The High Level Champions have convened a group of global leaders with a range of expertise and knowledge across regions and sectors to support the Race to Zero and Race to Resilience.

 

The Global Ambassadors will help the Champions accelerate the implementation of zero carbon targets and build resilience in urban, rural and coastal areas. Each Ambassador has been carefully selected as an individual deeply committed to transformative change and addressing the climate crisis. They have been appointed to help amplify the campaigns, anchor their narratives locally and accelerate action across mitigation and adaptation.

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U.N. Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Climate Ambition and Solutions Michael Bloomberg

As U.N. Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Climate Ambition and Solutions, Founder of Bloomberg LP and Bloomberg Philanthropies and 108th Mayor of New York City, Michael Bloomberg has long been a global leader in the fight against climate change.

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U.N. Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Climate Ambition and Solutions

Michael Bloomberg

Michael Bloomberg has long been a global leader in the fight against climate change. As three-term mayor of New York City, he implemented a groundbreaking strategic sustainability plan and reduced carbon emissions by 13 percent, positioning the city as a model for climate action around the world. His foundation, Bloomberg Philanthropies, focuses on the environment as one of its key program areas, and he has given $1 billion to the global climate fight. Bloomberg serves as the UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Climate Ambition and Solutions, as well as Global Ambassador for the Race to Zero and Race to Resilience campaigns.

Bloomberg leads a number of efforts that are making progress in the global climate fight, including serving as President of the Board of the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group. He also co-chairs the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy and the “America Is All In” coalition.

When the Trump administration announced its intent to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris Agreement in 2017, Bloomberg stepped in to launch the “America’s Pledge” initiative with then California Governor Jerry Brown. America’s Pledge analyzes the progress of some 4,000 U.S. non-federal climate leaders and reports its findings to the international community. He also created the American Cities Climate Challenge to help the largest U.S. cities make more progress in their fight against climate change. And he collaborates with partners and countries around the world to protect marine ecosystems and preserve coral reefs.

Bloomberg has also worked with environmental organizations to retire more than 60% of all U.S. coal plants since 2011 through the U.S. Beyond Coal campaign. In 2017, he expanded the effort to Europe, where Europe Beyond Coal has helped retire 50% of the continent’s coal plants. He also launched Beyond Carbon, the largest-ever coordinated campaign to fight the climate crisis in the U.S., which aims to retire all domestic coal plants by 2030 and stop the construction of new gas plants.

Bloomberg works to involve the financial community in fighting climate change, serving as chair of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures and formerly as chair of the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board. Both organizations give companies clear standards and recommendations to help guide their disclosures of climate-related risks and opportunities. At the UN Secretary-General’s request, he formed the Climate Finance Leadership Initiative with other influential private sector leaders to accelerate investments in climate solutions.

Bloomberg is co-author, with Carl Pope, of the New York Times bestseller Climate of Hope: How Cities, Businesses, and Citizens Can Save the Planet.

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Director of Vital Landscapes at the World Resources Institute (WRI) Dr Susan Chomba

Dr Chomba leads WRI’s work on Forests, Food systems and People which includes forest landscape restoration, sustainable agriculture/food systems and thriving rural livelihoods in Africa.

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Director of Vital Landscapes at the World Resources Institute (WRI)

Dr Susan Chomba

Dr Susan Chomba is the Director of Vital Landscapes at the World Resources Institute (WRI). She leads the institution’s work on Forests, Food systems and People which includes forest landscape restoration, sustainable agriculture/food systems and thriving rural livelihoods in Africa. Vital Landscapes work at WRI contributes directly to five global goals: 1. climate change mitigation and adaptation; 2. reducing poverty and enhancing gender equity; 3. reversing biodiversity loss; 4. building resilience in agriculture and food systems; 5. enhancing access to clean energy for services and production. Susan is a scientist with over 15 years of research and development experience in Africa. She previously led the Regreening Africa Programme at CIFOR-ICRAF, whose primary objective was to restore degraded lands by scaling up proven and cost-effective technologies and practices across eight countries in Africa: Rwanda, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Niger, Ghana, Mali and Senegal. She has been instrumental in setting the agenda for landscape restoration through local, national and global platforms.
She is a member of the African Academy of Sciences (AAS) and an associate editor for political ecology for the international journal, Frontiers in Human Dynamics. She holds a PhD in forest governance from the university of Copenhagen, Denmark, a double MSc. in agricultural development and agroforestry from the university of Copenhagen and Bangor university respectively; and a BSc. in forestry from Moi university in Kenya . She was named one of Global Landscape Forum (GLF) 16 Women Restoring the Earth in 2021.

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Chair of the UK Environment Agency Emma Howard Boyd

Emma Howard Boyd has been the Chair of the Environment Agency since 2016. The Agency is a public body responsible for the protection and enhancement of the environment in England.

