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Change food priorities, save planet — UN chief

Food systems currently generate one-third of all greenhouse gas emissions.

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UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres attends a meeting of the Security Council on September 23, 2021, during the 76th UN General Assembly in New York John Minchillo POOL/AFP

UNITED NATIONS, United States (AFP) — United Nations (UN) chief Antonio Guterres urged nations to revamp their food priorities Thursday, saying the world needed food systems that safeguard the environment.

“The war on our planet must end and food systems can help us build that peace,” the Secretary-General told a UN summit in New York.

Guterres said food systems “can and must play a leading role” in meeting the UN’s sustainable development goals by 2030.

The goals include ending poverty, protecting ecosystems and ensuring sustainable consumption and production patterns that limit waste.

Guterres told delegates of the food systems summit, taking place on the sidelines of the high-level meeting of the UN General Assembly, that the world needed “nature-based solutions.”

He noted that food systems currently generate one-third of all greenhouse gas emissions.

“It is possible to feed a growing global population while also safeguarding our environment,” he said.

“It takes sustainable consumption and production methods and nature-based solutions. It takes the smart, sustainable management of natural resources — from farms to fisheries,” Guterres added.

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