Ban Ki-moon Delivers a Keynote at the International Day of Peace Commemorative Roundtable

On September 19th, Co-Chair Ban Ki-moon gave a keynote speech at International Day of Peace Commemorative Roundtable. This event was held as a part of the annual Peace BAR Festival (PBF), a forum on the topic ‘The Future Unhinged: Climate Justice for All,’ and was hosted by Kyung Hee University from September 16th to 19th.

“In order for individuals and communities to escape the existential threats of climate change, we must act now.” – Ban Ki-moon

At the Roundtable, BKMC Board member Irina Bokova who is also former Director-General of UNESCO and an Honorary Rector of Humanities College at Kyung Hee University featured as a moderator. Club of Rome member Ian Dunlop, Professor Peter Wadhams of Cambridge University and Chancellor of Kyung Hee University System Inwon Choue attended as panelists to address global climate change crisis.

In his speech, BKMC Co-chair Ban said, “We are facing a fast-changing climate phenomenon.” “Record-breaking heat waves, wildfires, and typhoons are no longer perceived as abnormal, but as ‘new-normal’. He insisted that “Individual citizens should change their lifestyle habits to curb rising temperatures.” “If we allow the global temperature to rise more than 3 degrees Celsius, then it may be the end of humanity,” he warned.

He also outlined his efforts in environmental sectors as a UN Secretary-General. “I placed climate change as a top priority,” he said. “In 2007, the first high-level talk with world leaders was held.” Moreover, in December 2015, Co-chair Ban successfully initiated and established Paris Climate Agreement. He continued, “The Kyoto Protocol of 1992 was not an obligation to the largest emitters of greenhouse gases including China and India, but this has been improved in the Paris Agreement.”

“Only 11 years are left before climate change becomes a catastrophe,” said Ban. As he closed his speech, Ban emphasized, “We do not have Planet B. There is no alternative to the Earth. Therefore, there is no Plan B in the climate change problem.” “The only way is to foster cooperation based on multilateralism and coexist with nature.”

“It is very crucial for citizens to share information and knowledge about climate change.” – Inwon Choue

During the Roundtable, Chancellor Inwon Choue said, “Countries have promised to decrease 1.5 degrees by the end of the 21st century, but there is not much of a progress. If this continues, the world’s temperature will increase 1 degree higher by 2030.”  In particular, he said, “At this time, when an environmental catastrophe is currently happening, political leaders do not seem to consider climate change seriously.”

“It is very dire to change how we think and take an initiative.” – Irina Bokova

Bokova added to Chancellor Choue, “Political leaders do not pay attention to urgent climate issues. They seem to have forgotten their responsibility to preserve the planet.”

“We are on a path of increasing the world temperature by 4 degrees Celsius, which brings an environment incompatible with an organized global community. In other words, that represents global collapse.” – Ian Dunlop

In discussing lack of political efforts, Ian Dunlop said, “As climate change issues require long-term efforts, political leaders neglect this matter but rather focus on growth.” He also mentioned that one of the main reasons people are not mobilized to act on the issue despite its expected gravity is that the effects of climate change are not immediately apparent. “Whatever we put into the atmosphere today, we don’t see the full effect for 10, 20 or 30 years to come,” he said. “By the time [the effects] becomes clear, it will be too late to act. That means we have to act now.”

“Solutions are available to us but what we lack is political will to make it happen.” – Ian Dunlop

The experts outlined some specific actions to roll back climate change included decreasing industrial disposal is mandatory. Ian Dunlop said, “The problem is, at the moment, we are not reducing emissions at all – we are actually producing more.” “We should stop all carbon consumption today… [and] need to phase out fossil fuel by no later than 2050. We should remove subsidies to fossil fuel industries, tighten controls on fugitive emissions from fossil fuel operations and redesign agricultural practices to emphasize soil carbon sequestration, ocean sequestration and reforestation.”

“Reducing fossil energy on individual level is clearly not enough. Currently 41 billion tons of greenhouse gases are emitted worldwide each year, and 20 billion of which must be eliminated.” – Peter Wadhams

In addition to political dedication, Peter Wadhams, a professor of ocean physics at the University of Cambridge, highlighted the role of science and technology in climate change solutions. According to him, planting trees are less efficient. Rather, air purifiers should be implemented to absorb the greenhouse gases and the absorbed greenhouse gases can be buried in the ground.

Co-chair Ban will attend the first UN Global Summit on Climate Change on Tuesday, September 23rd to bring together political will of different countries.

