The United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres has appointed veteran Indian diplomat Satya Tripathi as the new UN Assistant Secretary-General and Head of the New York Office of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) – in other words, Tripathi is the new UN No. 2 after Mr Guterres.

Satya Tripathi, the development and environment expert as well as a lawyer has been appointed as the Assistant Secretary-General of the United Nations. Born and brought-up in Odisha of India, Satya holds two Bachelor’s degrees – in commerce and law and a masters in law from Behrampur University in Odisha. Being a veteran Indian diplomat, a development economist and a lawyer since 35 years, Satya has worked with the United Nations’ strategic assessment in Europe, Asia and Africa since 1998.

He has played key roles in some of the major operations of the UN, including being the Recovery Coordinator for the $7 billion post-tsunami and post-conflict recovery efforts in Aceh and Nias in Indonesia. Satya currently held the position of Senior Adviser on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development at the UNEP since 2017 and will now succeed Elliott Harris of Trinidad and Tobago as the new United Nations Assistant General; aka the number 2 at the United Nations head.

Satya Tripathi has also been appointed as the head of the New York Office of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). As the head of UNEP, Satya’s responsibilities will include tasks like supporting development, coordination and implementation of strategies on environment and “catalyse a transformational change” inside the UN to “to integrate the environmental dimension of peace, security and sustainable development”. With the double appointment, Satya Tripathi is now the third Indian at senior-levels of UN hierarchy, and India’s first-ever second boss at the UN.