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Ban Ki-moon Checks in Brazil How Country Is Fighting Global Warming

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon, has arrived in Brazil on Sunday, November 11, for his first visit to the country. He will be in Brazil for three days. Ban will be in the country accompanied by his wife, Yoo Soon-taek, and high-level UN officials.

Ban will travel to the Brazilian capital Brasí­lia and the states of São Paulo, in the Southeast and Pará, in the North. He intends to have a close look at the country's efforts for combating the effects of climate change.

He will also try to learn how Brazil is acting to attain sustainable development, and achieve the Millennium Objectives, in the fields of hunger and poverty.

In Brasí­lia, he is going to be received by president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva. With Lula, the UN leader will discuss issues pertaining to the international political agenda, such as the UN reform.

Ban will visit, in the municipality of Jaboticabal, in the interior of the state of São Paulo, an ethanol plant. In Pará, the secretary-general will get to know actions for combating deforestation and promoting the sustainable management of the Amazon.

The secretary-general visited Antarctica on Friday to see firsthand the impact of climate change and the melting of glaciers. He flew from Chile's southernmost city of Punta Arenas to that country's station on the Antarctica, Chilean Air Force President Eduardo Frei base, accompanied by officials and scientists.

From there, he took a 45-minute flight over the region, seeing several glaciers. The U.N. leader also visited the Antarctic bases of Uruguay and South Korea, his home country. At the Korean base he was greeted by a small reception and offered traditional Korean food and drink. He then returned to Punta Arenas.

On Thursday, Ban attended the opening of the Ibero-American summit, a gathering of leaders from Latin American countries, Spain and Portugal, which was held in Santiago, Chile.

He told summit delegates that global warming will be a central concern of his term as head of the world body.

Ban Ki-moon said during the first visit by a UN chief to the barren continent on Friday: "I need a political answer. This is an emergency and for emergency situations we need emergency action."

Antarctica has warmed more quickly than anywhere else on Earth in the last 50 years. Ban says he has made climate change a priority since he took office earlier this year and trip comes ahead a major conference on the issue to be held in Bali in December.

The summit is expected to discuss a new agreement to curb carbon emissions after the Kyoto Protocol expires in 2012. Ban flew over melting ice fields and witnessed vast chunks of ice the size of six-story buildings floating off the coast after breaking away from ice shelves.

"All we've seen has been very impressive and beautiful, extraordinarily beautiful," he said, adding: "But at the same time it's disturbing. We've seen … the melting of glaciers."

Bzz/Mercopress

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