Source: Korea Joongang Daily

© Korea Joongang Daily & Kyung Hee University

SDSN Youth launches the SDG Students Program in support of the Ban Ki-moon Centre

On September 17th, the SDSN Youth officially announced that the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens is endorsing its SDG Students Program, which is a youth initiative aimed to engage students in higher education in the global effort to achieve the 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The SDSN Youth representative said,

“The BKMC’s recognition of the fantastic work done by our SDG Student Hubs and SDG Coordinators in engaging students in the 2030 Agenda is an important encouragement so that we can keep working towards our goal of a better future.”

As the youth division of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN), the SDSN Youth’s mission is to empower young people globally to create sustainable solutions. Through its SDG Students Program, the SDSN Youth aims to not only engage students globally but also to empower them with the knowledge, skills, and pathways to action to be effective agents of change today, which coincides with the mission of the Ban Ki-moon Centre.

To those students who have actively learned about, engaged with, and taken action on the SDGs, “The SDG STudents Program Certificate” signed by Co-chair Ban Ki-moon of the Centre, Global Coordinator Siamak Sam Loni of the SDSN Youth, and President Chandrika Bahadur of the SDSN Association will be conferred at the end of the program, One of the required criteria to complete the program is to take the Ban Ki-moon Centre’s online course titled “Sustainable Development in the 21st Century with Ban Ki-moon.” This course was co-developed by the Centre and its partner Institute for Global Engagement and Empowerment (IGEE) at Yonsei University and was launched on Coursera.

Watch Ban Ki-moon’s advocacy video:

Be Part of SDSN Youth's SDG Students Program!

A big thank you to Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens for giving a shout-out to our SDG Students Program, which brings 🙋‍♂️🙋‍♀️ together to create positive change for the #SDGs and the 🌎! Learn more about the Program ➡️ www.sdgstudent.orgCheck out what Ban Ki-moon, former United Nations Secretary-General and Co-Chair of the centre, has to say about it! ⬇️

Gepostet von UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network – Youth am Dienstag, 17. September 2019

Learn more about the SDSN Youth: https://sdsnyouth.org/ 
SDG Students Program: https://www.sdgstudent.org/ 

Ban Ki-moon Calls for Urgent Action on Climate Adaptation together with Bill Gates and Kristalina Georgieva

On September 11th, as a leader of the Global Commission on Adaptation (GCA) along with Bill Gates, the Co-chair of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and Kristalina Georgieva, CEO of the World Bank, BKMC Co-chair Ban Ki-moon called on global leaders and experts from both government and business sectors to take urgent action to innovate and advance climate adaptation solutions.

The commission launched its report on “Adapt Now: A Global Call for Leadership on Climate Resilience” in Beijing, China.

“Climate change doesn’t respect borders: it’s an international problem that can only be solved with co-operation and collaboration, across borders and worldwide,” – Ban Ki-moon

Ban also said,

“It is becoming increasingly clear that in many parts of the world, our climate has already changed, and we need to adapt with it. Mitigation and adaptation go hand-in-hand as two equally important building blocks of the Paris Climate Change Agreement. Adaptation is not only the right thing to do, it is also the smart thing to do to boost economic growth and create a climate resilient world.”

According to the Global Commission on Adaptation report, investing $1.8 trillion globally from 2020 to 2030 in five areas of climate adaptation could yield $7.1 trillion in net benefits. This would be the only means left to avert climate apartheid, where the rich escape the effects and the poor do not, but this investment is far smaller than the eventual cost of doing nothing.

“People everywhere are experiencing the devastating impacts of climate change. Those most impacted are the millions of smallholder farmers and their families in developing countries, who are struggling with poverty and hunger due to low crop yields caused by extreme changes in temperature and rainfall. With greater support for innovation, we can unlock new opportunities and spur change across the global ecosystem. Adaptation is an urgent issue that needs support from governments and businesses to ensure those most at risk have the opportunity to thrive,” said Gates.

Ban expressed his concern about “lack of vision of political leaders,” criticizing that “they are much more interested in getting elected and re-elected, and climate issues are not in their priorities.”

“It’s true that many governments have been paying more to invest in mitigation, trying to reduce greenhouse emissions. But it’s equally important that we do more, if not more, equally on adaptation. If we invest one dollar today on adaptation, particularly on infrastructure resilient to climate, we can expect at least four dollars return,” said Ban.

On the margins of the GCA launch event, Co-chair Ban Ki-moon had a bilateral meeting with Minister Li Ganjie of the Ministry of Ecology and Environment of China.

Minister Li said that China has implemented a national strategy to actively respond to climate change.

