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PRME’s Response to UN Secretary-General’s Comments on Climate Action

30 May 2017 | New York, USA — United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres issued a strong statement in support of bold action and leadership on climate change, calling on a wide range of stakeholders including business and civil society to go beyond the commitments laid out in the Paris Agreement in order to create a more sustainable future for all.

“Climate action is gathering momentum not just because it is a necessity but also because it presents an opportunity – to forge a peaceful and sustainable future on a healthy planet,” the UN Chief stated.

“If we want to protect forests and life on land, safeguard our oceans, create massive economic opportunities, prevent even more massive losses and improve the health and well-being of people and the planet, we have one simple option staring us in the face: Climate action,” he said.

As the Principles for Responsible Management Education initiative of the United Nations Global Compact celebrates its 10th anniversary this year, PRME’s Head, Jonas Haertle, says that the global PRME community must align with the statement of the Secretary-General and demonstrate how business and management schools can be key drivers of solutions for action on climate.

“Over the past ten years, we have seen important transformations in many of the world’s business and management schools that are embracing education on issues like environmental sustainability and innovation,” Jonas said.

“As leading higher education institutions, PRME schools are helping to develop the responsible leaders of tomorrow, equipping them with mindsets and skills to become corporate sustainability champions. This will result in a business community that is more responsive to the needs of the planet and society.”

During his speech at the special event taking place in New York University’s Stern School of Business, the Secretary-General noted that action on climate is smart business.

“We are seeing new industries, new markets, healthier environments, more jobs, less dependency on global supply chains of fossil fuels,” Mr. Guterres said, adding, “The real danger is not the threat to one’s economy that comes from acting.  It is, instead, the risk to one’s economy by failing to act.”

Ahead of the 2017 Global Forum for Responsible Management Education and the celebration of PRME’s 10th anniversary, the PRME Secretariat with the support of the PRME Steering and Advisory Committees wish to fully align with the comments from the Secretary-General, and urge all business and management schools to continue taking bold action and leadership on climate through teaching and thought leadership.

Watch the full speech here, or read the text here.

30 May 2017

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