Today, I am making an urgent appeal to leaders, from all sectors and from around the world, to join us in this endeavour, and to give their support to this ‘Terra Carta’ – to bring prosperity into harmony with Nature, People and Planet over the coming decade.

Monsieur le Président, Excellences, Mesdames et Messieurs,

Je suis très touché d’avoir été invité à me joindre à vous tous, au début de cette année d’espoir, pour ce One Planet Summit unique d’une importance vitale. Je ne peux que vous féliciter, cher Monsieur le Président, d’offrir une occasion aussi cruciale de galvaniser une action ambitieuse mais concrète pour relever les défis critiques auxquels notre planète est confrontée et que nous partageons tous. 

(I am most touched to have been invited to join all of you, at the start of this year of hope, for this vitally important One Planet Summit. I can only congratulate you, Cher Monsieur le President, for providing such a crucial opportunity to galvanize ambitious, but practical action to address the critical challenges facing this Planet, which we all share with the rest of Nature.)

In recent years, we have made a degree of progress in forging consensus on the direction humanity must take and the milestones we must meet by the middle of the century. Our hope is that these milestones can be elaborated still further in the Convention on Biological Diversity Conference in China later this year, and at COP26 in the United Kingdom in November.

However, consensus and intention, goals and targets, are only the first steps. The next – although long overdue – must be an extraordinary, practical effort to mobilize the financial resources, technical ingenuity and institutional innovation required to pursue them.  

This is why, a year ago at Davos, I launched my Sustainable Markets Initiative, to put people and planet at the heart of global value creation. It was born of my heartfelt belief that the only possible solution to the challenges facing our planet lies in working in harmony with ‘Nature’s own economy’ rather than against it. 

En janvier dernier, aucun d’entre nous n’aurait pu anticiper la pandémie dévastatrice qui était sur le point de se produire, ni son impact horrible sur les vies et les moyens de subsistance partout dans le monde.  Aujourd’hui, en réfléchissant à tout ce que nous avons enduré ensemble, il est plus clair que jamais que la santé humaine et la santé planétaire sont fondamentalement liées. 

Au cours de l’année écoulée, par le biais de mon Initiative ‘Sustainable Markets’, j’ai réuni des dirigeants mondiaux, dans le cadre d'une coalition de volontaires, issus de tous les secteurs industriels et de presque toutes les branches de l’économie, et je les ai mis au défi de trouver des moyens de placer notre planète sur une trajectoire fondamentalement plus durable.  

(Last January, none of us could have anticipated the devastating pandemic which was about to unfold, or its horrifying impact on lives and livelihoods everywhere. Today, reflecting on all that we have endured together, it is more clear than ever that human health and planetary health are fundamentally interconnected.  

Over the past year, through my Sustainable Markets Initiative, I have convened global leaders, as part of a ‘Coalition of the Willing’, from across industries and almost every sector of the economy, and challenged them to identify ways to set our planet on a fundamentally more sustainable trajectory.)  

Today, I am making an urgent appeal to leaders, from all sectors and from around the world, to join us in this endeavour, and to give their support to this ‘Terra Carta’ – to bring prosperity into harmony with Nature, People and Planet over the coming decade. I can only encourage, in particular, those in industry and finance to provide practical leadership to this common project, as only they are able to mobilize the innovation, scale and resources that are required to transform our global economy.

While the Terra Carta outlines ten areas for action, with our focus today a key area must be accelerating the transition of carbon-intensive land use and scaling investment in the restoration of Natural Capital.

Les solutions basées sur la nature, telles que la restauration des sols, des forêts, des prairies, des zones~humides et des terres agricoles, peuvent protéger et restaurer la biodiversité tout en contribuant à réduire les émissions en tant que puits de carbone naturels. La tarification du carbone, la compensation des émissions de carbone et l’investissement dans le capital naturel pourraient avoir un impact significatif sur l’obtention du capital nécessaire pour réaliser une mise à l’échelle.  Par exemple, le marché des compensations carbone basées sur la nature devrait se développer de manière significative en raison du nombre croissant d’entreprises qui s’engagent à atteindre des objectifs de neutralité carbone. 

(Nature-based solutions, such as restoring soil, forests, grasslands, wetlands, agricultural lands and marine ecosystems can protect and restore biodiversity while also helping to reduce emissions as natural carbon sinks. Carbon pricing, carbon offsetting and making Natural Capital an investment theme could have a significant impact in driving the capital required to bring about scale. For instance, the Nature-based carbon offset market is expected to expand significantly as a result of the growing number of companies committing to net-zero targets.)  

In support of the Terra Carta, and with your valuable support and encouragement, Monsieur le President, one practical initiative has been to create a global private sector alliance to develop Natural Capital as an investment theme and actively to increase capital allocation in this direction, targeting $10 billion by 2022. This Alliance will also aim to expand the flow of Natural Capital investment through corporate offsetting and carbon-pricing prospects.

Mesdames et Messieurs, un avenir soutenable est en fait l’histoire de la croissance de notre époque – mais c’est à nous de saisir l’occasion qu’elle nous offre.  J’espère sincèrement que la Terra Carta nous aidera à y parvenir.  

Ainsi, alors que nous nous tournons vers un avenir plus brillant et plus durable, avec nos promesses tenues, unissons nos forces et ne perdons plus de temps. L’heure étant venue, c’est vraiment à nous de faire en sorte que chaque jour compte.

(Ladies and Gentlemen, a sustainable future is, in fact, the growth story of our time – but it is up to us to seize the opportunity it presents. It is my profound hope that the Terra Carta might help us to do just that.  

Therefore, as we look to a brighter and more sustainable future, with our promises kept, let us join forces and waste no more time. With the clock ticking, it really is up to us to make each day count.)