Pharrell Williams addressed local New York students on International Day of Happiness at the United Nations Headquarters to discuss the importance of addressing climate change on Friday (March 20).
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The “Happy” singer took the stage of the General Assembly Hall and greeted teen attendees with, “I’m staring at the future right now. Hello to the future.”
“Music brought me happiness. And when you find out what makes you happy — and it can be something as detailed as a long-term goal or it can be something as simple as the way I feel when my son smiles — you should know that happiness is your birthright,” Williams said. “It’s a reaction to something.”
“We have to move from climate change to climate action,” Williams said. “We’re in trouble but we can change.”
In partnership with the UN Foundation, Williams launched a global online “Happy Party.” The online campaign’s aim is to have supporters sign the Live Earth Petition, which will urge global leaders to tackle climate change and make it a priority at the December summit. He invited fans to upload personal photos on globalhappyparty.com that will be transformed into a gif to the “Happy” song.
Following his address, the singer and fellow speakers and environmental advocates Philippe Cousteau and Sylvia Earle were mobbed by students for photos when “Happy” played on the speakers, Daily Mail reported.
This article originally appeared in THR.com.