New UN Environment head takes over, pledges action on climate change

Source: Xinhua| 2019-06-15 17:39:59|Editor: Xiang Bo
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NAIROBI, June 15 (Xinhua) -- Newly appointed executive director of UN Environment Inger Andersen officially took over her duty in Nairobi on Friday and vowed to prioritize greater action on climate change, biodiversity loss and pollution during her four-year tenure.

Andersen, a Danish national and environmentalist expressed optimism that it is possible for humanity to fix the environmental problems with the help of science, the UN Environment said in a statement issued in Nairobi on Saturday.

"Climate change, biodiversity loss and pollution in all its forms pose a clear and present danger to human and planetary health and to prosperity," she said.

"I am proud and excited to begin work at the UN Environment Programme in beautiful Kenya at a critical time for humanity. Good environmental stewardship has never been more important," she added.

Andersen noted that what remains now is increased action by governments, private sector engagement and the youths.

"I am committed to work with all partners and donors, to define the priorities of an organization that is central to our aspirations of a sustainable and equitable world," she added.

The new UN Environment head called for unity to help fight challenges that threaten a healthy environment that allows all of humanity to thrive.

Andersen was nominated for the post by United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and approved by the General Assembly in February.

By the time of her appointment, she was the director general of the International Union for Conservation of Nature.

She replaces Erik Solheim who stepped down at the end of last year. Joyce Msuya, deputy executive director has been serving in an acting capacity since the departure of Solheim.