The United Nations today honoured Prime Minister Narendra Modi with the 'Champions for Earth' award for the various initiatives taken by his government towards the protection of the environment. The award has been given for steps including the 'No plastic by 2022' pledge announced by his government. Accepting the award from UN chief Antonio Guterres, Prime Minister Modi said, "It is an honour for Indians. Indians are committed to save the environment" He went on to say, "This award his for those who worship environment. The major contributors of this award are tribals who take care of jungles, fishermen who only take from the ocean the quantity to fulfil their needs and the farmers of the country." "If we are not worried about climate, then we cannot prevent calamity. The world is recognising India's contribution in the field of environment," he added. Speaking on the steps taken by his government towards the progress of the country, the prime minister said that the pace of development requires that we change urban lifestyles. "Today India is among those countries where urbanisation is growing very rapidly. Because of this, it is the need of the hour to change tha urbal lifestyle to smart and sustainable ways." "The infrastructure of the country is being developed keeping sustainable development and inclusive growth in mind," he said. The Prime Minister further said that national highways, expressways across the country are being turned eco-friendly, green corridors are being developed, and city transport networks like metros are also being connected to solar energy. Praising Modi, UN Chief Antonio Guterres said that the PM recognises climate change poses a direct existential threat to us, knows what we need to do to avoid a catastrophe. "Other leaders also recognise, know and understand, but the difference is that he not only recognises but he acts." "A green economy is a good economy. Technology is on the side of those who believe in a green economy. .Those who believe in a grey economy have a grey future", he added. Congratulating the PM, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj said Indians do not consider Earth as just as a planet but also as their mother. "Since childhood, when we get down from you bed, we have been trained by our parents to pray to mother Earth and request her forgiveness for keeping our feet on her. That is Indian culture," she said. Announcing the award earleir, the UN Environment Programme had said, \u201cThis year's laureates are recognised for a combination of bold, innovative and tireless efforts to tackle some of the most urgent environmental issues of our times\u201d The PM along with French President Emmanuel Macron have been jointly recognised in the Policy Leadership category for their contribution in championing the International Solar Alliance and encouraging new areas of levels of cooperation on environmental steps, including Macron\u2019s initiatives on the Global agreement for the Environment and Modi\u2019s unprecedented determination to remove all single-use plastic in India by 2022.