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  • Rick Bonetti

The Elders

Founded by Nelson Mandela in 2007, The Elders is "an independent group of global leaders working together for peace, justice, human rights, and a sustainable planet."

They work on existential threats to humanity that require a collective response - the climate crisis, pandemics, nuclear weapons, and conflict - a threat in itself and a risk factor for other threats." Explore Nelson Mandela's vision and legacy.

The Elders utilized the southern African concept of 'Ubuntu' - the awareness of our shared humanity. Ubuntu is translated as meaning "I am because we are" or "humanity towards others."

The Elders offer publications, speeches, live-stream panel discussions, webinars, a newsletter, press releases, and news commentaries. View their latest social content on Facebook and sign up to get their newsletter.

Humanity has a rapidly closing window to secure a liveable future. We have less than a decade left to hold the global temperature rise to 1.5°C and avoid irreversible effects on the planet. The climate crisis is hitting the most vulnerable hardest, and accelerating the biodiversity crisis: we need to halve emissions by 2030 and restore nature."

The impact The Elders seek regarding the climate crisis is: "The planetary emergency is contained and the most vulnerable protected through revitalized global cooperation." Specifically, they want to see action on the following priorities to solve the climate crisis:

  • Countries must implement the climate commitments they have made. Lack of political will is the main barrier to making domestic policy changes at the speed and scale needed.

  • While the UN remains the most important multilateral climate space, the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), G7, and G20 must also deliver finance and emissions reductions at scale.

  • Big emitters must be held to account for policies that align with the 1.5°C limit and the global nature goal, and accelerate just transitions.

  • Global solidarity mechanisms strengthen the resilience of those most vulnerable.

  • Public and private finance must be aligned with global climate and nature goals.

  • Voices of women and youth leaders must be heard and create the political space for more ambitious action.

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