food produced fails to make it from farm to table.  This is foremost an affront to the hungry, but it also represents a massive environmental cost in terms of energy, land and water. 

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Message of the UN Under-Secretary General and UNEP Executive Director, Achim Steiner

Every year on June 5th, people across the planet celebrate the United Nations World Environment Day. It is a day for action where hundreds of thousands of activities take place in virtually every country in the world to improve the environment now and for the future.

This year’s theme focuses on food waste and food loss. Think.Eat.Save. Reduce Your Foodprint is the new campaign that UNEP and the Food and Agricultural Organization of the UN, in conjunction with a rapidly growing list of partners from the public and private sector, launched earlier this year. It draws attention both to the issue and the absurdity that high volumes of perfectly edible produce are never making it from the farm to the fork.

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Press Statement
John Kerry Secretary of State
Washington, DC
June 5, 2013

On World Environment Day, the United States proudly joins the community of nations in recognizing that the protection and sustainable use of our planet’s natural resources is fundamental to creating a safe, secure world for future generations. Perhaps most urgently, we are reminded that no one nation can do it alone.

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Message of Luc Gnacadja Executive Secretary United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification

Food production has a profound impact on our environment. Consider that globally agriculture withdraws 70 percent of all freshwater for irrigation. It is a driver for about 80 percent of the deforestation and contributes 30 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions. Unsustainable land and water use expedites land degradation and the loss of biodiversity. 

Food is produced at such a high environmental cost. Yet, every year about one third of it is either wasted or lost. Meantime, one in seven people still goes to bed hungry. This enormous drain on our limited natural resources is shocking and morally unacceptable.

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World Environment Day: Global Influencers Share a Voice on Natural Capital

To mark the United Nations Environment Programme’s World Environment Day (5 June 2013), two of the key figures involved in the inaugural World Forum on Natural Capital are reminding business leaders of our common interest in protecting the environment and, in particular, the benefits of properly valuing our natural capital. 
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