International Monetary Fund Christine Lagarde and famed Naturalist and Broadcaster David Attenborough are drawing links between the natural world and the global economy and calling for action to avert the worst impacts of climate change, plastics pollution and mass extinctions.
In an event at the Spring Meetings of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank, Lagarde asked Attenborough about the environment and how the economy is connected to it.
“You are in charge of global nature. Let’s just assume for a second. And I’m in charge of the global economy, just for a second. What’s the connection between us,” asked Lagarde.
“Financial systems have a lot in common with the natural world systems. Both are economies. Both, for example, if you deal with your investment with your capital, it’s fine as far as I understand these things, it’s fine if you can take take the profit and take the investment. But, you wouldn’t be so silly as to eat into the capital? Would you not? But that is what we’re doing with the natural world all the time,” he answered.
Attenborough shared anecdotes from his long career as a presenter of wildlife documentaries and sounded the alarm about what he called a new fresh extinction.
Lagarde asked the audience if anyone had hope, to which Attenborough energetically raised his hand.
“And why,” he asked.
“Because young people understand these situations better than they have done in my lifetime and young people today are saying to those of us who’ve got hands on power, ‘Do something and we will support you.’ That’s why I have hope,” said Attenborough.