Report Back to the United Nations Secretary-General on Nature-Based Solutions, United Nations, New York

Mr Secretary-General, it has been New Zealand’s honour to work with China in assisting you to prepare for your Summit.

The commitments on Nature-Based Solutions have demonstrated the significant action under way, working with nature to increase resilience and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.  But more than that, the commitments and initiatives will also protect biodiversity, strengthen food security and underpin sustainable livelihoods around the globe.

We take home some important messages as follows:

  • There is tremendous potential in nature-based solutions, and we must unlock its full potential to keep global warming to 1.5 degrees;
  • Including nature in our policies and plans strengthens implementation and encourages investment;
  • If we can measure it we can manage it: investment in science and innovation will deliver the best nature-based solutions;
  • Valuing nature and shifting financial flows to support nature unlocks important levers for behaviour change.  We can use the power of good investment to do more of the right things and less of the wrong things;
  • We have to understand nature as a complex system, and look for the interventions that fit together to bring multiple benefits;
  • And finally Your Excellency, we have learned that all of these approaches are easier to achieve and have more impact through cooperation and collaboration.

Because as the Māori people of New Zealand say: Nā tō rourou, nā taku rourou, ka ora ai te iwi.  With your food basket and my food basket, the people will thrive.

Thank you.