On September 3, 2013, Green Cross International hosted the seventh meeting of its “Earth Dialogue” series, which were founded by former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev and former UN Under-Secretary-General Maurice Strong in 2002, in Lyon, France. The 2013 gathering at the Palais des Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, aimed to confront the challenges of the 21st century, including, but not limited to climate change, water stress, food production, ocean acidification, biodiversity decline, widespread poverty and inequality, and the elimination of nuclear weapons.
Participants included former Dutch Prime Minister Ruud Lubbers and other former heads of government, as well as many world leaders and experts in the fields of governance, environment, security, and economics.
GSI President Jonathan Granoff had the honor of reading a letter on behalf of President Bill Clinton at the conference opening session. In addition, Mr. Granoff moderated a panel titled “Building a Peaceful and Sustainable World,” featuring other notable leaders including Frederico Mayor, Deputy Director-General of UNESCO; Mohan Munasinghe, Chairman of the Munasinghe Inst. of Development; Mirian Vilela, Executive Director of the Earth Charter International; Julia Marton-Lefevre, Director General of the International Union for Conservation of Nature; Jane Youyun Zhang, Executive Vice-President China Association for Employment Promotion; and Garry Jacobs, Chairman of the Board of Trustees, World Academy of Art and Science. The panelists explored the current top international priorities, as well as the threats that are just over the horizon.
The meeting was part of the 20th anniversary of Green Cross International, the sustainability-focused NGO founded by GSI Advisory Board member Mikhail Gorbachev, who delivered the keynote speech. At the event, Mr. Granoff shared a presentation titled “Our Choice: Creativity or Destruction.” In it, he called for states to “work together, with a shared sense of urgency and responsibility, to address three critical challenges: making sure the interdependence of financial markets– which impact Wall Street and Main Street and cause many to live on No Street– become just, equitable, stable, and sustainable; protecting the global commons; and eliminating nuclear weapons.”
Read more about the Earth Dialogue 2013
Download the official program of the Earth Dialogue 2013
Read the declaration from the Earth Dialogue 2013
Watch more videos from the Earth Dialogues
Read more about the Green Cross 20th Anniversary
Jonathan Granoff is the President of the Global Security Institute, a representative to United Nations of the World Summits of Nobel Peace Laureates, a former Adjunct Professor of International Law at Widener University School of Law, and Senior Advisor to the Committee on National Security American Bar Association International Law Section.