UN Environment Director: “We do not have the time to waste”

June 21, 2022

Science has an important role to play in the transition to a sustainable society. But, decision-makers have to act more quickly.

UNEP Director Inger Andersen. UNEP Director Inger Andersen. Photo: Jens Olof Lasthein / Stockholm University.

Science has an important role to play in the transition to a sustainable society. But more cooperation is needed and decision-makers have to act more quickly on research results. Those were the main messages at an international sustainability conference held in connection to the Stockholm+50 conference.

How science-based solutions can drive transformative change

“Science is like a canary in a coal mine. The time between the canary warning us and us reacting is too long.”

UNEP Director Inger Andersen at Stockholm+50

In conjunction with the 50th anniversary of the first environmental conference of the UN, Stockholm University, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Karolinska Institutet and Stockholm Environment Institute held a one-day conference at Stockholm University on how scientists and academia, through research and education, could support sustainable transformations for a better future.

The conference “Sustainable planet, sustainable health – how science-based solutions can drive transformative change” gathered distinguished international speakers, including His Excellency Dr. Moghweetsi E.K Masisi, President of the Republic of Botwana and the Under-Secretary General of the United Nations Inger Andersen, and representatives from academia, NGOs, student associations and the industry.

The role of science in the transformation

Video: Stockholm University / YouTube.

Stockholm Trio for Sustainable Actions

A joint Stockholm initiative for sustainable actions were launched by the three presidents from Karolinska Institutet, the KTH Royal Institute of Technology and Stockholm University. The initiative is called the “Stockholm Trio for Sustainable Actions.” The ambition with this initiative is for Stockholm to become a hub for world-class science on sustainability. The university presidents stressed that universities have a responsibility to act in accordance with the global development goals.

The event gathered approximately 400 participants from around the world.