Video message by the Federal Minister for Foreign Affairs Heiko Maas at the virtual event by the Israeli Foreign Ministry on “Earth Day 2021”

22.04.2021 - Speech

Extreme weather events,

land degradation,

food and water insecurity –

these developments threaten our livelihoods.

They harm our economies.

And they also fuel conflicts around the globe. That is why we must treat climate change as a threat to international peace and security – for that is what it is.

And I am glad, dear Gabi, that we are addressing this topic together today.

It is high time to “Restore our Earth”.

To do so, we need innovative solutions. This is where the private sector comes in.

We need to rethink the way we do business. And we must view sustainability and profits in their true light – not as enemies, but as two sides of the same coin.

For months and years to come, the COVID-19 pandemic will leave deep marks in our societies, economies and budgets.

But the way out of this crisis is also an opportunity for an inclusive, sustainable recovery.

In the European Union, we have created the Green Deal to reach climate neutrality by 2050. The idea is to boost eco-friendly business models and green technologies through significant investments.

And we are “open for business” with our friends and partners around the globe.

One truly transformative area for our future cooperation will be hydrogen. Germany alone will invest two billion euro over the coming years to create a viable market.

And, of course, we are relying on our vibrant start-up scenes – here in Germany and also in Israel. Your country has been at the forefront of enhancing cyber security and developing technologies such as autonomous driving.

Let us build on this as we are working our way out of the current crisis –

by laying the groundwork for a more sustainable future on this Earth Day 2021.


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