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Our Part: Enlisting Allies To Fight Climate Change

"Our Part": Enlisting Powerful Allies In An Ambitious Awareness Campaign To Promote Sustainable Lifestyle And Combat Climate Change

21 April, Beijing--The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) announced today that Chinese actress/celebrity Zhou Xun was appointed as its first National Goodwill Ambassador (NGWA) with a special focus on promoting environmental sustainability. Meanwhile, a multimedia awareness campaign titled "Our Part" kicked off featuring Zhou Xun and UNDP to advocate simple, effective lifestyle changes to reduce carbon footprints and collectively combat climate change.

"I would like to thank you, Zhou Xun, for touching our hearts with your acting, and now, for helping us in our mission to tackle climate change. We are proud to welcome you as the newest member of the UN family and honored to call you the first National Goodwill Ambassador for UNDP China," said Khalid Malik, UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in China.

"Zhou Xun has set a good example in her own life to protect the environment that also impacts people around her. It only seems fitting that she has chosen to help the United Nations promote environmental awareness and engage her constituencies to make lasting and meaningful changes in our joint campaign," Malik said.

"Climate change has become the defining issue of our time, set to transform the very way we live. Climate change poses risks towards the attainment of the Millennium Development Goals and we must all do our part to tackle this challenge head-on," he added.

Launched on the eve of Earth Day, in collaboration with Huayi Media Brothers Times Culture Agency, Modern Media and sohu.com, the two-year, multi-media campaign aims to leverage Zhou Xun's star power to motivate individuals to take part in the fight against climate change by adopting simple lifestyle habits such as using reusable chopsticks in restaurants or switching to more efficient, energy saving light bulbs.

Malik pointed out that over the past year, the issue of climate change has finally hit a coverage tipping point, receiving wide attention in the world's media. "However, while more and more people in China and around the world become aware of the issue, many feel powerless to alleviate it and rather see the reduction of carbon emissions as something to be tackled by Governments and big industries."

"Our Part" is meant to tell people that small lifestyle changes can collectively make a big difference. By working with Zhou Xun and our partners, we hope to empower people with the right tools and incentives to reduce their carbon footprints by leading a more energy efficient lifestyle."

Zhou Xun described her appointment as an honor and responsibility. Regarding how to motivate people to practice environmental lifestyle habits, she said: "It's not about the message, but the delivery. Based on our online survey which had over 40,000 participants and also my personal experience from my last three film sets, it was obvious that people know about green tips. The issue is how to get people to voluntarily practice them. Our goal is to find a clever way to make green tips hip, fashionable and fun. We want people to be proud to practice them."

"Based on our strong commitment to social responsibility, Modern Media has used its media power to convey the message of living a healthy and sustainable life," said Thomas Shao, CEO of Modern Media. "Our work is to entertain, educate, inspire and ultimately drive change so our readers can internalize the concept of environmental sustainability in their daily lives. The life attitude we hope to communicate to our readers can be summarized as 'concern', 'care' and 'love'."

To support the campaign, sohu.com hosted an online competition, calling on the public to submit innovative designs for the official name and logo of the campaign. In the course of one month, over 80 logo ideas were submitted and over 40,000 individuals participated in the environmental survey also featured on the website. Selected logo ideas were displayed and winners awarded at the press conference.

Zhou Xun also unveiled her work plan as National Goodwill Ambassador after the appointment. She promised to spend time visiting UNDP climate change project sites this year.

Background:

UNDP is the UN's global development network, advocating for change and connecting countries to knowledge, experience and recourses to help people build a better life.

Appointed by its headquarters, UNDP have six global Goodwill Ambassadors. They are soccer legends Ronaldo from Brazil, Zinédine Zidane from France and Didier Drogba from Côte de Ivoire, tennis star Maria Sharapova, Japanese actress Misako Kono and Crown Prince Haakon Magnus of Norway.

Modern Media:

Since its foundation in1993, Modern Media Group has aimed to become a national media brand known for publishing high quality and stylish magazines.

Its publications include Modern Weekly, The Outlook Magazine, Asian Business Leaders, Life Magazine, Car and Dream, LOHAS and City Magazine.

Zhou Xun (BALZAC AND THE LITTLE CHINESE SEAMSTRESS, THE BANQUET, PERHAPS LOVE) is an award-winning actress, fashion icon and eco activist.

Resources:

'Our Part' Campaign: http://xiaozhou-undp.yule.sohu.com

UNDP China: http://www.undp.org.cn

ENDS

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