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Chair of the UK Environment Agency

Emma Howard Boyd

Emma Howard Boyd has been the Chair of the Environment Agency since 2016. The Agency is a public body responsible for the protection and enhancement of the environment in England.

She’s also an Ex officio board member of the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA), and an Advisor to the Board of Trade. Emma, with a background in finance, is a board member or advisor to many organisations which include The Prince’s Accounting for Sustainability Project, the Green Finance Institute, the Coalition for Climate Resilient Investment, the Centre for Greening Finance and Investment, the Council for Sustainable Business, the European Climate Foundation, and Menhaden PLC. Emma was the UK Commissioner to the Global Commission on Adaptation from 2018 until its sunset in January 2021.

Before becoming the Chair of the Environment Agency in September 2016, she has served as a Board member since 2009, was Chair of the Audit and Risk Assurance Committee until 2016, and served as Deputy Chair. Her other past roles include being the Chair of Trustees at ShareAction from 2015 to 2018, Vice-Chair of the Future Cities Capital from 2013 and 2018, and acting as a Non-Executive Director at the Aldersgate Group (2012 -2018) and Thrive Renewables (previously Triodos Renewables, 2004-2012). Before that, she held various executive roles at Jupiter Asset Management. She was also Chair of UKSIF (the UK Sustainable Investment and Finance Association), a member of the Commission on Environmental Markets and Economic Performance, and the Green Finance Taskforce.

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Director of the International Centre for Climate Change and Development (ICCCAD) Prof. Saleem Huq

Prof. Huq is an expert in adaptation to climate change in the most Vulnerable developing countries and has been a lead author of the third, fourth and fifth assessment reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)

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Director of the International Centre for Climate Change and Development (ICCCAD)

Prof. Saleem Huq

Dr Saleemul Huq is the Director of the International Centre for Climate Change and Development (ICCCAD) and Professor at the Independent University Bangladesh (IUB) as well as Associate of the International Institute on Environment and Development (IIED) in the United Kingdom. In addition he is the Chair of the Expert Advisory Group for the Climate Vulnerable Forum (CVF) and also Senior Adviser on Locally Led Adaptation with Global Centre on Adaptation (GCA) headquartered in the Netherlands.

He is an expert in adaptation to climate change in the most Vulnerable developing countries and has been a lead author of the third, fourth and fifth assessment reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and he also advises the Least Developed Countries (LDC) group in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).

He has published hundreds of scientific as well as popular articles and was recognized as one of the top twenty global influencers on climate change policy in 2019 and top scientist from Bangladesh on climate change science.

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Special Envoy of the UN Secretary General for the 2021 Food Systems Summit Dr Agnes Kalibata

As the UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy, Dr. Kalibata provides leadership, guidance, and strategic direction towards the 2021 Food Systems Summit.

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Special Envoy of the UN Secretary General for the 2021 Food Systems Summit

Dr Agnes Kalibata

As the UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy, Dr. Kalibata provides leadership, guidance, and strategic direction towards the 2021 Food Systems Summit. She is responsible for outreach and cooperation with key leaders, including governments, to ensure the Summit serves as a catalytic process within the Decade of Action to improve food systems around the world to deliver on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Paris Agreement.

Since 2014, Dr. Kalibata has also served as President of AGRA, where she leads the organization’s efforts with partners to ensure a food secure and prosperous Africa through rapid, sustainable agricultural growth, improving the productivity and livelihoods of millions of African smallholder farmers. Prior to joining AGRA, Dr. Kalibata was Rwanda’s Minister of Agriculture and Animal Resources (MINAGRI) from 2008 to 2014. She has a distinguished track record globally as an agricultural scientist, policy maker and thought leader.

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Founding Director of SPARC Sheela Patel

Sheela Patel is widely recognised – nationally and internationally – for seeking urgent attention to the issues of urban poverty, housing and infrastructure onto the radar of governments, bilateral and international agencies, foundations and other organizations.

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Founding Director of SPARC

Sheela Patel

Sheela Patel is the founder director of the Society for Promotion of Area Resource Centres (SPARC), an NGO based in Mumbai, that has been working since 1984 to support community organisations of the urban poor in their efforts to access secure housing and basic amenities and seek their right to the city.
SPARC has been working in alliance with two Community Based Organizations – National Slum Dwellers Federation (NSDF) and Mahila Milan (women’s collectives in slums) that are active in 70 cities in different states of India. Since 1999, she has also been Secretary and Chief Executive of SPARC Samudaya Nirman Sahayak (SSNS), a non-profit company set up to assist slum communities take on construction projects in cities to provide slum dwellers to build homes and sanitation for themselves.
She is a founder amongst many of Slum Dwellers International, a transnational social movement of the urban poor in Asia, Africa and Latin America, whose board she previously chaired.
Patel is widely recognised – nationally and internationally – for seeking urgent attention to the issues of urban poverty, housing and infrastructure onto the radar of governments, bilateral and international agencies, foundations and other organizations. Among other things, Sheela is currently a trustee of the International Institute or Environment and Development (IIED) and was a Commissioner of the Commission for Adaptation to climate change between 2018-2020.

