Greetings by Director Sir
We live in troubled times .We live in a world which is sitting on a volcano of geopolitical upheavals , cyber attacks , climate change , and natural disasters – just to name a few .
The world got a scare when a few months ago we actually braced for a nuclear fallout .Never before , since the days of the Cuban Missile Crisis did the world actually prepare for a nuclear exchange which appeared a distinct possibility , between North Korea and the USA. We also came to know how deadly this exchange could be – indeed the whole planet earth could be converted into a ball of fire within minutes .It is also noteworthy that even though the nuclear powers may not indulge into a war by design – the danger of it being accidental could be very real .Murphys law “ Anything that can go wrong – will go wrong”, is a telling reminder that we must denuclearize as soon as possible .
Its not just the Korean peninsula that heralded the dangers that lurk the world .In our backyard , we have a failed state and a rogue one at that .Also the Middle East is another flashpoint where a increasing number of destabilizing forces might lead to the eruption of new military conflicts in addition to those in Syria and Yemen .
We have other issues that threaten the world apart from war .Last year was characterized by high impact hurricanes , extreme temperatures ,and the rise of CO2 emissions .In the US alone , there were 16 weather and climate events with losses exceeding 1 billion dollars each !
The world celebrated when leaders from 170 countries signed the Paris Agreement on climate change .The sad news is that America subsequently withdrew its support which threatens progress in limiting global temperature rises .
Yet another concern and threat that the world faces is lack of clean water .Lack of clean water not only harms human health but also impacts economic activities ,sparks conflict and in the future , “water wars” is beginning to look a distinct possibility .
All the above concerns are not specific to a single or group of nations .It is common to all those who inhabit this beautiful planet of ours .It is here that the United Nations assumes such a important role .We cant wait for our children to grow up into adults to sensitize them to the problems .We don’t have that kind of time .
I am happy that children in schools organize MUNs’ .I am sure that a healthy debate takes place on the many problems that face our planet .
I also hope they spread the idea which has been so succinctly put forth by Yuval Harari .I quote
“We are all living together on a single planet , which is threatened by our own actions .And if you don’t have some kind of global cooperation , nationalism is just not on the right level to tackle the problems , whether its climate change ,or whether its technological disruption”.
I hope they realize that mankind cannot live without Mother Earth , but the planet can live without humans .!!