Circularity to Restore the Earth

IIEA11th May 20212min
Ms Andersen argues that incorporating circularity into economic models will be vital to restore the earth and to secure humanity’s future.


This is the third event of the Environmental Resilience lecture series, co-organised by the IIEA and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). On this occasion, Inger Andersen, Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations and Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme, argues that the triple planetary crises of climate change, biodiversity loss, and pollution threaten to undermine decades of progress in reducing poverty, and global efforts to achieve the sustainable development goals. She discusses how societies can build a more resilient future as we seek to kick-start the global engines of growth, following the devastation of the pandemic. Ms Andersen highlights the urgent need to incorporate circularity into economic models. She then outlines the transformative impact that circularity practices will have on the ways we produce and consume, but which will be vital to restore the earth and secure the future of humanity.

About the Speaker:

Inger Andersen has been Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations and Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme since 2019. Between 2015 and 2019, she was the Director General of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).  Ms Andersen has more than 30 years of experience in international development economics, environmental sustainability, strategy, and operations. For 15 years at The World Bank, Ms Andersen held several leadership positions including Vice President of the Middle East and North Africa; Vice President for Sustainable Development and Head of the CGIAR Fund Council. Previously, Ms. Andersen worked for 12 years on drought, desertification; and water management at the United Nations including at the UN Sudano-Sahelian Office and UNDP.