The organisation promoting the “blue fuel” will join millions from around the world to celebrate the “blue planet” on the occasion of the International Mother Earth Day on 22 April. When combusted, natural gas takes on a shade of blue reminiscent of a fully illuminated Earth as seen from space.
The Gas Exporting Countries Forum (GECF), an intergovernmental platform of 19 countries from four continents, upholds the idea that “Earth and its ecosystems are our home” and that it is necessary to promote harmony with nature and the planet we call home.
In fact, the resolution to mark the International Mother Earth Day at the United Nations General Assembly was introduced by one of the founding members of the GECF, Bolivia, in 2009. It was also in Bolivia, where the Forum’s Fourth Summit of Heads of State and Government, titled its 2017 Santa Cruz de la Sierra Declaration as “Natural Gas: Clean and Reliable Resource for Global Sustainable Development”.
“Natural gas, by virtue of its name, is found in nature. No one is making it in a lab. It’s similar to nature’s bounties of seasons, flora, fauna, and food that our beloved planet provides us to sustain humanity,” states GECF Secretary General HE Yury Sentyurin.
“Developing and implementing policies for natural gas as a reliable, clean, efficient and affordable source in the global energy mix whilst supporting the attainment of the UN Sustainable Development Goals is in complete respect of our duty to the Earth.”
Other values of the International Mother Earth Day encourage fostering of shared responsibilities and uniting people around the world. The Forum, by its very mission, is a platform to share mutual knowledge and unite various nations.
In order to mobilise its members’ strength to meet the most urgent threats to the planet, the GECF has initiated an Environmental Knowledge and Solutions (EKS) framework, under which 13 particular actions, from reduction of greenhouse gasses to mitigation of pollution from energy-related activities, have been highlighted. The GECF has also established Gas Research Institute (GRI) to pioneer new discoveries in natural gas’ role in environmental stewardship among others.
The Forum is an active voice on climate change events and took part in COP24 and COP25. In December 2020, it entered into an agreement with another UN body, UNESCO, to further the noble cause of protecting the Earth. It annually hosts a series of specialised events to collect insights, share best practices on how to treat environmental challenges, and strengthen the sustainable role of natural gas.