“As we try our best to carry out mitigation actions, we have constantly strengthened our adaptation ability, such as issuing national strategies and making them as long-term plan. Infrastructure construction and other projects like forestry, agriculture, marine areas will take climate change into account,” he said.

Ban said,

“Mitigation and adaptation go hand-in-hand as two equally important building blocks of the Paris Climate Change Agreement. Adaptation is not only the right thing to do, it is also the smart thing to do to boost economic growth and create a climate resilient world.”

Read more about the GCA report here, and watch Ban Ki-moon’s interview on CGTN.

Sources

www.washingtonpost.com/news/powerpost/paloma/the-energy-202/2019/09/10/the-energy-202-bill-gates-ban-ki-moon-and-other-leaders-propose-ways-to-adapt-to-a-warming-planet/5d766d4e602ff171a5d734d0/?noredirect=on

www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/sep/10/climate-crisis-world-readiness-effects-gravely-insufficient-report

www.gca.org/global-commission-on-adaptation/adapt-our-world?fbclid=IwAR060tzLjCBH2Lzla-1rfCeFL9C1r9BLQB7J2khTH2Qil1jxqzzOcb5em6U

http://global.chinadaily.com.cn/a/201909/11/WS5d7889a3a310cf3e3556afd3.html

© CGTN

Ban Ki-moon speaks at the 2019 Global Infrastructure Cooperation Conference (GICC)

On September 3rd, Co-Chair Ban Ki-moon gave a keynote speech at the opening ceremony of the 2019 GICC held in Seoul.

In his speech, Co-Chair Ban Ki-moon highlighted the environmental aspects must be considered when promoting the development of the infrastructure industry in order to improve the quality life and respond to climate change.

“The construction industry accounts for 40% of the total energy consumption and generates more than 39% of the world’s greenhouse gases,” he explained.

“The infrastructure industry has a huge impact on climate change, which also gives a big responsibility for the construction industry.”

In addition, he said that while infrastructure development improves the quality of life for our humanity, the development of infrastructure industry is also bringing in side effects that melt glaciers and threaten biodiversity due to climate change such as global warming.

“Government and construction industry should cooperate in building a sustainable infrastructure. Sustainable development and climate change are not possible only with the help of government and international organizations. Partnerships that are closely coordinated by leaders, such as organizations, are important as well.”

Hence, Co-chair Ban Ki-moon stressed the importance of cooperation among diverse entities and experts on the urgent task of climate change.

© International Contractor Association of Korea GICC 2019

“Beyond the Times, Bridge the World!”

The 2019 Chungju World Martial Arts Masterships kicked off on August 30th, attracting about 4,000 participants from 107 countries.

BKMC Co-chair Ban Ki-moon delivered a welcome remark at the opening in his role as Honorary President of the 2019 World Martial Arts Masterships Committee and as Chair of the IOC Ethics Commission.

At the opening, Ban took the torch to light the mastership flame and delivered a keynote, stressing that sports connect the world with peace and cooperation.

He also encouraged passionate athletes from all over the world and awarded the winners of the women’s Chengguan medals.

Following the opening ceremony, the 3rd World Martial Arts Leaders Forum took place on the next day under the theme of “United through Martial Arts: Peace and Harmony.”

Experts from relevant international organizations and sports affiliates were present to discuss the role of martial arts as well as gender equity.

Learn more: http://www.chungju2019.com/home_eng

© WTO

Ban Ki-moon speaks to OPEC Secretariat

BKMC Co-chair Ban Ki-moon and CEO Monika Froehler visited the OPEC Secretariat in Vienna on August 28th. Ban delivered an address as a former Secretary-General of the United Nations.

“OPEC is an intergovernmental organization which takes the principles of multilateralism seriously … witnessed through the ‘Declaration of Cooperation’ and ‘Charter of Cooperation’ that has been in the interests of producers, consumers and the global economy,” said Ban.

He emphasized that global challenges that we are facing must be solved through global solutions and global partnerships:

“Keep working with others and strengthen the relationships you already have. Listen to consumers. Promote dialogue. Respect all points of view. Reach consensus.”

During a bilateral meeting between Co-chair Ban Ki-moon and Secretary-General Mohammad Barkindo of OPEC, Barkindo said that “Energy is one of the most cross-cutting issues when it comes to sustainability – without energy, there is no industry.” Both recalled the tireless efforts that went into the annual COP meetings that led to the Paris Agreement.

