NEW YORK: United Nations secretary-general Ban Ki-moon met here on Tuesday with members of the International Advertising Association, in response to the UN's appeal for help in mobilizing support for a global communications campaign to reverse climate change.

The meeting coincided with the openings of the 63rd UN General Assembly and New York's fifth annual Advertising Week event.

IAA executive director Michael Lee has no illusions about the importance of the challenge: "The ad industry is up to the task of making a significant contribution to help change consumer behavior, influence public policy and help the UN make further progress on this issue.

"The ultimate selling proposition might just be saving the planet."

The meeting was attended by many of the agency world's most senior executives, among them InterpublicGroup's Michael Roth, Omnicom's John Wren and Maurice Levy of Publicis Groupe. WPP Group, Havas and MDC Partners were also represented.

Ki-moon told the meeting: "Now is the time for action, and we welcome this assistance from the advertising community, which will bolster our present capacities."

The industry will contribute to a new global initiative due to be presented to UN members at the organization's Climate Change Conference in Poznan, Poland, in December.

Data sourced from AdWeek (USA); additional content by WARC staff