Global action on climate change must not become another victim of the coronavirus outbreak, Boris Johnson will tell a UN summit on Thursday.
The Prime Minister is using a remote address to a meeting to stress that nations need to make “ambitious commitments” to deal with the situation.
Mr Johnson is expected to say: “As the world continues to deal with coronavirus we must look ahead to how we will rebuild, and how we can seize the opportunity to build back better.
“The UK will lead by example, keeping the environment on the global agenda and serving as a launch pad for a global green industrial revolution.
“But no one country can turn the tide – it would be akin to bailing out a liner with a single bucket.
“We cannot let climate action become another victim of coronavirus.
“Let us be the leaders who secure the very health of the planet for our children, grandchildren and generations to come.”
Mr Johnson will announce the UK is to co-host an event with the UN on December 12 to mark the five-year anniversary of the Paris Agreement on climate change.
Downing Street said the gathering would be “an opportunity for world leaders to announce new and enhanced nationally determined contributions (NDCs) and net zero targets.
“As part of the Paris Agreement, all countries are due to submit ambitious new NDCs by the end of this year.
“NDCs set out what each country will do by 2030 to help limit global warming and achieve net zero emissions, from boosting renewable energy to investing in green transport.
“The Prime Minister will call on world leaders to announce genuinely transformational net zero targets and bold climate finance pledges at the December 12 event.”