Barkindo praised Ban Ki-moon’s dedication to preventing conflict, peace-making, improving human welfare and fostering sustainable development and said he would be “long remembered throughout the international community.”

Co-chairs Ban and Fischer say: “The UN can not do anything without solidarity”

At the European Forum Alpbach 2019, BKMC Co-chairs Ban Ki-moon and Heinz Fischer were interviewed on August 25th by Der Standard, an Austrian daily newspaper published in Vienna.

Journalist Christoph Prantner asked why multilateralism is essential to meet the major global challenges. The two agreed that the international community must find new unity and that otherwise the big global challenges such as the climate crisis can not be overcome.

Ban stressed the “importance of

multilateralism in solving global challenges,” giving examples on the trade war between the USA and China and the rise of populism in Europe. He said that “regional issues were solved through solidarity and diplomacy in the past.”

Fischer added, “leadership alone is not enough, global challenges are always politicalecological
and ideological.”
He used the Paris Agreement as one of the solutions for current issues.

Giving the World War II and the subsequent creation of the United Nations (UN) and European Union (EU), Fischer pointed out that “sometimes we need a shock/crisis to be able to move towards a bigger goal.”

 

Read more (GER): https://bit.ly/2k03s1O

© Eugenie Berger

The 4th Board meeting of the Ban Ki-moon Centre takes place in Vienna

“Half of my heart lies in Vienna,”

said Co-chair Ban Ki-moon at the beginning of the 4th Board meeting held on August 27-28th. Following the first Board meeting hosted in Seoul, the second in Alpbach, and the third in Kuwait, the fourth was hosted at the City Hall of Vienna in Austria.

Mayor of Vienna Michael Ludwig welcomed the BKMC Board members and expressed his appreciation for having the Ban Ki-moon Centre based in Vienna as well as its contributions to the city’s development in the field of multilateralism and its leading role in international affairs.

The participants included:

  • Ban Ki-moon, BKMC Co-chair & 8th Secretary-General of the United Nations
  • Heinz Fischer, BKMC Co-chair & 11th President of Austria
  • Márcia Balisciano, Director of RELX Corporate Responsibility
  • Irina Bokova, Former Director-General of UNESCO
  • Maurice Lévy, Chairman of Publicis Groupe
  • Ed Futa, Former General-Secretary of Rotary International
  • Ambassador Kim Won-soo, former UN High Representative for Disarmament Affairs
  • Ambassador Sadiq Marafi, Permanent Representative of Kuwait to the United Nations in Vienna
  • Andrea Pfanzelter, Senior Advisor of the KAICIID International Dialogue Centre
  • Michael Sheldrick, Co-founder and Vice President, Global Policy and Government Affairs at Global Citizen
  • Ambassador Shin Chae-hyun, Permanent Representative of the Republic of Korea to the United Nations in Vienna
  • Jean Todt, President of the FIA and United Nations Secretary General’s Special Envoy for Road Safety
  • Dimitri de Vreeze, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of DSM Netherlands
  • Monika Froehler, Chief Executive Officer of the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens
  • Ambassador Choi Sung-ju, Ban Ki-moon Foundation for a Better Future

CEO Monika Froehler moderated the meeting, briefing the Board on the Centre’s past engagements and development. The Board discussed strategic methods for promoting the activities and projects of the Centre as well as effective ways to amplify the messages through the Centre’s various partnerships and affiliated offices. Ambassador Choi from the Ban Ki-moon Foundation for a Better Future based in Seoul also presented the Foundation’s vision and mission to the BKMC Board and discussed possible collaborations.

 

© BKMC & Eugenie Berger

The 2019 Ban Ki-moon Global Citizen scholars present their project ideas to the BKMC Board members!

The new batch of the Ban Ki-moon Global Citizen scholars of this year met with the Ban Ki-moon Centre team and its Board members in Alpbach on August 25th. A total of 6 scholars were chosen this year respectively from Rwanda, South Korea, Ghana, Jordan, and Nigeria.

The scholars presented their innovative ideas and projects aimed to advance the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in front of the Centre’s co-chairs and Board members and received some suggestions and advice on how to move forward with strategic plans to make the most impact.

Salahaldeen Alazaizeh, who is a Business & Innovation Designer at مؤسسة فاي للعلوم Phi Science Institute introduced “Xi Education” which is a social enterprise that aims to educate undergraduate students, equip them with advanced skills and give them an interactive experience to enhance their knowledge in research, applied science and innovation. He stressed the importance of advancing the SDG 4: Quality Education and creating a solid scientific community of young multi-disciplined youth in Jordan.