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Co-Founder and Co-Chair of Imagine Paul Polman

Paul Polman is Chair of social enterprise IMAGINE, which mobilizes business leaders to tackle climate change and global inequality.

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Co-Founder and Co-Chair of Imagine

Paul Polman

Paul Polman is Chair of social enterprise IMAGINE, which mobilizes business leaders to tackle climate change and global inequality. He is also Chair of The B Team, Saïd Business School and The Valuable 500, as well as Honorary Chair of the International Chamber of Commerce and World Business Council for Sustainable Development and Vice-Chair of the UN Global Compact. A leading proponent that business can – and should be – a force for good, he has been described by the Financial Times as “a standout CEO of the past decade”.

As CEO of Unilever for ten years, he demonstrated that a long-term, multi-stakeholder business model goes hand-in-hand with excellent financial performance. He was a member of the UN Secretary General’s High-Level Panel that developed the UN Sustainable Development Goals, and he continues to be an SDG Advocate who works across industries to deliver the 2030 development agenda.

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Global Leader of Climate & Energy at WWF Manuel Pulgar Vidal

Manuel Pulgar-Vidal is the Global Leader of Climate & Energy at WWF, with 35 years of experience in environmental law and policy.

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Global Leader of Climate & Energy at WWF

Manuel Pulgar Vidal

Manuel Pulgar-Vidal is the Global Leader of Climate & Energy at WWF. He has 35 years of experience in environmental law and policy and served as Minister of the Environment of Peru (2011 to 2016) and President of the Twentieth Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change – COP20 in 2014.

Pulgar-Vidal was the Executive Director of the Peruvian Society for Environmental Law, an influential institution in Latin America. He has a law degree from the Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú, where he is a professor, and has completed studies for a master’s degree in Business Law at the Universidad Peruana de Ciencias Aplicadas. He is a board member of Forest Trends, Amazon Conservation Association and Peruvian Society of Environmental Law and a member of the Assembly of the World Wide Fund for Nature – Colombia.

He has recently been added to the Aspen Institute Management and Leadership Advisory Group and is the chairman of the evaluation council of the French sovereign Green Bonds. He is an active member of different groups aiming to get strong outcomes as a part of the formal climate talks and the non-party stakeholders’ agenda. He has been recognized by the governments of France, Germany and Spain and by the Royal Scottish Geographical Society for his contribution to the Paris Agreement.

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CEO of Royal DSM Feike Sijbesma

Feike Sijbesma has been CEO of Royal DSM for nearly 13 years and transformed Royal DSM from a bulk-chemical company into a global leading Life Sciences & Materials Sciences company.

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CEO of Royal DSM

Feike Sijbesma

Feike Sijbesma has been CEO of Royal DSM for nearly 13 years and transformed Royal DSM from a bulk-chemical company into a global leading Life Sciences & Materials Sciences company, focusing on nutrition (food), health and sustainable living (a.o. green energy). At DSM sustainability and innovation is not only a key responsibility but also a core value and a main business driver. DSM became a clear purpose driven company, being financially successful and doing well (450% Total Shareholder Return) by addressing the UN SDG’s and doing good for the world. Feike is a strong advocate for inclusion and diversity as well.

Since early 2020, Feike Sijbesma transitioned to the role of Honorary Chairman of Royal DSM of which he has been CEO between 2007 and 2020. From March till September 2020, Feike Sijbesma has been Special Corona Envoy for The Netherlands.
Feike sits on a variety of Boards, as Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Royal Philips, as non-executive board member of Unilever and as member of the Supervisory Board of the Dutch Central Bank.

Feike is co-chair, together with Ban Ki-Moon, of the Global Center on Adaptation. He is Climate Leader of the World Bank, focusing on carbon pricing (CPLC). He is member of the Board of Trustees of the World Economic Forum and is heading the CEO Climate Leaders group. He is also member of the Advisory Board of the IMF.

Mr. Sijbesma is a recipient of the Humanitarian of the Year Award & Leaders of Change Award presented by the United Nations; received an honorary doctorate from Maastricht as well as Groningen University, Netherlands; he was listed by Fortune on the World’s 50 Greatest Leaders, by Harvard Business Review as one of world’s 100 most successful CEO’s and he received the Courage to Lead Award from the World Resources Institute.