Ator says that the president “has in his hands the chance to change the world and the Global South”; PT member will open UN conference

Hollywood actor Mark Ruffalo and indigenous activist Txai Suruí demanded that President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva (PT) adopt nature preservation as the central theme of his opening speech at the UN (United Nations) assembly, on the 3rd fair (September 19th).

In an article published in the newspaper Folha de S.Paulo this Sunday (September 17, 2023), the duo says that “the eyes of the world will be focused on Brazil” and asks that the PT member use his moment in the spotlight to remind world leaders of the importance of containing the advance of climate change.

Citing recent environmental disasters, Ruffalo and Suruí state that the Global North has already destroyed most of its natural resources, showing that “you are not fit to lead a world on fire”. This would be the moment for the South to take the lead, led by Brazil, which holds most of the Amazon forest.

“Lula certainly understands that such upward leadership would bring Brazil incredible advances in jobs, tourism, education and beyond. But this plan has a major complication: the Amazon has reached a crossroads, and Brazil’s future as a global leader depends on Lula deciding which path to take.”

However, they also say that Lula is repeatedly on the right side of “battle”, but, at times, he seems to contradict himself by supporting the exploration of fossil fuels. For example, the drilling of the mouth of the Amazon by Petrobras, which he defended. The article says he needs to choose his position in the trench.

“He says we don’t need to cut down a single tree to develop the economy. On the other hand, he sometimes seems stuck in an old worldview, unable to see an immediate future without oil – a threat, for example, that continues to loom over the Amazon. Oil exploration would be a death sentence for the forest and for Lula’s ambition, who wants Brazil to be a nation on the rise“, says the text.

For the actor and activist, trust, an important element in preserving the Amazon biome – which is close to the point of no return, which is when it is no longer possible to reverse the impact of destruction – is being dissolved in the midst of global conflicts. The head of the Brazilian Executive would be the only global figure capable of recovering this feeling.

“With his trajectory, sacrifice and beliefs, he is the only leader on the world stage capable of doing so [reconstruir a confiança]. Furthermore, it will need to gain the trust of indigenous peoples, essential allies in this effort whose history with the Brazilian government gives them every reason to distrust. […] Lula has in his hands the chance to change the world and the Global South.”

They end by declaring that the president will show in his speech whether “is ready to rise as a leader for a new emerging and multipolar world”.

“The question is whether Lula really internalized how special Brazil is thanks to the existence of the Amazon rainforest. Many of us are convinced that he has this level of strength and greatness within him. But at the end of the day, it will be your choice to take a stand against it.”these.

Ruffalo reinforced the request this Sunday morning (September 17) on X (formerly Twitter). He shared a video from the NGO (Non-Governmental Organization) Avaaz that shows the sky over New York City (USA), on Friday night (September 15), illuminated with 1,000 drones creating images in support of the Amazon. The action had the help of more than 9 million volunteers from the organization around the world.

“President Lula, the world is watching. More than 9 million people came together to write a message to protect the Amazon in the sky over Manhattan. Now it is your turn. Brazil must lead the protection of this vital ecosystem”wrote the actor.


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