“Presenting my project in front of the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens team, listening to the inspirational story from Co-chair Heinz Fischer and getting structured feedback from Co-chair Ban Ki-moon himself was one of my best experiences here in Alpbach!” – Salahaldeen Alazaizeh

Eun Ji Scarlett Park from South Korea presented her project idea on “Rain Water Harvesting” by using rainwater jars that are environmentally friendly, cost-efficient, and sustainable. She tackled the issues of increased population and pollution as well as other impacts of climate change.

“I have truly learned to acknowledge myself as a global citizen. As an individual with passion, we can be a good leader; but with the drop of compassion, you can be a global one.” – Eun Ji Park

Oyindamola Adegboye from Nigeria introduced “Common Futures Conversations” initiated by Chatham House: The Royal Institute of International Affairs where she serves as a Country Representative of Nigeria. The program’s objectives are to address the disconnect between young people and traditional policy-making processes at both a national and international level; to use digital dialogues to give young people to opportunity to enhance their understanding, connect with peers and develop their own ideas; to make their voices heard; and to foster more global cooperation on controversial and highly-debated issues. She suggested the digital hub and the CFC communities as solutions.

“I was mostly inspired by the work of the other young scholars who are doing amazing things towards a more equal and sustainable world. The passion and innovation were evident in the atmosphere and I was privileged to be in the midst of such people. They give me hope for the future of the world.” – Oyindamola Adegboye

The “Light to Read” project was initiated by Samuel Afadu who is the founder of Light My World International. In Ghana, “over 6 million people are living without electricity in their homes,” he said.

“Providing solar-powered lamps to school children in communities with no access to electricity in Ghana will enable students to study at night, improving their education and knowledge level while reducing the expense of money used by their parents to provide light for the family.” – Samuel Afadu

Belinda Isimbi Uwase, Founder of the Girls Light Our World (GLOW), explained her project which supports young girls who have recently graduated or are still in high school in Rwanda. She said the group intends to provide a platform for female students to freely express themselves, learn new skills and contribute to their community through volunteering and taking actions.

After presenting her project, Uwase said,

“Having the honor of presenting my project to such influential people was a dream come true. I felt an overwhelming feeling of pride and gratitude, and I am so thankful to the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens for giving me this opportunity. I have never felt so proud to be a global citizen.” – Belinda Isimbi Uwase

Daniel Park from South Korea presented his idea of connecting directly with farmers through an online platform in order to empower farmers and to have them have a 100% profit from their products. To execute the project, Park said that there needs to be some support from volunteers and NGOs and that sharing knowledge with others is crucial.

After sharing his project ideas, Park expressed his appreciation for having an opportunity to share his ideas and to learn from the other change-makers and leaders from all over the world.

“It was a truly amazing experience in Alpbach where I had an opportunity to see and listen closely to many global leaders such as former SG Ban Ki-moon.” – Daniel Park

One of the scholars from last year Alhassan Muniru, Co-founder of Recycle Up! Ghana, also participated in the meeting to share his experience and his own project ideas with the new scholars. The BKMC Board members, including the co-chairs, congratulated the scholars on their progress made and encouraged them to continue their impact while applying a global citizenship mindset. At the end of the presentations, the scholars were awarded the “Ban Ki-moon Global Citizen Scholarship” certificate.

Learn more: https://bankimooncentre.org/projects/global-citizen-scholars-fellows

Ⓒ BKMC / Eugenie Berger

Meeting with President Alexander Van der Bellen of Austria

As the former United Nations Secretary-General and Co-chair of the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens, Ban Ki-moon had a bilateral meeting with the President of Austria Alexander Van der Bellen on August 25th. CEO of the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens Monika Froehler also accompanied.

The Ban Ki-moon Centre has closely worked with the Austrian government with a common goal of advancing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). President Van der Bellen expressed his appreciation for Co-chair Ban Ki-moon’s advocacy and strong will to strengthen the relationship between Austria and South Korea. Ban says that half of his heart lies in Austria as he has served as a Korean Ambassador to Vienna in the 1990s.

Having its headquarter located in Austria, the Ban Ki-moon Centre has not only actively cooperated with the international organizations and relevant stakeholders based in the country to promote the SDGs and global citizenship mindset but has it been also a bridge between the two countries, tackling the global challenges together with both governments. Ban has given advice to the Austrian government about its strategic plans for the Agenda 2030 and has also chaired the Korean government’s National Council on Climate and Air Pollution that tackles climate issues surrounding the Korean peninsula.

Ⓒ BKMC / Eugenie Berger