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Panel discussion on climate change and biodiversity loss based on Sir David Attenborough’s documentary

Ministry for Foreign Affairs
18.1.2021 14.04
News item

Experts preparing for the 2021 UN summits will meet youth to discuss the protection of biodiversity and climate action. The event is organised by the British Embassy, the Ministry for Foreign Affairs and WWF Finland.

Sustainable food production is one of main solutions to help resolve the challenges facing nature and climate. Picture: Jürgen Freund / WWF

The panel discussion on Wednesday 20 January is targeted at educational institutions.  The panellists for the event are Minister for Foreign Affairs Pekka Haavisto, Secretary General and CEO at WWF Finland Liisa Rohweder, UK COP26 Special Envoy John Murton, Senior Ministerial Adviser at the Ministry of the Environment Marina von Weissenberg, and member of UK Youth Climate Coalition‏ Nelli Vanninen

The discussion is inspired by A Life On Our Planet, a documentary film by renowned natural historian Sir David Attenborough. In the film, produced by Netflix, Attenborough, now aged 94, depicts the biodiversity loss that has taken place during his lifetime and explores various scenarios of sustainable co-existence between humans and other species.

Important year for climate

The UK will host the 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) in November. Biodiversity is one of the challenges to be discussed at this important summit.  WWF, which has been monitoring the state of ecosystems worldwide, published its Living Planet report in 2020 and pointed out that the population sizes of wild vertebrates have dropped by 68% on average since 1970.

Finland aims to be the world’s first climate neutral and fossil-free welfare society. Last year, Finland was one of the first countries to voluntarily sign the Leader’s Pledge for Nature. This initiative seeks to halt biodiversity loss by 2030 and to motivate the world to follow the path to sustainable development.

Finland supports biodiversity through various international organisations, including the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Global Environment Facility (GEF). Funding is also allocated to the International Union of Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and such Finnish civil society organisations as WWF Finland, Siemenpuu Foundation and the Finnish Association for Nature Conservation. Finland’s active contribution to the work done in the UN shows, for example, in the monitoring of the state of the world's forests and their carbon stocks.

Information on the event:

Biodiversity Panel Event; Wednesday 20 January 2021 at 13.15–14.30 (Finnish time).

The language of the event will be English. The event will be live-streamed but the documentary on Netflix is not part of the event.

The panel discussion can be followed online.

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