New York, NY (BBN)– United States President-elect Barack Obama has telephoned Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to discuss how to address current crises and strengthen the partnership between the US and the United Nations.

The conversation, which took place on Wednesday afternoon, also focused on other regional and global issues and followed a congratulatory letter Mr. Ban sent Mr. Obama on his election, according to a UN press statement.

Meanwhile UN environmental chiefs have welcomed Mr. Obama’s statement that his presidency “will mark a new chapter in America’s leadership on climate change,” made in a video message to an international conference in California on Tuesday.

“This is very meaningful, and not just for the climate conventions,” UN Environment Programme (UNEP) Executive Director Achim Steiner said in a statement, referring to the upcoming climate convention in Poznan, Poland, from 1 to 12 December. “It is also a signal that in spite of – or rather because of – the current financial crisis, a greener economic policy is finding new momentum.”

Mr. Obama’s remarks were also welcomed by Yvo de Boer, Executive Director of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), which is leading the climate talks.

“Obama indicated that he wants to show leadership both domestically and internationally,” he told reporters, according to a press statement issued by UNEP. “I feel that’s a very important signal of encouragement for all of the countries in these negotiations.

BBN/SI/SS/AD-20Novemner08-11:55 PM (BST)