The man in charge of the United Nations touches down in Auckland today for a three day trip with a focus on climate change.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres – the former Prime Minister of Portugal – will take part in a number of events in Auckland and Christchurch and will be meeting Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern later today.

Guterres has been on tour in the Pacific to see how climate change was impacting the region, which includes visits to Tuvalu, Vanuatu, Fiji and New Zealand.

His visit comes just days after the Government unveiled the Zero Carbon Act – legislation that aims to reduce all greenhouse gasses, excluding biogenic methane, to net zero by 2050.


Guterres has not been shy about his views on climate change.

Speaking to the Associated Press recently, he said the world needed to dramatically change the way vehicles, homes and factories were fuelled to limit global warming.

The alternative, he said, "would mean a catastrophic situation for the whole world".

His tour of the Pacific comes just months before the highly anticipated UN Climate Action Summit in September.

Ardern said she was looking forward to welcoming Guterres to the country this weekend.

"The United Nations is the forum where we collectively address the global challenges we face, including climate change and international security.

She said Guterres' visit is an opportunity to share some of the innovative ways New Zealand is addressing these issues.

"New Zealand strongly supports the role of the United Nations in upholding the international rules-based system and ensuring all voices are able to be heard."


Guterres is scheduled to attend a breakfast with youth climate change and environmental leaders, chaired by Climate Change Minister James Shaw, on Monday morning.

Later in the day, he will participate in a roundtable with the Pasifika Community Organisations and International NGOs, before giving a keynote speech at the Auckland University of Technology's South Auckland campus.

He will also participate in a climate change and agriculture event in Christchurch on Tuesday, as well as laying a floral tribute to the victims of the March 15 terror attack.