OIC Secretary General’s message on the occasion of the World Environment
04/06/2020- The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) joins the international community in marking June 5 as the World Environment Day. While the whole world is facing an unprecedented challenge from the novel COVID-19 virus, this year’s theme “Time for Nature” has once again highlighted the urgent need to adopt policies for protecting biodiversity. COVID-19 has exposed the weaknesses of our health systems and food supply chains to meet our requirements. It is imperative for the survival of human beings and other species that we shall adopt a coordinated and comprehensive approach to maintain the delicate balance between protecting nature and sustainable economic development.
Fully cognizant of the inextricable linkage between environmental sustainability and development, the OIC attaches high priority to the concerns related to environment, climate change and protecting biodiversity. The First OIC Summit on Science and Technology held in Astana in September 2017 adopted a ten year programme, “OIC STI Agenda 2026”, that outlines priorities and strategies for addressing the environment sustainability in the OIC Member States. Successive meetings of the OIC Council of Foreign Ministers and Islamic Conferences of Ministers of Environment also address a wide range of environmental challenges, including issues related to deforestation, desertification, water scarcity and adverse impacts of climate change.
I would like to conclude by reiterating the urgency to adopt integrated measures to reduce adverse effects of climate change and natural disasters. Environmental concerns must be incorporated into national strategies for sustainable development. International and regional cooperation needs to be strengthened in areas of climate change in order to protect the nature for the wellbeing of our future generations.