Draghi meets young activists. Image by Reuters. No copyright infringement intended

Draghi and Pope speak on environment ahead of COP-26

Environment News

Both the Pope and Italy’s Prime Minister Draghi spoke about the environment ahead of the COP-26 in Glasgow (31st October – 12th November).

Premier Mario Draghi said today he agreed with young people demanding world leaders take immediate action to combat the climate crisis. “The young people are right,” Draghi said as he opened the Pre-COP meeting at the Milan Conference Centre, MiCO. “The ecological transition is not a choice, it is a necessity. Acting later would mean having to pay the much higher price of a climate disaster”.

Draghi meets young activists

Draghi said the NRRP Recovery Plan would enable Italy to invest more in renewables and in protecting biodiversity. EU funds finance the plan to the tune of almost €200 billion.

Early on Thursday, Draghi met young activists Greta Thunberg of Sweden, Uganda’s Vanessa Nakate and Italy’s Martina Comparelli. They are taking part in the Youth4Climate conference, at the offices of the Milan prefect.

Draghi said the meeting went “really well”. Time will tell whether Thunberg thinks it was just more “blah blah blah”.

Pope Francis: A healthy environment is right of every human being

In a message to the Council of Europe, Pope Francis reiterated his call for immediate action. 

Ahead of COP-26 in Glasgow, the Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) convened a high-level panel and interactive debate. The theme was “The environment and human rights”. The “right to a safe, healthy and sustainable environment” was the focus of its Autumn Session which took place from 27 to 30 September 2021.

In a video message to the participants sent on Wednesday, Pope Francis commended the initiative. He reiterated his call for immediate action for the care of our common home.

He said the Holy See, although an Observer nation, follows with particular attention all the Organisation’s activity in this regard; “in the conviction that every concrete initiative and decision which can improve the dramatic situation facing our planet’s health must be supported and valued.”

He also recalled his previous address to the PACE of 25 November 2014. Then he reminded everyone the earth “is the greatest resource which God has given to us and is at our disposal not to be disfigured, exploited, and degraded, but so that (…) we can live in this world with dignity.”

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